Photo: Reuters, retrieved

To understand the depth of Venezuela’s economic collapse, you have to stop for and second and fathom the fact that the Banesco intervention, the country’s largest commercial bank, has practically no impact on the financial system, not because it is robust and can absorb whatever happens, but because it’s so wrecked that no one can tell the difference.

Last Thursday, the government announced the intervention of Banesco for 90 days, and the arrests of several of its top officers. They will appoint an ad-hoc board to run the bank and, although the intervention can only be legally renewed once, you can bet this will be permanent.

But the real news is that this is no news.

A bank run will probably not occur because hyperinflation has already wiped out the savings of those Venezuelans who had no option but to save in bolivars. Most people only have the equivalent of less than five dollars in their bank accounts, which are spent as fast as possible. The privileged ones with access to dollars only change small amounts periodically for everyday expenses, and companies who once held large amounts of bolivars have already written them off from their financials, using them to buy anything that doesn’t lose its value at a 8,900% rate.

Setting aside the devastating effects to the families of those arrested in a charade, and the illegal seizing of property, most people won’t see a difference in their already hellish day-to-day quest.

A decline in customer service? Most people already spend hours in line to withdraw less than a dollar a day in cash, from all banks. They also experience a collapsed point of sales platform. Massive default on loans? Credit is long gone as a leveraging source because hyperinflation and government regulations make it impossible (and suicidal) to lend money at fixed two digit interest rates, with a four figure inflation rate. Most credit card limits are under five dollars and the government-approved cap on mortgages won’t buy you Barbie’s dream house.

To give you some perspective on the real market value of a Venezuelan bank, you have to consider facts like the country’s monetary base (it amounts to $40 million, which won’t even buy you Kim Kardashian’s mansion); Banesco’s net worth, according to its financials,  is $3.9 million. Its net profits during 2017 were $ 1.6 million.

So: most banks in Venezuela are virtually worthless. They only keep going with the hope of a regime change.

Setting aside the devastating effects to the families of those arrested in a charade, and the illegal seizing of property, most people won’t see a difference in their already hellish day-to-day quest to buy something to eat. There’s no real intention from the government to make people’s lives easier with this intervention, which is probably an ill-advised attempt to get a hold of the remittances sent from abroad, from which the bolivar part is mostly paid through Banesco. Chances are this won’t work, and the country will remain bankrupt.

That’s not something to cheer for. We’re experiencing the effects of a banking crisis without going through one: banks in Venezuela were stripped from the possibility of performing their core functions, storing savings and lending money. It turns out that to have a banking crisis, you actually needed a functioning economy first.

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  1. So sad. Maduro cannot rob banks anymore in Venezuela. All banks have been destroyed.
    Moreover, I wonder where Maduro, Diasdado, and Gabriela are keeping their money.

  2. Good article.

    I have follow up question regarding this part: “… probably an ill-advised attempt to get a hold of the remittances sent from abroad, from which the bolivar part is mostly paid through Banesco. Chances are this won’t work[.]”

    There was some chatter about this in the comments the other day. My understanding is that many/most people in the US send remittances by transferring USD to a US bank account of someone who then transfers Bs to the recipient’s Venny account. But, a mere $100 US remittance is now 60M-70M Bs. Maybe the Chavismos figure they can monitor bank transfers and start jailing people sending amounts that look like remittances in order to scare the rest out of the remittance exchange business to force people to go through them?

    Why do you say “Chances are this won’t work”?

    • “Why do you say “Chances are this won’t work”?”

      Because people are likely going to find another way to send their remittances to their relatives keeping that juicy 98% off the greasy chabizta clutches that are salivating at the onanist thought of stealing them to immediately send them to their personal accounts in some fiscal paradise.

  3. When he is finally broken by torture he agrees that “two plus two equals five.” He had discovered that they could indeed “get inside you”, and “Something was killed in your breast; burnt out, cauterised out” ( 1984)
    These kinds of cognitive changes could indicate that their conscientiousness – a trait associated with self-discipline, orderliness and ambition – has been destroyed.

    • I watched “1984” for the first time a couple of weeks ago and could not help by bowl my eyes out. The resemblance with the current situation in Venezuela is beyond striking.

  4. Dig up your great-grandmothers’ wedding rings. Break them into tiny pieces. Then you’ll have money to spend. Is there anything to buy?

