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Thursday, May 10th 2007

Further Evidence Of The Decline Of The Dollar

Following up the post on abuse of prescription opiates, we get a post with a look at illicit drugs. Specifically, how they cartels and distributors do business – with the Euro nowadays, instead of the dollar. Apparently this largely reflects the rise of cocaine use in Europe and its decline in the U.S.,

“The euro has replaced the dollar in the Western Hemisphere as the currency of choice among these traffickers, which is an extraordinary shift,” she said. “As cocaine use has declined in the U.S. dramatically, in the European market it has risen.”

Traffickers are drawn by bigger profits on the European street, where a kilogram of cocaine sells for about $50,000, compared with $30,000 in the United States, officials say.

But you have to also think this represents the dollar’s weakness against the Euro (which, as I understand it, isn’t a sign of a necessarily shifting world but instead just your traditional wax and wane).

In anycase, there are some amazing statistics used to cite the growing use of the Euro in the drug market:

  • 90% of the Euro bills entering the U.S. to be exchanged are coming from Latin America
  • Spain, Europe’s center for money laundering, holds more than 25% of all 500 Euro notes

Well, at least if we take the DEA’s word for it, this is evidence that cocaine use is dipping in the U.S….or maybe it just largely reflects cocaine’s rise in Europe.