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The Ascent Of Money – Summary Chapter 1 Dreams of Avarice

In 2008, British historian Niall Ferguson published an extremely insightful book on the phenomenon money. A must-read for anyone that wants to frame today’s economic reality in a broader, and deeper, context. A summary of the 362 pager follows:

The Curious Manager

In 2008, British historian Niall Ferguson published an extremely insightful book on the phenomenon money. A must-read for anyone that wants to frame today’s economic reality in a broader, and deeper, context. A summary of the 362 pager follows:

Dreams of avarice

Examples in human history have demonstrated the need for money, and the availability of it, to smear the mechanics of economy. Barter is less efficient, and no money-less society has ever proven sustainable (both Communism and the Incas relied on brutal centralist absolutism and used human labor as currency). Hunter-gatherers will not trade, but battle for resources.

As far back as 600 BC, coins were used in modern-day Turkey. Greeks, Romans and later Chinese (221 BC) standardized coins as unit of account. Chronic lack of silver in the old world was only solved by the New world’s conquest (rich silver mines in Lima and Potosi). The silver overflow…

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