The peso (established as the peso convertible) is the currency of Argentina, identified by the symbol $ preceding the amount in the same way as many countries using dollar currencies. It is subdivided into 100 centavos. Its ISO 4217 code is ARS.
Since the late 20th century, the Argentine peso has experienced a substantial rate of devaluation, reaching 25% year-on-year inflation rate in 2017. The official exchange rate for the United States dollar hovered around 3:1 from 2002 to 2008, climbing to 6:1 between 2009 and 2013. By August 2018, the rate had risen to 40:1.
|Peso argentino (Spanish)|
|Freq. used||5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, 500, 1,000 pesos|
|Freq. used||1, 2, 5, 10 pesos|
|Rarely used||1, 5, 10, 25, 50 centavos (discontinued due to inflation, still legal tender)|
|Central bank||Central Bank of the Argentine Republic|
|Source||Banco Ciudad and private consultants|
Amounts in earlier pesos were sometimes preceded by a "$" sign and sometimes, particularly in formal use, by symbols identifying that it was a specific currency, for example $m/n100 or m$n100 for pesos moneda nacional. The peso introduced in 1992 is just called peso (until 2002 peso convertible), and is written preceded by a "$" sign only. Earlier pesos replaced currencies also called peso, and sometimes two varieties of peso coexisted, making it necessary to have a distinguishing term to use, at least in the transitional period; the 1992 peso replaced a currency with a different name, austral.
The peso was a name often used for the silver Spanish eight-real coin. Following independence, Argentina began issuing its own coins, denominated in reales, soles and escudos, including silver eight-real (or sol) coins still known as pesos. These coins, together with those from neighbouring countries, circulated until 1881.
In 1826, two paper money issues began, denominated in pesos. One, the peso fuerte ($F) was a convertible currency, with 17 pesos fuertes equal to one Spanish ounce (27.0643 g) of 0.916 fine gold. It was replaced by the peso moneda nacional at par in 1881.
The non-convertible peso moneda corriente (everyday currency) ($m/c) was also introduced in 1826. It started at par with the peso fuerte, but depreciated with time.
Although the Argentine Confederation issued 1-, 2- and 4-centavo coins in 1854, with 100 centavos equal to 1 peso = 8 reales, Argentina did not decimalize until 1881. The peso moneda nacional (m$n or $m/n) replaced the earlier currencies at the rate of 1 peso moneda nacional = 8 reales = 1 peso fuerte = 25 peso moneda corriente. Initially, one peso moneda nacional coin was made of silver and known as patacón. However, the 1890 economic crisis ensured that no further silver coins were issued. At the beginning of the 20th century, the Argentine peso was one of the most traded currencies in the world.
The Argentine gold coin from 1875 was the gold peso fuerte, one and two-thirds of a gram of gold of fineness 900, equivalent to one and a half grams of fine gold, defined by law 733 of 1875. This unit was based on that recommended by the European Congress of Economists in Paris in 1867 and adopted by Japan in 1873 (the Argentine 5 peso fuerte coin was equivalent to the Japanese 5 yen).
The monetary system before 1881 has been described as "anarchistic" (anarquía monetaria). Law 1130 of 1881 put an end to this; it established the monetary unit as the peso oro sellado ("stamped gold peso"), a coin of 1.612 grams of gold of fineness 900 (90%), and the silver peso, 25 g of silver of fineness 900. Gold coins of 5 and 2.5 pesos were to be used, silver coins of one peso and 50, 20, 10 and 5 centavos, and copper coins of 2 and 1 centavos.
The depreciated peso moneda corriente was replaced in 1881 by the paper peso moneda nacional (national currency, (m$n or $m/n)) at a rate of 25 to 1. This currency was used from 1881 until January 1, 1970 The design was changed in 1899 and again in 1942.
Initially the peso m$n was convertible, with a value of one peso oro sellado. Convertibility was maintained off and on, with decreasing value in gold, until it was finally abandoned in 1929, when m$n 2.2727 was equivalent to one peso oro.
The peso argentino ($a) (ISO 4217: ARP) replaced the previous currency at a rate of 1 peso argentino to 10,000 pesos ley (1 million pesos m$n). The currency was born just before the return of democracy, on June 1, 1983. However, it rapidly lost its purchasing power and was devalued several times, and was replaced by a new currency called the austral in June 1985.
