Thursday, March 11, 2010

Chinese Inflation?

There is ample precedent...

"After having for years tried to support and maintain these (paper) notes, the people had no longer any confidence in them, and were positively afraid of them. For the payment for government purchases was made in paper. The fund of the salt manufactories consisted of paper. The salaries of all the officials were paid in paper. The soldiers received their pay in paper. Of the provinces and districts, already in arrears, there was not one that did not discharge its debts in paper. Copper money, which was seldom seen, was considered a treasure. The capital collected in former days was...a thing not even spoke of any more. So it was natural that the price of commodities rose, while the value of the paper money fell more and more. This caused the people, already disheartened, to lose all energy. The soldiers were continually anxious lest they should not get enough to eat, and the inferior officials in all parts of the empire raised complaints that they had not even enough to procure the common necessities. All this was a result of the depreciation of the paper money"

Ma Tuan-lin, 1245 AD.

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