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PDVSA Bond Sale Will Bolster Venezuela's Bolivar, Diaz Says

Venezuelan state oil company Petroleos de Venezuela SA's planned $3.5 billion bond sale will bolster the currency in unregulated trading, Banking Superintendent Trino Diaz said.

The bolivar's current exchange rate in the unregulated market of about 4,100 per dollar doesn't reflect the strength of the Venezuelan economy, Diaz said in a telephone interview from Caracas. He cited record foreign reserves, annual economic growth of more than 10 percent and high oil prices as reasons the bolivar should be stronger.

The black market rate is 48 percent below the official rate of 2,150 per dollar. Venezuelans turn to the unregulated market when they can't get government authorization to buy dollars at the official rate.

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