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Argentina Freezes Supermarket Prices To Halt Soaring Inflation; Chaos To Follow

Tyler Durden's picture


Up until now, Argentina's descent into a hyperinflationary basket case, with a crashing currency and loss of outside funding was relatively moderate and controlled. All this is about to change. Today, in a futile attempt to halt inflation, the government of Cristina Kirchner announced a two-month price freeze on supermarket products. The price freeze applies to every product in all of the nation’s largest supermarkets — a group including Walmart, Carrefour, Coto, Jumbo, Disco and other large chains. The companies’ trade group, representing 70 percent of the Argentine supermarket sector, reached the accord with Commerce Secretary Guillermo Moreno, the government’s news agency Telam reported. As AP reports, "The commerce ministry wants consumers to keep receipts and complain to a hotline about any price hikes they see before April 1."

Perhaps they will. What consumers will certainly do is scramble into local stores to take advantage of artificially-controlled prices knowing very well they have two short months to stock up on perishable goods at today's prices, before the country's inflation comes soaring back, only this time many of the local stores will not be around as their profit margins implode and as owners, especially of foreign-based chains, make the prudent decision to get out of Dodge while the getting's good and before the next steps, including such measures as nationalization, in the escalation into a full out hyperinflationary collapse, are taken by Argentina's female ruler.

As such expect photos of empty shelves from Buenos Aires to start popping up in a few days, comparable to how threats of a gun and weapon ban by the US government did more for the top and bottom line of US arms dealers than any military conflict ever could.

Sure enough:

Economist Soledad Perez Duhalde of the consulting firm predicted on Monday that the price freeze will have only a very short term effect, and noted that similar moves in Argentina had failed to control inflation. Consumers shouldn’t be surprised if the supermarkets are slow to restock their shelves and offer fewer products for sale, she added.

In other news Argentina, just like the rest of the "developed" world, appears to have a slight inflation tracking problem:

Polls show Argentines worry most about inflation, which private economists estimate could reach 30 percent this year. The government says it’s trying to hold the next union wage hikes to 20 percent, a figure that suggests how little anyone believes the official index that pegs annual inflation at just 10 percent.

The BLS has the solution: just exclude any product whose price is rising from your CPI calculation, and voila. For everything else there is a hedonic adjustment.

The ironic comparison to the US does not end there however:

A more effective way to contain inflation would be to “reduce government spending, which is financing an expansion of the money supply, and to have a credible price index.”

Wait, are they still talking about Argentina or the US?

The government announced the price freeze on the first business day after the International Monetary Fund formally censured Argentina for putting out inaccurate economic data. The IMF has given Argentina until September to bring its inflation and economic growth statistics up to international standards. If Argentina doesn’t comply, it could face expulsion from the world body in November.

Well good thing the US complies with the IMF's stringent "seasonally adjusted" data reporting quality control. Or else, the US may have been expelled from the IMF too. And then who would fund the creeping bailout of Europe (aside from Germany of course)?

The IMF censure “is not just a new error ... it’s also a clear example of the organization’s unequal treatment and double standards in regard to certain member countries,” Lorenzino said. “Argentina, just as it agreed with the IMF to do, will keep working to improve its statistical procedures in accordance with good international standards.”

So to summarize: first capital controls, then a currency crisis, then expectations of sovereign default, then a rise in military tensions, and finally - price controls, after which all out chaos usually follows.

Study this sequence well: it is coming to every "developed" country near you in the months and years ahead.

But, as with every other hyperinflationary implosion, there is a silver lining: the stock market is soaring...

... at least in Peso terms. When priced in USD, the 360% stock market "rise" is more like -9% in the past 21 years. But luckily, the general public has a gene that prevents it from grasping the difference between nominal and real - something Ben Bernanke is very well aware of.


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Tue, 02/05/2013 - 01:58 | 3215617 moonstears
moonstears's picture

Team...that blog, I read it once,most all of it, during an early spam....did not read now but I'd bet it says something like: "woke up, took a dump, dragon lady cooked pigs in a blanket for breakfast..." just fuckin' silly.

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 07:14 | 3215780 matrix2012
matrix2012's picture

You guys are so funny amusing around with the crappy angry sinner thingy, the lines are really entertaining...

A L O L ! !   HA  HA  HA ...  HA  HA  HA 

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 07:44 | 3215809 spankfish
spankfish's picture

+1 for using Nutsack

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 02:17 | 3215646 Tsunami Wave
Tsunami Wave's picture

No more fuck lloyd blankfien page, I-Be-Julia.. and all the other retarded handles you've used here over the many months?

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 11:32 | 3216287 Clayton Bigsby
Clayton Bigsby's picture

Food shortages in 3, 2, 1....

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:29 | 3214940 IMA5U
IMA5U's picture




Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:30 | 3214941 honestann
honestann's picture

No problemo.  Henceforth WalMart (and others) will only accept grams of gold in payment for products.  And they hereby pledge not to raise prices... EVER.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:43 | 3214981 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

Aldi bitchez!

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:20 | 3215235 Matt
Matt's picture

But you have to pay the sales tax in FRNs.

