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Less than two years ago, a cup of coffee cost 450 bolivars in Venezuela. Today, as the nation's hyperinflation continues to skyrocket, a cafe con leche costs 1 million bolivars — or a mere 29 U.S. cents, according to Bloomberg.

Expand chart
Data: dolartoday.com; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

Why it matters: The economic devastation in the country, despite vast oil reserves, has led to mass migration, starvation and political unrest. Despite large protests last year, President Nicolas Maduro won a sham reelection with turnout at only 46%, despite the government attempting to bribe voters to the polls.

The big picture: It's nearly impossible to compile the cash needed to grab a coffee given allowances at banks in the country. Back in January, CNN Money's Stefano Pozzebano detailed his attempt to get cash in the Venezuelan capital, ultimately getting 10,000 bolivars — that day's allowance — after visiting four banks over four hours. On that day, less than six months ago, 10,000 bolivars equaled six U.S. cents.

  • The exchange rate then meant that $1 would get you about 200,000 bolivars. Today, with an exchange rate of $1 to a little over 3.4 million bolivars, per DolarToday, that same cash allowance is equal to somewhere around a third of a cent.
  • The most common note in circulation is 100 bolivars, so you'd need 10,000 of them for your cup of coffee, per Bloomberg.
  • The current yearly inflation rate in Venezuela is now 43,378%, according to Bloomberg — and the rate over last three months extrapolated over a full year would be a staggering 482,153%.

By the numbers, according to a study by Project Syndicate's Ricardo Haussman last year — before the nation's hyperinflation kicked into high gear:

  • The minimum wage declined by 88% from 2012 to 2017 when compared against the black market exchange rate.
  • The median worker wage could only purchase 2,740 of the cheapest available calories per day as of the end of 2017.
  • "Meat of any kind is so scarce that the market price of a kilogram is equivalent to more than a week of minimum-wage work."
  • Venezuela's GDP contracted by 40% in per capita terms from 2013 to 2017 — and that's based off estimates as Maduro stopped reporting economic data in 2015.

From the ground: The New York Times's Andes bureau chief Nick Casey recently visited Venezuela:

  • "It's as if people have accepted this is how life is going to be now: little food, not much water, fewer cars because there are no tires."
  • He introduces a young Venezuelan girl, Mia, who "is one of about 50 kids at risk of malnutrition who receive one meal a day at [a] soup kitchen, just enough to keep them from the brink — at least for a year, while the program lasts."

Go deeper:

Go deeper

52 mins ago - Health

Vermont becomes first state to reach 80% vaccine threshold

A COVID-19 vaccination record card and an "I got my COVID-19 vaccine!" sticker. (Photo by: Don and Melinda Crawford/Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

Vermont Gov. Phil Scott (R) announced Monday that 80% of its eligible population has received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Why it matters: Vermont is the first state in the country to reach that threshold. As a result, Scott said he is removing all COVID-19 restrictions.

Garland says DOJ will strengthen rules on obtaining lawmakers' records

Photo: Tom Brenner-Pool/Getty Images

Attorney General Merrick Garland said Monday he has directed Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco to "evaluate and strengthen the department’s existing policies and procedures for obtaining records" from members of Congress.

Why it matters: At Garland's direction, the Justice Department's inspector general has opened an investigation into the Trump-era DOJ's use of secret subpoenas to obtain data belonging to House Democrats.

Dangerous heat wave set to shatter records across Southwest

High temperatures for Friday, June 18, 2021 shown, with record-breaking temperatures marked by a rectangle. Image: Weatherbell.

A punishing mid-June heat wave is set to scorch much of the Southwest and West this week, with Las Vegas potentially eclipsing its highest temperature on record, which stands at 117°F.

Why it matters: The heat will build in a region that is experiencing a record drought, leading to dangerous fire weather conditions, high power demands, and causing water supplies to dwindle further. The heat itself could prove deadly.