In recent days, Czechs have begun to look for foreign currencies to buy up as uncertainty in the global economy and inflation pressures grow.
Most of the addressed money changers agreed that the demand for currency exchange had begun to rise in the last seven to ten days. According to them, Czechs are especially interested in exchanging korunas for U.S. dollars or euros, seen as relatively safe currencies. Demand has also grown for the British pound and Swiss francs. According to the exchange offices, the usual amount of money people want to exchange has also increased, with often tens of thousands of korunas being transferred per individual (about €400 to €3,500).
Now, there are long lines at some currency exchange offices in Prague, and the majority of the customers consist of Czechs.
According to the exchange offices, the interest from Ukrainians has also increased slightly, but not significantly. The situation is more difficult because some Prague exchange offices no longer buy the Ukrainian hryvnia. In other places, the purchase of the Ukrainian currency still works, but often at a significantly reduced exchange rate.
All the contacted Czech exchange offices completely stopped the purchase of Russian rubles. The main reason is European sanctions against Russia over the invasion of Ukraine, which caused a massive drop in the Russian currency.
A change in people’s financial management confirms a survey by Generali Investments company. A third of people modified their way of dealing with savings in response to recent events. Another 38 percent of respondents are considering it.
According to the survey, people most often withdraw their money in cash, and 13 percent of respondents have already done so. However, the CEO of Generali Investments, Marek Beneš, does not recommend such a step. The value of most investment products is now low due to volatile markets. If people withdraw their financial reserves now, they may lose some of their finances, Beneš warned. He advises his clients to wait until the situation clears up and becomes more predictable.