Wed, 02/06/2013 - 00:01 | 3218906 honestann
honestann's picture

In Argentina?

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:29 | 3214942 Fred Hayek
Fred Hayek's picture

Isn't it wonderful how authoritarians like Kirchner absolutely refuse to learn from history?

Hmm. Let's see what will happen next. Every item will now be changed ever so slightly and repackaged ever so slightly to be a "new" item that can be sold at a new, higher price. Oh . . and shortages and an increasing shift of economic activity to the black market.

Authoritarians are so . . tiresome.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:31 | 3214950 lewy14
lewy14's picture

We are all Diocletians now.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:38 | 3214973 moonstears
moonstears's picture

lewy14...What's that mean, are we blaming the Christians?

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:49 | 3214998 Fredo Corleone
Fredo Corleone's picture

In addition to his prurient desire to persecute Christians, the Emperor was quite devoted to the imposition of price controls, coupled with currency debasement.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:59 | 3215009 moonstears
moonstears's picture

I know, Fredo, just jokin'...but you are correct, Sir! When price controls failed, onto find a scapegoat, 'viola, "Christians did it, to the lions with them"! Now we're placated with Beyonce, who made mainstream media flashin' a pyramid sign, was it diabolical, or a shout out to her Egyptian homies??

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:15 | 3215030 Fredo Corleone
Fredo Corleone's picture

Beyonce and her "Novus Ordo Seclorum" moment ? Perhaps she is a freemason.

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 01:15 | 3215565 knukles
knukles's picture

No shit illuminati writ large
Vigilant Citizen material

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 07:21 | 3215799 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

I went by VC right after the game to see if anybody posted it up... Didn't see anything, YET, but I'm sure they'll get to it [Maybe their server is located in the Superdome ~ lol]... It was fucking obvious... Anyway, maybe VC is busy prepping for the Grammy's... That's usually a 'Moloch' worshipping fest...

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:11 | 3215065 trav777
trav777's picture

dey beez gypshuns

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:20 | 3215091 Zap Powerz
Zap Powerz's picture

What a shitshow that was.  And her voice sucked. No wonder she lipsynced the NA.

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 01:14 | 3215564 lewy14
lewy14's picture

See, this is why I love this blog... I mean where else can you make a cryptic comment like "We are all Diocletians now" and have people just get it...

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 03:22 | 3215699 TBT or not TBT
TBT or not TBT's picture

Gibbon, bitchae!

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:56 | 3215020 darteaus
darteaus's picture

She learned just fine - distract the populace while you strip mine the country and send the money to your Swiss bank account.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:32 | 3215131 TBT or not TBT
TBT or not TBT's picture

Also, stuff will not be there to be bought at the frozen prices.    It will be traded black market in foreign currencies and tangible goods.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:34 | 3214961 Campagnolo
Campagnolo's picture

once Argentina lost the war over the Malvinas (Falklands) against England, this country collapse for ever. Anyone that knew how rich Argentina was and what shape is now, will be crying...something similar to Detroit, once the third biggest city in the States, today a ghost town.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:12 | 3214995 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

I was in Argentina in 1990/91... Being hosted by my good friends [a JEWISH FAMILY ~ whocoodanode?]...


Anyway ~ they were fairly wealthy & had a nice place in an upscale neighborhood... The matriarch of the family [actually ~ the patriarch was setting up shop in Mexico City as a way to funnel wealth out of Argentina], was busy spending her money on cheap ass Honda Civics, or almost ANYTHING she could find that was coming in off the boats...

I wasn't in to those things then, but it struck me as so odd [why would this wealthy family be buying up all these crappy old Honda Civics & storing them]?...

Now I know...


Edit: & some clown JUNKS me for that comment... Pffffffffffft...

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:23 | 3215239 Almost Solvent
Almost Solvent's picture

Honda Civics were smart. Run 4eva and they don't draw the ire of the starving masses like an Audi, Beamer or Benz. You could actually drive a Civic (assuming fuel available) and not have to worry as much about that bullet coming your way like an Escalade might bring.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:45 | 3215272 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

I agree they were smart... now...


I never understood it AT THE TIME... IOW ~ nobody TRULY understands anything until reality punches them in the face...

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:00 | 3215034 Freddie
Freddie's picture

I hear what you are saying but this has really been going on since 1950s.m  The Falklands war was sort of a last gasp.  Kirscher and her hubby are total shit. 

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 09:50 | 3216004 Calmyourself
Calmyourself's picture

At least her husband is room temperature hopefully she will soon follow..

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:34 | 3214962 edb5s
edb5s's picture

Problem solved!  Wow, that was easy.  On to the next one.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:11 | 3215062 Freedumb
Freedumb's picture

Well, just for completeness, they still need to change the method they use to calculate inflation so that inflation no longer happens like the BLS

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:34 | 3214963 Timmay
Timmay's picture

Months and years? Hoping for days and weeks.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:34 | 3214965 moonstears
moonstears's picture

In 2011/2012 heard Jim Rogers say "I worry about 2014". Recently read J Williams at shadowstats say 2014, as well. I think both of them are VERY cedible thinkers in economics. We got some time??

