It's not just a reserve currency for central banks and the money of choice for international businessmen; it's also the unofficial currency of street vendors around the world, and legal tender in a handful of countries, including El Salvador, Ecuador and Zimbabwe.
From NPR's Jacob Goldstein:"A while back, Zimbabwe got rid of its absurdly debased local currency and made U.S. dollars legal tender. But with the Federal Reserve an ocean away, there's no mechanism in Zimbabwe for replacing old U.S. dollar bills with fresh money. So Zimbabweans have taken matters into their own hands, washing old bills that get too smelly or dirty."It's literal money laundering. And for everyone who worries about the continuing debasement of the US dollar, a bright spot:The greenback still has cachet. And if perception actually does trump reality, the dollar is still the proudest currency a wallet can hold.