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Showing posts with label Brazil. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Brazil. Show all posts

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Are We a 'Criminal Element'?

by Bill Bonner 


Back in the USA, stocks rose again yesterday. The Dow finished up 128 points. Gold fell $25 per ounce yesterday... and everybody seems to think it will be going down forever. (A word of caution: probably not.)
Last week, we went to São Paulo, Brazil. There, too, we found taxi drivers who knew a lot more about monetary crises than the typical US economist. Said one:
I remember. I was just a kid. But my father would call and tell us to run to the grocery store. He had just been paid. We'd dash for the grocery story, meet him there and buy everything we could. We spent every cent in just a few minutes.
Our friend was recalling what it was like in the late 1980s in Brazil. The government had caused inflation... then hyperinflation. Prices rose so fast that as soon as people got some cash they ran to the grocery store to spend it.
Later, there was no point. In 1990, hyperinflation in Brazil reached 30,000%. What cost 1 real (the Brazilian currency) in 1980 cost 1 trillion in 1997. The hyperinflation wiped out the middle class... and wiped the shelves clean.
"It's hard to run a business when you don't know what your money is going to be worth," said our friend. "Businesses tended to just stop."

From Harare to Buenos Aires...

And here in Argentina, there came an announcement this week. The government will freeze the price of gasoline for the next six months.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Thanks, World Reserve Currency, But No Thanks: Australia And China To Enable Direct Currency Convertibility

by Tyler Durden 

A month ago we pointed out that as a result of Australia's unprecedented reliance on China as a target export market, accounting for nearly 30% of all Australian exports (with the flipside being just as true, as Australia now is the fifth-biggest source of Chinese imports), the two countries may as well be joined at the hip.

Over the weekend, Australia appears to have come to the same conclusion, with the Australian reporting that the land down under is set to say goodbye to the world's "reserve currency" in its trade dealings with the world's biggest marginal economic power, China, and will enable the direct convertibility of the Australian dollar into Chinese yuan, without US Dollar intermediation, in the process "slashing costs for thousands of business" and also confirming speculation that China is fully intent on, little by little, chipping away at the dollar's reserve currency status until one day it no longer is.