The crisis of 1943

In 1943, during the Second World War, Mexico was again faced with a silver crisis. A combination of reasons - anticipation of a rise in the price of silver; the Mexican government’s agreement to sell practically its entire silver production to the United States for its military industry; and a boom in the Mexican and US jewellery industries - caused the price of silver to rise and silver coins to be hoarded. On 21 August Mexico imposed a heavy export tax on silver products, to make it unprofitable to melt down silver coins to ship as bullion, and temporarily suspended a contract which promised all surplus silver production to the United States. However because of a shortage of fractional coinage, especially the fifty centavos denomination, it was compelled to authorise banks to issue cheques with printed denominations of twenty- five and fifty centavos. while it arranged for the production of new coins.


Originally 50c cheques were issued by various factories and casas comercialesEl Porvenir, Año XXV, Núm. 9647, 19 August 1943. Thus, we known of cheques of the Cervecería Cuauhtemoc, S. A., the Empaques de Cartóon Titan, S. A., the Vidrio Plano, S. A., and the Hojalata y Lamina, S. A., drawn on the Banco de Nuevo León, S. A.and dated 12 August (Hojalata y Lamina also recorded dated 28 August).

Credito Industrial Monterrey 50c

Banco Comercial 50c

Then on 19 August the Cámara de Comercio deposited funds in five local banks (the Banco de Nuevo León, S. A., Banco Nacional de México, S. A., Crédito Industrial de Monterrey, S. A., and Banco Comercial de Monterrey, S. A.)El Porvenir, Año XXV, Núm. 9647, 19 August 1943. Notes are known dated 19, 20 and 28 August.

drawn on date on note from to
Banco de Nuevo León 19 August    
Banco Nacional de México 19 August    
Crédito Industrial de Monterrey 20 August    
Banco Comercial de Monterrey 28 August    


On 27 August the Correos y Telégrafos refused to accept the cheques of the Camara and various factoriesEl Porvenir, 28 August 1943. On next day Enrique Treviño García, manager of the Cámara, arranged with Salvador Chávez Sánchez, in charge of the Oficina Federal de Hacienda for them to be accepted by his officesEl Porvenir, 28 August 1943 and on 29 the Cámara deposited some money with the CorreosEl Porvenir, 30 August 1943.

By 1 September Miguel Margáin, secretary general of the Cámara, reported that they had issued $100,000 and had agree to issue even moreEl Porvenir, 1 September 1943.

On 15 September it was reported that the Cámara de Comerciantes en Pequeñothe manager was Rodrigo Noedal Fuentes (El Porvenir, Año XXV, Núm. 9675, 16 September 1943) was considering an issue of $15,000 in 50c cheques drawn on the Banco Nacional de MéxicoEl Porvenir, Año XXV, Núm. 9674, 15 September 1943.

On 29 September Treviño García said that the banks were still changing deteriorated cheques for others of the same value or, in greater quantities, for banknotesEl Porvenir, 29 September 1943. The new fractional coinage did not arrive until 23 OctoberEl Porvenir, 24 October 1943.