Warren Hill in his book, Competing in the Global Marketplace states that "international financing extended by banks around the world reporting to the Bank for International Settlements is estimated at $6.4 trillion, including $4.6 trillion net international lending. Total world banking assets are put at more than $20 trillion, insurance premiums at $2 trillion, stock market capitalization at over $10 trillion, and market value of listed bonds at about $10 trillion. In addition, practically every international trade in goods or services requires credit, capital, foreign exchange, and insurance" (Hill, 2004). Because of the large amount of currencies, as well as the wide variety amongst currencies, governments who wish to participate in trading must be able to protect their investments and transactions. This paper will to discuss the use of hard and soft currencies in aiding in the protection of those investments and/or transactions.
Soft Currency is defined as, "weak currency who's value fluctuates often" (Investopedia).
Soft currency is a less desirable means of payment when compared to hard currency, primarily due to reliability. Countries with soft currency tend to have frequent currency devaluation, credit payment difficulties and political unrest. Soft currency is typically not able to be exchanged for currency of other countries due to its unrealistic exchange rates. Some of the current soft currencies are the peso, the Baht, Zlotys and the Hong Kong dollar.
According to Investopedia, hard currency is defined as "a currency, usually from a highly industrialized country, that is widely accepted around the world as a form of payment for goods and services. By its nature, hard currency is expected to remain relatively stable through a short period of time and to be highly liquid in the foreign exchange market. Another condition for hard currencies is that it comes from a politically and economically stable...