. How The US Dollar Became King Of Reserve Currency? - CapitalStreet FX

How the US dollar became king of Reserve Currency?

How the US dollar became king of Reserve Currency?

09 Jan 2023


You may be wondering how the US dollar became the most powerful reserve currency. Here’s a look at some of the factors that have helped make it a global powerhouse.

Introduction to Bretton Woods Agreement

You may be wondering how the US dollar became the most powerful reserve currency.
Well, it all started with the Bretton Woods Agreement. This was an agreement that was made in 1944 between 44 Allied nations who wanted to rebuild the global economy after World War II. Under this agreement, the US dollar was converted into gold, which established a system of payments based on the dollar. This helped to stabilize global currencies and prevented economic collapse.

In addition, Bretton Woods also established a system of fixed currency exchange rates using gold as the universal standard. This meant that countries could exchange their currency for US dollars, which would then be exchanged for gold. This allowed international trade to flourish and prevented economic instability.

Currency Pegs and the US Dollar

The Bretton Woods Agreement solidified the US dollar as the most powerful reserve currency in the world.
One of the reasons the dollar was so successful is that it was pegged to gold. This meant that other countries could exchange their currency for US dollars, which were backed by gold reserves. This gave other countries faith in the dollar, and made it more valuable.

The agreement also allowed the US to borrow money easily, and impose sanctions on other countries. This gave the US a lot of power in the world economy.

The Rise of the Gold Standard

The Bretton Woods Agreement was a major turning point in the history of the US dollar. Signed in 1944, it paved the way for the dollar to become the most powerful reserve currency in the world. How did it achieve this?

Essentially, the Bretton Woods Agreement solidified the dollar’s position as the global reserve currency. It did this by tying the value of the dollar to gold, and by making the US responsible for controlling most of the world’s gold supply. This gave other countries confidence that they could rely on the US dollar as a stable currency and led to an increase in foreign bank reserves being held in US dollars.

As a result of all this, over 61% of foreign bank reserves are currently held in US dollars. This makes the US dollar one of the most successful reserve currencies in history.

100 years agreement with Saudi Arabia to sell oil in USD

Did you know that there’s an agreement in place between the United States and Saudi Arabia that goes back nearly 100 years? It’s true! And what’s even more interesting is that this agreement has a lot to do with how the US dollar became the most powerful reserve currency.

Under the agreement, Saudi Arabia agreed to sell its oil exclusively in US dollars. Why is this important? Because Saudi Arabia is what’s known as the “oil marker,” meaning that it sets the price of oil. And since oil is priced in US dollars, that means that other countries have to hold USD in order to buy oil.

So, essentially, the agreement between the US and Saudi Arabia led to the USD becoming the most commonly held reserve currency. Crazy, right?

The collapse of the Gold Standard and its Impact on the US Dollar

The gold standard collapsed due to a number of reasons, but the most important one was the cost of the Vietnam War. As the war dragged on, the United States began to print more and more money to fund it, and this led to inflation.
Other countries started to lose faith in the dollar and started demanding that their dollars be exchanged for gold. The United States didn’t have enough gold to meet these demands, so they were forced to abandon the gold standard in 1971.

The move away from the gold standard had a huge impact on the dollar. It lost its peg to gold, and its value started to float on international markets. However, because the dollar was still used in international trade and because the United States still had the largest economy in the world, other countries continued to hold onto dollars as a reserve currency.

Impact of Recent Events on the Value of the US Dollar

The recent coronavirus pandemic and ensuing market crash have called into question the US dollar’s status as the world’s reserve currency.

The virus has decimated the global economy, with businesses shutting down and consumers staying home. This has led to a decrease in demand for the US dollar, as people are using less of it to buy goods and services.

The stock market crash has also had an impact on the value of the dollar. When stock prices go down, investors tend to sell their assets and move their money into cash, which is typically denominated in US dollars. This causes the demand for dollars to increase, and the value of the currency to go up.

However, it’s important to keep in mind that these are short-term events, and they don’t necessarily mean that the US dollar is losing its status as the world’s reserve currency. In fact, many experts believe that the dollar will continue to be the dominant reserve currency for years to come.


So, what does this mean for the average person on the street? The rise of the petrodollar created a stable platform for global trade and also helped to maintain the American standard of living. America was able to import goods and oil at a cheaper price, while other countries could import American goods at a stable rate.
But as we know, all good things must come to an end. The petrodollar is slowly losing its influence, and other countries are starting to move away from the dollar. This could mean big changes for the American economy in the years to come.