How to buy dollars legally and at a lower price than the parallel market

The dollar MEP is called the price per dollar that arises from an operation with sovereign bonds in the Buenos Aires Stock Exchange. EFE / Sebastiao Moreira / Archive

The free dollar soared last Friday to $ 174, the highest level of the year, given the proximity of the payment of the bonus, which is expected to push the demand for the currency in the parallel market. In that framework, the Bolsa or MEP dollar, which closed at $ 164, continues to be the cheapest and most accessible on the market and the one that most attracts savers.

In just two weeks, the so-called “blue” dollar rose $ 17, and the gap with the official, which is around $ 100, exceeds 82 percent. The currency in the illegal market rose from $ 156 in the first week of June, to $ 174 and thus, surpassed the price of the solidarity dollar -the official plus 65% surcharge-, which operates at $ 166.50, with which it became the most expensive retail exchange rate on the market.

In addition, The free dollar hit eight-month highs, from $ 175 on October 29 of last year. The “blue” is still traded 21 pesos or 10.7% below its record price, of $ 195, on October 23 of last year.

A relevant fact is the increase in the exchange rate gap, now over 80%, already in a “risk zone” due to the distortions that it can cause on the prices of final goods, parts, components and imported inputs. Friday’s 82% gap is the largest since January 15.

In this way, The MEP Bolsa dollar, because it is operated on the Buenos Aires Stock Exchange and allows access to banknotes with no amount limit, continues to be the cheapest and most accessible on the market.

What is the MEP dollar?

This is what the price per dollar that arises from an operation with sovereign bonds on the Buenos Aires Stock Exchange is called. As many issues are priced in both pesos and dollars, and those values ​​are not regulated, the relationship between the price in pesos and its version in dollars tends to adjust without paying attention to the way in which the central bank drives the price of the currency in the official exchange market.

In this way, it works as an alternative exchange rate that, unlike the free dollar, is legal and has fewer purchase limits than the savings dollar. The latter cannot be operated by people who have acquired dollars for savings in exchange houses and banks in the previous 90 days. Likewise, buying the MEP dollar prevents access to the solidarity quota for the same amount of time.

Neither can it be operated by those who have received assistance during the pandemic, in the form of soft loans, freezing of fees and card refinancing, among others.

However, the great advantage for those who can access the MEP is that there is no limit to the volume that can be purchased.

Stock companies hardly require that buyers accept an affidavit in which they declare that they have no impediments to operate. In those same companies they recommend not to operate if you are unable to do so, because they are very transparent movements that can perfectly be audited.

How to buy and sell “MEP dollar”

The operation consists of opening a client account in a bank or Stock Exchange company and then transferring the pesos that you want to change to said account. The next step is to use the pesos to buy Bonar 2030 (AL30) in immediate cash.

In general, the market is charging between 0.5% and 0.6% for each operation, which translates into a cost of 1% to 1.2% in total in terms of commissions.

With the bonuses in the account, start playing the parking lot (it is the time that the asset must be kept before operating it again) of one day to be able to exchange those bonuses for dollars. OROnce the deadline is over, the next step is to resell them in exchange for dollars, also in immediate cash. If it is then transferred to the bank, they are dollars that can be withdrawn at the window.

In general terms, the market is charging between 0.5% and 0.6% for each operation, which translates into a cost of 1% to 1.2% in total in terms of commissions.

Conversely, those who have dollars in their hands and want to receive more than what a bank pays to change them to pesos, can follow the reverse mechanism. Bonar 2030 (AL30) is bought with dollars and, after parking, that voucher is resold in exchange for pesos.

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