What is BBD (Barbados Dollar)

BBD (Barbados Dollar) is the national currency for Barbados. The money is also called the Barbadian dollar. The dollar sign Bds$ represents the Barbados dollar to distinguish it from other currencies denominated in dollars, such as those of the United States, Australia, and Canada. 

The U.S. dollar (USD) is also widely accepted in Barbados. 

BREAKING DOWN BBD (Barbados Dollar)

​​​​​​​The current Barbados Dollar (BBD) began circulation in 1972, after the establishment of the Central Bank of Barbados. Like the U.S. dollar (USD) it subdivides into 100 cents. The BBD replaced the East Caribbean dollar at par. 

Since 1975, the currency pegs to the USD at a rate of 2 BBD to 1 USD. However, exchanging money at the airport or another entry point usually yields a slightly lower exchange rate. BBD coins come in denominations of 1 cent, 5 cents, 10 cents, 25 cents and 1 dollar. Banknotes come in denominations of 2, 5, 10, 20, 50 and 100 dollars. 

In 1882, the first dollar-based currency issued in Barbados were private banknotes. Along with British pounds (GBP), this formed the nation's legal tender. In 1935, the British West Indies dollar circulated at par with the private bank Barbados dollars. 

Between 1938 and 1949, the government began to issue Barbados dollars. These banknotes would continue to circulate until replaced by the Eastern Caribbean dollar in 1965.

In 1972, the Barbados parliament established the Central Bank of Barbados. Consequently, the central bank introduced the current version of the Barbados dollar (BBD). 

Barbados Economy 

Barbados is an island nation in the Lesser Antilles off the coast of South America. Both Spanish and Portuguese laid claim to the island during colonial expansion, but it was the British Kingdom who would later establish a colony there in 1627. Sugar cane was introduced in 1640 and became a mainstay of the economy. The labor-intensive crop caused a massive growth in the enslaved population. The island remained a British possession until independence in 1966.

Since the 1970s, Barbados has a mixed economy which includes tourism, manufacturing and offshore financing. In 2016, the Barbados-based company Bitt introduced the Barbadian Digital Dollar. The Bitt is a blockchain -based digital currency. The company's goal is to provide banking solutions to underserved citizens of Barbados, which has long lacked a reliable banking system. Transactions involving the Barbadian Digital Dollar (Bitt) happen almost instantaneously on digital devices.

In September of 2017, the Barbados dollar was effectively devalued when the government began charging a 2% fee on all transactions involving the use of foreign currency. The charge applies to the buying of goods made outside of Barbados, purchases from foreign companies, and remittances to family and friends. According to Finance Minister Chris Sinckler, the fee was introduced "to signal the need to reduce the demand for consumption goods." 

According to 2017 World Bank data, Barbados experiences a gross domestic product (GDP) yearly growth rate of 1.7% and has an annual inflation deflator of 4.2-percent.