    • Only if you pay with the whole ring, I went to buy one thing at the local market and stuff it’s been dollarized a long time ago, at an average 900.000 Bs/$ rate, so as an example Venezuela has 2$ margarine that a basic salary of a whole month barely can buy, or thanks to the magic of the control de cambio, that same margarine can cost up to 135.000$ because the 10 Bs/$ rate which is the one the dictatorship will most likely want to shove down people’s throats for their remittance money.

      Because for the chabizta garbage it’s not enough to know their hated enemies, the “middle class sifrinitos” are “washing pocetas in Miami” they also MUST STARVE like they did when they lived in Venezuela, to satisfy the average cha-imbecile’s onanist revenge fantasy.

      • Is that what it’s all about? Social resentment? Who are these Chavistas, where did they come from? Are these the llaneros that came to Caracas and settled in the hills in all those barrios a long time ago? Chaves’ 5 million? Forgot what it was like to work for a living? Why are they so resentful to the middle class? Aren’t the majority among them starving like dogs? Why would they consider this revenge? Just because they pissed on the carcass of Venezuela and left it so that nobody can live here decently anymore so anybody who could moved away? Can you shed some light on this old buddy, it’s eating at me that none of this makes any sense. Obviously I’m not catching it at quite the right angle. Do any of you regulars ever come to the beaches in Falcon? It would be nice to have an actual tete a tete with one of you geniuses.

        • ** “Is that what it’s all about? Social resentment?”

          Even worse, it’s plain and simple envy, they made up some fake grudge to justify the fact that they’re simple parasites who think themselves to be more intelligent and superior because they don’t have to work to obtain stuff in life.

          They didn’t want to work for a living and wanted everything for free just because they felt entilted to it, they believe they are “superior”.

          ** “Who are these Chavistas, where did they come from?”

          From the guts of the previous parties in power, adecos, copeyanos and communists, the bottom detritus that was fed the lie that “productive work is for the stupid”

          ** “Are these the llaneros that came to Caracas and settled in the hills in all those barrios a long time ago?”

          The “llaneros” (Or better said, the slackers) that wanted easy money and squatted in the hills and built the slums because the populist adecopeyano governments wanted to have an easy political capital.

          They’re also communists and idiots brainwashed by communists who wanted to tear the country apart and gift the pieces to the castro regime “because they are superior”

          ** ” Forgot what it was like to work for a living?”

          They never wanted to work for a living in the first place, they were fed the lie that only the stupid are the ones that do that.

          ** “Why are they so resentful to the middle class?”

          Because middle class has always been the scapegoat in the history of mankind, they’re not numerous enough to revolt against a government, and they don’t have the economic power to act against the government; specially in Venezuela they were seen as “thieves and swindlers” because those were the lies the communists fed to the idiots in the slums for years.

          Besides, they were envious, and when someone has envy, the easiest thing is to find a way to disguise it as something righteous to avoid accepting that they’re jealous, simple as that, they envied middle classers because they had stuff and themselves the “poor ones” didn’t, hell, even many of those chabiztos were middle classers themselves but then they were also envious of other middle classers too.

          There’s also the component that left-leaning people usually hates the middle class because “they want to identify themselves as rich, and thus want to have a rich’s life, but they’re living in a lie, they’re not rich, they’re not upper class, they hate the poor”, this is most often the claim of those “middle-class socialists”, the ones that are also known as “caviar commies” or “cafeteria socialists”, people who’s been brainwashed by communist propaganda during the 60s.

          ** ” Aren’t the majority among them starving like dogs?”

          Many of the most radical and fanatic rabid chabiztos are doing that because they are stuffing their pockets thanks to some stupid mafia that keeps “fu****g the sifrinos pendejos who looked down on me” and also lets them live without doing any actual work, because the bachaqueros don’t do any work, regardless of how many stubborn folks keep saying that “standing in a line” is a work (Which they actually don’t do, they get everything directly from the regime-controlled distribution system)

          ** “Why would they consider this revenge? Just because they pissed on the carcass of Venezuela and left it so that nobody can live here decently anymore so anybody who could moved away?”

