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Tuesday, April 7, 2009

US communities print own money over tight cash

Mon, 06 Apr 2009 21:25:14 GMT | PressTV

'Detroit Cheers,' the local money in Detroit

Some US communities have started printing their own currency in order to ease the economic pain inflicted by low cash flow across the country.

People in low-income American communities have formed networks in order to create, buy and sell local currencies that are partially below the US Dollar in value but strong enough to help them buy goods at their neighborhood stores.

The 1930's Great Depression, the largest economic contraction to hit America in history, prompted the idea of generating new local currencies like 'Ithaca Hours' in New York, 'Plenty' in North Carolina, 'Berk Shares' in Massachusetts and 'Detroit Cheers', amongst 75 other types of local money mushrooming across the States.

Economists say that cash-strapped people have, through tough financial times, come up with their own solutions for ailing economies via injecting local money into their markets in an attempt to put more food in their family basket.

"The world is just now reeling from economic chaos; in Detroit, that's how we always roll," a Detroit Cheers user commented.

US communities and local governments printed a special currency known as the 'Scrip' during the Great Depression to keep trades afloat.

"We're a wiped-out small town in America," USA Today quoted a Plenty user in North Carolina as saying. "This will strengthen the local economy... The nice thing about the Plenty is that it can't leave here."

Americans are allowed to print their own local money provided that it does not look like federal banknotes, nor should it be used as legal tender.

The United States was hit by its second hardest economic recession in 2007, which has so far caused the country to shed more than two million jobs and a budget deficit almost topping two trillion dollars in a matter of less than two years.

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