Zimbabwean dollar

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Zimbabwean dollar
Zimbabwe fourth dollar - $500 Obverse (2009).jpg
$500 note of the fourth Zimbabwean dollar.
ISO 4217
Code ZWL[1]
Denominations
Subunit
 1/100 cent
Symbol $
Banknotes $1, $5, $10, $20, $50, $100, $500, (plus many more denominations)
Highest denomination – $1014
Coins none
Demographics
User(s) None
(previously  Zimbabwe)[n 1]
Issuance
Central bank Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe
Valuation
Inflation 98% per day (mid-Nov 2008)
or 1023 % per year
 Source [2]
This infobox shows the latest status before this currency was rendered obsolete.

The Zimbabwean dollar (sign: $, or Z$ to distinguish it from other dollar-denominated currencies) was the official currency of Zimbabwe from 1980 to 12 April 2009. During this time, it was subject to periods of above average inflation, followed by a period of hyperinflation.[3]

The Zimbabwe dollar was introduced in 1980 to directly replace the Rhodesian dollar at par (1:1), at a similar value to the US dollar. Over time, hyperinflation in Zimbabwe reduced the Zimbabwe dollar to one of the lowest valued currency units in the world. It was redenominated three times (in 2006, 2008 and 2009), with denominations up to a $100 trillion banknote issued.[4] The final redenomination produced the "fourth dollar" (ZWL), which was worth 1025 ZWD (first dollars).

Use of the Zimbabwean dollar as an official currency was effectively abandoned on 12 April 2009. It was demonetised in 2015, with outstanding accounts able to be reimbursed until April 30, 2016.[5][6] In place of the Zimbabwean dollar, currencies including the South African rand, Botswana pula, Pound sterling, Indian rupee, Euro, Japanese yen, Australian dollar, Chinese yuan, and the United States dollar are now regularly used.[7][8]

Origin[edit]

The Zimbabwean dollar's predecessor, the Rhodesian dollar, was essentially equal to half of the value of the Pound sterling at the time it was adopted (during the decimalisation of 1970). The same practice which was used in other Commonwealth countries such as South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand. The selection of the name was motivated by the fact that the reduced value of the new unit correlated more closely to the value of the US dollar than it did to the pound sterling.[citation needed]

Design[edit]

The main illustration on the obverse of all of the banknotes was the Chiremba Balancing Rocks in Epworth, Harare, which were used as a metaphor demonstrating the importance of balancing development and the preservation of the fragile environment.[9] The reverse side of dollar notes often illustrated the culture or landmarks of Zimbabwe.

First, Second, Third and Fourth Zimbabwean Dollars (1980-2009)[edit]

Introduction of the first dollar (ZWD)[edit]

The first Zimbabwean dollar was introduced in 1980 and replaced the Rhodesian dollar at par. The initial ISO 4217 code was ZWD. At the time of its introduction, the Zimbabwean dollar was worth more than the US dollar in the official exchange market, with 1 ZWD = 1.47 USD, although this did not reflect the actual purchasing power it held. As a result, in both the official and parallel markets, the currency's value eroded rapidly over the years, and by July 2006, the parallel market value of the Zimbabwean dollar fell to Z$1000000 = GB£1.[10]

Date of
redenomination
Currency
code
Value
1 August 2006 ZWN 1 000 ZWD
1 August 2008 ZWR 1010 ZWN
= 1013 ZWD
2 February 2009 ZWL 1012 ZWR
= 1022 ZWN
= 1025 ZWD

First re-denomination: introduction of the second dollar (ZWN)[edit]

In October 2005, the head of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, Dr. Gideon Gono, announced that Zimbabwe would have a new currency the following year, and new banknotes and coins would be produced.[citation needed] However, in June 2006, it was decreed that, for a new currency to be viable, Zimbabwe had to first achieve macro-economic stability (i.e., double digit inflation)[citation needed]. Instead, in August 2006, the first dollar was redenominated to the second dollar at the rate of 1000 first dollars to 1 second dollar (1000:1). At the same time, the currency was devalued against the US dollar, from 101000 first dollars (101 once revalued) to 250 second dollars, a decrease of about 60% (see exchange rate history table below).[citation needed] ISO originally assigned a new currency code of ZWN to this redenominated currency, but the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe could not deal with a currency change, so the currency code remained 'ZWD'.[11] The revaluation campaign, which Gideon Gono named "Operation Sunrise", was completed on 21 August 2006. It was estimated that some ten trillion old Zimbabwe dollars (22% of the money supply) were not redeemed during this period.[12]

The following year, on 2 February 2007, the RBZ revealed that a new (third) dollar would be released. However, with inflation at the time still in the four digits,[clarify] the banknotes remained in storage. During the same month, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe declared inflation illegal, outlawing any raise in prices on certain commodities between 1 March and 30 June 2007. Officials arrested executives of some Zimbabwean companies for increasing prices on their products,[13][14] and economists reported that "chaos had started to reign and people in the public sector has becoming frantic".[15] On 6 September 2007, the Zimbabwe dollar was devalued again by 92%,[16] creating an official exchange rate of ZW$30,000 to US$1, although the black market exchange rate was estimated to be ZW$600,000 to US$1.[17]

As an official exchange rate became more unreliable, the WM/Reuters company introduced a notional exchange rate (ISO ZWN) which was based on Purchasing Power Parity utilising the dual listing of companies on the Harare (ZH) and London Stock exchanges (LN).[18]

Second re-denomination: introduction of the third dollar (ZWR)[edit]

The 100 trillion Zimbabwean dollar banknote (1014 dollars), equal to 1027 pre-2006 dollars.

