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How Crumbling U.S. Dollars Bailed Out Zimbabwe

After hyperinflation in 2008, Zimbabwe abandoned its own currency, which included notes of 50 billion Zimbabwe dollars and even trillion-dollar notes. The main currency is the U.S. dollar, though the South African rand (on right) is also used in some places.

by Anders Kelto, NPR:


Four years ago, Zimbabwe experienced one of the worst cases of hyperinflation in history. The country abandoned its own currency and switched to the U.S. dollar — a move experts say prevented a complete economic collapse.

But using American dollars has created a host of bizarre issues. The bills are filthy, crumbling and often in short supply. There are no U.S. coins to make change, so chocolate is handed out instead. There is, oddly, an abundance of $2 bills.

Read More @ npr.org

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