Editor's note: This is the second of a two-part series on the G-20. Part I examined efforts to rebalance the global economy. Part II examines efforts to reform the global monetary system.
Leading up to and throughout the G-20 finance ministers meeting last weekend, murmurs were heard about the role of the dollar and the need to reform the global monetary system. This is nothing new, of course, as a variety of major economies have expressed an interest in demoting the dollar since the global financial crisis broke out in 2008. The most recent examples came from Brazil and China, who picked up where France left off a little more than a month ago. But despite the chorus of calls for monetary-system overhaul, the prospects for meaningful change are dim.
Early last month, French President Nicolas Sarkozy began promoting a plan for a more diverse international monetary system that would rely less on the dollar as the world's primary reserve currency. However, after meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama, Sarkozy appeared to back off, saying that the dollar would remain top dog among international currencies.