          Because that way they satisfy their stupid idea that “I f****d that sifrino”, and that’s pretty much it, they want to “f**k the sifrinos” because the only thing that has moved their lives has been their hate and envy for a grudge they made up in their own minds themselves, so they revel in the sadistic communist edicts that seize a business and destroys its owners’ lives, or when the big honcho appears on TV and barks insults and now are celebrating that “the escuálidos will starve outside Venezuela too because they’ll have to send 50 times more remittances to their stupid families here”

          They also satisfy their ridiculous fantasy of that “I don’t have to work to be rich, work is an invention of those stupid escuálidos to exploit me”

          And because they are justified to do everything they’ve done because they believe themselves to be superior to others, they don’t want to accept any of the consequences of their behavior either, as they’re the first ones to whine that “they don’t like to talk about politics” or “you can’t reason with those right-wing sifrinos who hate me because I’m from the barrio” or “Venezuela needs all of us, you must add, not substract”

          chabiztas never cared about Venezuela in the first place, they’re a breed of the most vile and disgusting detritus of the country’s society that jumped at the chance of seizing power not caring that the price was destroying the country and giving the pieces to the castro-communist invaders.

          • “Even worse, it’s plain and simple envy, they made up some fake grudge to justify the fact that they’re simple parasites who think themselves to be more intelligent and superior because they don’t have to work to obtain stuff in life.”

            Envy is the central selling point for every form of marxism. That’s why el pueblo also has (its own) blood on it’s hands.

  5. Cesar, the Ven. banking system was completely destroyed long before Banesco; what may happen is that the 25% of the total system that semi-functions that is Banesco becomes less functional in line with the rest of the banking system. What is completely destroyed is the Pueblo’s ability to feed itself after recent consumer price increases–an African-type famine affecting millions is in the cards in the relatively near future, which will necessitate a forceful solution of one kind or another….

    • A banking system can never work in hyperinflation. The real return will always be negative and the banks will have no money to loan. No loans will always and forever mean no growth. For Vzla to “fix” this would require a monetary freeze (zero M2 increases) and massive debt forgiveness coupled with many guilty crimes forgiven. A hard pill to swallow. Such is life. I’m not sure a big and vocal turnout for Falcón is the worst fate this farce of an election deserves. Who knows! We should all be 100% united against this illegal and illegitimate regime.

  6. Playing around with the Western Union website, I find I can send money person-to-person to anyone I like most anywhere on the planet, including Zimbabwe, but when I select Venezuela as a destination, a big, red banner appears that tells me, in effect, to get serious and select a real country.

    I have heard it is still possible but damned if I can figure it out.

    • I have no trouble selecting Venezuela (from Western Unions Norwegian pages). Entering local currency equivalent to 1 dollar shows VEF 65323 will arrive in Venezuela. US sanctions?

      • Congrats–you can change $1 at the official/only legal Ven Govt. Dicom rate of 65323=approx. 1/10 of the unmentionable going rate.

      • “1 dollar shows VEF 65323 will arrive in Venezuela. ”

        The problem is that your family in Venezuela would need about 1000$ to barely eat 3 times a day.

        Not so easy when people in the country is making about 40$ at that same imaginary, fake and non-existant dicom rate.

      • Sitting here at my computer, with credit card in hand, in my office north of Boston, using the Western Union website, I am able to wire, say, 1,000 USD to Zimbabwe, and Western Union will guarantee my named recipient in Zimbabwe will receive 1,000 USD. I will be charged a reasonable transaction fee.

        When I can do the same vis-a-vis Venezuela, then maybe the country will start the long journey back.

        PS: I don’t know didly about Zimbabwe, just using it as an example.

        • I believe that Zimbabwe allowed partial Dollarization. I think they ran out of Dollars and printed some scrip that was supposed to be at par with the US Dollar.
          This may be why you can put Dollars in someone’s hands in Zimbabwe and not in Venezuela.

  7. Cesar Crespo…the one thing I am learning about the Chavistas is that there is always from their perspective a reason for everything they do. The disconnect is that a lot of what they do seriously impairs the economy but I think they do that to create a situation where they, with complete economic, military and political power, will take credit for small rebounds once they finish destroying your economy.

    • BC—I am just not sure where any small rebounds could come from. PDVSA seemingly may be about to fail outright much less provide the 90% of foreign currency it has historically. This would mean little to no more food/medicine imports for a country that can not produce water given snow and fire. The only hope is further loans from China/Russia, neither has seemed to willing recently. Things look like they could get much worse in the near future unfortunately.