On 30 July 2008, the dollar was redenominated.[19] After 1 August 2008, ZW$10 billion were worth ZW$1. The new currency code was ZWR.[19] The denominations to be issued were coins valued Z$5, Z$10 and Z$25, and banknotes worth Z$5, Z$10, Z$20, Z$100, and Z$500.[20] Due to frequent cash shortages and the apparently worthless Zimbabwean dollar, foreign currency was effectively legalised as a de facto currency on 13 September 2008 via a special program. This program officially allowed a number of retailers to accept foreign money.[21] This reflected the reality of the dollarisation of the economy, with many shop keepers refusing to accept Zimbabwe dollars and requesting US dollars or South African rand instead.[22][23] Despite redenomination, the RBZ was forced to print banknotes of ever higher values to keep up with surging inflation, with ten zeros reappearing by the end of 2008.

Third redenomination: introduction of the fourth dollar (ZWL)[edit]

On 2 February 2009, the RBZ announced that a further 12 zeros were to be taken off the currency, with 1,000,000,000,000 third Zimbabwe dollars being exchanged for 1 new fourth dollar.[24][25] New banknotes were introduced with face values of Z$1, Z$5, Z$10, Z$20, Z$50, Z$100 and Z$500.[26] The banknotes of the fourth dollar circulated alongside the third dollar, which remained legal tender until 30 June 2009.[27] The new ISO currency code was ZWL.[28]

Despite the introduction of the fourth dollar, the problems were not eliminated, and the economy continued to be almost completely dollarised.[29] In his first budget, the Zimbabwe finance minister, Tendai Biti, stated "the death of the Zimbabwe dollar is a reality we have to live with. Since October 2008 our national currency has become moribund".[30] In late January 2009, acting Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa announced that all Zimbabweans would be allowed to conduct business with any currency, as a response to the hyperinflation crisis.[31] On 12 April 2009, media outlets reported that economic planning minister Elton Mangoma had announced the suspension of the local currency "for at least a year", effectively terminating the fourth dollar.[32][33]

Withdrawal of the Zimbabwean Dollar[edit]

Zimbabwean inflation rates since independence (official up to Jul. 2008, estimates thereafter)
Date Rate Date Rate Date Rate Date Rate Date Rate Date Rate
1980 7% 1986 15% 1992 40% 1998 48% 2004 132.75%
1981 14% 1987 10% 1993 20% 1999 56.9% 2005 585.84% 2008 Mid-Nov. 79,600,000,000%
1982 15% 1988 7.3% 1994 25% 2000 55.22% 2006 1,281.11%
1983 19% 1989 14% 1995 28% 2001 112.1% 2007 66,212.3%
1984 10% 1990 17% 1996 16% 2002 198.93% 2008 Jul. 231,150,888.87%
1985 10% 1991 48% 1997 20% 2003 598.75%

Hyperinflation[edit]

All four issues of the Zimbabwean dollar experienced high rates of inflation, although it was not until the early 2000s that Zimbabwe started to experience totally unsustainable hyperinflation.[34][35]

On 13 July 2007, the Zimbabwean government said that it had temporarily stopped publishing (official) inflation figures, a move that observers said was meant to draw attention away from "runaway inflation which has come to symbolise the country's unprecedented economic meltdown".[36][37] In 2008, the inflation rate accelerated dramatically, from a rate in January of over 100,000%[38] to an estimated rate of over one million percent by May,[39][40] and nearly 250,000,000% in July.[41] As predicted by the quantity theory of money, this hyperinflation was linked to the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe's choice to mushroom the money supply.[citation needed]

The regime is surviving by printing money: at this stage there is no other way.

Martin Rupiya, professor (war and security studies), University of Zimbabwe.

Money supply (2006–2008)[edit]

100 million Zimbabwean dollars

In an attempt to overcome the increasingly worthless nature of the dollar, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe repeatedly resorted to printing additional notes,[42][43][44][45][46] often at great expense from overseas suppliers.

A selection of Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe bearer cheques printed between July 2007 to July 2008 (now expired) that illustrate the hyperinflation rate in Zimbabwe.

On 1 March 2008, it was reported that documents obtained by The Sunday Times showed that the Munich company Giesecke & Devrient (G&D) was receiving more than €500,000 (£382,000) a week for delivering bank notes equivalent to Z$170 trillion a week.[47][48] By late 2008, inflation had risen so high that automated teller machines for one major bank gave a "data overflow error" and stopped customers' attempt to withdraw money with so many zeros.[49]

Abandonment and demonetisation[edit]

The use of foreign currencies was legalised in January 2009, causing general consumer prices to stabilise again after years of hyperinflation and price speculation.[50] The move led to a sharp drop in the usage of the Zimbabwean dollar, as hyperinflation rendered even the highest denominations worthless. The Zimbabwean dollar was effectively abandoned as an official currency on 12 April 2009, when the Economic Planning Minister Elton Mangoma confirmed the suspension of the national currency for at least a year.