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:48 | 3215174 balz
balz's picture

Armstrong says Fall of 2015.

IMO we are in a Long Descent scenario as explained by John Michael Greer: each "recovery" leads to another drop, which mean less complexity and less oil used, which create another "recovery", and then another drop.

This will get ugly, but not like 2008. Much slower. Some people will try to buy the bottom, but they will realize later that it was not a bottom at all... Look in the 70s; it will play out the same.


Tue, 02/05/2013 - 00:23 | 3215494 seek
seek's picture

My bet (and math) has been on 2015-2018 for some time now, and I wouldn't disagree with Amstrong here.

However, I'm always surprised at how they can keep the plates spinning, but know they can't forever. The timing on this thing is a bitch, because it's non-linear and dependent on psychology and faith of the masses. I'm convinced when it happens, the speed of it will catch everyone by surprise, even TPTB.

The old "tanks in the streets' scenario used to scare congress in 2008 isn't going to hold water. Anything of value will be gone in less time than it takes to move a meaningful military presence. DHS' procurement of firearms and ammo will be discovered to be woefully short of what would be needed to even buy a few more days time.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:35 | 3214966 Temporalist
Temporalist's picture

Did those people learn to buy gold and silver yet?


If not they're really dumb.


Also, there is no inflation.


Print MOAR!!!

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:25 | 3215242 Matt
Matt's picture

fool me once, shame on you. Fool me ... I can't get fooled again!

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:37 | 3214970 Joebloinvestor
Joebloinvestor's picture

I would like to see the record of when price controls actually worked.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:57 | 3215021 knukles
knukles's picture


Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:49 | 3214984 Sophist Economicus
Sophist Economicus's picture

But, but, but,  Krugman said Argentina was a South American wonder story!!!!

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:56 | 3215016 knukles
knukles's picture

Read his shit.  Advocating endless printing.  The Trillion Dollar Coin Solution

Actually, methinks he has named his blog/column properly, for he as a liberal, like most liberals, has no conscience.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:14 | 3215073 donsluck
donsluck's picture

I disagree. The biggest difference between a conservative and a liberal IS conscience. Only the liberal feels guilty.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:34 | 3215135 TBT or not TBT
TBT or not TBT's picture

Is that why they're all about good intentions, I mean on the surface anyway?

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:49 | 3215178 WmMcK
WmMcK's picture

A conservative is a liberal that's been mugged.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:08 | 3215216 EINSILVERGUY

A conservative is a liberal that has been mugged twice

Fixed it for you

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:17 | 3215229 chump666
chump666's picture

Keynesians like smoking angel dust.

Drug of choice apparently.


Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:44 | 3214987 chump666
chump666's picture

Should be watched closely re: Argentina and China USD black-markets on hyperinflation hitting emerging markets.

BUENOS AIRES--Argentine stocks closed sharply lower Monday as investors around the world appeared to act on renewed concern about Europe's financial and economic crises.
The benchmark Merval stock index fell 2.9% to 3428.69 in volume totaling about 55.8 million Argentine pesos ($11.25 million).
Power distributor Edenor (EDN.BA, EDN), which has seen wide swings in recent months, led the declines, falling 5.3% to ARS1.07. It was followed by its parent company, power generator Pampa Energia SA (PAMP.BA, PAM), which fell 5.2% to ARS1.27.
Just one Merval share rose Monday. Telecom Argentina SA (TECO2.BA, TEO) gained 0.6% to ARS24.55.
Securities tied to economic growth, also known as GDP warrants, also did poorly. The TVPA fell 0.93% to ARS47.80; the TVPY fell 1.06% to ARS46.60.
Meanwhile, Argentina's black-market peso opened the week notably stronger against the U.S. dollar, closing at ARS7.72 to the dollar, according to the financial daily El Cronista. On Friday it traded for closer to ARS8.
Argentina strictly rations the sale of dollars and other currencies, forcing many people into the black market if they really need other currencies for travel or to save.
Rising demand for the dollar, spurred largely by tourists who need greenbacks to travel abroad, has pushed the gap between the official exchange rate, which is closely controlled by the central bank, and the black-market rate to a new high.
Government officials consistently have downplayed the significance of the black-market peso, saying that trading of it is minimal and has no impact on the broader economy.
Officials expect an avalanche of dollars to hit Argentina in a couple of months when farmers start exporting a record soybean crop. Those dollars should help contain demand, reducing pressure on the black market.
The official exchange rate closed at ARS4.983 on the MAE wholesale currency market.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:12 | 3215218 Orly
Orly's picture

The so-called, "Blue Dollar"?

What do they call it in China?  Red Dollar?  Yellow Dollar?

Always a step ahead, ain't ya Chump?


Tue, 02/05/2013 - 00:19 | 3215483 chump666
chump666's picture

Ah yes, you got my black money USD posts awhile back?

Anyways, so, we got a big correction (risk aversion to end all) forming Orly?  I am dying to throw down a huge short, then close up shop. 

Your thoughts please.

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 02:16 | 3215644 Orly
Orly's picture

I am not seeing it right now, Chump, as there is the pesky little problem of what to do with our friends the Japanese and the British.

