Supermodels, according to modern legend, once refused to get out of bed for less than $10,000 a day. Now, the world’s wealthiest catwalk queen has taken that maxim a step further - by demanding that, when the bulging pay packet does fall into her designer-clad lap, it is not denominated in dollars.
Gisele Bündchen, the 27-year-old Brazilian who is the face of more than 20 brands worldwide and is reported to have a personal fortune of $150m (£72m), has said she wants to be paid in euros for fear that the US currency will continue to weaken amid turmoil in the financial markets. Her concerns follow warnings about the dollar from the American billionaire Warren Buffet and the banker Bill Gross.
Bündchen’s twin sister and manager, Patricia, said that when the model signed her latest deal to represent Pantene hair products, she demanded that the brand owner, Procter & Gamble, pay her in euros.
“Contracts starting now are more attractive in euros because we don’t know what will happen to the dollar,” Patricia Bündchen told the Bloomberg news agency. Gisele will also be paid in euros for the deal she struck last October with Dolce & Gabbana SpA in Milan to promote the Italian designer’s new fragrance, The One.
Neither Procter & Gamble nor Anne Nelson, Bündchen’s agent at the New York model agency IMG Models, wished to comment.
Last week Mr Gross, manager of the world’s biggest bond fund, said that moving away from the dollar “should be on top of the list” for those looking to invest money. “We’ve told all of our clients that if you only had one idea, one investment, it would be to buy an investment in a non-dollar currency,” said the chief investment officer of Pacific Investment Management Co in California.
Mr Buffet, one of the world’s richest men, said last month that his faith in the dollar was dwindling fast. Speaking about his |investment vehicle Berkshire Hathaway, the tycoon said: “We are still negative on the dollar relative to most other major currencies, so we bought stocks in companies that earn their money in other currencies.”
The US dollar hit an all-time low against the euro, the Canadian dollar and the Chinese yuan last week. The euro pushed above $1.45 for the first time after the Federal Reserve cut interest rates for a second successive time to 4.5 per cent, while the pound rose to a 26-year high at $2.08. Many forecasters say the dollar is likely to continue to slide downwards.