On 29 January 2014, the Zimbabwe central bank announced that the US dollar, South African rand, Botswana pula, Pound sterling, Euro, Australian dollar, Chinese yuan (renminbi), Indian rupee, and Japanese yen would all be accepted as legal currency within the country.[51]

In June 2015, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe began to formally demonetise the Zimbabwean dollar, to officially value the fiat currency at zero, in order to complete a switch to the US dollar by the end of September 2015.[5][52] The Zimbabwean government stated that it would credit 5 US dollars to domestic bank accounts, with balances of up to 175 quadrillion Zimbabwean dollars, and that it would exchange Zimbabwean dollars for US dollars at a rate of 1 USD to 35 quadrillion Zimbabwean dollars to accounts with balances above 175 quadrillion Zimbabwean dollars.[53][54] This move was meant to stabilise the economy and establish a credible nominal anchor under low inflation conditions. The exercise brought closure to the outstanding issue on the Zimbabwe dollar, further confirming the government's position that the local unit will not return anytime soon. The Government has maintained that the return of the Zimbabwe dollar would only be considered when key economic fundamentals, such productivity in key sectors, have been achieved.[55]

Coins[edit]

In 1980, coins were introduced in denominations of 1, 5, 10, 20, 50 cents, and 1 dollar. The 1 cent coin was struck in bronze, with the others struck in cupro-nickel. In 1989, bronze-plated steel replaced bronze. A 2 dollar coin was introduced in 1997. In 2001, nickel-plated steel replaced cupro-nickel in the 10, 20 and 50 cents and 1 dollar coins, and a bimetallic 5 dollar coin was introduced. The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe announced plans for new Z$5,000 and Z$10,000 coins in June 2005,[56] although these were never actually struck.

In its 2014 mid-term monetary policy statement, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) said it would import special coins, known as Zimbabwean bond coins, to ease a shortage of change in the economy. Like the original 1980 coins, these special coins would be denominated in 1, 5, 10, 20, and 50 cents, but would have values at par with US cents. There would also be South African rand coins of 10 cents, 20 cents, 50 cents, 1 rand, 2 rands, and 5 rands. The RBZ's statement did not specify when or where these coins would be imported from, but a later report on November 26, 2014 clarified that over $40 million worth of these coins were expected to be delivered within the next week from Pretoria. On 18 December 2014, the 1, 5, 10, and 25 US cent denominations were released into circulation. The 50 US cent denomination followed in March 2015.

Banknotes, traveller's cheques, and bearer cheques[edit]

Main article: Banknotes of Zimbabwe
£8 worth of Zimbabwean dollars in 2003.

The banknotes of the Zimbabwean dollar were issued by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe from 1980 to 2009. Up to 2003, regular banknotes were issued, but as hyperinflation developed from 2003, the Reserve Bank issued short-lived emergency traveller's cheques.

Exchange rate history[edit]

This table shows a condensed history of the foreign exchange rate of the Zimbabwean Dollars to one US Dollar:

First dollar Second dollar Third dollar
Month/Year Exchange rate
1983 1
1997 10
2000 100
Jun 2002 1 000
Mar 2005 10 000
Jan 2006 100 000
Jul 2006 500 000+
Month Exchange rate
Aug 2006 650
Sep 2006 1 000
Dec 2006 3 000
Jan 2007 4 800
Feb 2007 7 500
Mar 2007 26 000
Apr 2007 35 000
May 2007 50 000
Jun 2007 400 000
Jul 2007 300 000
Aug 2007 200 000
Month Exchange rate
Sep 2007 600 000
Oct 2007 1 000 000
Nov 2007 1 500 000
Dec 2007 † 4 000 000
Jan 2008 6 000 000
Feb 2008 ‡ 16 000 000
Mar 2008 70 000 000
Apr 2008 100 000 000
May 2008 777 500 000
Jun 2008 40 928 000 000
Jul 2008 758 530 000 000
Day Exchange rate
15 August 2008 244.83
15 September 2008 29283
7 October 2008 29277
14 October 2008 29317.7
21 October 2008 29298
28 October 2008 29306
8 November 2008 29325

† Due to the December 2007 banknote shortage, funds transferred via Electronic Funds Transfer Systems (EFTS) bore a premium rate of about $4 million, while the cash transaction rate varied around $2 million.
‡ Exchange rate was 20,000,000 for large amounts.

The third dollar rates above are OMIR. The cash rate differs significantly to the above rates. The table below is the cash rate of the third dollar history:

Month ZWR per USD
Sept 2008 1 000
Oct 2008 90 000
Nov 2008 1 200 000
Mid Dec 2008 60 000 000
End Dec 2008 2 000 000 000
Mid Jan 2009 1 000 000 000 000
2 February 2009 300 000 000 000 000

Devaluation of the first dollar[edit]

The first dollar devalued from 0.6788 R$ to 1 US$ in 1978 to roughly half a million per US$ in 2006, when the currency was revalued.

This table shows in more detail the historical value of one US dollar in Zimbabwean dollars:

Exchange rates of the first dollar (ZWD)
Date Official Rate Parallel Rate Notes
1978 US$0.6788 (Apr) n/a Z$ pegged to US$
1980 US$0.68 (Mar) n/a Z$ tied to basket of FRF, DEM, ZAR, CHF, GBP, USD
18 April 1980 – Independence (1 Z$ = 1 R$)
1982 0.8925 to 0.9140 (Dec) ZWD devalued by 16.5%
1983 0.96135 (Jan) up to 3.18 (July) ZWD devalued by 5%
Parallel rate highly variable — premium up to 231%
1983 (Aug) to 1993 (Dec) 0.96135 – 6.82 Flexible basket; dual rates; 20% tax on outgoing payments
1994 6.82 (Jan) 8.36 (Oct) Floating official rate (1 July) ; dual rates; ZWD devalued by 17%
1995 8.26 (Jan) 8.85 (Oct) floating official rate; dual rates; rates unified 1998 (Dec)
1996 9.13 (Jan) 10.52 (Oct)
1997 10.50 (Jan) 12.00 (Jan); 25.00 (Nov)
1998 18.00 (Jan) 16.65 (Jun); 19.00 (Jul); 23.50
1999 36.23 (Jan) 38.30 (Sep) On 31 March 1999, the Official Exchange Rate was pegged at ZWD 38 per USD; the parallel market had re-emerged by December 1999.
2000 38 to 55 56 to 62 (Jul); 65 to 70 (Aug.) In August 2000, the Official Exchange Rate was pegged at ZWD 50, then ZWD 51 and finally at ZWD 55 per USD; parallel black market rates were at a large premium; in November, foreign exchange bureaus were closed.
2001 55 70 (Jan); 80 (Feb); 100 (Mar); 120 (Apr); 140 (May); 160 (Jun); 250 (Jul); 300 (Aug); 400 (Sep); 300 (Oct); 320 (Nov); 340 (Dec) In June, the official rate became a crawling peg rate.
2002 55 380 (Jan) to 710 (Jun), 1400 (Jul) to 1740 (Oct) to 1400 (Dec) In 2002, the parallel black market for foreign exchange mushroomed.
2003 55 (Jan); 824 (Feb) 1400 (Jan); 1450 (Feb); 2300 (May); 3000 (Jul); 6000 (Aug); 6400 (Oct); 6000 (Nov) In February 2003, the Official Exchange Rate was re-pegged at ZWD 824 per US $
2004 824 (1 January); 4196 (12 January) to 5730 (Dec) 5500 (1 January) to 6000 (Dec) In January 2004, semiweekly (RBZ-controlled) currency auctions were set up to determine the official rate.
2005 5,730 (January); 6,200 (March); 9,000 (May); 10,800 (18 July); 17,600 (25 July); 24,500 (25 August); 26,003 (September); 26,003 (October); 60,000 (Nov); 84,588 (30 December) 6,400 (January); 14,000 (March); 20,000 (May); 25,000 (18 July); 45,000 (25 July); 45,000 (25 August); 75,000 (September); 80,000 to 100,000 (October); 90,000 (Nov); 96,000 (30 December) 24 August: Zimbabwean dollar becomes least valued currency unit
In November 2005, the regular currency auctions were discontinued and the RBZ announced that "market factors" would control the exchange rate.
2006 (to 31 July) 85,158 (3 January); 99,201.58 (24 January); 101,195.54 (28 April)[57] 100,000 (6 January); 106,050 (19 January); 115,000 (20 January); 125,000 to 150,000 (25 January); 175,000 to 190,000 (24 February); 205,000 to 220,000 (3 March); 220,000 to 230,000 (13 April); 300,000 to 310,000 (25 May); 315,000 (9 June); 340,000 to 350,000 (16 June); 400,000 (21 June); 450,000 (1 July); 520,000 (9 July);[58] 550,000 (27 July)[59] Economists predict an unofficial rate of nearly ZWD 250,000 to the US dollar by mid-2006.
24 January – RBZ caps daily variance of official exchange rate based on volume traded. The ZWD is able to fluctuate (from its average rate) in a daily band of: 0% (under USD 5 million); 1% (USD 5 to 10 million); 1.5% (USD 10 to 15 million); or 2% (exceeds USD 15 million). This effectively froze the official exchange rate.

Devaluation of the second dollar[edit]

The second dollar started off on August 1, 2006 with an official rate of 250 and a parallel rate of 550 to the US$. In July 2008 the dollar was revalued again, this time 10,000,000,000 2nd dollars became 1 3rd dollar, after the parallel rate reached 500 billion to 1 US$.

More detailed data can be found in the table below:

Exchange rates of the second dollar (ZWN)
Date Official Rate
(Revalued dollar)
Parallel Rate
(Revalued dollar)
Notes
2006 August 250 (250,000 old) 550 (1 August); 650 (3 August); 650 to 700 (24 August) 1 August: RBZ revalues the Zim dollar. 1,000 Old Zim dollars become 1 revalued Zim dollar. The official exchange rate is set to 250 revalued Zim dollars per 1 US dollar. (Parallel rate soars to over 600 revalued dollars per 1 US dollar)
September

700 to 800 (8 September – high volume transactions);[60] 850 (14 September);[61] 1,200 to 1,300 (28 Sep) or 1,500 (29 September – high volume transactions)[62]

October

1,500 (12 October);[63]

November

1,700 (6 November);[64] 2,000 (19 November);[65] 2,400 (29 November);[66]

December

3,000 (25 December)[67]

2007 January 250

3,200 (11th[68]); 3,500 (18th[69]); 4,000 (20th[70]); 4,200 (23rd[71]); 6,000 (26th[72])

February

4,800 (2nd[73]); 5,000 (12th[74]); 6,600 (23rd[75]); 7,000 (27th[76])

March

7,500 (1st[77]) 8,000 (2nd[78]); 10,000 (8th[79]); 11,000 (11th[80]); 12,000 – 17,500 (16th[81]); 16,000 (19th[82]); 20,000 (21st[83]); 24,000 (22nd[84]); 25,000 (27th[85]); 26,000 (29th[86])

Zimbabwean dollar becomes least valued currency unit around 21 March; In March, the parallel rate becomes extremely erratic, with reported rates varying significantly.
April 250
(15,000 special rate)

30,000 (1st[87]); 15,000 (7th[88]); 20,000 (8th[89]); 25,000 (11th[90]); 35,000 (15th[91])

A "special rate" of 15,000 ZWD per USD was brought in on 26 April 2007. The improved exchange rate will be applied to miners, farmers, tour operators, non-governmental organisations, embassies, Zimbabweans living abroad that repatriate earnings, and others who generate foreign exchange. Exporters will be required to exchange money at the central bank to receive the better rate.[92]
May

28,000 (10th[93]); 32,000 (18th[94]); 38,000 (20th[95]); 40,000 (22nd[96]); 45,000 (24th[97]); 50,000 (29th[98])

June

55,000 (3rd[99]); 60,000 (12th[100]); 75–100,000 (13th[101]); 120,000 (16th[15]); 205,000 (20th[102]); 300,000 (22nd[103]); 400,000 (23rd[104])

July

270,000 (5th[105]); 300,000 (14th[106])

