Venezuela's bolivar, from banknote to children's toy

For the third time in 13 years, Venezuela has slashed zeroes off its inflation-battered currency, the bolivar. This time, it will shed six zeroes, for a total of 14 since 2008. With that, a million bolivars have overnight become one -- still the equivalent of about 25 US dollar cents. Venezuela's central bank announced the move last month to simplify transactions, with consumers scrambling to make payment for even the most basic goods or services. According to private sector estimates around two thirds of transactions in the country now happen in US dollars. Old banknotes now worth almost nothing have become children’s toys or lie discarded in streets around the country. The once-rich oil producer is battling its eighth year of recession and hyperinflation that reached nearly 3,000 percent in 2020 and more than 9,500 percent the year before, according to central bank figures.

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