Now even the freshly minted bills, printed in rainbow hues and imported in part from the United States, are quickly dwindling in value.
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CARACAS: Venezuelans already struggling to find food, medicine and other basic necessities have a new shortage to worry about: cash.The Venezuelan government released new, higher denomination bills in values of 500, 5,000 and 20,000 bolivars earlier this year after the currency meltdown left the country's then-largest note worth around 2 cents on the black market.In January, one U.S. dollar was worth 4,578 bolivars on Venezuela's pervasive black market; by October a U.S. dollar got you 29,170 bolivars, according to DolarToday, a website critical of the government that tracks the black market rate.Jose Gil, director of Venezuelan polling firm Datanalisis, said the cash shortfall carries a "very high price" for Maduro's government but the opposition has not been able to capitalize on the discontent.Venezuela's central bank injected 849 million bills in varying denominations into the nation's economy up until August, three times the amount released over the same time period in 2016 – yet still not enough to keep up with inflation.Venezuelan Banking Superintendent Antonio Morales recently told Union Radio that bolivar notes leaving banking institutions are not being returned, as typically happens when cash shifts from customers to commercial businesses and back to banks.
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