On the Origin of Money by Carl Menger
On the Origins of Money is a discussion of the history of money and currency, from its crudest form as cowrie shells, animal pelts, and salt in early societies to the coin and paper money we use today. Rather than focusing on the type or shape of the money, author and economist Carl Menger looks at the reasons behind monetary exchange and why money is so valuable (or where it gets its inherent value). His argument centers on the "saleableness" of the goods or commodities being sold-in other words, the more "saleable" (or valuable or in demand) an item is, the more money it is worth. Hence, money gets its value from the objects it pays for. This short work is an insightful look into the history and value of money for any student or professional economist.
The Purchasing Power of Money by Irving Fisher
Perhaps America's first celebrated economist, Irving Fisher — for whom the Fisher equation, the Fisher hypothesis, and the Fisher separation theorem are named — staked an early claim to fame with his revival, in this 1912 book, of the "quantity theory of money." An important work of 20th-century economics, this work explores: the circulation of money against goods, the various circulating media, the mystery of circulating credit, how a rise in prices generates a further rise, influence of foreign trade on the quantity of money, the problem of monetary reform, and much more.
The ABC of Money by Benjamin Franklin
From the days of farmer's bartering for bushels of corn to establishing the concept of credit, this practical guide gets at the root of the subject of money: why it exists and, more importantly, what money really is. The ABC of Money is an undiscovered gem offering a wealth of knowledge and Carnegie's shrewd philosophies on the subject — a fascinating look at the history of "debased coin" and "greenbacks," and the value of currency from one of the great American industrialists.
Making Money Happily by Herbert N. Casson
Do your job a little better than expected. Learn all you can from those above you. Waste no time on little things. Back yourself to win. The business advice in this handy little book, first published in 1926, are the bricks that build solid foundations for success, but they're ones that far too many who strive for success forget along the way. Casson, a business journalist, knows wherefrom he speaks: he met and interviewed many of the biggest successes of the early 20th century, and the knowledge and wisdom he gleaned from those meetings is still pertinent today.
For more books on money, history of currency, wealth, and government reports, be sure to check out our economics page on cosimobooks.com