Some interesting new from and about Korea:
- Third time’s a charm. Maybe. Korea will attempt a 3rd rocket launch on Friday the 26th to put a satellite into orbit. I honestly hope this one makes it. If this one fails it will be horrendously shameful for a country with such a high level of technology in other aspects of their society. I hope it goes up and stays there.
- Speaking of going up, I hope the Korean won continues to go up in value. The graph on the right shows the number of KRW required to buy one US dollar and although the curve is a continuing downward trend for the past five months, it means the value of the KRW is going up. It takes less won to buy a dollar and so those of us who exchange our money for dollars will net more. The Euro, Pound and Canadian dollar are also losing value relative to the won. Personally, I’d like nothing more than for the KRW to be about 500 (or less) to the Dollar so every million won I ship home nets me $2k. But Hyundai can’t make much money selling cars at that rate and even today’s closing price of 1102 is likely causing a few executives to suck their chairs up into some orifices. Don’t expect this trend to continue without the Bank of Korea stepping in with some action to drop the value of the won back to about 1130 or so.
- South Korea gets to wear the big boy pants at the U.N. The country was voted in as a non-permanent member of the security council. Although some experts think the vote means that South Korea is finally getting some respect internationally, the identity of other new members of the security council might temper that just a bit; Predominantly rural Rwanda was also voted in as was Luxemburg with a population of just over 500,000.
- Despite warnings of military retaliation if leaflets were dropped, all is quiet on the northern front. The Korean police blocked activists from dropping all their leaflets via balloons, but they still managed to get several thousand off.
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