Paper Money

Venezuela goes big with new inflationary note

Venezuela has a way to go match Zimbabwean levels of inflation in its currency, but it is certainly trying. A press release from its central bank on Nov. 1 said that President Nicolás Maduro wanted to expand the monetary system so the economy could function properly. Therefore, a new bill of a 100,000-bolivar denomination, or the U.S. equivalent of about $2.50 on the black market, was entering circulation that week.

Except for its yellow color, the new note is nearly identical in all respects to the 100-bolivar note — it depicts a bust of Simon Bolivar on the face and a cardenalito bird and the Waraira Repano National Park on the back. Instead of adding zeroes, the denomination is spelled out as “cien mil bolivares” (hundred thousand bolivares) instead of “cien bolivares.” On both notes the number “100” remains directly above it. It could be that simply three more letters (MIL) were engraved on the old printing plates.

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