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The bank in china has to have an account at an intermediary bank, and order a transfer from that account to the account of the US bank. Therefore the chinese bank needs to have the dollars.


For large currency transactions, the big banks go through an intermediary called CLS. Both sides to a transaction transfer funds (in form of central bank deposits) to the CLS group. Then simultaneously these are transferred to the respective parties. Or if one side fails to deliver CLS returns the funds of the other party. See ...


If you are specifically looking to analyze the US dollar, you can use the US dollar index $USDX (or dollar spot index DXY). There are many additional "baskets" for this and other currencies, such as Markit iBoxxFX Trade-Weighted Indices, based on central banks’ basket exchange rates, which track the performance of a currency against a defined basket of ...

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