Venezuela’s Surreal Prices

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A box of 36 coloured pencils as photographed in a studio with an illustrative price tag of $115 (US dollars), equivalent to the Bs. 725 (bolivars) that it costs on average to purchase in Caracas at the official exchange rate of 6.3 bolivars per dollar, in Caracas September 29, 2014. Venezuela’s economic crisis has led to some shocking and surreal price distortions that hit people’s buying power dramatically. While the government of President Nicolas Maduro calls the country’s minimum wage of Bs. 4,252 the highest in the region when converted to $675 using the official exchange rate, the galloping black market for currency considers it as just $42.50 when converted at the street rate of Bs. 100 per US dollar, the rate which many importers and retail outlets must use to acquire hard currency. Venezuela’s annual inflation rate of more than 63 percent is the highest in the Americas, according to official statistics. (Photo by Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters)

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A Goodyear brand automobile tyre as photographed in a studio with an illustrative price tag of $753 (US dollars), equivalent to the Bs. 4,750 (bolivars) that it costs on average to purchase in Caracas at the official exchange rate of 6.3 bolivars per dollar, in Caracas September 29, 2014. (Photo by Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters)

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An aluminium pressure cooker as photographed in a studio with an illustrative price tag of $507 (US dollars), equivalent to the Bs. 3,200 (bolivars) that it costs on average to purchase in Caracas at the official exchange rate of 6.3 bolivars per dollar, in Caracas September 29, 2014. (Photo by Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters)

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A five-gallon bucket of house paint as photographed in a studio with an illustrative price tag of $528 (US dollars), equivalent to the Bs. 3,329 (bolivars) that it costs on average to purchase in Caracas at the official exchange rate of 6.3 bolivars per dollar, in Caracas September 29, 2014. (Photo by Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters)

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A can of Coca-Cola as photographed in a studio with an illustrative price tag of $5.56 (US dollars), equivalent to the Bs. 35 (bolivars) that it costs on average to purchase in Caracas at the official exchange rate of 6.3 bolivars per dollar, in Caracas September 29, 2014. (Photo by Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters)

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A pair of Stanley brand household pliers as photographed in a studio with an illustrative price tag of $121 (US dollars), equivalent to the Bs. 765 (bolivars) that it costs on average to purchase in Caracas at the official exchange rate of 6.3 bolivars per dollar, in Caracas September 29, 2014. (Photo by Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters)

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A Samsung 32″ plasma TV as photographed in a studio with an illustrative price tag of $5,476 (US dollars), equivalent to the Bs. 34,500 (bolivars) that it costs on average to purchase in Caracas at the official exchange rate of 6.3 bolivars per dollar, in Caracas September 29, 2014. (Photo by Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters)

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A kilogram (2.2 lbs) of raw carrots as photographed in a studio with an illustrative price tag of $19.05 (US dollars), equivalent to the Bs. 120 (bolivars) that it costs on average to purchase in Caracas at the official exchange rate of 6.3 bolivars per dollar, in Caracas September 29, 2014. (Photo by Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters)

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An Adidas Adipure Crazy running shoe as photographed in a studio with an illustrative price tag of $1,198 (US dollars), equivalent to the Bs. 7,547 (bolivars) a pair of them costs on average to purchase in Caracas at the official exchange rate of 6.3 bolivars per dollar, in Caracas September 29, 2014. (Photo by Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters)

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A Big Mac as photographed in a studio with an illustrative price tag of $14.60 (US dollars), equivalent to the Bs. 92 (bolivars) that it costs on average to purchase in Caracas at the official exchange rate of 6.3 bolivars per dollar, in Caracas September 29, 2014. (Photo by Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters)

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A locally produced bath towel as photographed in a studio with an illustrative price tag of $136 (US dollars), equivalent to the Bs. 859 (bolivars) that it costs on average to purchase in Caracas at the official exchange rate of 6.3 bolivars per dollar, in Caracas September 29, 2014. (Photo by Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters)

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A hair dryer as photographed in a studio with an illustrative price tag of $697 (US dollars), equivalent to the Bs. 4,392 (bolivars) that it costs on average to purchase in Caracas at the official exchange rate of 6.3 bolivars per dollar, in Caracas September 29, 2014. (Photo by Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters)

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A Barbie doll as photographed in a studio with an illustrative price tag of $194 (US dollars), equivalent to the Bs. 1,226 (bolivars) that it costs on average to purchase in Caracas at the official exchange rate of 6.3 bolivars per dollar, in Caracas September 29, 2014. (Photo by Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters)

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A household broom as photographed in a studio with an illustrative price tag of $24.60 (US dollars), equivalent to the Bs. 155 (bolivars) that it costs on average to purchase in Caracas at the official exchange rate of 6.3 bolivars per dollar, in Caracas September 29, 2014. (Photo by Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters)

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A 50 lb. (22.7 kg) bag of Purina Dog Chow as photographed in a studio with an illustrative price tag of $272 (US dollars), equivalent to the Bs. 1,716 (bolivars) that it costs on average to purchase in Caracas at the official exchange rate of 6.3 bolivars per dollar, in Caracas September 29, 2014. (Photo by Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters)

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A 75-watt incandescent light bulb as photographed in a studio with an illustrative price tag of $13.51 (US dollars), equivalent to the Bs. 85.12 (bolivars) that it costs on average to purchase in Caracas at the official exchange rate of 6.3 bolivars per dollar, in Caracas September 29, 2014. (Photo by Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters)

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