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I'm sorry that I could not write to you for such a long time. I was so busy because of the Euro. What does the Euro have to do with me? I told you I am working in Finance. When the Euro era began on January first, I got a lot of calls from subscribers and I had to make many more visits than usual. Many bankers wanted to know if my company, Bridge, provided Euro related information, such as information about the Euro currency price, Euro money market, Euro bonds and everything else about the Euro. As we do provide all this information, I had to be on the phone answering inquiries from subscribers all day long.
On the first business day, the third of January, I sometimes had to speak on two phones at a time, one on each ear. The calls are still coming in till now. I also have to visit each of my customers, which number around 40. They want historical data on the Euro currency and other information, such as interest rates and cross currencies. A chart can be made with this historical data and dealers can try to guess the future price movement from it. Graphs are very important tools for some dealers. They can't trade without graphs. We say they are blind with open eyes. In English, you might say it is a case of the blind leading the blind.
As for the historical data, we have a two-year history of data. How do you think we got data for a two-year period when the Euro started just a week ago? The Hong Kong & Shanghai Bank calculated the value of the ECU with conversion rates. The ECU is the invisible pre-currency of the Euro currency and it was used and quoted as a benchmark by banks before the Euro started. The conversion rates are the exchange rates between the Euro and the currencies of the eleven countries that composed the European union.
The Euro is being spotlighted for its future influence on the world finance market. Many financial analysts say that it's been doing all right till now and they are optimistic about the Euro. However, it has been only 10 days since the introduction of the Euro. Nobody can tell with surety what the Euro will become after all. The Euro might turn out to be a failure and the EMU might experience economic hardship. Or, perhaps there might soon be Euro money in your wallets instead of greenbacks.
Are you going to open an Euro account soon at your bank?
Choi Hae-Young, Jan11, 1999
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