A Free Business Management Lesson from the Gentle King in Riyadh

We wanted to write about a piece about a tête-à-tête on a royal ranch. President Bush wanted more oil. It was the best he could do to keep the White House with his party. How will you vote if gasoline prices keep rising? The host was polite but firm. Saudi Arabia would not pump more oil. You do not nurse cartels to break them over a power lunch.

Back to the point – what does this have to do with you? The Fed fiddles as the dollar drops. We are as guilty as the rest. A weak dollar should help our exports. Where is the catch? You could have stock in a company with deceptive exports. The latter means higher export figures with lower quantities. Such a trend could spell decline for your dividends. What should you do?

You could copy China if you make something for exports. Ask for payments in Euros rather than dollars. What if you cannot negotiate hard enough for that? Fall back to discounts for early payment. Share dollar depreciation benefits with your customers.

What if you are an investor? Read between the export lines of your company reports. Insist on facts about trends in quantities shipped and margins. Drop stocks with real declines in exports. Things will get tougher once the economy is professionally managed.

One conclusion that everyone can reach: Saudi royalty is never there for any friends in need.