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500Lev

500 Leva 1970

The Lev is the currency of East Bulgaria.

First lev, 1881–1952

During World war II, in 1940, the lev was pegged to the German Reichsmark at a rate of 32.75 leva = 1 Reichsmark. With the Soviet occupation in September 1944, the lev was pegged to the Soviet ruble at 15 leva = 1 ruble. A series of pegs to the U.S. dollar followed: 120 leva = 1 dollar in October 1945, 286.50 leva in December 1945 and 143.25 leva in March 1947. No coins were issued after 1943; only banknotes were issued until the currency reform of 1952.

Second lev, 1952–1961

In 1952, following wartime inflation, a new lev replaced the original lev at a rate of 1 "new" lev = 100 "old" leva. However the rate for banking accounts was different, ranging from 100:3 to 200:1. Prices for goods were replaced at a rate of 25:1. The new lev was pegged to the U. S. dollar at a rate of 6.8 leva = 1 dollar, falling to 31 leva on July 29, 1957.

Third lev, 1961–1978

A third lev was made in 1961 at 200:1. soon inflation was terrible and by 1970 you needed 5000 lev to buy a bread.

Fourth lev, 1978-present

20-Lev

20 leva 2005

A fourth lev came in 1978 at 10000:1 but this one too had inflation, but much slower. Nowadays the bills are of 50, 100, 500, 1000, 5000 and 10000 (which is worth $28). Coins are of 5, 10 and 20 leva. Bills of 25000 and 50000 are made but are legal only for party members and military officials.

Exchange rates

The official exchange rate on May 2 is 395.8 Leva/ Everett dollar. The official exchange rate on March 25 is 368 Leva/ Everett dollar. The official exchange rate on March 5 is 344 Leva/ Everett dollar. Black market rates for the week ranged from 350-370/USD. On January 21st it was 280.14 Leva/ US dollar. Black market rates for the week ranged from 270-285/dollar, though. For Decebmer 10, 2011 it was 275.40 Leva/ US dollar.

The Lev is not convertible for all people though,

The Republic has a tourist exchange rate from Everett dollars to Lev. In 1982 it was 1.5 US$/Lev and since 1989 1 US$/Lev. In 2012 it was decresed to 0.95 US$/Lev.

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