The austral ("₳") (ISO 4217: ARA) replaced the peso argentino at a rate of 1 austral to 1000 pesos (one billion pesos m$n). During the period of circulation of the austral, Argentina suffered from hyperinflation. The last months of President Raul Alfonsín's period in office in 1989 saw prices move up constantly (200% in July alone), with a consequent fall in the value of the currency. Emergency notes of 10,000, 50,000 and 500,000 australes were issued, and provincial administrations issued their own currency for the first time in decades. The value of the currency stabilized soon after President Carlos Menem was elected.
The current peso (ISO 4217: ARS) replaced the austral at a rate of 1 peso = 10,000 australes (ten trillion pesos m$n). It was also referred to as peso convertible since the international exchange rate was fixed by the Central Bank at 1 peso to 1 U.S. dollar and for every peso convertible circulating, there was a US dollar in the Central Bank's foreign currency reserves. After the various changes of currency and dropping of zeroes, one peso convertible was equivalent to 10,000,000,000,000 (1013) pesos moneda nacional. However, after the financial crisis of 2001, the fixed exchange rate system was abandoned.
Since January 2002, the exchange rate fluctuated, up to a peak of four pesos to one dollar (that is, a 75% devaluation). The resulting export boom produced a massive inflow of dollars into the Argentine economy, which helped lower their price. For a time the administration stated and maintained a strategy of keeping the exchange rate at between 2.90 and 3.10 pesos per US dollar, in order to maintain the competitiveness of exports and encourage import substitution by local industries. When necessary, the Central Bank issues pesos and buys dollars in the free market (sometimes large amounts, in the order of 10 to US$100 million per day) to keep the dollar price from dropping, and had amassed over US$27 billion in reserves before the US$9.81 billion payment to the International Monetary Fund in January 2006.
The effect of this may be compared to the neighboring Brazilian real, which was roughly on a par with the Argentine peso until the beginning of 2003, when both currencies were about three per U.S. dollar. The real started gaining in value more than the peso due to Brazil's slower buildup of dollar reserves; by December 29, 2009 a real was worth almost 2.2 pesos.
In December 2015, US dollar exchange restrictions were removed in Argentina following the election of President Macri. As a result, the difference between the official rate and the unofficial “blue” rate almost disappeared. The official exchange rate was on April 1, 2016, 14.4 to US$1. On November 10, 2017, it was 17.5. On November 2 2018, it was 36.60 after it hit the 42 pesos mark one month before. By March 27, 2019 it was 44.9.
In 1992, 1-, 5-, 10-, 25- and 50-centavo coins were introduced, followed by 1 peso in 1994. Two peso coins for circulation were introduced in 2010. The 1-centavo coins were last minted in 2001.
In 2017, there are plans to issue a new series of coins in denominations of $1, $2, $5 and $10.
|1 centavo||Argentina 1 centavo|
|5 centavos||Argentina 5 centavos|
|10 centavos||Argentina 10 centavos|
|25 centavos||Argentina 25 centavos|
|50 centavos||Argentina 50 centavos|
|1 peso||Argentina 1 peso|
|2 pesos||Argentina 2 pesos|
|1 peso||Argentina 1 peso (2017-present)|
|2 pesos||Argentina 2 pesos (2018-present)|
|5 pesos||Argentina 5 pesos (2017-present)|
|10 pesos||Argentina 10 pesos (2018-present)|
Commemorating the National Constitutional Convention, 2-peso and 5-peso nickel coins were issued in 1994.
