Venezuela loosens currency controls, bolivar plunges

Venezuela's bolivar plummeted to 51.86 to the dollar on a new exchange that the government set up yesterday as part of an attempt to increase dollar supplies and tame the black market.

The price of the dollar on the government's official exchange is 6.3 bolivars and 10.8 bolivars on a secondary exchange, although it's 57-58 bolivars on the black market.

While critics charge that the new system, called Sicad 2, represents a severe devaluation, there are also those who are happy about the loosening of Venezuela's currency controls.

On F/X watch: Clorox (CLX), Colgate-Palmolive (CL), Kimberly-Clark (KMB), Avon Products (AVP), Unilever (UL) and Energizer (ENR).

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