Once at nearly three to the US dollar, the dinar stood at 2000 to the dollar immediately post-Saddam, and as of today sits at 1469 (or 1054 to the NZ dollar). The Iraqi economy is functioning in a modest fashion, and quietly doing okay for one still in the grip of violence:
[A recent report on Fox News] takes us to the Iraqi stock exchange , where state-owned enterprises that have been privatized are now traded vigorously on the frenetic market floor. [The] report doesn’t paint an overly rosy picture of the Iraqi economy. The violence has taken its toll, and unemployment is still at 27 percent. But economy is growing. [The report] cites Brookings Institution findings that the standard of living in Iraq has doubled since 2003, and the Iraqi economy is projected to grow by 16.8 percent next year. The post-Saddam dinar has held its value better than the U.S. dollar.Such is the 'dividend of freedom' that Iraq can now enjoy. Betting on the dinar is a bet on Iraqi freedom. And the dinar is now being used again for major contracts: "Iraqi contractors... are now counting dinars instead of dollars on payday." BetOnIraq.com makes the argument for being bullish on the dinar:
Might a free Iraq thrive? Above and beyond the vast oil reserve, agriculture, and highly educated population, there is now liberty in Iraq. We believe that where liberty is sown, prosperity blooms.If you believe that liberty brings prosperity, then as the BetOnIraq website suggests, "Put their money where you mouth is."
We understand that liberty is always challenged. It's challenged regularly in our own country. Why should a fledgling democracy, on the heels of a 30 year dictatorial rule, be immune?
...We simply trust that the seed of freedom, implanted more than two years ago with the fall of Saddam's regime, has germinated in the hearts of the majority of the Iraqi people. We see this as a wondrous thing, with tremendous possibilities.
If things ultimately turn out well for the people of Iraq, they should also turn out well for anyone who bought Iraqi currency at today's prices.
Linked Post: Betting on Iraq,
The Winning Side,
Baghdad contractors go from dollars to dinars,