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Bipartisan bill targets currency manipulation

Keywords: Tags  trade reform, currency bill, House of Representatives, Tim Murphy, Congressional Steel Caucus, Sandy Levin, Tim Ryan, Mo Brooks subsidy

NEW YORK — A bill to hold currency manipulators accountable was introduced in the House of Representatives March 20.

The Currency Reform for Fair Trade Act of 2013 would allow the Commerce Department to treat undervalued currency as a subsidy. The House of Representatives passed a similar bill with bipartisan support in the last Congress, but it did not reach the Senate (, Nov. 14, 2011).

"Currency manipulation to gain an unfair competitive advantage is among the most destructive trade-distorting practices used today," Thomas J. Gibson, president and chief executive officer of the American Iron and Steel Institute, said in a statement. "While China has been the largest offender, in today’s weak global economy, an increasing number of governments are manipulating their currencies to insulate their domestic producers. This is devastating to U.S. domestic manufacturers—especially the steel industry—and is contributing to the nation’s inability to fully recover from the recession."

The bill was introduced by Rep. Tim Murphy (R., Pa.), chairman of the Congressional Steel Caucus, as well as Sandy Levin (D., Mich.), Tim Ryan (D., Ohio) and Mo Brooks (R., Ala.). Murphy is expected to testify at the joint Congressional Steel Caucus and House Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade hearing March 21.

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