If the paradigm that has been in place over the past several years would hold, then the Euro would be considered a very risky currency and the Japanese yen a safe-haven.  To a lesser extent, the Pound Sterling, though the GBP kind of floats back and forth between risk-on and risk-off.

Right now, the Euro is showing tremendous strength (for no other reason than the American taxpayer via the Fed...) and I believe that will continue, so it's risk-on.

Remember my missive on the Cable the other day and how it looks like the GBPUSD pair will slide back down through the bottom trendline of a wedge formation on the Weekly chart.  It looks like that is going to happen but not before there is some correction to the EURUSD to back around 1.389 or so, then up, up and away!

Once the Euro turns back higher, the Pound will turn back lower (decoupling big-time...) and both currencies won't stop until people's mouths are agape at these moves.

So what, you say?  You didn't ask me about currencies.  My point is, though, that if Euro goes much higher and the Sterling goes much lower, then that keeps the DXY relatively stable (as has been my contention all along with some of these bizarre moves in currency pairs...).

Meaning...they are still in complete control of what's going on.  And they have no intention of allowing a crash in the equity market but are more likely to allow it to trade sideways for an extended period of time.  It's ironic in a way that we are now going to see boring equity markets, while 4X markets are going to be jumping like catfish in the black water.

Stocks go nowhere, PMs go nowhere, xJPY shoots the moon, the Euro rises non-stop like an ugly zit three days before the prom (and the big story that no one is going to be talking about for a while...) the Pound craters to 1.52, then on to 1.437.

Mark Carney is going to print to the high heaven and British pensioners are screwed once again.  Damn shame, too.

Well, take it for what it's worth.  As always, we'll see.


Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:26 | 3215243 SmallerGovNow2
SmallerGovNow2's picture

visited east germany before the wall fell.  official exchange rate was 1 to 1 between east and west.  however, once in east germany, the black market exchange rate was 5 to 1...

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 00:26 | 3215499 chump666
chump666's picture

Brazil was the same in early 90's when hyper inflation hit.  It's a strange time, with America actually exporting inflation to all corners of the globe, while the world buys up USDs on various 'markets'.  China is the big worry.  Things get out of hand there, which they may, they could just shut down the exchange rate, close up the trade markets and just handle their own nightmare i.e iron curtain style.  Obama should grow a f*cking brain and realize that the Fed is sending us into a world of hurt.

But back to the black markets, essentially they would not be manipulated, just old style open out cry bids and offers. 

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:49 | 3215000 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

Just like ammo if you're not stocked up by now you're going to be screwed. First the price controls and then come the shortages.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:59 | 3215029 espirit
espirit's picture

How true Doc.  Beans, bullets, bullion - and not necessarily in that order.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:05 | 3215046 dick cheneys ghost
dick cheneys ghost's picture

Great Blog------------BTW, Not mine

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:01 | 3215038 DosZap
DosZap's picture

Just like ammo if you're not stocked up by now you're going to be screwed. First the price controls and then come the shortages.

If ObaMao gets his way you are dead on.

Tried to find ANY .22LR rimfire lately?.

$6.00 per 50, IF you found any.


Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:45 | 3215165 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

I managed to scoop up 1000 rnds last night. I got an email update that some was in stock so I bought it shortly thereafter.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:53 | 3215275 BigDuke6
BigDuke6's picture

so you cut em in half with a machine gun and then give em a band aid doctor?

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 00:14 | 3215476 abatis
abatis's picture

If you are successful during trying times and survive, eventually, you may run low on ammo. A little forged steel may prove helpful. Personally, I find the Bone Machete re-assuring.  and always worth a few trinkets of silver.

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 00:59 | 3215540 Acidtest Dummy
Acidtest Dummy's picture

Quality used kitchen cutlery has been a superior shopping experience for me. Green River Works made knives 100 years ago that are still second to none. High carbon steel makes food prep fun. Also, trivial fact: pots and pans were frequently included in peoples wills, (as an estates primary assests.) Alright, get offa my lawn now.

happy face

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 05:16 | 3215749 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

Some nice looking blades there. Thanks for the link.

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 01:09 | 3215557 bigrooster
bigrooster's picture

$2.12 at Walmart in PHX last Friday.  Limit 3 boxes.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:30 | 3215126 Shell Game
Shell Game's picture

Indeed.  2008/09 was a big wake-up call.  Bailout socialism goes broad daylight, The Fed commits to QE, the Tea Party co-opted and put down, Ron Paul viciously shut out of county/state conventions, Etc.  These declarations by the establishment made certain future outcomes inevitable, and made accumulation of certain Preps and tangibles obvious. 

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 23:46 | 3215424 Ident 7777 economy
Ident 7777 economy's picture







You mean "Live by the sword die by the sword" Ron Paul?


(Comments he twittered regarding Chris Kyle's shooting death?


Riiiight ... 





Tue, 02/05/2013 - 03:38 | 3215661 Shell Game
Shell Game's picture

hmmm, ya think MAYBE he was referring to how these guys don't have the proper treatment for perpetual warfare's PTSD?  Pharma's suicide drugs are NOT the answer. 

