As the dollar clamp tightens in Argentina, the greenback traded at 6.31 Pesos
The US dollar in Argentina soared on Monday and was trading in the “blue” or parallel market at 6.31 Pesos considerable higher than last Friday. The official rate climbed a modest half cent to 4.53 and 4.575 Pesos.
Argentina is short of foreign currency and needs the dollars to honour maturing debt and to pay for imports.
With the tightening of the clamp on the purchase of greenbacks and ahead of winter holidays in Argentina, buyers turned to the parallel market to purchase dollars to travel abroad according to operators.
Last week the Argentine Central bank said that residents could only purchase dollars in money exchange houses with cheques, debit account or bank transfer, meaning operations had to be done mostly in banks, --under the same conditions--, with no need for any optional trading.
However even abiding by the rules, the sale of dollars is a complicated process with no guarantee of obtaining the desired sum.
According to Buenos Aires money operators last week the Central Bank was able to hoard 600 million dollars from daily operations having totalled an estimate 8 billion dollars in the first six months of the year. “Monday ended with purchases of 90 million dollars”.
Several government officials have come out in public to argue that Argentina has its own currency, the Peso and there is no need to save or make real estate deals in US dollars. “Dollars are to pay debts and imports”, has been the preaching.
Even President Cristina Fernandez who has/had considerable sums of money in several banks has said she converted her dollars to Argentine Pesos.
However in spite of the clamp and attempts to catch every possible dollar, Argentines managed to exit 131 million dollars during the last week. In effect since the free purchase of dollars was blocked last October, savings accounts in greenbacks in Argentina have dropped from 14.9 billion to 8.9 billion, approximately 40%.
The data was provided by the Central bank. “The drop in foreign currency deposits in the private banking system continues and during the week reached a daily average of 25 million dollars”.
Last July 5 the Argentine central bank banned the sale of dollars for savings by “suspending access to the local money exchange market for the purchase of foreign assets with no declared specific purpose”.