August

200,000 (21st[107])

September 30,000

250,000 (7th[108]); 280,000 (14th[109]); 340,000 (18th[110]); 500,000 (26th[111]); 600,000 (29th[112])

Official exchange rate was changed to 30,000 on 7 September 2007[108]
October

750,000 (17th[113]); 1,000,000 (19th[114])

November

1,200,000 (1st[115]); 4,500,000 (14th[116]) (not confirmed); 1,400,000 (24th[117]); 1,500,000 (30th[118])

December

1,800,000 (1st[119]); 4,000,000 (3rd[120])

Due to the Dec 2007, banknote shortage, funds transferred via Electronic Funds Transfer Systems (EFTS) bore a premium rate of about $4 million, while the cash transaction rate varied around $2 million.
2008 January

1,900,000 (3rd[121]); 2,000,000 (4th[122]); 3,000,000 (8th[123]); 4,500,000 (19th[124]); 5,000,000 (21st[124]); 6,000,000 (24th[125])

The Old Mutual Implied Rate (OMIR) is calculated by dividing the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange price of the Old Mutual share by the London Stock Exchange Price for the same share. The answer is the Old Mutual Implied Rate for the Pound. Then a cross rate calculation is done for the USD rate.
6,240,837.51 (OMIR for 21st) 5,787,585.19 (OMIR for 25th) [126]

February

7,500,000 (13th[127]); 8,500,000 (18th[128]); 16,000,000 and 20,000,000 for large amounts (21st[128])

March

24,000,000 (2nd[129]); 25,000,000 (5th[130]); 46,000,000 (10th[131]); 70,000,000 (19th[132])

69,226,148.58 (OMIR for 17th)[133]

April

80,000,000 (17th[134]); 85,000,000 (24th[135]); 100,000,000 (26th[136])

May

30,000 (to 4 May);
168,815,333.33 (5 May); 187,073,022.88 (6 May); 190,429,449.18 (7 May); 204,565,727.39 (8 May); 210,389,632.00 (9 May); 216,528,794.21 (12 May); 224,832,332.83 (13 May); 236,706,849.48 (14 May); 246,433,371.43 (15 May); 255,771,415.67 (16 May); 275,335,294.12 (19 May); 303,753,731.48 (20 May); 337,341,911.76 (21 May); 369,632,426.29 (22 May); 405,870,411.18 (23 May); 434,449,294.12 (27 May); 486,485,294.12 (28 May); 529,336,764.71 (29 May); 580,678,132.35 (30 May) [137]

190,000,000 (1st[138]); 200,000,000 (6th[139]); 250,000,000 (13th[140]); 315,000,000 (16th[141]); 498,000,000 (22nd); 494,000,000 (23rd); 580,000,000 (28th); 703,000,000 (29th); 777,500,000 (30th) [142]

The official exchange rate was allowed to float 6 May
June

647,863,191.18 (2nd); 718,489,852.94 (3rd); 843,884,558.82 (4th); 969,647,058.82 (5th); 1,105,887,222.22 (6th); 1,365,130,333.33 (9th); 1,679,946,944.44 (10th); 2,150,078,888.89 (11th); 2,904,111,111.11 (12th); 3,524,549,987.29 (13th); 4,276,736,111.11 (16th); 4,952,500,000.00 (17th); 5,817,192,485.76 (18th); 6,718,055,555.56 (19th); 7,437,184,423.78 (20th); 8,260,031,632.83 (23rd); 9,005,149,886.88 (24th); 9,801,839,921.51 (25th); 10,594,701,303.45 (26th); 11,378,472,550.24 (30th) [137]

971,500,000 (1st); 1,123,000,000 (3rd); 1,221,500,000 (4th); 1,964,500,000 (5th); 2,159,000,000 (6th); 2,691,588,425 (7th); 3,139,382,641 (9th); 4,605,736,200 (10th); 5,090,337,736 (11th); 5,137,128,498 (12th); 6,412,613,315 (13th); 7,512,863,828 (16th); 9,288,500,000 (17th); 13,999,000,000 (18th); 17,743,015,150 (19th); 20,269,600,000 (21st); 22,952,543,340 (23rd); 22,835,153,651 (24th); 32,603,770,511 (26th); 40,928,000,000 (30th)[142]

967,480,942 (OMIR for 2nd); 1,746,899,809 (OMIR for 3rd); 3,047,030,834 (OMIR for 4th); [143]

16,044,776,323 (OMIR for 19th); 17,039,490,724 (OMIR for 20th); 34,910,587,875 (OMIR for 23rd); 78,479,941,887 (OMIR for 24th); 62,024,868,786 (OMIR for 25th); 64,575,990,281 (OMIR for 26th); 164,312,344,622 (OMIR for 30th)[144]

July

12,226,034,516.65 (1st);
13,350,764,705.88 (2nd);
14,345,060,331.82 (3rd);
15,183,703,996.98 (4th);
16,204,996,229.26 (7th);
17,066,529,677.98 (8th);
17,883,023,378.58 (9th);
18,681,527,512.36 (10th);
19,489,294,117.65 (11th);
20,170,317,159.13 (14th);
21,460,313,914.03 (15th);
23,356,231,572.65 (16th);
25,389,017,580.37 (17th);
27,164,677,690.87 (18th);
30,201,803,133.32 (21st);
34,749,797,812.59 (22nd);
39,129,724,504.88 (23rd);
43,319,583,395.92 (24th);
48,679,445,871.90 (25th);
54,036,639,077.74 (28th);
58,886,562,526.04 (29th);
63,761,761,010.94 (30th);
69,484,070,056.18 (31st);
(Source[137])