Paul is one of the few conservative who has the balls to speak out directly against the US's immoral militarism and MIC, so no fucking surprise. 

What galls the Christian 'Right' (who are really Leftists) is that Ron Paul has involked biblical references against prideful warfare (eg. the Golden Rule, 'Live by the sword, die by the sword..').  I mean, how dare he shed the light of truth on the unspoken oath and warfare demagogy of the 'Right'?

Shallow neo-cons will never get that militarism has severe consequences on many, many fronts. 


Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:53 | 3215007 knukles
knukles's picture

Toldja so, toldja toldja toldja

Over 2 years ago I wrote here on the Venerable Hedge numerous times that with the way the world's going.... print extraordinaire to counter fiscal problems (oxymoron) will ultimately result in higher prices resulting in turn, in wage and price controls.

Many voted down and laughed.....
Get ready.
The socialists really and truly believe that they can legislate price, demand, supply, morals, ethics and thought.

I got some bad fucking news....
The socialists are here, now and planning to try the same shit because this time will be different...
God help us all for we are incapable of doing so ourselves... Particularly the statist atheistic nobs in u kno where....those who view the state as the ultimate higher power.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:18 | 3215079 Husk-Erzulie
Husk-Erzulie's picture

Particularly the statist atheistic nobs in u kno where....

Massachusetts! (I love it, love it, love it).  I remember as a kid buying ammo at the country store, and it didn't seem  weird.  What the hell happened to my state?

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:30 | 3215250 Fred Hayek
Fred Hayek's picture

There's still some sanity in central and western Mass. (excluding the Amherst area) but Rt. 128 may as well be the river Styx.

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 05:17 | 3215750 e-recep
e-recep's picture

what the fuck does atheism to do with believing that the state is the ultimate power?? the ignorance of the pious bunch is sickening.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:54 | 3215013 darteaus
darteaus's picture

Now you know why Crazy Cristina is making all that noise about the Falklands - distraction from economic disaster.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:55 | 3215017 Hulk
Hulk's picture

Food shortages to follow soon...

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 20:58 | 3215026 Oldrepublic
Oldrepublic's picture

Argentina is a good place to study bad economics!

An interesting place I have been there several times.Casey really likes the place.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:01 | 3215035 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

Why go to Argentina to study bad economics when we are living a case study right now?

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:11 | 3215063 WmMcK
WmMcK's picture

Cuz the locals already don't heed the gov't there?

They've been thru it before -- think black mkts and 0 sum games,

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 03:27 | 3215701 TBT or not TBT
TBT or not TBT's picture

Argentina should just negotiate a deal where its currency is the world's reserve currency and have everything priced in that currency.   A lot of countries make this same mistake but Argentina has done it repeatedly.

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 14:27 | 3216961 Bam_Man
Bam_Man's picture

Cuz they may be several chapters ahead of us, but we are catching up fast!

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:07 | 3215054 WmMcK
WmMcK's picture

Maybe for RE (ranching, polo, spas) but not for storing PM's.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:00 | 3215031 ShrNfr
ShrNfr's picture


Argentina Freezes Supermarket Prices To Halt Soaring Inflation; Extreme Shortages To Follow



Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:00 | 3215033 Sleepless Knight
Sleepless Knight's picture

Coming soon to a supermarket near you!!

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:05 | 3215044 goldenbuddha454
goldenbuddha454's picture

Christina obviously didn't get Ben's memo that food is a "Transitory Item" and thus should be ignored when calculating inflation. 

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:05 | 3215047 Stuck on Zero
Stuck on Zero's picture

The Argentine government would have better luck with a "printing freeze."


Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:08 | 3215053 moonstears
moonstears's picture

They've played this game before, George Soros made a killin' over a decade ago on this, they know what to do. Anyone there a fellow ZHer? Keep us updated, go to the grocery store tonight and let us know.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:48 | 3215175 PLira
PLira's picture

Keep an eye on this guy. Ferfal bugged out sometime in the last couple of years to Ireland from Argentina.

His Grandfather had Irish roots and while he was a youth, Grandpa went to great lenghts to get his family Irish Passports as he knew the unrest SA could bring.

Anyway, in the last couple of years, Feral, who went through this in the 90's and 2001, saw this stuff repeating and said, "I'm outta here". So he should have some good commentary and compare/contrast on the current events in Arg land. He still has some family there.

He peddles a book but don't hold it against him. Met him in a conference once, really nice guy who thinks Arg is an excellent model to the USA dilemma.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 23:31 | 3215387 lasvegaspersona
lasvegaspersona's picture

The book Ferfal wrote is a good one...a guide to what will probable come here if it is a gradual change. Theirs (Argentina) came suddenly with a restatement of the currency (overnight  went from 1:1 to the dollar to 3:1). There was immediate panic and then the drip drip drip of lost wealth...stolen by the government.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:11 | 3215066 tecno242
tecno242's picture

ahhh.. price controls... the last step before falling off the cliff of hyperinflation.

the Romans tried price controls w/ laws that were punishable by death.  That didn't work either.  No one pays attention to history.. or they are just ignorant and just panic after they've already ridden failed policy into the ground.

