Zimbabwe hyperinflation fun fact

Ask any economist what’s the first thing that comes to mind when they think of Zimbabwe, and they will tell you “hyperinflation”.

Zimbabwe’s peak month of inflation was estimated at 79.6 billion percent month-on-month, 89.7 sextillion percent year-on-year in mid-November 2008.

As the sign at the bottom of the page points out, it was a fascinating thing that Zimbabwe experienced such an extraordinary period of hyperinflation, as at one time there were one hundred 1-cent coins in one dollar bill.

Which meant, theoretically, there would have been the equivalent of a QUINTILLION 1-cent coins in one of these – the ten trillion dollars bill (a quintillion is a 1 followed by 18 zeros).

That meant that if you asked for your 100 trillion dollar note to be exchanged at the Penny Arcade for 1-cent coins, they would have had to give you back 500 billion tonnes worth of coins.

The scrap value of all this metal would be worth $500 billion (US Dollars), making you instantly one of the richest man in the world ever (as the sign below claims – 7 times richer than Bill Gates).


Dragos Vuia is a Vancouver-based UX Designer that's passionate about user experience strategy, cognitive-based design decisions, and innovative mobile interactions, who also travelled to 108 countries and territories so far, carefully documenting these experiences through photos, videos and stories.

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