Argentinian’s are increasing looking for monetary alternatives as the country’s high inflation rate has brought on tough capital controls. Argentinian’s are banned from buying dollars, are subject to a 20% tax on foreign credit card purchases and restrictions on owning and valuing foreign assets. The country’s official inflation rate is 10.6%, but many estimates have the rate much higher, around 26%.
The Bitcoin market in Argentina is small but expanding (having doubled since February) and TradeHill, the recently resurrected Bitcoin exchange, is betting that the digital currency will take off in Argentina.
In an interview last week TradeHill founder Jered Kenna said that “Argentina possibly has the most demand I’ve seen out of Latin America for Bitcoins,” adding that his business has been talking to local banks and is planning a local office.
From The Blue Market
This post is a peep into the underground exchange markets for dollars and bitcoins in Argentina. For the last couple of weeks, I have experienced the informal exchange of bitcoin and dollars on first hand in Buenos Aires. Furthermore, I have realized how both locals and expats may reap significant gains by using bitcoins as a medium of exchange.
Bad economic times and capital controls go hand in hand. In 1933 FDR used Executive Order 6102 to confiscate US citizen’s gold as mentioned in the above video. The International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA), means the same thing could happen again today.
Extreme capital controls aren’t just a possibility, they are a reality in a many parts of the world, particularly Argentina.
North Dakota congressional candidate Eric Olson accepts donations to his campaign in Bitcoin http://ericolson2012.com/donate/ And sitting New Hampshire state representative Mark Warden is accepting them for his re-election campaign. http://www.markwarden.com/page/contribute-campaign
Attention digital currency providers, start advertising in Argentina. http://www.forbes.com/sites/jonmatonis/2012/09/04/argentina-begins-tracking-all-credit-cards/
BitInstant’s Charlie Shrem wants Bitcoiners to “get together and get a SuperBowl ad” adding that “I want this commercial to be a statement to the banks and governments of the world and say ‘Look, your people don’t like your fiscal policies, you’ve put us in a recession, you’re screwing us up so much. We’re taking control of our own money, the way we’re doing it is Bitcoin.’ I want to scare them.”
Also, in the next few weeks BitInstant should be open for business in Canada, 3,700 people have already signed up to get the new Bitcoin debit card, and loads more Bitcoin debit card details here http://codinginmysleep.com/bitcoin-mastercard-followup-interview-with-charlie-shrem/
GATA Chairman Bill Murphy is appearing on Russia Today’s “Capital Account” program at 4:30 p.m. ET Wednesday. http://www.gata.org/node/11714
And yet another community currency in Spain http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/sep/04/spain-euro-free-economy?newsfeed=true