Chavez: Socialism or death

Scott Jagow Jan 10, 2007


SCOTT JAGOW: This morning, Hugo Chavez was sworn for a third term as President of Venezuela.

He raised his right and said, “Fatherland. Socialism or death. I swear it.” We believe him.

This week, Chavez announced plans to nationalize the biggest phone company and the power industry in his country, but that freaked out investors. They sold tons of shares and Venezuela’s stock market plunged.

Inflation is high, the currency is worth peanuts.

Jens Gould is a freelance reporter in Caracas. He says Chavez may miss those private investors.

JENS GOULD: You have so much cash in the market and that cash has trouble going anywhere. It has trouble getting out of the country because there are currency controls. A lot of private investment could mop up some of that cash, but you have less and less private investment and so more and more inflation.

The sell-off in Venezuela could spill over to Wall Street today.

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