cupo

Sobremesa chronicles

(For this week’s sobremesa, Rodrigo chimes in re. the “morality” of selling your dollar allowance) In Venezuela you get a yearly dollar allowance. If you use your allowance, nothing happens. If you sell your allowance, you could face jail time, and also be considered traitor to you Fatherland. But is it morally wrong to sell what the…

land-of-confusion

Land of confusion

“Venezuela is the only country in the world where street vendors sell you both a copy of the Transit Law … and a nice, cold beer.” Laureano Márquez’s riff began what was a major theme in the discussions we held in Austin about our country – about Venezuela being a land of confusion, a country…

Apple Venezuela

The whys and wherefores of the $20,000 iPhone

(A guest post from reader/journalist Arnaldo Espinoza) The Whys and Wherefores of the $20,000 iPhone Arnaldo R. Espinoza (@Naldoxx) Prices in Venezuela stopped making sense a while ago, and nowhere more so than at the Apple Store. Long gone are the days of Dame tu PIN and the bidding wars between carriers. It’s become pricey…

On the "margin," we devalued today

What is a dollar worth? Depends on who you know

Venezuela today has four different prices for the dollar – three of them official, one of them not. For basic imports (chavista code for “available only to Godgiven and his cronies”) a dollar costs BsF 6.3. For not-so-basic imports and for traveling (chavista code for “let’s throw a bone to the middle classes so they won’t…

Merentes on the tambora

An announcement about nothing

The Expectation-Disappointment cycle around Venezuela exchange-mechanism announcements is so well established by now, we barely get our hopes up any more. Today was no different. There was little about today’s press conference that the public didn’t already know or that wasn’t already so. Much like that well-loved sitcom, today’s event with Rodolfo Marco Torres and Nelson…

Allegory of what happened to Ford's Venezuela profits.

The Sound of 1.1 Trillion Pennies Dropping

People are starting to put 2 and 2 together. This Reuters report finds that 40 major U.S. companies have big-time exposure to the Venezuelan shitshow, in the form of at least $11 billion dollars worth of paper profits in bolivars that are going to vanish in a puff of logic the second the Bs.6.30:$1 fiction –…