Everyone who gets a PHD obviously knows history, but for some reason, chooses to believe they are smarter than those that walked the path before them.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:31 | 3215129 Husk-Erzulie
Husk-Erzulie's picture

Everyone who gets a PHD obviously knows history

Apparently not.  What is it about public policy that attracts the truly brain dead?  No sense of history = the same mistakes over and over and over.  Amazing isn,t it?

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:51 | 3215181 tecno242
tecno242's picture

arrogance and political influence. 

You are heavily influenced to be arrogant. 

This time it will be different.

As soon as you back your currency with nothing but confidence and give the political arm the power to make more money as needed, you are from that point doomed.  For politicians want to be elected, to be elected they must please the most people, to please the most people they must be the candidate that gives away the most free shit.

Free shit isnt possible until you remove the constraint that your currency is either backed by or made out of a limited resource.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:36 | 3215256 Fred Hayek
Fred Hayek's picture

The Road to Serfdom has a chapter title, IIRC, Why the Worst Get on Top. I'll pause while off color jokes are made. Okay now? Anyway, when a job involves making decisions and assuming power that no honorable person would feel comfortable making you get only sociopaths like Kirchner and Obama striving for that top spot.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:29 | 3215248 goldenbuddha454
goldenbuddha454's picture

Heavy Crude Price Controls under Jimmuh COTTA worked so well:

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:39 | 3215263 goldenbuddha454
goldenbuddha454's picture

Why price controls don't work:

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 01:11 | 3215560 A Dollar Short
A Dollar Short's picture

 "ridden failed policy into the ground", now, that sounds like US..

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 06:00 | 3215766 css1971
css1971's picture

No, they are simply cretins.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:18 | 3215082 dark pools of soros
dark pools of soros's picture

not too late to load up on cheap debt to be paid by ultra cheap dollars tomorrow...


think of all the scotch you can buy today from a reverse mortgage

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:48 | 3215280 Matt
Matt's picture

Any online money lenders lending Argentinian money? 

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 01:26 | 3215579 Acidtest Dummy
Acidtest Dummy's picture

Iowa's ethanol production capacity (_certainly_ burning food is a crime against humanity) is enormous. Russians might give up their Vodak and Iowa could supply them with Everclear for ~$2 per liter, delivered. It is not Whisky, but why develop a taste for expensive? SHTF, getting drunk won't be the problem.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:20 | 3215090 Miles Kendig
Miles Kendig's picture

Christina Fernandez de Kirchner a la Nixonian extraordinaire .. minus the EPA as CFK is kickin' nuttin' but exhaust out of every pore

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:20 | 3215092 tony bonn
tony bonn's picture

the ghosts of nixon and diocletian haunt us yet.....don't cry for me argentina.......

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:21 | 3215094 Ricky Bobby
Ricky Bobby's picture

I hate that ugly skank Kirchner, and the worst part is when our lame stream media reports, the only angle they take is "see how great it is to have a women in power". 

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:15 | 3215226 SmallerGovNow2
SmallerGovNow2's picture

our lame stream media will be the death of the usa...

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:24 | 3215103 Robert.Paulson
Robert.Paulson's picture

Maybe those supermarkets could use Bitcoin for payment. It's much more feasible than scraping or cutting pieces of gold out of your tungsten filled gold bullion if one wants to get a mate. Anyways, gold please... this barbaric relict of the medieval age. :P


Whos in for some FREE hugs in the testical cancer group?  ;o)

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 07:42 | 3215808 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

Why don't you move to Argentina & get the whole program started for them?... You'll be paid in hotpockets for your service...

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:25 | 3215104 balz
balz's picture

Key word: silver.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:37 | 3215145 Debeachesand Je...
Debeachesand Jerseyshores's picture

And lots of freshly minted 2013 Silver Eagles.

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 00:21 | 3215489 BeerBrewer09
BeerBrewer09's picture

.9999 maples.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:29 | 3215119 Son of Loki
Son of Loki's picture

Remember Nixon's price controls in the 1970's? People were shooting each other at gas stations for the gas, especially cabbies who needed the petrol to get to the airport, etc.....


When price controls were removed oil soared to new highs.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:33 | 3215133 Falconsixone
Falconsixone's picture

What the hells that guy smiling about? Did the dipshits tell the producers to keep producing at a 100% loss or else? Just use soilent green next week or numbnuts will be a lost fool with a plastic card.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:44 | 3215161 davidsmith
davidsmith's picture

So to summarize: first capital controls, then a currency crisis, then expectations of sovereign default, then a rise in military tensions, and finally - price controls, after which all out chaos usually follows.



You forgot the last step: Pinochet redux (you may have forgotten, but the CIA, fortunately, has remembered).

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:46 | 3215167 yogibear
yogibear's picture

Wait until all those overseas US dollars come in. Too many dollars chasing limited goods.

The government and fed will hide inflation. Their doing it now.

As long as the fed and government doesn't acknowledge inflation there isn't any.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:48 | 3215172 Milestones
Milestones's picture

My son is in BsAs this moment. Labor corts are very cheap and the unofficial rate of exchange is appx. 8-1 or will be very shortly. He said 6 months maybe.--I've been there several times before and knowing the people I doubt it will last that long. The final unwinding is about to begin.            Milestones

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 21:59 | 3215197 Payne
Payne's picture

You could change a Brand name on the shelf to a new product and charge a new price.  Not restock shelves for 2 months.  

