As an anthropologist, I am fascinated by behavioral and social biases. One bias investors have is over allocation to their home markets. This makes sense if there is an information edge but otherwise can be expensive.
The objective for many investors isn't to maximize return, it is to increase purchasing power. To that end currency allocations should be considered. The dollar's weakness is old news. The fundamentals of US debt to GDP when one considers outstanding legislative entitlements and demographics do not paint a happy picture going forward for the USD.
An interesting place to put cash investments is the Norwegian Krone. Norway has the following economics attributes.
- 17.2% GDP government surplus expected for 2008
- Stable political environment
- 2008 predicted GDP growth of 3.8%
- Rule of law
- Intelligent resource allocation of petroleum reserves and state petroleum fund
- Current T-bill yield of 5.76%
As a former foreign exchange quantitative analyst and prop trader, it is interesting to note that currencies have a tendency for serial autocorrelation. If you are a professional money manager, it is fairly easy to gain access to the Norwegian Krone and pick a point on the yield curve that matches your risk and investment horizon.
Information from the Norwegian central bank can be found here.
For retail investors, www.everbank.com may be interesting to look at.
The data for the chart above is from OANDA.com
Here is the spreadsheet data. Download USDNorwegianKrone.xls
Full disclosure: I have no relationship with OANDA, Everbank and don't currently hold a Norwegian Krone position. I did live in Denmark and Sweden with my wife for brief periods of time and found them highly agreeable. :)