U.S. Markets closed

Argentines Are Paying 50% Interest Rates on Loans to Go to the World Cup

Charlie Devereux, Pablo Rosendo Gonzalez
Argentines Are Paying 50% Interest Rates on Loans to Go to the World Cup 

Argentines are so crazy about soccer that a lender is betting they’ll pay 50 percent interest to finance their trips to the World Cup in Russia this month. BBVA Banco Frances SA, the local unit of the Spanish bank, has been airing television commercials encouraging Argentines to rally behind Lionel Messi and his teammates by taking out one of their seven-year loans. Now, paying effectively 50 percent interest annually on a loan may look like insanity even for the most die-hard soccer fan, but with Argentina’s inflation running at more than 25 percent and the central bank pushing its benchmark rate to 40 percent last month, the BBVA offer looks less onerous.