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:02 | 3215204 lasvegaspersona
lasvegaspersona's picture

I predict supply shortages.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:07 | 3215208 El Hosel
El Hosel's picture

Good thing higher food prices are not considered inflationary here at home... we have it made Bitchez

Transitory Volatility, nothing to see here, move along muchachos.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:07 | 3215213 fijisailor
fijisailor's picture

First come price controls and then shortages.  Sounds like the physical gold and silver markets right now.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:07 | 3215214 Bee1000
Bee1000's picture

For christ fucking sake, price controls!  Shortages to follow...

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:13 | 3215222 Seasmoke
Seasmoke's picture

damn March 31st is going to be a bad day to go food shopping there

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:23 | 3215238 icanhasbailout
icanhasbailout's picture

They may as well just have announced "Shortages coming - start hoarding". Because if they weren't before, they sure are now.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:39 | 3215264 Cabreado
Cabreado's picture

Seriously now... did Kirchner ever display concern for her country, over herself?

As the world yearns for truth, is communicating, and false leadership is being exposed,

watch out for the color of those swans, er, dominoes.


Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:47 | 3215279 Cathartes Aura
Cathartes Aura's picture

lulz T-dawg,

What consumers will certainly do is scramble into local stores to take advantage of artificially-controlled prices knowing very well they have two short months to stock up on perishable goods at today's prices, before the country's inflation comes soaring back, only this time many of the local stores will not be around as their profit margins implode and as owners, especially of foreign-based chains, make the prudent decision to get out of Dodge while the getting's good and before the next steps, including such measures as nationalization, in the escalation into a full out hyperinflationary collapse, are taken by Argentina's female ruler.

best get a male ruler in there fast and sort this shit out, like they do in the rest o' the world.

post super-ballz dawg whistle.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:49 | 3215282 theoakman
theoakman's picture

Krugman on Argentina in 2012:

Matt Yglesias, who just spent time in Argentina, writes about the lessons of that country’s recovery following its exit from the one-peso-one-dollar “convertibility law”. As he says, it’s a remarkable success story, one that arguably holds lessons for the euro zone.

I’d just add something else: press coverage of Argentina is another one of those examples of how conventional wisdom can apparently make it impossible to get basic facts right. We keep getting stories about Ireland’s recovery when there is, in fact, no recovery — but there should be, darn it, because they’ve done the “right” thing, so that’s what we’ll report.

And conversely, articles about Argentina are almost always very negative in tone — they’re irresponsible, they’re renationalizing some industries, they talk populist, so they must be going very badly. Never mind this:

Just to be clear, I think Brazil is going pretty well, and has had good leadership. But why exactly is Brazil an impressive “BRIC” while Argentina is always disparaged? Actually, we know why — but it doesn’t speak well for the state of economics reporting.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:51 | 3215286 MrBoompi
MrBoompi's picture

Government spending doesn't cause inflation. Printing Monopoly money does.

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 00:10 | 3215473 icanhasbailout
icanhasbailout's picture

The inability of governments to restrain their spending inexorably leads to printing Monopoly money.

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 00:40 | 3215509 toomanyfakecons...
toomanyfakeconservatives's picture

I spend that green monopoly money on food, ammo, and durable goods within minutes of it entering my pocket.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 22:53 | 3215291 q99x2
q99x2's picture

Stop the inflation. Price the products in Bitcoins. Pay employees in bitcoins too.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 23:04 | 3215317 DaveA
DaveA's picture

This is as stupid as Boris Yeltsin announcing that price controls will be removed in six week's time, thus ensuring that stores would sell nothing for six more weeks.

Every store in Argentina will be empty from the day after tomorrow until April 1, if this decree isn't rescinded sooner. Kirchner will go full-Chavez and blame "hoarders", even if the "hoarded" goods never got produced.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 23:40 | 3215411 Totentänzerlied
Totentänzerlied's picture

State propaganda 101. Blame invisible enemies for invisible crimes. Blame and persecute the victims of state policies. Blame and persecute the people who try to help themselves.

This happens in every single communist country you can name. Blame the hoarders instead of the fully fucking delusional economic policies which in all honesty are so fucking absurd, they make Keynesiansm look legitimate and which create the very motivation for hoarding in the first place. Then sweep down with Red Terror to root out the traitors, and consolidate power even more.

Forward, Soviet.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 23:08 | 3215326 Magnum
Magnum's picture

Things like carrots and grains are relatively stable in price but try to buy bulk canned beef stew in any US supermarket. Canned beef products are already scarce most likely due to producers unwilling to sell.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 23:17 | 3215345 azzhatter
azzhatter's picture

talked to a guy in texas last week and he said cattle supply is lowest in 35 years. watch beef skyrocket here. drought is gonna be a killer

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 23:50 | 3215434 Gordon_Gekko
Gordon_Gekko's picture

"watch beef skyrocket here" or disappear. Price controls in the US are executed via the futures market.

