BUENOS AIRES, Argentina – Argentina is making a big expansion in its welfare program in peso terms, increasing cash handouts to families with children by 26 percent to keep up with inflation.
President Cristina Fernandez also is expanding the $6.9 billion program to include families. Now families who earn up to 14,000 pesos a month qualify. That's about $3,000 at the official exchange rate.
Government statistics claim inflation is just 9.2 percent annually, but Thursday's changes are as close as the government has come yet to acknowledging that real inflation is three times higher.
Widely discounted official statistics also claim that the average daily food intake required for a healthy person costs just six pesos. That's hardly enough to buy a can of soda on the streets of Buenos Aires.