Thursday, November 19, 2015

Dealing with a Strong U.S. Dollar

Posted by Paige Diller, Intern

As the strength of the U.S. dollar is on the rise, a small group of representatives from local businesses sat down for a roundtable discussion to gain insight and share advice on how to manage the currency’s impact on exports and trade.

Currency Strength and Exporting Impacts Explained.
Though the U.S. dollar gaining strength is an indication of a recovering economy, it negatively impacts U.S. companies that export their goods and services. For example, in November of 2014, a good that was produced and priced at $5 by a U.S. company could be purchased by a European company for 4. A year later, the same U.S. company making the same product and priced at the same $5 would now cost a European company 4.61.

The cost of buying U.S. goods and services is going up for international companies while U.S. companies are not necessarily pulling in any additional revenues.  

Strategies for Dealing with the Strong U.S. Dollar.
The World Trade Center hosted event “Strategies for Dealing with a Strong U.S. Dollar” facilitated interactions between local companies who all face this challenge. The discussion was led by Matt Blyth of Fulton International Group, Kirk Elken of Securitas Global Risk Solutions, and Timothy Deitrich of Barley Snyder. Together they were able to provide insight from different positions with expertise in foreign exchange strategies, credit insurance options, and legal considerations, respectively.

A variety of manufacturing companies, from different industries within the manufacturing field, participated in this conversation. Of the entire discussion, Letters of Credit to assure reliability of customers, cultural challenges that impact business interactions, and the changing international environment of competition were just a few topics introduced; problems and challenges were responded to with advice and potential solutions from others.

One Part of a Bigger Picture.
Though the focus of this conversation was the strength of the U.S. dollar and the challenges that presents, it was noted that this is one part of a bigger picture. Success in exporting is dependent on having a wide perspective of the many challenges exporting may present and having a balanced approach in developing solutions for operating in the international market.

As our speakers so eloquently concluded, there is no “magic solution” to these challenges. However, roundtable conversations where ideas, advice, and insight can be shared is an immeasurably valuable resource in pursuing exporting success and proficiency.

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