53,049,500,000 (1st);[142]
65,797,000,000 (7th);[142]
102,351,000,000 (8th);[142]
145,624,500,000 (11th);[142]
151,425,393,163 (11th);[145]
193,014,500,000 (14th);[142]
200,414,514,369 (14th);[145]
274,200,889,709 (15th);[142]
288,072,000,000 (16th);[142]
325,110,110,211 (16th);[145]
324,446,338,775 (17th); [142]
360,000,000,000 (17th); [145]
380,000,000,000 (18th); [142]
430,000,000,000 (18th); [145]
600,000,000,000 (21st); ,[142][145]
650,000,000,000 (22nd)[145]
750,000,000,000 (23rd); [142]
555,000,000,000 (25th): [146] 758,530,000,000 (30th); [142] 510,000,000,000 (31st): [146]

142,024,433,315 (OMIR for 1st);
129,140,850,245 (OMIR for 2nd);
109,689,985,935 (OMIR for 3rd);
113,028,111,843 (OMIR for 4th);
202,409,619,045 (OMIR for 7th);
173,176,356,278 (OMIR for 8th);
126,117,317,180 (OMIR for 9th);
139,534,966,792 (OMIR for 10th);
189,961,549,747 (OMIR for 11th);
194,840,848,150 (OMIR for 14th);
236,850,692,832 (OMIR for 15th);
241,421,049,361 (OMIR for 16th);
270,477,236,528 (OMIR for 17th);
404,332,849,598 (OMIR for 18th);
502,683,475,196 (OMIR for 21st);
687,860,375,011 (OMIR for 22nd);
495,932,559,520 (OMIR for 23rd);
488,452,876,313 (OMIR for 24th);
619,334,351,928 (OMIR for 25th);
525,086,664,547 (OMIR for 28th);
456,921,446,064 (OMIR for 30th);
669,809,343,407 (OMIR for 31st);
(Source[147])

Restoration of market data feeds[edit]

In the final months before Zimbabwe's central bank reforms of 30 April 2008, virtually all popular currency conversion resources relied upon the official rate of 30,000 ZWD to 1 USD for published figures, in spite of the vast differences between that and free market rates. By 23 May 2008, Bloomberg[148] and Oanda[149] began publishing floating rates based on Zimbabwe's formally regulated domestic bank market, while Yahoo Finance started using the updated official rate in July, albeit with a decimal point shift of 6 places. Those reported rates generally reflected the Official Rate as shown in the above table. They soon began to differ, in overvaluation of the Zimbabwean dollar, increasingly substantially in comparison to less regulated markets such as offshore markets or paper cash freely traded on the streets of Harare, reflected above as Parallel Rates.

Devaluation of the third dollar[edit]

On 1 August 2008, ten zeroes were removed from the currency, reducing 10 billion Zimbabwean dollars to one dollar.[150] On 3 October 2008, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe temporarily suspended the Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) system, halting electronic parallel market transfers,[151] but it was reinstated on 13 November 2008.[152]

After being introduced on 1 August 2008, the third dollar continued to devalue.

An overview of the exchange rate data can be found in the table below:

Exchange rates of the third dollar (ZWR)
Date Official Rate
(Source:[137] )
Parallel Rate
(Sources: †[142] /
[145])
Old Mutual Implied Rate
(OMIR Source:[147])
Notes
2008 August

7.58 (1st)
8.11 (4th)
8.94 (5th)
9.92 (6th)
10.93 (7th)
11.90 (8th)
13.19 (13th)
14.52 (14th)
15.80 (15th)
17.49 (18th)
18.84 (19th)
20.08 (20th)
21.55 (21st)
23.29 (22nd)
25.34 (25th)
27.66 (26th)
29.91 (27th)
32.05 (28th)
34.83 (29th)

40.53 †; 51 ‡ (1st);
61 ‡ (2nd)
40.96 †; 66 ‡ (5th)
74 ‡ (8th)
41.79 † (11th)
110 ‡ (13th)
190 ‡; 64.12 † (14th)
230 ‡ (15th)
223.51 †; 375 ‡ (18th)
420 ‡ (19th)
430 ‡ (21st)
460 †; 440 ‡ (26th)
650 ‡; 700 † (27th)
1,400 †; 1,700 ‡ (29th)

49.23 (1st)
38.35 (4th)
34.05 (5th)
39.41 (6th)
64.19 (7th)
48.13 (8th)
74.86 (13th)
138.46 (14th)
121.43 (15th)
168.84 (18th)
161.24 (19th)
185.33 (20th)
297.21 (21st)
393.30 (22nd)
992.02 (25th)
749.47 (26th)
868.71 (27th)
1,330.10 (28th)
1,780.04 (29th)

1 August: The Reserve Bank revalued the dollar again: 10 billion ZWN (or 10 trillion ZWD) becomes 1 ZWR.

See also:
["Zimbabwe's re-valued currency after one month"] includes a daily list of the ZWD parallel exchange rates in August 2008.

