The current economy has had an impact on all communities, but especially Latinos, who were already feeling the pinch. This has caused a reduction in the amount of money that immigrant communities are sending to their home countries, and anti-immigrant scapegoating has a role to play as well. Pero here’s a very interesting development, as reported by Feet in 2 Worlds, remesas have started to change their usual traveling direction, with money coming from Latin America to the United States.
“We have seen a significant increase in the number of money transfers made from the D.R. to the U.S.,” confirmed Reny Pena, supervisor of customer services and transfers at the company’s office [La Nacional] in the Upper Manhattan neighborhood of Washington Heights.
Pena said that the volume of transfers from the Dominican Republic to the U.S. grew from between 80 and 120 monthly transfers in 2006 to the current rate of about 150 transfers a day. The increase has prompted the agency to expand the department that deals with U.S.-bound remittances from one to five employees.
Another part of this trend is U.S. based Dominicans keeping money in the Dominican Republic as opposed to in banks here because of better returns. Dominicans here have those savings sent to them here as a way to pay the bills.