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Economics Made Simple: How money, trade and markets really work by Madsen Pirie

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Trading things, creating wealth

“Splash!” A smile cracked across the old man’s walnut-stained face as the sleek bird broke the surface. He could see the silvery fish, its tail glittering as it writhed in the cormorant’s throat. Good. That made six today.

Black Silk was his favourite bird. As it fluttered onto the end of his boat, the old man stroked its head affectionately and took the fish from its beak. He untied the ring from the bird’s throat and rewarded it with a couple of smaller fish which the bird eagerly snapped up. His weather-beaten eyes took in the sun, now low in the sky. Six was enough. With a contented sigh he bound the remaining fish to his pole with the others and headed for the shore.

The market was already beginning ...

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