For the last two years Argentina has suffered from hyper-inflation and spiralling costs. But recently?
For the last two years Argentina has suffered from hyper-inflation and spiralling costs. But recently President Jorge Videla boasted that his government was keeping inflation at 150 per cent a year..... an improvement on 400 per cent a year ago. For Argentinians, though, increasing costs and the decreasing purchasing power of their wages has become virtually an accepted way of life.
SYNOPSIS: In the streets of the capital Buenos Aires the cost of living is the main topic of conversation. In July fuel prices sent heating and transport costs soaring. Even food, such as meat, which once almost everyone in Argentina could afford, is becoming too expensive. Cooked ham on display costs 2,200 pesos, about 10 dollars. A woman's skirt, about 29 dollars, and men's shoes nearly 67 dollars.
At banks, long queues have been forming as people try to cash in on the recent interest rate war between the banks. Rates more than doubled to reach 14 per cent a month on fixed term deposits and two official banks even offered 130 per cent a year with special rates for 30 day depositors.
Thousands deposited their money hoping for a quick return but now the banks have called a truce among themselves.
At the beginning of October the minimum wage went up 65 dollars on government orders. But at the same time, since the Videla Government took control two years ago, the purchasing power of the average wage packet has dropped by half.