Margot's Reviews > The Ascent of Money: A Financial History of the World

The Ascent of Money by Niall Ferguson
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May 17, 13

bookshelves: currently-reading
Read from July 24, 2011 to May 17, 2012

I really enjoyed this book. Ferguson presents a quite readable narrative arc for the history of currency and finance in the West (although subtitled A financial history of the "world" it does focus on the western world). I highly recommend it!

A taste:
"A society that expects most individuals to take responsibility for the management of their own expenditure and income after tax, that expects most adults to own their own homes and that leaves it to the individual to determine how much to save for retirement and whether or not to take out health insurance, is surely storing up trouble for the future by leaving its citizens so ill-equipped to make wise finance decisions." (14)

"The intangible character of most money today is perhaps the best evidence of its true nature. What the conquistadors failed to understand is that money is a matter of belief, even faith: belief in the person paying us, belief in the person issuing the money he uses or the institution that honours his cheques or transfers. Money is not metal. It is trust inscribed." (31)
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