    • Bill C.
      The overriding reasons for all Chavista actions are power grabbing and theft. These are the only reasons for their actions.

  8. Waltz…my guess is that the bottom may not be reached for six months to a year because it may take that long to weed out private enterprise. Then the Chavistas will loosen things up a bit to show minor improvements as a socialist success. In the meantime my guess is they will keep order through the military. The Chavistas, my guess is, plan to proceed quickly to turn your country into a Cuba like state.

    • Bill, real famine is coming for millions of the “Pueblo”–it’s no joke. Prices for most consumer/food goods are rapidly becoming dollar-equivalent, many imported goods are 2-3x U.S.$ equivalent or non-existent, while oil income is collapsing/being embargoed. Narco income is not reaching the Pueblo. New max. min. wage is $4/mo.; no amount of small freebies/xtra income can make a survivable minimum wage for the vast majority of the population. This isn’t Cuba redux with 4-6 mill pop.–it’s Venezuela with 28-30 mill pop.

    • BC—I am from Chicago,so take everything I have to say with an extra helping of salt. I have the feeling that the avalanche is in its infancy and will accelerate quickly. Just remember this comes with extra sodium chloride.

  9. What few or none are saying is that Banesco, its president, and almost ALL banking people left all crooks too. Complicit THIEVES. I’ll have a good cup of coffee when CC or anyone reporting admits that much. Kleptozuela is what is is, at All levels, the financial top levels OF COURSE. These are just hyenas fight for the last pieces of meat. Chavistas, or not. Or both. READ about Banesco.. Totally in bed with Chavismo for years, of course.

  10. And it starts with the Juan Carlos Banesco President. What a piece of Chavista shit!! As they all are, in every banking industry, or every other industry besides banking. Now that there’s less to steal, they just fight a bit among white-collar wild dogs and hyenas, that’s all. Same crap. Corruption in Kleptozuela is from top to bottom. Face it. Everywhere. Especially in whatever banks are left. Or how do you think they’ve survived hus far? Crooks, as almost everyone in Kleptozuela. Banesco.. cry me a freaking river..

  11. What’s the current story with shipping food stuffs into VZ? I can’t get a straight answer from my wife, because we don’t talk much these days since I voted for Trump. (She’s politically naive, and this would still be the case if I voted for Hillary, God forbid. Although she did hate Chavez from Day One.)

    My ex-pat asylum-seeking nieces and nephews in Miami used to send packages to their mom, but I haven’t asked them lately. Is this stuff getting through? % stolen? Ridiculous premium required to be paid in order to get it through without stuff?

    I ask because of the issue of remittances, and Chavista control of them.

    Hasn’t VZ gotten to the point where paper money…from wherever it comes from…just gets more and more worthless and subject to corruption? Or that word I hate, arbitrage?

    And that a case of canned tuna is worth its weight in gold, as opposed to 10 suitcases of high denomination Bs?

      • Shipment companies, mostly out of Miami, consolidate and ship to Venezuela where the cargo goes through customs and then onwards.

        To be sure, the GNazis will take their cut, either cargo or cash.

        Sees like, for now, they have learned not to kill the cow and let the milk flow. Of course, this being Venezuela, who knows how long that will last.

      • ““Ridiculous premium required to be paid in order to get it through without BEING STOLEN,” I meant to write.”

        First-need products such as personal hygiene, medicines or food WILL get ransacked, regardless of how little are you bringing, food and hygiene are the most often targeted products because the chabizta bachaquero garbage can sell those easier and faster.

        Hell, even 5 years ago on 2013, one friend bought several personal hygiene products with her wife among other things and about 25% of the stuff got “lost” and never arrived, because it was actually stolen from the boxes by the nazi guard.

        So yeah, you can note those stolen things as “additional cost” or a “chabizta tax”

        • From what I have seen in the last 2-3 years, certain shipments go in either unmolested or they already contain the “mordida”, set aside in the shipping container itself, in some cases.

          Much depends on the shipper, and the connections he has in port. Some do, and some don’t.

