- Venezuela’s cash supply has dipped below $1 billion, according to a report by Bloomberg.
- That’s less than the net worth of many entrepreneurs and celebrities, including rapper Jay-Z and reality star Kylie Jenner.
- The country has had limited access to funds since governments around the world enacted sanctions to try to force the country’s embattled president, Nicolás Maduro, from power after he faced accusations of rigging elections.
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Venezuela’s cash supply has fallen below $1 billion as the country faces sanctions from governments around the world, limiting its ability to access funds and sell off the tons of gold it has in storage.
The South American country now has less than $800 million in cash and $200 million in other liquid assets, people familiar with the Venezuelan central bank’s finances told Bloomberg.
The drop means Venezuela’s cash balance has dropped below the net worth of many billionaire entrepreneurs, including Jay-Z, who is worth more than $1 billion, according to Forbes.
Joining the list of people worth more than Venezuela’s supply of cash are Kylie Jenner, who Forbes ranked as the world’s youngest self-made billionaire, and ultra-wealthy founders like Jeff Bezos of Amazon and Bill Gates of Microsoft.
While Venezuela has around 73 tons of gold held locally, worth around $3.6 billion, the country has struggled to turn that gold into cash because the US has limited buyers and banks from doing business with the country’s embattled presidential administration, the report said.
Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro has been accused of rigging presidential elections last year and is not recognized by many countries, including the US, as the president of his country.
Sanctions from around the world have tried to limit Maduro’s power in an effort to force him from the presidency. Opposition leader Juan Guaidó has been recognized by many countries around the world as the winner of last year’s elections and the country’s rightful president, though Maduro has refused to cede power to him.
Aside from its domestic supply of gold, the country also has about $1.6 billion worth of gold in London, but the Bank of England has blocked Maduro from bringing that gold back home, according to the report.
The shrinking supply of cash could spell more trouble for Venezuelans, not just Maduro, as the country faces a humanitarian crisis amid massive, widespread inflation and the crash of the country’s economy.
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