The economy of Shattered World relies on an economy theory known as the "Loans Standard Economy". More simply it can be described as a zero sum economy. That is the total outstanding loans always equals the total amount of money in use in the economy.
Effectively this means the money supply grows and shrinks according to player demand for money. It is not inflationary because more money isn't simply continually "printed" (created) as in most muds. Nearly all prices are determined by players (and wizards who also participate in the economy); basically money is a reflection of supply and demand for certain goods and services within Shattered.
It is a give and take situation where the players circulate the money by buying houses, shops and items to sell in those shops, in the aim to make money. And other players (as well as wizards) buy items from these shops to get a flow of money around the economy such that the money being paid out equals the money being gained.
There is also a loan system that players can use at the bank, where the total amount of debt = the total amount of money on Shattered World. The loan system lets the players pay off their debt in three mud months, a standard system the mud uses for it own tracking of time. How much you can borrow is based on a number of things, including your time on the mud and whether you own property.
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