"Mahood Venezuela, which is an internationally funded think-tank, that's affiliated with the Venezuelan opposition party that would be positioned to President Nicolas Maduro. He's been the country's president since two thousand thirteen and under his presidency. The country's economy has the Szekely fallen apart yesterday. We talked to Gabriella about the economic data in Venezuela. But also Gabriella is not just looking at numbers on a page. She lives in Gattaca. She grew up there. The country's economy is collapsing all around or and it's something that she sees every single day. She sees it in the closed up storefronts the shrinking number of people on the streets. And how skinny everyone is getting. And we wanted to get that experience from Gabriele to this is the indicator from planet money. I'm Stacey Vanik Smith, and I'm Garcia today on the show day in the life of an economist in. Doc. This message comes from NPR sponsor gained bridge game bridge offers annuities designed for the digital age simplify products with guaranteed returns that you can buy direct. Learn more at gain bridge dot life slash NPR. Game bridge is not available in all states. Support also comes from Hello Monday. A new podcast from Lincoln's aditorial team about the changing nature of work and how to get the most from Monday and your career fine. Hello Monday on apple podcasts or wherever you listen to podcasts. Gabriella Saadi says she's incredibly lucky she loves her work and her job pays her in US dollars three hundred dollars a month that actually she says a decent wage in Venezuela in spite of her relative privilege living in Caracas is not easy the city and country are crumbling around her and her family, and she sees this every day as soon as she gets up. One of the first things I do is attack. If I have. You know, running water used to see I can. Yeah. To see five we'll be able to take her shower or not Gabriela says, she has water about half the time, but shower or no shower Gabriella has to go to work, but she doesn't take her car not anymore. I need this piece to get aches. And we cannot find it and you were in Venezuela. So I have to take Pollock transportation. But sees I bring my laptop with me to work. I cannot do that. Because I could get robbed. This is Scott us. Okay. One of the most dangerous cities in the world. These days Gabriella takes taxi to work, of course, the taxes can't get parts either. So Gabriel says the ride can be pretty hair-raising once Gabrielle is in her office. She analyzes data with the team of communists, and researchers and tries to come up with economic solutions for Venezuela. She says it's basically black office anywhere, desks. Computers. Water cooler talk power outages that lasts for hours. We are. So used to having them we even have an alum here in the office. Never we got a blackout. So we can you know, plug out everything. So our repayment of one get damage OSA? There's not like a power surge or something exactly around the middle of the day. Gabriel says she tries to go to the grocery store to shop for her family. But before she can do that she has to get Venezuelan boulevards Gabriella and her colleagues get paid in dollars. Gabriel says she's very grateful for that. But a lot of times by Staples. Or really anything you? You need boulevards. Of course, the Bulevar is having a terrible time. Hyperinflation has gripped the country. It is now running at ten million percent. That's what inflation is right now in Venezuela. Ten million percent in order to deal with all this Gabriel and all of our colleagues the system she converts a little bit of US dollars, two boulevard every day through a currency trader ten dollars a day or twenty dollars a day, depending on my expenses. So I will talk to that trader and that person would get me a buyer, and then I will sell sell them dollars is on the phone like a. Yeah. Over what's up over? What has a guy? The guy converts Gabrielle is ten or twenty US dollars into boulevard and transfers at tiny amount into her Venezuelan Bank account the rest of the money. She keeps in a Bank account in the US, or it's protected from the inflation, and even the ten or twenty bucks that the guy transfers into Gabriel's Venezuelan Bank account is not immune to. Inflation. I cannot postpone my shopping. I have to do it right away. Because what happens if you postpone? The prices will rise. If Gabriela waits too long to do her shopping. She says her money could lose enough value that she would not have enough to get what she needs in. It's on her way to the supermarket that Gabriella sees just how much things have changed in her country. The worst Florida is whenever I have to go to the supermarket to buy something because on my way to the supermarket. I see all these families trying to look food on the trash families even with with like, I don't know five kits. They don't ask you for money. The ask you for food. So I will carry that with me to give them like some. So mean. Yeah. And I have never seen like it'll class feeble looking for food on the trash. But now you do because for example, a teacher that used to be in the middle class. Now is now in poverty to real says that when she gets to the grocery store, it is always packed with a huge line snaking around the corner because the cash is worthless. Everyone has to pay by debit card, and because the internet and the power spotty getting a payment through configure really long time sometimes to store will disclose its doors because it can't take any payments and says Gabriella the grocery store has become this kind of grab bag the shelves are often empty and the items are random things have in grocery list is pointless. You know, whenever you see a good that you haven't seen in monce. Even if you don't need it. You just get crazy. And you buy it like, for example up today some meal, and I hadn't seen it for a while. So I got like six liters of male. And I didn't even need that. But that's like the effect of the hyper inflation and everything what were the prices like. Oh. Indeed dollars. It would be more than one dollar the litter. Most people in Venezuela. Make the equivalent of around six dollars a month that milk would be incredibly expensive out of reach for them. Part of this is because of hyper inflation and part of it is because Venezuela's economy has collapsed and still have all of its institutions like the farms, so a country full of starving. People is not really making that much of its own food. It is importing that food. And it's not just food any kind of necessity can be hard to get when Gabriel is ninety five year old grandfather got sick. She ran into the same problem. He was in the hospital three months ago. And we couldn't find a medicine that he needed it. We had to go to like ten places. But then I walked the medicine with people that that had it, and I gave that person the medicine that they need it. Oh, you traded. You like bartered exactly afterward Gubbio says she likes to go for. A run outside. There is so park in Caracas for most runners go it's safe. There are military there and everything Gabriel says there are some rich military government types who liked this park so protected otherwise she says the city's gotten so dangerous, especially for a woman alone. When she gets home says the first thing she does is check her computer and especially Twitter for news. Most of the TV and radio stations are owned by the government. So it's all about fake news for them will leave in the best country in the world, the classic manual cater. So we have three ter-, and we say informed there. It's through Twitter and through texting Gabriela realized that the blackouts were happening across the whole country and not just in the city of dacas. It's Twitter that warns her when more blackouts are coming or reports that eighty newborn babies died in the hospital during the last blackout when news broke yesterday that opposition leader. One guy does car had been attacked in Caracas. Gabriela sent me a photo of hundreds of cars pulled over to the side of the highway full of people desperately trying to get reception on their phones to get some kind of news update. It turned out. He was fine. Of course, Gabriela is an exceptionally lucky person in Venezuela. Her father is a US citizen, and she has some money saved up in a Bank account in the US because you could leave if you wanted. Yeah. I could I could do you stay like, well, I don't know maybe this will sound very millennial. But I feel like I have a purpose here. I know that I can make a difference. And it's like, I'm very very committed to to the people of an that's well, that's I'm here at the end of day. Gabriela goes to bed cetera Larne for six AM after all she has to get up early to her daily water. Check."