September

37.15 (1st)
39.59 (2nd)
42.72 (3rd)
45.53 (4th)
48.79 (5th)
52.71 (8th)
58.10 (9th)
62.47 (10th)
67.52 (11th)
71.40 (12th)
77.69 (15th)
83.57 (16th)
88.70 (17th)
92.97 (18th)
96.43 (19th)
101.57 (22nd)
105.43 (23rd)
109.48 (24th)
114.61 (25th)
118.76 (26th)
125.75 (29th)
132.25 (30th)

2,000 †; 2,498 ‡ (1st);
2,800 †; 3,650 ‡ (2nd)
4,300 † (3rd)
4,500 † (4th)
4,800 † 5,700 ‡; 7,500[153] (5th)
8,500 ‡ (8th)
14,000 † (9th)
20,000 †; 29,000 ‡ (11th)
30,000 (12th)[153]
34,000 † (15th)
22,000 †; 34,000 ‡ (16th)
33,000 † (18th)
65,059 †; 59,652 ‡ (22nd)
80,754 ‡ (23rd)
140,251 †; 135,368 ‡ (24th)
271,915 ‡ (25th)
271,593 † (26th)
554,915 †; 360,707 ‡ (29th)
Cash: 1,000 (25th)[154]

3,362 (1st)
3,949 (2nd)
4,311 (3rd)
5,085 (4th)
11,815 (5th)
13,583 (8th)
11,608 (9th)
14,936 (10th)
25,384 (11th)
19,788 (12th)
18,888 (15th)
11,633 (16th)
22,837 (17th)
34,606 (18th)
37,997 (19th)
79,816 (22nd)
131,237 (23rd)
270,794 (24th)
247,618 (25th)
266,075 (26th)
557,362 (29th)
592,416 (30th)

October

138.14 (1st)
145.62 (2nd)
153.10 (3rd)
160.46 (6th)
167.68 (7th)
176.33 (8th)
183.19 (9th)
198.93 (13th)
208.65 (14th)
217.72 (15th)
229.90 (16th)
244.05 (17th)
266.40 (20th)
290.92 (21st)
316.56 (22nd)
345.18 (23rd)
507.24 (28th)
558.53 (29th)
619.52 (30th)

790,510 ‡; 1,000,000[155] (1st)
4,000 (cash) (3rd)[156]
11,000 (cash) (11th)[157]
50,000,000 (16th)[158]
100,000,000 (20th)[159]
20,000 (cash) (20th)[160]
Cash: 50,000 (24th)[161]
11,939,980,000 ‡;
25,137 (cash) ‡ (25th)
69,127 (cash) ‡ (27th)
90,000 (cash) (29th)[162]

1,418,021 (1st)
841,881 (2nd)
660,732 (3rd)
1,715,118 (6th)
2,305,440 (7th)
2,045,021 (8th)
3,161,381 (9th)
4,183,564 (10th)
7,667,426 (13th)
10,706,802 (14th)
20,129,927 (15th)
66,418,944 (16th)
121,013,052 (17th)
333,500,825 (20th)
1,220,071,643 (21st)
3,178,696,865 (22nd)
26,867,910,902 (23rd)
98,339,944,470 (24th)
101,338,478,626 (27th am)
70,547,871,952 (27th pm)
233,621,089,202 (28th am)
250,783,986,568 (28th pm)
509,148,077,013 (29th am)
916,918,295,246 (29th pm)
2,443,676,912,678 (30th am)
3,949,870,500,674 (30th pm)
6,674,757,281,553 (31st am)
11,851,630,480,952 (31st pm)

Electronic bank transfers (RTGS) were suspended by the Reserve Bank on the 3rd.
No funds can be transferred between banks, effectively aborting the parallel rates.

November

769.68 (3rd)
851.74 (4th)
922.96 (5th)
1,024.63 (6th)
2,850.37 (7th)
4,651.33 (10th)
6,626.39 (11th)
8,399.31 (12th)
10,788.70 (13th)
13,469.56 (14th)
17,398.16 (17th)
25,593.66 (18th)
30,320.43 (19th)
34,912.83 (20th)
38,128.72 (21st)
44,182.50 (24th)
49,237.71 (25th)
56,197.60 (26th)
62,761.43 (27th)
70,197.01 (28th)

100,000 (cash) (5th)[163]
30,000,000,000,000 ‡; 200,000 (cash) ‡ (7th)
28,400,000,000,000,000 ‡ (12th)
400,000 (cash) (12th)[164]
650,000 (cash) ‡ (14th)
1,200,000 (cash) ‡ (24th)

12,405,270,255,015 (3rd am)
35,179,473,949,600 (3rd pm)
118,066,516,958,323 (4th am)
216,162,327,532,185 (4th pm)
267,539,344,335,978 (5th am)
225,497,447,368,896 (5th pm)
193,012,615,772,476 (6th am)
134,838,399,549,100 (6th pm)
182,325,758,081,729 (7th am)
663,325,716,143,026 (7th pm)
1,680,757,577,947,650 (10th am)
22,410,101,039,302,100 (10th pm)
44,754,638,846,288,100 (11th am)
27,157,406,063,618,700 (11th pm)
18,237,844,841,170,300 (12th am)
12,981,054,269,303,500 (12th pm)
19,148,534,621,367,600 (13th am)
41,974,524,821,395,400 (13th pm)
62,136,238,923,283,400 (14th am)
183,025,618,461,867,000 (14th pm)
251,649,721,203,565,000 (17th am)
642,371,437,695,221,000 (17th pm)
661,229,327,046,568,000 (18th am)
447,591,739,042,251,000 (18th pm)
439,481,070,796,885,000 (19th)
12,617,983,349,233,500 (20th)

The Reserve Bank lifted the suspension on the Real Time Gross Settlement System (RTGS) on 13 November[165]

As of 26 November newspaper reports stated the RTGS was still not operational, and part of the reason was that the Zimbabwean Government had not paid the company responsible for fitting the system.[166]
The Zimbabwe Stock Market, and consequently the OMIR, crashed on 20 November when allegations of market manipulation became public. ZSE chief executive Emmanuel Munyukwi revealed that a large number of multi-quad-, quin-, and sextillion cheques had bounced.[167]
Old Mutual has not traded since 20 November, so no meaningful OMIR figures are available. It is estimated that the OMIR on 25 November would have been 649,374,262,960,211.[147]

