The Argentine economy is under maximum pressure.
One day after the government limited access to dollars to pay for imports, the market harshly punished the Argentine peso.
, the one that is sold without state restrictions on the black market, was exchanged for 239 pesos, 15.5% more than at the beginning of the month.
It thus reached its maximum value since the exit from convertibility in 2002. Companies that go to the financial market to obtain foreign currency had to pay up to 253 pesos, 18.4% more than on June 1.
The fall of the peso in the financial market was accompanied by a collapse of Argentine bonds quoted in foreign currency.
The country risk, which is the differential that Argentina pays for its debt against United States bonds, exceeded 2,400 points on Tuesday and advanced 132% since the debt swap with the International Monetary Fund agreed last January.
The surcharge keeps Argentina out of the international credit markets and forces it to finance itself in pesos at exorbitant amounts.
The Central Bank maintains the official dollar, which importers access, at 129 pesos.
But the spike in the value of “unofficial” dollars against the peso is evidence of a lack of confidence in the economic direction.
Inflation this year is already estimated at over 70%, while investors flee the peso and take refuge in the dollar.
The Minister of Economy, Martín Guzmán, had to clarify on Monday that the debt in pesos was not at risk of
He did little to placate the rumors circulating to that effect among financial operators.
warned on Tuesday that "two years after Argentina came out of its last default, a debt crisis is brewing once again," while speaking of the "widespread nervousness" corroding the spirits of Argentine bondholders.
Most peso bonds are tied to inflation.
The soaring CPI finds the Government of Alberto Fernández forced to pay more and more for the renewal of its debt securities, while the agreement with the IMF limits the aid from the Central Bank to cover the budget deficit.
"There is a growing feeling in Buenos Aires that officials are running out of financing options and that a restructuring of local bonds is becoming almost inevitable," said
, one of the most listened to finance agencies among owners of money. .
The agency's pessimism coincided with the last debt auction of the month.
The Argentine Treasury had to refinance this Tuesday maturities for 258,000 million pesos (about 2,000 million dollars at the official exchange rate), a figure that it finally managed to collect, despite the financial noise.
The monetary authorities had to pay rates of 60% per year, while 85% of the new debt was contracted with bonds with very short maturities, to 2022. The fate of bonds in foreign currency is no better: today they trade in a range of between 20 and 23 dollars for every 100 dollars agreed, values that are considered
Argentina, however, has no short-term maturities after agreeing in August 2020 to refinance its debt with private creditors and this year with the IMF.
All the efforts of the Government go through to contain the bleeding of dollars that dries up the reserves of the Central Bank.
With no debt payments, all attention is on imports.
On Monday, it limited the access of foreign currency for the payment of goods considered non-strategic, in an effort to guarantee the necessary dollars to pay the increasingly large gas import bill.
Minister Guzmán said that if all the purchases registered since January are added, the gas account amounts to 4,600 million dollars, 205% more than in the same period of the previous year.
That is why he decided to further tighten the exchange tourniquet.
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