|50 centavos (1996)||50 centavos (50th anniversary of UNICEF)|
|50 centavos (1997)||50 centavos (50th anniversary of the death of Eva Perón and the attainment of voting rights by women)|
|50 centavos (1998)||50 centavos (The establishment of Mercosur)|
|50 centavos (2000)||50 centavos (Death of General Martín Miguel de Güemes)|
|50 centavos (2001)||50 centavos (Death of José de San Martín)|
|1 peso (1996)||1 peso (50th anniversary of UNICEF)|
|1 peso (1997)||1 peso (50th anniversary of the death of Eva Perón and the attainment of voting rights by women)|
|1 peso (1998)||1 peso (The establishment of Mercosur)|
|1 peso (2001)||1 peso (Death of General José de Urquiza)|
|2 pesos (1994)|
|5 pesos (1994)|
|2 pesos (2007)||2 pesos commemorating the Falklands War (Malvinas War)|
Some 2-peso coins were issued in 1999 to commemorate the centenary of the birth of world-famous writer and poet Jorge Luis Borges; they had an image of Borges' face on one side, and a labyrinth and the Hebrew letter aleph on the other. In addition, commemorating the 50th anniversary of the death of Eva Perón, on September 18, 2002 a new 2-peso coin with her face was created. It was said that this coin would replace the old AR$2 banknote if inflation continued to be high. None of the 2-peso coins are currently in wide circulation.
Some other 50- and 1-peso coins exist commemorating different events, including the 50th anniversary of the creation of UNICEF (1996); the attainment of voting rights by women (1997); the establishment of Mercosur (1998); and the death of José de San Martín (2001).
In 2010, commemorating the bicentennial anniversary of the May Revolution, several 1-peso coins were issued, all featuring the same obverse, different from the main series, and images of different places on the reverse, such as Mar del Plata, the Perito Moreno Glacier, mount Aconcagua, the Pucará de Tilcara, and El Palmar.
In 1992, banknotes were introduced in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, and 100 pesos. The 1-peso note was replaced by a coin in 1994. The pictures below are outdated, since they bear the legend "Convertibles de curso legal" (meaning that value was fixed to the same amount in US dollars). New bills, printed since 2002, do not have this text. As most bills have been replaced, it is rare to find ones marked as convertible except in the large $100 denominations. All bills are 155 × 65 mm in size.
|$2||Blue||Bartolomé Mitre; replica of a handwritten manuscript of Historia de Belgrano y de la Independencia Argentina and contrapuerta of his house||Museo Mitre||Bartolomé Mitre and his initials||November 26, 1997 - April 27, 2018|
|$5||Green||José de San Martín; replica of his will and reproduction of Abrazo de Maipú, painting by Pedro Subercaseaux depicting the hug shared by San Martín and Bernardo O'Higgins that sealed Chile's independence||Monument to the Army of the Andes, Cerro de la Gloria; Order of the Liberator General San Martín medal||José de San Martín and his initials||June 22, 1998|
|$5||Green||José de San Martín and the Order of the Liberator (Orden del Libertador)||José Artigas, Simón Bolívar, José de San Martín, and Bernardo O'Higgins||José de San Martín and his initials||October 1, 2015|
|$10||Brown||Manuel Belgrano; replica of an 1812 report by him to the government of the United Provinces of the Río de la Plata and reproduction of La Patria Abanderada by Alfredo Bigatti at the National Flag Memorial||National Flag Memorial; drum —in remembrance of drummer boy Pedro Ríos who died at the Battle of Tacuarí— and typical textile pattern from the Argentine Northwest||Manuel Belgrano and his initials||January 11, 1999|
|$10||Brown, green, blue and purple||Manuel Belgrano||Juana Azurduy de Padilla and Manuel Belgrano on horseback with swords raised to the new flag on February 27, 1812 along the Paraná River||Manuel Belgrano and electrotype MB||April 4, 2016|
|$20||Red||Juan Manuel de Rosas; reproduction of Retrato de Manuelita Rosas by Prilidiano Pueyrredón, which depicts his daughter Manuela Rosas||Battle of Vuelta de Obligado; reproduction of the military trophies included in the 8 reales coin of 1840||Juan Manuel de Rosas and his initials||January 18, 2000|
|$50||Black||Domingo Faustino Sarmiento; reproduction of a manuscript of Vida de Dominguito, biography of his adopted son who died at the Battle of Curupayty||Casa Rosada; motifs to his various activities: La Porteña locomotive, European immigration and Facundo (1845), a cornerstone of Latin American literature||Domingo Faustino Sarmiento and his initials||July 19, 1999|
|$50||Blue||The Islas Malvinas, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands||Antonio Rivero, the Darwin Cemetery, light cruiser General Belgrano, the Malvinas Islands, and the Dolphin gull (Leucophaeus scoresbii)||Malvinas Islands and electrotype "IM" (Islas Malvinas)||2 March 2015|
