Use the Weak Dollar to Negotiate Better Trade Terms

The falling dollar spares no one. The average daily shopping list contains loads of products and services with imported content. Some of us travel abroad every year. Perhaps you have a fondness for things made in other countries. The dollar is an instrument of global trade. China and the Middle East have enormous stashes of dollars. The Fed adds to the mayhem. Crashing interest rates tempt people to borrow more. Much of this money goes into buying stocks and commodities from our adversaries. The dollar is set to keep falling, at least as long as the Bush administration stays put. What can you do?

Ask for credit. This is different from taking a loan. The trick is to stay away from increasing your purchases. Just ask for time to pay for whatever you will buy anyway. It could be a store around the corner, or an associate of a foreign manufacturer or service provider. Be careful about doing deals in Euros, RMB, or currencies with better financial administration than we suffer. This piece is about paying in dollars only. Hold on to your cash for dear life. Your wallet is not a safe parking slot. Switch to a Debit Card, and put off swiping it for as long as possible.

Your credit could get lumped with expensive interest. Negotiate as though you plan cash on the barrel-head. Open the credit matter only after a price has been haggled to death. It is like poker. Do not show your hand until the sucker is ready for the kill.

Why should a store switch from cash? That is because the recession swells inventories. Some products have limited shelf lives. Others go out of fashion. Your credit foray can reap rich dividends. Just look for things which are close to the ‘Best Before’ deadline on labels.