          • and some tards still wonder why i call a spade a spade. Kleptozuela is all about THEFT. Criminals. Indians with zero moral values. Unmitigated Corruption at all freaking levels of society. Especiaaly your beloved supposed victims, el pueblo.. most of them pueblo leeches deserve every bit of crap they’ve earned in Kleptozuela. They made it. Millions of them, not just Chavistas. Understand that, and everything else is crystal clear. They got what they deserved, most our beautiful “pueblo”

    • From Miami you can ship Door to Door for 16$ per cubic foot by ship, no customs. It takes a while to get there. You can ship just about anything. There is a risk of it being “lost”, but not that high. Send a little at a time so you can spread the risk. Also, use a shipper that has volume and ships whole containers and have the connections, not Mickey Mouse operations that depend on others.

      • Wanley. I agree. I work with a shipper in Orlando. Everything gets through. I do not ask questions. I just assume bribes are paid.

  12. For those that complain about Poeta’s rants, here’s something to chew on:

    How come not one in my Venezuelan family…those who escaped to elsewhere or those still there…is active studying what killed their country and engaging on Spanish-language websites to talk about this disaster? All they do is give thumbs up or down on some stupid FB posts.

    It’s really unbelievable, and evidence of Poeta’s claims that from top to bottom, ALL Venezuelans are responsible for this apathy, AND corruption.

    Where are the ex-pats’ actions in their new countries? The protests? The movements? The desire to GIVE A SHIT!?

    • Ira,
      The ones here, in the US, are too busy complaining about Trump and defending the “rights” of illegal immigrants.

    • Besides, aren’t you the one whose wife’s family has a good chunk of chabiztos (Disregard that if it’s not true, I can’t track everybody’s nicknames all the time)? If it’s true, then what the hell, man, how can you take those hypocrites as an example of what venezuelans are?

  13. The remensa saga is at the core of this I’ll bet because many believe that’s the source of incoming dollars (or any real currency) and so there’s money to be had there. But does this really play out like that? Of folks here in the US send down money, it’s the US banking system that bilks the client since they keep the US dollar and a bank in Ven. doles it out in Bs. Or is it that the bank in Venezuela is credited the US amount IN dollars, then they disburse the worthless Bs?

    I don’t work it this way at all, but I would be curious exactly how the US dollars get disbursed and to who once a remensa is sent to Ven. Wouldn’t be surprised if both banks are gaming the system in place with currency controls.

    But I know if you wanna find motivation behind the Chavistas, follow the money, because they don’t have any.

    • To my knowledge, no actual $$ go to Venezuelan banks. People use their foreign accounts to sell dollars to people who also have foreign accounts and in turn the latter transfer the equivalent in Bs (market rate) using their local accounts to the recipient in Vz. There’s nothing illicit about it. The government just presents it as a crime because their cash starved.

      This actually makes me wonder how much sense does the exchange control makes now for the regime, considering the dwindling oil revenue, implementing a semi free exchange “a la cubana” where the government keeps the hard cash and issues a “convertible bolivar” for internal use, would enable them to keep the remittances whilst still passing something with relative value to the population with family overseas. This of course would mean the de-facto dollarization of the country and the creation of a new social class just like in Cuba but those are just minor nuances for the Chavistas as long as they can keep profiting on the pueblo’s misery. Plus the design has already been validated by their Cuban masters.

    • My wife’s relatives utilized dollars when dealing with others electronically. But, they also had US bank accounts. Dollar for dollar. Everything else done retail was with cash. Most retailers accepted dollars even a year ago when the last relative left.

      My understanding is that banks in Venezuela were happy to accept US electronic transfers in dollars, and offered WAY better than Chavismo exchange rates, as they were still making out like bandits. I am not sure if they were able to sell dollars, though.

      I have never been to Cuba. Do they force the traveler to exchange all of their cash for Cuban currency?

    • The BCV pumps BSF into the banks. The banks then loan out the money. Many of the companies they loan to are “suitcase companies” who are really money changers– and many of the the biggest money changers are BTW Chavista. How else do the Bolichicos get rich?? With the BSF on loan, they then change them to dollars and earn a commission, pay back the loan. Rinse, Wash, Repeat. Of course, not one dollar actually arrives to Venezeula because the “suitcase company” has several bank accounts in the USA, Europe, offshore or wherever under somebody else’s name (personal or corporate). Everything is by electronic transfer. Physical dollars in cash are rare, since tourism has disappeared. This is how big time money exchange goes on, say to buy a house or a car or a shopping mall.