|$100||Violet||Julio Argentino Roca; replica of a letter Roca sent to Miguel Cané —then ambassador to Austria— and evocation of Argentine progress under the sun of the future||Conquest of the Desert —painting La Conquista del Desierto by Juan Manuel Blanes; evocation of Roca as a statesman and military man: hand-written sheets of paper, the saber and a laurel branch||Julio Argentino Roca and his initials||December 3, 1999|
|$100||Violet||María Eva Duarte de Perón; based on the design of a 5-peso banknote planned to be released following her 1952 death, but unreleased due to the coup d'état that deposed President Juan Domingo Perón||Ara Pacis||María Eva Duarte de Perón and her initials||September 20, 2012|
|These images are to scale at 0.7 pixel per millimeter. For table standards, see the banknote specification table.|
In 2016, the Banco Central de la República Argentina issued a new series of banknotes, with the 200 and 500 pesos banknotes as the newest denominations. A new 20 and 1000-pesos note were issued in 2017, and new banknotes of 50 and 100 pesos were issued in 2018. A new series of coins in denominations of $1, $2, $5, and $10 will be issued in 2018.
|$20||Red||Guanaco||Patagonian Desert||Guanaco and electrotype 20||3 October 2017|
|$50||Gray||Andean condor||Aconcagua||Andean condor and electrotype 50||16 August 2018|
|$100||Violet||Taruca||Sierra de Famatina||Taruca and electrotype 100||19 December 2018|
|$200||Blue||Southern right whale||Valdes Peninsula||Whale and electrotype 200||26 October 2016|
|$500||Green||Jaguar||Yungas||Jaguar and electrotype 500||30 June 2016|
|$1000||Orange||Hornero||Pampas||Hornero and electrotype 1000||1 December 2017|
|These images are to scale at 0.7 pixel per millimeter. For table standards, see the banknote specification table.|
|Current ARS exchange rates|
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The 2018 Argentine monetary crisis was a big devaluation of the Argentine Peso, caused by the high inflation, an increase in the price of the United States dollar at the local markets, and other domestic and international reasons. As a result of it, the presidency of Mauricio Macri requested a loan from the International Monetary Fund.Argentine peso (1983–1985)
The peso argentino was the currency of Argentina between June 1, 1983 and June 14, 1985. It was subdivided into 100 centavos. The symbol was $a. The ISO 4217 code was ARP.Argentine peso ley
The peso ley 18.188, usually known as either peso or, to distinguish it from the earlier peso moneda nacional, informally as peso ley, was the currency of Argentina between January 1, 1970 and May 5, 1983. It was subdivided into 100 centavos. Its symbol was $, sometimes $L. Its name comes from law 18188 which established it, effective April 5, 1969. Its ISO 4217 code was ARL.Argentine peso moneda corriente
The peso moneda corriente was a non-convertible Argentine paper currency which circulated between 9 January 1826, and 4 November 1881. Its symbol was $m/c. It was also known as the peso papel (paper money).
The peso moneda corriente was introduced at par with the peso fuerte ($F) but was devalued several times during its life. In the period from 3 January 1867 to 17 May 1876, the peso moneda corriente could be converted to gold, at the rate $m/c 25 = $F 1, in the Oficina de Cambios (exchange office) of the Banco de la Provincia de Buenos Aires. The office closed in 1876 because the people exchanged pesos for gold in large quantities. The peso moneda corriente was replaced by the peso moneda nacional at the rate of 25 pesos moneda corriente = 1 peso moneda nacional.
During the period the peso moneda corriente was in use, currencies from other countries were also used (especially the Bolivian boliviano).Argentine peso moneda nacional
The peso moneda nacional was the currency of Argentina from November 5, 1881 to January 1, 1970, the date in which the Argentine peso ley was issued to the Argentine public. It was subdivided into 100 centavos, with the argentino worth 5 pesos. Its symbol was m$n or $m/n.Banking in Argentina
This article is about the banking system of Argentina, including an overview of the recent past. For details on the economy at large, see Economy of Argentina.During the 1990s, marked by President Carlos Menem's policies of liberalization, Argentina's financial system saw a significant consolidation and strengthening, in large part through foreign investment. In addition to high reserve and capital-adequacy requirements, the Central Bank of Argentina maintained a repurchase agreement with a consortium of international banks to provide a $6,000 million safety net in the event of a liquidity squeeze.
