Venezuela's Currency Value Dependent on One Guy at an Alabama Home Depot

Sounds funky right?

Venezuela has been dealing with a lot – collapsing oil prices, corruption, and hyperinflation.

The value of their currency has dropped to the point where 1 bolivar is worth less than a penny, and the street value is legitimately dependent on a man that works at a home depot in Hoover, Alabama.

Gustavo Diaz created a website called DolarToday that helps Venezuelans navigate their underground economy.

It's so prolific, that it affects the price of almost everything; affecting approximately 15 million dollars of transactions each day. 

His site has an online calculator, that uses algorithms to give you the "actual value" of your bolivars.

It's illegal, in Venezuela, to publish exchange-rates outside of the government's officially set currency rate – but Diaz's site does just that … basing prices off of what people are paying on on the underground market. 

Now, in real life, Gustavo Diaz is a political refugee who was marked as an enemy of state after participating in an unsuccessful coup against the government of Hugo Chavez.

He strongly apposes Maduro's "totalitarian regime," and is still doing what he can to fight that regime from his Home Depot in Hoover.

Gustavo Díaz at the Home Depot in Hoover, Ala., where he works.

via WSJ


In a year that's polarized us as a country  … It's important to remember you can dislike something and still love your country and its people.

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