As if it were a season of the year, Argentina has at the gates of spring a new and foreseeable dollar crisis. President Alberto Fernandez it has had no alternative but to protect the Central Bank’s reserves, of some 42 billion dollars (35.4 million dollars), after months of a sustained loss of foreign exchange. A drain endangers the objective of economic recovery of a country whose economy will fall by 12% as a result of the crisis inherited from the right-wing government and the pandemic.
When announcing the new measures that limit the purchase of the American currency for his savings, Fernández has said that the dollar must stop being “a speculation mechanism, a variable for some to accumulate dollars, in a country where they are needed to produce, not to save. “As might be expected, the financial market reacted badly. The price of the currency has begun to climb in the illegal circuits of exchange that , under the increasingly weakening rigors of quarantine, they often work through WhatsApp.
Between 2015 and 2019, 86,000 million dollars escaped. The former president of the country, Mauricio Macri, he was forced at the end of his presidency, against his wishes, to establish restrictions on the purchase of the currency that have now been aggravated. From the “exchange stocks” it has gone to the “super stocks”. The newspaper ‘La Nación’ seems to have spoken on behalf of those affected. “The pandemic is the Government“, He has written.
However, Fernández has decided to pay the cost of a measure that also affects purchases abroad with a credit card and the payment of streaming services. The background of this decision It hides a strong dispute with the economic sectors that are pressing for a devaluation of magnitude to increase the profits of companies that export and price their assets in dollars.
Fight for depreciation
The fight for depreciation has just started and can lead to another once in a market hit. A bitter medicine that society has already taken on several occasions, in 1975, 1981, 1989, 1991, 2002 and 2019.
Until last Wednesday, the dollar was paid in banks at 79.25 pesos. A 30% tax was added to that price. Every Argentinian could buy $ 200 per month, either to save or resell them and, with that difference, mitigate the hardships.
To meet that demand, the Central Bank disposed of 1,826 million dollars. Along the way he lost another 6,757 million dollars because many companies had taken loans preferential pesos in pesos, granted by the State within the framework of confinement, and then they exchanged those sums for US bills.
The Argentine economy, in fact, “bimonetaria”. The dollar is not only a saving and investment currency. Regulates everyday trifles and collective obsessions. Argentines have saved 225,516 million dollars in foreign banks.