I often see in some programs the word doleiro, like in News. Usually, they are involved in corruption. But even searching on the internet, I'm not sure if this is a correct definition (Wikipédia):

Doleiro é o indivíduo que compra e vende dólares no mercado paralelo. Ao caracterizar alguém como doleiro a Polícia Federal já indicia a ele ao menos nos crimes de lavagem de dinheiro e evasão de divisas. Dessa forma, entende-se que o doleiro é quem converte moedas de um país sem autorização ou além dos limites permitidos das leis vigentes.

Is doleiro this? Is this definition correct? Is there any other possible meaning?

If someone can explain me with "easy words", because I'm not a fluent speaker of portuguese, I would be happy.

  • Don't forget to add a link to your sources.
    – Centaurus
    Commented Nov 27, 2017 at 22:37
  • 3
    Doleiro is a black market dollar dealer. I just know this from personal experience. At some point, if you've needed to exchange dollars for reais or reais for dollars you might have used one. It is extremely common and used by "respectable" people.
    – Lambie
    Commented Nov 28, 2017 at 0:08
  • 1
    Yes, the definition is correct. The clients can vary from big-time criminals to your own mother.
    – Lambie
    Commented Jul 3, 2019 at 21:30

3 Answers 3


Briefly, "doleiro" is the guy who gets your dirty money from crimes or illegal practices here in Brazil and deposits it in offshore tax-havens.

By doing this, the "doleiro" is committing two crimes: "tax evasion" (evasão de divisas), which consists in withdrawing money from one country and depositing it in another country without any formal notification to the competent authorities) and "money laundering": hiding valuable objects resulting from illegal operations.

Because these amounts cannot simply be deposited into the beneficiary's bank account (such a move would raise suspicions), a "Doleiro" seeks a safe destination for the money.

It is quite common for a "doleiro" to own legal currency exchange offices, which are often used to secretly perform those irregular money operations. Very rarely can the Internal Revenue Service trace such moves.

I hope I was helpful.

Visit https://www.nexojornal.com.br/expresso/2016/04/07/O-que-é-um-doleiro-figura-presente-nos-principais-esquemas-de-corrupção

  • 1
    This is completely misleading. A doleiro does not get "my" dirty money. The exchange rate they offer is better. Yes, they may have some dirty money customers but many "respectable" people use them. I have used one. And it's on a cash-only basis, too.
    – Lambie
    Commented Nov 28, 2017 at 0:12
  • In fact, Brazilians travelling abroad will often use them because the rate is better, and, also, tourists use them (when referred by Brazilians) because the rate is better. Now, there are obviously large transactions carried out re tax havens for the rich etc. but that they also help poorer people, in fact.
    – Lambie
    Commented Nov 28, 2017 at 0:51
  • What does "the rate is better" mean? Obviously if the rate is better for someone buying dollars with reais, it is worse for those selling dollars for reais. Do you mean their spread is smaller? (I don't think so. The advantage of the doleiro is rather that s/he doesn't ask for your identity card, which means more privacy and no paperwork.) Commented Dec 1, 2017 at 10:49
  • The rate is better means in either direction the exchange rate is better, mostly by getting rid of the bank fees. Exchange rates can be for both directions. SO: when I go to RIO, I take my dollars to the doleiro because he gives me more for my dollars, and when my friends travel ABOARD, they take their reais to them and he will ask for fewer reais per dollar and their money will go farther. Spread is irrelevant, this isn't forex trading. The exchange rates are better regardless of the direction. Why are you questioning this simple idea??
    – Lambie
    Commented Dec 8, 2017 at 15:48
  • 1
    @Lambie I guess because the two things you're saying contradict each other. If it's cheaper he's either a) offering a smaller spread or fixed commissions or b) laundering money, at which point setting up worse (for him) exchange rates than what he'd get on the open market would be the price of doing business.
    – Artefacto
    Commented Jul 3, 2019 at 18:51

A definição apresentada está correta. Um doleiro é um indivíduo que negocia divisas sem pagar taxas ou impostos. São na verdade muito comuns no Brasil, em alguns Estados mais que em outros, por motivos administrativos e culturais. Geralmente são procurados por oferecerem melhores valores de câmbio.

Under request: English Version

The presented definition is correct. Doleiro is a moneychanger who actively avoids paperwork and taxes. Fairly widespread in Brazil, finding a local doleiro can be much easier in some states than others (e.g. Rio de Janeiro) for a number of reasons. They're popular because of the competitive exchange rates offered.

  • 1
    Não queres incluir um versão em inglês. Aqui a norma é responder na língua da pergunta.
    – Jacinto
    Commented Jul 3, 2019 at 7:22
  • Exatamente. É isso mesmo.
    – Lambie
    Commented Jul 3, 2019 at 21:28

There are doleiros, cambistas and remesseiros. Most people mix them but doleiro is as described here some dealing with black money.

Cambista is just somebody who exchanges money for you, still as a crime as he doesn't pay IOF and doesn't have legal status to do this.

Remesseiro is someone sending money remittances illegally.

The main difference is, cambistas will inlay exchange little money at a lower spread and therefor cheaper prices.

Remesseiro may have cheaper prices ans they can send huge amount but most likely not such huge amounts.

Doleiros will take huge amounts of dollar from Brazil to a tax heaven or to Paraguay, doleiros normally charge much more as this is black money and the person is willing to pay more in order to have the money in a tax heaven.

I live in CDE Paraguay and I know what I'm talking about.

  • black money? What's that?
    – Lambie
    Commented Feb 12, 2023 at 20:58

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