      But then you have small time money changers who are just business owners who have turned to money changing because you cannot earn anything by running a real business in Venezuela. This is how they turn their BSF into dollars and stay ahead of inflation. Works the same, but without getting loans from the big banks (though not to say they could get small business loans and do the same thing). Not one dollar ever arrives to Venezeula, it is all electronic in banks abroad.

      This is why the government will have to take over ALL banks if they want to control remittances.

      This whole thing with Banesco is just a SMOKESCREEN. Thats it A F$%KING SMOKESCREEN.

      We should know by now never to believe the stated reason in the press for whatever these malandros do. What is going on in smokey, whiskey stenched back rooms, behind closed doors is the real truth. A more critical assessment of this Banesco issue would at least look into that…

      At least Poeta points out that the Prez of Banesco is Chavista scum.

      And BTW a friends relative was busted in PDVSA scandal earlier this year (yes, there are corrupt family members in EVERY family in Kleptozuela). And of course bought his way out of jail for 1000$ US through corruption. THIS IS PURE SHOW!

      Chaos and corruption remains supreme in Kleptozuela, do you really think these clowns can do investigations on over 10 million bank accounts before they collapse themselves? You are talking about the most incompetent of the incompetent. Pure SHOW!

      • sure, its another smoke screen. Cuban intelligence ordered that. But beyond the screen, there are sharks and vultures fighting for meat.The dying corpse of Kleptozuela. Still rather appetizing, a few billion dollars never go unattended in Klepto-Latin America. No rules, no punishment. It’s the wild west of CapoCabello land.. And the rodrigues devils, etc. All about CASH. Why can’t people understand that. KLEPTOZUELA is what is is. Uneducated Indians pretending to be nouveaux riches. And getting away with it. That’s all. MASSIVE THEFT among 5th world uneducated and uncontrolled Indians. Very simple. Got it?

  14. I heard a rumor today that said that one of the reasons that Banesco was intervened was that the Venezuelan Branch is set up so it can receive dollars sent from the Panama and another country branch, but a DICOM rate, so maybe the Government will use it to “officially” receive remittances sent in dollars

    • Who would sell their hard earned cash for 1/10 of the street value? makes much more sense to just ship the goods. Although, it would not surprise me if the government next step is to start messing with couriers and door-to-door companies to grab their share of the pie (The GN and customs thieves already do this on a retail scale)

      • You are right. They already do.

        For years, we used Fed Ex, DHL, etc to get parcels to Venezuela. About 3 years ago. these CARE packages never started clearing customs. Then we sent couriers when Fed Ex had given up. They ended up getting robbed at the ports of entry. (the Maiquetía Shake Down). In the end, nothing was getting through except German language business and academic journals and Farsi textbooks. (And since business and success are something that doesn’t interest the typical Chavista, that is where we stashed cash!)

    • This is nonsence… cannot transfer dollars for remmitance thru the bank…….because you cannot recieve dollars……you must find a willing seller with a dollar account ..then recieve in cash from them…in person…then sell dollars… becoming harder…..but there are many who have dollars that are leaving…..but are afraid to travel with them…
      At this moment…if you have dollars….you have immence leverage… can buy things for a fraction of cost ..people are desperate…..but also very paranoid to recieve them….

      • This is my understanding of the situation as well. Spot on. There are many homes and vehicles and boats and all kinds of nice shit to be had if you want to invest in that sort of thing right now. Toys used to be expensive here compared to north american prices but right now if you have us cash or the ability to transfer it to someone else US account outside the country then you can buy whatever you want right now at a rock bottom price. Example I just picked up a little boat and motor (dragon) for $1000 usd. I figured hey, I can always use it to get my family out to Aruba. Buddy hummed and hawwed about how the boat was worth twice that and I just kept insisting that’s all I had and when he saw those $100 notes, we closed the deal. Was to the point where some guys were buying up all the engines and bikes and motor cycles and anything you could load in a boat and take to Aruba including the boats themselves. Paying cheap in dollars and selling for god knows how much on the island. Leave it to a Venezuelan to find a way of making money from any situation.

        • ” Leave it to a Venezuelan to find a way of making money from any situation.”

          They can’t do it legally, as venezuelan “perraje” is banned from Aruba.

          • Since when has that ever stopped anyone here? Here illegal is just a sick bird. Anyways that seems to have stopped now anyway, haven’t seen them around in a while. They were stopping people with nice motorcycles and offering them cash in US to sell right there and then. Not even worried about the paperwork.

