GOLD was the currency - if you had it - in germmany from the end of WW I to the end of november 1923 .
just to give an idea of how the inflation rose in november 1923 , i've chosen postal rates to mail a local letter :
nov 1 - 40 million marks
nov 12 - 5 billion (milliard) marks
nov 26 - 40 billion marks
a 20 billion marks stamp - two were needed to mail one local letter !
on dec 1 the new mark (rentenmark) became the new value and a letter could be posted for either 10 pfennig (cents) of the "new" mark or 100 billion of the "old" mark !
after the war ended in may 1945 and until the german currency reform
on june 20 , 1948 there was one universal currency :
AMERICAN AND BRITISH CIGARETTES .
a cigarette traded at about 7-8 marks each . the daily wage was about 20 marks !
all you could buy for MONEY where the rationed goods (some bread , margarine etc.) .
all other goods and services were paid for in cigarettes or equivalent value .
i remember that when i went to the dentist , my mother would send some eggs along . we had some chickens in the yard , so we were lucky , but anyone who kept chickens also had to hand a certain number of eggs over to a "collection agency" .
some people even kept a chicken or two in their apartments - but it was also difficult to find grains to feed the cchickens .
somhow we survived it all - and looking back certain parts of it look rather amusing now .