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Currency and the Collapse of the Roman Empire

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At its peak, the Roman Empire held up to 130 million people over a span of 1.5 million square miles. How could such a powerful empire collapse? Simple, the real effects of debasement took time to materialize ... and then exploded.

Adding more coins of poorer quality into circulation did not help increase prosperity - it just transferred wealth away from the people, and it meant that more coins were needed to pay for goods and services. At times, there was runaway inflation in the empire. For example, soldiers demanded far higher wages as the quality of coins diminished.

With soaring logistical and admin costs and no precious metals left to plunder from enemies, the Romans levied more and more taxes against the people to sustain the Empire. Hyperinflation, soaring taxes, and worthless money created a trifecta that dissolved much of Rome’s trade.

The economy was paralyzed. By the end of the 3rd century, any trade that was left was mostly local, using inefficient barter methods instead of any meaningful medium of exchange.

Read the full articel at ZeroHedge

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