black market

Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Financial, Idioms, Wikipedia.

black market,

the selling or buying of commodities at prices above the legal ceiling or beyond the amount allotted to a customer in countries that have placed restrictions on sales and prices. Such trading was common during World War II wherever the demand and the means of payment exceeded the available supply. Most of the warring countries attempted to equalize distribution of scarce commodities by rationing and price fixing. In the United States black-market transactions were carried on extensively in meat, sugar, tires, and gasoline. In Great Britain, where clothing and liquor were rationed, these were popular black-market commodities. In the United States, rationing terminated at the end of the war, but a black market in automobiles and building materials continued while the scarcity lasted. In the decades following World War II, as the countries of Eastern Europe were trying to industrialize their economies, extensive black-market operations developed because of a scarcity of consumer goods. Black marketing is also common in exchange of foreign for domestic currency, typically in those countries that have set the official exchange value of domestic currency too high in terms of the purchasing power of foreign money. Black-market money activities also grow when holders of domestic currency are anxious to convert it into foreign currency through a fear that the former is losing its purchasing power as a result of inflation. See also bootleggingbootlegging,
in the United States, the illegal distribution or production of liquor and other highly taxed goods. First practiced when liquor taxes were high, bootlegging was instrumental in defeating early attempts to regulate the liquor business by taxation.
..... Click the link for more information.


See W. Rundell, Black Market Money (1964).

black market

a. any system in which goods or currencies are sold and bought illegally, esp in violation of controls or rationing
b. (as modifier): black market lamb
2. the place where such a system operates
References in periodicals archive ?
The amount lost to black market tobacco had previously been falling from a record PS3.
The black market is the largest source of Forex in the country because it controls the remittances of the Sudanese expats which exceed 6 billion pounds annually," he added.
Furnace black segment estimated to lead overall carbon black market
The global conductive carbon black market is consolidated with a few major players and the trend is expected to continue over the next five to eight years.
It needs to realize that if the rules are too many or too tight, they will be welcomed only by the black market.
The pound devaluation policy is only a quarrel between the CBE and some traders on the black market, but could have been settled in some other way, not by destroying the economy," said Gamal El-Deen.
982 to the dollar in the black market on 3 February, a 22-month low, according to seven dealers surveyed by Bloomberg at the time.
That was slightly stronger than the black market rate on Wednesday, when several traders put the average rate at 7.
The black market appeared almost as soon as rationing began.
A visiting foreign policy fellow at the Brookings Doha Center, Luay al-Khatteeb, said: "The key gateway through that black market is the southern corridor of Turkey.
the RAND Corporation, Juniper said that the cyber black market constituted a
The new director was appointed only about a month ago but he closed the gas station of the YPC and gave its share of diesel to private gas stations that sell diesel on the black market," added Al-Haddad.