Mergers and acquisitions, which decreased the number of Argentine banks from nearly 300 in 1990 to fewer than 100 at the end of 1999, were expected to continue and lead to improvements in management and efficiency. The foreign currency reserves of the Central Bank stood at nearly $25,000 million in December 1999, or over 9 months of imports. However, these reserves were used to back the monetary liabilities of the Central Bank and were not available for conducting monetary policy; by the terms of the Convertibility Law, each Argentine peso in circulation was to be matched by one American dollar in the reserves.
Despite the recession (started in 1998 after the international economic shock due to the 1998 Russian financial crisis), bank deposits continued to grow until 2001, although at a much slower rate than in previous years. Total deposits in the banking system stood at nearly $80,000 million by mid-2001 — more than twice that of June 1995, when deposits hit a low of $37,000 million. Foreign-controlled banks held over 40% of total deposits, and six of the top 10 commercial banks were in the hands of American and European financial institutions.
Still, the level of bank utilization in Argentina remained relatively low, and bank intermediation represented only about 30% of the GDP — a much lower ratio than those of Chile, Mexico, or Brazil, for example.
Nevertheless, the banking system suffered a fatal flaw: it lent dollars and took deposits in Argentine pesos (nominally argendollars). By early 2001, deposits had reached $87,000 million, but when the economy took a second dip, capital started flowing out of Argentina, and deposits started to move away from the weaker players of the financial system, namely provincial banks and large local banks.
This eventually led to a run on all banks in the system, a freeze in deposits, and a currency devaluation, which included an asymmetric devaluation of loans and deposits. Banks were forced to collect their dollar loans at a conversion rate much lower than the rate applied to its dollar deposits. This made many banks technically bankrupt and destroyed the confidence of the public in the financial system, which was held responsible for many of the economic ills of the country.
Deposits fell to less than $40,000 million by the end of 2002. Foreign banks fled the country during 2002 and 2003, selling their operations to smaller local banks at a fraction of their original investments. Only a few large foreign banks decided to stay.
In 2004, the government compensated the banks for the impact of the asymmetric devaluation of deposits and loans through a series of "compensation bonds".
Currently banks are again gaining deposits, which amounted to more than $44,000 million by February 2006, and have been increasing their lending portfolios. Their operations are leaner, due to the massive layoffs of 2002, that reduced their working force by more than 30%. However, the public still remains wary of taking long term loans, and rates are high in real terms given Argentina's low rates of inflation. Banking penetration remains low and banking costs high.
The Argentine banking sector is currently dominated by state-owned banks, with the largest being the Banco de la Nación Argentina. In 2005, for the first time since the 2001 collapse, the banking system made a profit, according to a Central Bank report released in February 2006. The total profits amounted to 1,958 million pesos (more than $650 million).Bolivian peso
The peso boliviano (ISO 4217 code: BOP), divided into 100 centavos, was the currency of Bolivia from January 1, 1963 until December 31, 1986. It was replaced by the boliviano at 1,000,000 pesos bolivianos = 1 boliviano. "$b." was the currency symbol for the peso boliviano.Caja de conversión
The caja de conversión was the body responsible for maintaining the value of the Argentine peso in gold, as part of the currency board that operated in Argentina before 1935. It was a precursor of sorts to the Argentine Currency Board of the 1990s.Casa de Moneda de la República Argentina
The Casa de Moneda de la República Argentina is the Argentine mint, controlled by the Argentine government and administratively subordinated to the Ministry of Economy. A mint was established in 1779, before Argentina became independent. Law 733 of 1875 ordered the creation of two mints, one in Buenos Aires and another in Salta; the Casa de Moneda in Buenos Aires was opened on 14 February 1881, with ingeniero (engineer) Castilla as director and John Joseph Jolly Kyle as chief chemist.It produces legal tender coins and banknotes. It also produces medals and security prints (i.e., passports, subway tokens, postage stamps) that are used and issued by government-run service providers. The present currency printed is the Argentine peso, since 1992.
