Bitcoin has been sidewaying for the past two weeks with it now nearing the upper range as it surpassed $49,000 before currently trading at $48,600.
The currency is getting a boost by a new regime in places like Nigeria where some states are banning people from entering banks if they do not show a digital id card of their vaccine status from a government app.
This measure was also enacted in Argentina’s capital, Buenos Aires, where a new law requires since Tuesday a vaccine ‘passport’ to be shown for “in-person attendance at private entities when people congregate.”
That includes banks in a country where many save in dollars and access to such dollars is usually only available inside a bank as the ATMs outside operate in only highly inflating pesos.
Argentina’s GDP has crashed, nearly halving since 2017 from $640 billion to now $380 billion as inflation runs above 50% on interest rates of 38% in a monetary collapse that has seen the peso go from 16 to the dollar, to now 102.
This tragedy has led many there to use dollars, especially for savings, but the government is now preventing at least some of them from continuing to do so.
As digital cash, bitcoin has performed the same service as the dollar at least in medium time frames and at least so far, but without needing any permission from banks or indeed the government.
Argentinians that may have gone to USD due to its low volatility may thus go to bitcoin instead, with crypto adoption picking up in the country.
Inflation this year is a global story however due to crackup boom levels of money printing and borrowing that continues at least in Europe where some governments appear to be unwilling to easily let go of the opportunity to control social movements through a government app that can potentially be extended to act as social credit scoring.
The European Central Bank will thus keep printing with endless money somehow appearing out of nowhere as the British Chancellor gives out another $1 billion with inflation now at risk of reaching double digits in Europe next year.
It’s already almost there in Russia where they’ve increased interest rates to 8.5%, doubling since January as inflation likewise rises from 4.9% to 8.4% last month.
In Turkey it has risen above 20% with a currency collapse averted only by their president, Recep Erdogan, guaranteeing savings against foreign exchange fluctuations. A move that led to a 40% gain for the lira from 19 to the dollar, to now 12.
With inflation going global, the big question at the end of this year is whether it can be controlled. Something that might now appear less likely as the temptation seems to be far too high to just give out free money for no economic productivity in return, and any real measures to tackle it would risk an economic crash.
So they might be inflating their way out of their huge debt that they keep piling up without any constrains whatever, leaving hard assets like land and bitcoin as one way of escaping this inflation tax.