Monday, March 23, 2020

Trip to the bank

The highest bill in Indonsia is 100,000 which today is about six bucks. Usually it's more than seven. I've seen it at almost nine.

Nyoman picked me up in his VW bus like bemo today. I only use ATMs at banks with guards, having been phished twice necessitating canceling the card. Dogette Bandita in my lap we went to the BNI bank on Jalan Toba. The exchange rate had gone higher still. Friday it was a little over 16000 rupiah to a dollar, 2500 over a few weeks ago and higher than I'd ever seen it. This is a time to withdraw rupiah from an ATM and save it for later. I did so Friday, Saturday, and today. Today the official exchange rate when I left home was astonishingly high. I can see it by writing "1 USD to IDR" (Indonesian Rupiah) in the URL line of my browser. It came out 16, 785. Driving toward the bank, I noticed the money changers posted USD - 16,100. All the reputable ones did. The ones trying to lure people in always have it about 500 higher so I'd read 16, 599 and amounts like that - even up to 16, 999. Avoid them. When I saw that 16,1000, I thought the rate had gone down in the last few minutes. That's awful big jump that quick. Back home I checked the exchange rate again to see if it had fallen more but to my surprise it had only fallen a little. It read 16, 750 or so. I checked my bank records to see what rate I got and it was close to 16,100. I'd never seen a discrepancy like that. ATM rates are always the highest, higher than the money changers and just a little below the exchange rate. Somewhere the brakes are being put on. I won't complain. Gotta stretch money as far as I can now and that sure helped. Wonder where it's headed. - dc 

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