In 1927 the Casa de Moneda Museum was inaugurated, with historical banknotes, coins, postal and other stamps, seals, medals, and others.Centavo
The centavo (Spanish and Portuguese 'one hundredth') is a fractional monetary unit that represents one hundredth of a basic monetary unit in many countries around the world. The term comes from Latin centum, ('one hundred'), with the added suffix -avo ('portion').Convertibility plan
The Argentine Currency Board pegged the Argentine peso to the U.S. dollar between 1991 and 2002 in an attempt to eliminate hyperinflation and stimulate economic growth. While it initially met with considerable success, the board's actions ultimately failed. In contrast to what most people think, this peg actually did not exist, except only in the first years of the plan. From then on, the government never needed to use the foreign exchange reserves of the country in the maintenance of the peg, except when the recession and the massive bank withdrawals started in 2000.Costa Rican peso
The peso was the currency of Costa Rica between 1850 and 1896. It was initially subdivided into 8 reales and circulated alongside the earlier currency, the real, until 1864, when Costa Rica decimalized and the peso was subdivided into 100 centavos. The peso was replaced by the colón at par in 1896Ecuadorian peso
The peso was a currency of Ecuador until 1884.Guatemalan peso
The peso was the currency of Guatemala between 1859 and 1925.List of currencies
A list of all currencies, current and historic. The local name of the currency is used in this list, with the adjectival form of the country or region.Portuguese Timorese pataca
The pataca was a monetary unit of account used in Portuguese Timor between 1894 and 1958, except for the period 1942–1945, when the occupying Japanese forces introduced the Netherlands Indies gulden and the roepiah. As in the case of the Macanese pataca which is still in use today, the East Timor unit was based on the silver Mexican dollar coins which were prolific in the wider region in the 19th century. These Mexican dollar coins were in turn the lineal descendants of the Spanish pieces of eight which had been introduced to the region by the Portuguese through Portuguese Malacca, and by the Spanish through the Manila Galleon trade.Roque Fernández
Roque Benjamín Fernández (born April 30, 1947) is an Argentine economist, former President of the Central Bank, and Economy Minister, as well as the only member of the Chicago Boys ever to have been the chief economic policy maker in Argentina.
Fernández was born in Córdoba, Argentina and holds a CPA from the National University of Córdoba and a PhD in Economics from the same university. In 1973 he obtained a scholarship from the Ford Foundation and went on to earn a PhD in Economics from the University of Chicago in 1975.
Since its foundation in 1978, he has been a member of the board of directors and faculty of the Universidad del CEMA, where he taught Monetary Theory. Fernández was appointed President of the Central Bank of Argentina on February 5, 1991, by recommendation of the new Economy Minister, Domingo Cavallo. As such, he was instrumental in managing the Argentine Currency Board that served as a guarantor of Cavallo's Convertibility Plan in its early years, and which helped maintain a 1:1 parity between the Argentine peso and the US dollar. He remained at the post until August 4, 1996, when President Carlos Menem removed Cavallo following a political dispute, and Fernández became Minister of the Economy on August 6, 1996, serving in that capacity until Menem's retirement on December 10, 1999.
During his tenure, Fernández earned plaudits for helping maintain a steady exchange rate and zero inflation, and doing so despite repeated international shocks, such as the Mexican, Asian, and Russian financial crises.
Fernández is currently Professor of Macroeconomic Analysis (graduate) and Macroeconomics I (undergraduate) at UCEMA. He was also visiting professor in the University of Southern California, Florida International University, Universidad de Chile, Universidad Católica de Chile, and has worked as a consultant and economist for the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. His major areas of interest are banks, financial systems in developing nations, fiscal and monetary policy, exchange rate policy, balance of payments and financial crisis.
As a researcher, he is author of several books and publications, including articles in the American Economic Review and Journal of Political Economy. He is a member of the Academia Nacional de Ciencias Economicas.Salvadoran peso
The peso was the currency of El Salvador between 1877 and 1919.
Currencies of the Americas