This paper investigates the prices set within the Exchange Network of Chania and tries to examine what prices are attributed to which products and services, how those prices are set and what they reveal about the values of the goods offered. Moreover, the further aim of the paper is to explore the implications of those prices concerning the function of the scheme itself, within the context of the local economy of the Chania area. The data have been gathered during regular visits to the open markets of the scheme since January 2012. Therefore, the paper attempts to contribute original research findings concerning prices in parallel currency schemes and study several important issues which arise in multiple currency practice.
To cite this article: Sotiropoulou, I. (2015) ‘Prices in parallel currency: The case of the exchange network of Chania, Crete’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 19 (Summer) 128-136 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547 http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2015.013
Complementary currency systems are based on principles of solidarity and contestation of the regular currency systems, so their prices may differ from those in the regular economy. This study aims to explore that assumption and discusses in what ways and for what reasons some prices are different. Based on data collected in Buenos Aires during 2004, it researched the ways in which various prices in the Argentine Redes de Trueque followed those in the regular economy or internal considerations of the system, as relative supply and demand, production costs, and ethical and institutional factors. It found substantial evidence against the assumption that prices in the CCS were a direct conversion of prices in pesos. Each node was organised as a price network in which critical prices -namely those of groceries bought in pesos- were used as reference for other prices. The result was a power asymmetry in favour of those who had pesos to get supplies in supermarkets, but some traders refrained from obtaining the maximum profit and preferred to ask a “fair price”. Notions of fairness and shared values, however, varied widely, like the effectiveness of the institutional controls put in place to keep prices down.
To cite this article: Gomez, G. (2015) ‘Price Setting Mechanisms in Complementary Currencies in Argentina’s Redes de Trueque’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 19 (Summer) 42-52 <www.ijccr.net> ISSN 1325-9547 http://dx.doi.org/10.15133/j.ijccr.2015.005