Image Source: AFP/File, Miguel Riopa.
AFP is carrying a story that the Spanish village of Salvaterra de Miño has brought back the old peseta currency this fall. Initially, the experiment was only supposed to last one month, but it was so popular that town leaders are allowing it to run to December 31. Nostalgia for the currency, which has been obsolete since 2002, is very high amid the euro's woes and the old coins and banknotes are being welcomed like long absent friends.
The 'blonde,' the much-loved 100 peseta coin. Image Source: Business Insider.
It's an interesting phenomenon, demonstrating how economies really work; perhaps it is a reminder of the days when economists thought economically, before they began applying abstract mathematical formulas and dynamic physics concepts to human trading realities. Sometimes, the realities defy theories, abstractions, and differential equations:
In Salvaterra, nostalgia is high for the old gold-coloured coin affectionately known as "the blonde", and the old peseta notes.
"Every time an old note turned up I would touch it, since I was really glad to see it again and touch it again," says Fina Rodriguez, owner of an electrics shop.
The euro is less well-loved. In a recent survey, 70 percent of Spaniards said they had gained no benefit from the single currency.
"When we changed the currency, everything got dearer," says Montse Ledo, owner of the Fenteiros bar, one of 58 businesses taking part in the project.
The peseta scheme had been due to last just a month from the start of October, but locals dug out so much of the old currency that in the run-up to Christmas Salvaterra is still a peseta zone.
The town now plans to wrap up the experiment on December 31 and change the accumulated pesetas for euros, since no time limit has been set on cashing in the old coin since the single currency took over in 2002.