December

76,620.00 (1st)
83,613.46 (2nd)
89,826.13 (3rd)
100,330.21 (4th)
111,126.89 (5th)
128,734.67 (8th)
140,085.70 (9th)
154,661.25 (10th)
226,954.13 (11th)
404,294.50 (12th)
925,825.00 (17th)
1,151,656.00 (18th)
1,423,462.00 (19th)
1,748,530.00 (23rd)
2,133,117.00 (24th)
2,772,250.00 (29th)
3,641,246.00 (30th)
4,894,167.00 (31st)

2,000,000 (cash)‡ (2nd)
5,300,000 (cash)‡ (4th)
10,000,000 (cash) (5th)[168]
25,000,000 (cash) (9th)[169]
30,000,000 (cash)‡ (10th); 60,000,000 (cash) (12th) [170]
150,000,000 (cash)‡ (16th)
200,000,000 (cash)‡ (17th)
600,000,000 (cash)‡ (19th)
9,000,000,000 (cash) (22nd)[171]
2,000,000,000 (cash)‡ (24th)

2009 January

5,601,509 (2nd)
6,386,667 (5th)
8,042,778 (7th)
8,676,674 (8th)
9,326,444 (9th)
10,148,113 (12th)
11,171,474 (13th)
13,856,763 (14th)
15,273,676 (15th)
16,744,890 (16th)
18,683,139 (19th)
20,215,883 (20th)
25,599,608 (21st)
30,577,532 (22nd)
36,844,444 (23rd)
44,796,944 (26th)
415,888,889 (27th)
1,407,917,306 (28th)
3,429,836,806 (29th)
7,039,188,034 (30th)

40,000,000,000 (12th)[172]
3,000,000,000,000 (15th)[173]
1,000,000,000,000 ‡(16th)
5,000,000,000,000 ‡(21st)
10,000,000,000,000 (22nd)[174]
13,000,000,000,000 (23rd)[175]
30,000,000,000,000 (27th)[176]
40,000,000,000,000 (28th)[177]
100,000,000,000,000 (29th)[178]

35,000,000,000,000,000 (1st) – UN Rate[179]
150,000,000,000,000,000 (29th) – UN Rate

February

12,336,416,667 (2nd)

250,000,000,000,000 (1st)[180]
300,000,000,000,000 (2nd)[24]

Devaluation of the fourth dollar[edit]

On 2 February 2009, the RBZ removed 12 zeros from the currency, with 1,000,000,000,000 (third) Zimbabwe dollars being exchanged for 1 new (fourth) dollar.[24] Although the dollar was abandoned on 12 April 2009, exchange rates were maintained at intervals for some months. Therefore, the fourth dollar would be worth 200,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000, or 2×1035 first dollars if never revalued.

On 4 June 2015, it was announced that the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe would exchange some of the old banknotes for US dollars.[181]

Exchange rates of the fourth dollar (ZWL)
Date Official rate[182] Parallel rate
United Nations rate
(Source:[179] )
Notes
2009 February

22.00 (3rd); 24.51 (4th)
28.54 (5th); 32.19 (6th)
35.34 (9th); 38.80 (10th)
42.32 (11th); 46.07 (12th)
49.87 (13th); 53.00 (16th)
58.04 (17th); 62.70 (18th)
66.49 (19th); 71.21 (20th)
76.22 (23rd); 81.58 (24th)
86.15 (25th); 91.39 (26th)
95.42 (27th)

300 (2nd)[24]

150,000 (3rd)

March

99.67 (2nd); 103.29 (3rd)
108.01 (4th); 113.12 (5th)
117.26 (6th); 121.85 (9th)
126.11 (10th); 131.00 (11th)
134.92 (12th); 138.58 (13th)
143.42 (16th); 150.52 (17th)
156.69 (18th); 163.34 (19th)
170.39 (20th); 177.25 (23rd)
186.61 (24th); 193.52 (25th)
199.76 (26th); 206.74 (27th)
209.62 (30th); 213.07 (31st)

April

221.29 (1st); 225.83 (2nd)
230.68 (3rd); 238.94 (6th)
244.81 (7th); 245.21 (8th)
249.40 (9th); 255.19 (14th)
259.10 (15th); 263.94 (16th)
266.64 (17th); 271.04 (20th)
294.18 (24th); 306.68 (29th)
309.31 (30th)

12 April: Zimbabwe Dollar suspended.
May

315.23 (4th); 319.13 (5th)
328.36 (6th); 320.02 (7th)
326.26 (8th); 329.65 (11th)
332.26 (12th); 336.46 (13th)
345.12 (14th); 350.30 (15th)
354.58 (19th); 357.48 (20th)
360.64 (21st); 363.14 (22nd)

June

363.48 (16th)

July

371.39 (16th)

August

361.62 (28th)

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ After the Zimbabwean dollar was suspended indefinitely from 12 April 2009, Euro, United States dollar, Pound sterling, South African rand, Botswana pula, Australian dollar, Chinese yuan, and Japanese yen are used as legal tender. The United States dollar has been adopted as the official currency for all government transactions.

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Further reading[edit]

Zimbabwean dollar
Preceded by:
Rhodesian dollar
Reason: independence recognised
Ratio: at par
Currency of Zimbabwe
18 April 1980 – 12 April 2009
Note: 1st dollar (ZWD): 18 April 1980 to 21 August 2006
2nd dollar (ZWN or 1 000 ZWD): 1 August 2006 to 31 December 2008
3rd dollar (ZWR or 1010 ZWN): 1 August 2008 to 12 April 2009
4th dollar (ZWL or 1012 ZWR): 2 February 2009 to 12 April 2009
Succeeded by:
Hard currencies and Zimbabwean Bond Coins (from 18 December 2014)
Reason: hyperinflation, resulting in the suspension of local currency
Ratio: 250 ZWL = 1 USD