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 01:09 | 3215555 Magnum
Magnum's picture

Honestly it seems that canned beef soup is disappearing.  There is an image that it's still possible to buy, if you go to a supermarket they put it way on the bottom shelf and there will be about 9 cans.  Try spending just $200 on canned beef soup, I mean soup with actual beef in it.  We used to buy from COSTCO a trunkload of very good beef soup in cases of 12 cans.  Now they have ZERO of this product, the only soup they have is with chicken, noodles, rice, etc.  Beef is an odd situation.  It's strange that people are not taking notice.  I suppose there are other things to eat. 

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 03:32 | 3215706 TBT or not TBT
TBT or not TBT's picture

Maybe the drought killed the domestic hay crop.   That generates a sell off of living cattle with attendant price drop followed by price spike because the herds got slaughtered.    ALSO, in unrelated news, ethanol mandates cause beef and chicken and pork prices to increase...and gasoline prices to increase, and gasoline to suck, and a handful of politicians in farm states to keep their seats.    Am I missing any?    Oh, they also help cause Arab Springs, in conjunction with central bank money printing.   

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 08:59 | 3215897 youngman
youngman's picture

They sold the herd off last year as they could not afford the grains to feed them.....I have pun entented....that it is 57% of normal this year....this is the yes ..beef is going to get more expensive....

Now in Argentina....the Bitch put export controls on their to keep the price down....well...they culled their herds too...they used to export a lot of beef...your Dinty Moore stew was Argentine beef....

I have friends that own ranches in Argentina...they were always telling me to come down...its great ..its perfect....not they are trying to figure out how to get their money out...they can´t legaly now....and I assume their ranchs will be confiscated in the future...the "peoples" know

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 00:38 | 3215506 toomanyfakecons...
toomanyfakeconservatives's picture

It's funny you mention beef stew. I'm canning it as fast as possible.


I'm trading this green monopoly money called "Federal Reserve Notes" as fast as I can for vegetables, gravy mix, and this gorgeous stewing beef that currently sells for $3.19/lb at my local wholesale club.

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 01:10 | 3215558 Magnum
Magnum's picture

I have a lot of beef myself in my freezer, having purchased 3/4 steer not too long ago.  How do you can it?  What kind of equipment?  I really like a good beef soup.

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 01:45 | 3215604 Temporalist
Tue, 02/05/2013 - 06:04 | 3215767 mt paul
mt paul's picture

eating on half a moose

too many salmon to count

life is good...

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 10:15 | 3216054 toomanyfakecons...
toomanyfakeconservatives's picture

Small time... just a basic pressure canner on the stovetop. I opened a 9 month old jar the other day and the smelled and tasted like the moment it was made.

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 23:33 | 3215393 Totentänzerlied
Totentänzerlied's picture

 "The commerce ministry wants consumers to keep receipts and complain to a hotline about any price hikes they see before April 1."

---It is the duty of ALL members of the revolutionary classes to report any speculating or procuring, and any other counterrevolutionary activities, to the local Cheka authorities. The capitalists and bourgeoisie are working ceaselessly to undermine the people's revolution and must be punished most severely. Anyone caught cooperating with the enemy classes will be liquidated on sight.---

Ah, the good old days are here again!

Forward, Soviet!

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 23:34 | 3215394 Sizzurp
Sizzurp's picture

Stand by for shortages of everything, except in the black market.  The Argentine people are not stupid, but politicians always pander to the lowest common denominator.  Such is the disaster of democracy. 

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 04:21 | 3215731 Peterus
Peterus's picture

No way. I'm sure that these supermarket will keep selling below costs just as mrs. Prime Minister wanted them too.

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 05:41 | 3215763 css1971
css1971's picture

If they are not stupid why does this keep happening to them?

Tue, 02/05/2013 - 00:23 | 3215408 Monedas
Monedas's picture

"Tangerine !  She's got them all on the run .... but her heart belongs to just one .... her heart belongs to Tangerine !" .... Jimmy Dorsey 1942

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 23:41 | 3215416 John Law Lives
John Law Lives's picture

Cristina should call The Great Chairsatan.  He says he knows how to stop inflation within 15 minutes.


Mon, 02/04/2013 - 23:49 | 3215428 Gordon_Gekko
Gordon_Gekko's picture

"But luckily, the general public has a gene that prevents it from grasping the difference between nominal and real - something Ben Bernanke is very well aware of."


Hahahaha!!! Awesome!

Mon, 02/04/2013 - 23:54 | 3215440 chdwlch1
chdwlch1's picture


Tue, 02/05/2013 - 00:20 | 3215487 Dapper Dan
Dapper Dan's picture



EXCLUSIVE: Justice Department memo reveals legal case for drone strikes on Americans

By Michael Isikoff
National Investigative Correspondent, NBC News

A confidential Justice Department memo concludes that the U.S. government can order the killing of American citizens if they are believed to be “senior operational leaders” of al-Qaida or “an associated force” -- even if there is no intelligence indicating they are engaged in an active plot to attack the U.S.


Tue, 02/05/2013 - 05:41 | 3215764 smacker
smacker's picture

Project SKYNET.

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!