Venezuela pumps dollars, slows rout in currency


Lost amid the economic chaos in Venezuela, the bolivar has actually stabilised somewhat.
In the six weeks since the initial plunge after the government simultaneously carried out a massive devaluation and redenomination of the currency, it has slid just 19 percent in the black market.
That may not constitute stabilisation in most foreign-exchange markets, but in Venezuela, where hyperinflation has been ravaging the economy for months on end, it’s the closest thing to normality seen in a while.
While far from a major policy victory and possibly only ephemeral, the bolivar’s relative stability is a rare feat for Venezuela and could even help slow the breakneck pace of hyperinflation, which is forecast to reach 1 million percent this year. President Nicolas Maduro devalued the bolivar by 95 percent last month in what was perceived as a tacit acceptance of the ubiquitous black-market exchange, where most Venezuelans acquire dollars.
As part of his new economic plan, Maduro also increased the frequency of the country’s official dollar auctions known as DICOM to three a week from one. The central bank auctioned $5.3 million at 62 bolivars per dollar, the highest daily amount since the system started operating more frequently in February, according to data from Caracas-based banking consultancy Banca y Negocios.

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