COSTA RICA BUSINESS NEWS – Although we are no seeing drastic fluctuations, the dollar exchange has been on a slow and steady decline in the past month.

Dollar exchange for the past 39 days, from the BCCR

Last November 5, the buy was ¢533.34 for one U.S. dollar, today, December 4, the rate is ¢528.15, a drop of ¢5.19. The sell rate went from ¢544.95 at the beginning of November to ¢539.74 today, a drop of ¢5.21.

The drop has also forced an increase in the “Tasa Básica Pasiva” (Basic Passive Rate) to 7.25%, up from 7.20% for the past two weeks.

This is the second time the indicator has been at 7.25%, the last was the week of November 13 to 19.

The Tasa Básica Pasiva is the average interes rate by financial institutions paid on deposits between 150 and 210 days. The Banco Central de Costa Rica (Central Bank) calculates the rate based on the information by the financial institutions.

At the beginning of this year the Tasa Básica Pasiva was 6.50%, the gradual increase began in April.

During this year, credit in colones at private financial institutions has increased, while credit in dollars as remained relatively stable. That means banks and other financial institutions have a greater need to take in dollars to make dollar loans and that put pressure on rates.

Source: Banco Cental de Costa Rica (BCCR);