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How Venezuela Got No Dollars From $65 Billion Bond Sales


In the past decade, Venezuela and the nation’s oil company Petroleos de Venezuela SA have sold $65 billion of dollar-denominated bonds without ever seeing a dime.

Sure, they got money, but took in no dollars. To preserve foreign reserves while injecting some much-needed hard currency into the economy, the government, PDVSA and the central bank sold the debt to local investors in return for bolivars. Buyers then sold the notes abroad to obtain U.S. currency, which has become scarce as Venezuela tries to limit capital flight.