          • “Here illegal is just a sick bird”

            In Venezuela, “illegal” means that the you can be a regime’s minion selling stuff at overinflated prices to keep people sunken in the latrine of poverty.

  15. “Banesco’s net worth, according to its financials, is $3.9 million. Its net profits during 2017 were $ 1.6 million.”

    End of the road. A small business enterprise in the US is worth more than that.

    I imagine that 99.9% of Banesco’s real value was off-shored years ago. Whatever Banesco is, they are not stupid.

    I imagine that Diosdado will make some grand proclamation and rationalize why Chavismo had to confiscate this bank from the vile, corrupt Capitalists. Not that they will be able to do anything with it. Any financially attuned businessman worth their salt has a “poison pill contingency”.

    • “Banesco’s net worth, according to its financials, is $3.9 million. Its net profits during 2017 were $ 1.6 million.”

      Banesco’s branch IN VENEZUELA.

      That “In Venezuela” is the part that was left out of the article, Banesco has branches in other countries such as Panama and USA.

      How much “net worth” is for those two branches? Panama and USA.

      • I imagine Nick, Delcy and Diosdado got themselves a couple of buildings and a few ATMs filled with bolivars. Whatever THAT might be worth…

    • Escotet, BANESCO’s owner, bought failed bank in Spain, renamed it ABANCA, and has it going along with the Panama and US banks he owns.

      He himself said it when the crisis hit, BANESCO-VENEZUELA is the least part of his holdings.

  16. Rob pretty well summed up how I go about doing remensas to relatives still in CCS. My relatives set up bank accounts up here in the states using my address. I deposit dollars into their account. Said relatives in CCS have a list of friends who also have US dollar accounts and who will will convert the dollars into Bs. My relative goes with him or her offering the highest exchange rate that day. He transfers the dollars into their account (electronically) and the seller transfers Bs into my relatives Venezuela account.

    But this doesn’t account for all of those still stuck in Venezuela who DON’T have overseas dollar accounts, which has to be the majority. How does the transfer work for them?

    • Juan –

      Can’t speak for everybody, but for the people I know, same thing you said except the third party “money changer” has the US account and Venny account to transfer to recipient Venny accounts

  17. What ever happened to Polar and Lorenzo Mendoza? Was always under threat of takeover? Does Polar have immunity?

    BTW, having followed this slow motion train wreck for more than 17 years, I suggest there is no “bottom”.

    The Banesco story, a bank that should be valued in $billions is only worth $3million and change. This is the largest collapse of an economy, and IOC pdvsa, in the history of this hemisphere, maybe world, and no outside Venezuela cares.

    • My belief is this: Without the benevolence of Polar, Venezuelans would be starving. Mendoza is taking a loss on every kg of flour he sells in Venezuela, which he subsidizes with flour he sells elsewhere. If it weren’t for Polar selling at a loss, Maduro would starve his people and vilify Mendoza for being “greedy”. Still, Mendoza is Maduros favorite whipping boy… who would he blame if he nationalized the last Capitalistic enterprise in Venezuela? He knows damn well if he did that, there would be ZERO food in Venezuela.

      Right now, Mendoza is the king-maker, and will come out of all of this shitstorm looking better than Christ himself. He is well placed/situated for when this disaster comes to an end.

  18. This is a good read. Sorry if previously linked or referenced by another poster:

    Major General (Army) Cliver Alcalá Cordones , who joined the late President Hugo Chávez in the attempted coup of the 4F in 1992, assures that he is persecuted for being critical of President Maduro’s government. “There is no rule of law: the law they apply is outside the Constitution,” he said in an interview with La Razón. “The country is ungoverned by a clan of criminals ,” he says. “It is a small orchestrated elite to plunder the country’s riches and destroy the purchasing power of the people. It has been alarming and bestial the price increase during the last days, moving food and medicines away from 95% of Venezuelan homes, “he adds.,15700021,15700124,15700149,15700168,15700173,15700186,15700189,15700201&usg=ALkJrhgZObWDbb39GCkHjpsp2t2cRwlYmw

    • Anything said by a chavista out of power is not a “good read”, by definition.
      Waste of time is more like it.

      • Well, it’s a lot shorter and way less pompous than the Rafael Rameriz screeds about how he and the Eternal Commander were best buddies.


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