Economy

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This article may contain outdated information that is inaccurate for the current version of the game. It was last updated for 1.10.

Economy interface

In EU4, the national and international economy underpin almost every function of a country, and often fuels international diplomacy. Understanding and nurturing the country's economy yields better national finances, allowing the country to boost it's standing in the world and further grow at a faster pace. Economics in the game revolve around the income and expenditure of ducats, the game's international currency, into and out of the country's treasury.

Income[edit]

Income is the sum of all money gained monthly. Unlike in EU3, all income is liquid and does not need to be minted.

Fun fact: The maximum amount of ducats a country can acquire is 1 million, however this number is seldom reached and extremely difficult to reach (if at all possible) without using an extended timeline mod.

Taxation[edit]

Main article: Tax

Tax comes directly from the population and produces a relatively dependable baseline income. Each province has a base tax and a tax income efficiency. The yearly province tax amount is simply (base tax) * (tax efficiency).

Production[edit]

Main article: Production

Production is a measure of the amount of income generated by local trade good producers. Unlike in EU3, production income is added directly to the state's income each month.

Trade[edit]

Main article: Trade

The Trade Value produced by each province flows into the trade network, where it is eventually collected by capitals and Merchants and converted into ducats. Careful management of trade can make it the most powerful source of income by far.

Gold[edit]

Gold is a special "trade" good. Gold does not produce any Trade Value; instead, it is converted directly into ducats. Gold production income is equal to 40 ducats per year per unit produced, with the exception of pagan and shamanistic countries which receive income equal to only 1 ducat per year per unit produced. Income from gold causes inflation per year equal to half its proportion of the country's income; at 100% income inflation would increase by 0.50% per year.

With the El Dorado expansion enabled, colonial nations with gold provinces will not receive the income of gold for themselves, but instead will store it in a ‘Treasure Fleet Counter’ that counts up towards a certain sum depending on the size of the colony’s gold mines. Once the counter is full, the colony will send a treasure fleet. The treasure fleet travels downstream along the trade routes, passing each node between the colonial nation and its mother nation’s trade capital. If there are privateers present in these nodes, they will steal a share of the gold corresponding to their power in the node. At the end of the journey, any money that remains is given to the mother nation, who suffer some inflation depending on the amount of money relative to the size of their economy.

Nations who do not have their trade capital downstream of their colonies’ trade nodes will be unable to receive treasure fleets. In these cases, the colonial nation will simply keep the gold for themselves, paying just the usual amount in tariffs.

Tariffs[edit]

Main article: Tariffs

A colonial nation has to transfer a part of the total income, called tariffs, to its overlords. At formation this part are 10%. The tariffs can be set for each colonial nation by the overlord in the subject interface or may change through events.

Vassals[edit]

The overlord receives 50% of the vassals' tax income. Feudal monarchies receive an additional 10%, and the French national idea "French Language in All Courts" increases this by 10% as well.

It is worth noting that increased vassals' tax income does not work like increased tariffs. It does not amplify the amount of gold your vasalls pay, but rather makes them pay a larger percentage of their own tax income to you, weakening their own Economy.

Certain ideas and policies increase income from vassals.

Income from vassals.png Traditions Ideas Bonuses Policies
+50%

Offensive-Administration: Vassal Taxation Policy
+25%

Ashanti traditions
Kanem Bornuan traditions
Mesoamerican traditions
Persian traditions
Timurid traditions
Influence idea 1: Tribute System
Bosnian idea 5: Land of Princes
Ayutthayan ambitions Influence-Economic: Vassal Obligations Act
Influence-Expansion: Overseas Dominions
Influence-Quality: The Integrated Administration Act
+20%

Georgian idea 4: Georgian Protectorates
Malian idea 1: Restore Malian Suzerainty
+15%

French idea 1: French Language in all Courts
+10%

Aristocratic idea 2: Local Nobility

Harbor fees[edit]

Signing a fleet basing agreement with another country will cost an amount equal to 0.1Gold Icon.png[1] per month for every port belonging to the other country with a minimum of 0.5Gold Icon.png and maximum of 2.0Gold Icon.png per month.

The AI never asks to access ports of the player, and the player can never offer it (there is a -1000 "strategic interests" modifier). Whether the province is cored or not has no affect on the cost of fleet basing rights.}} per month.

Subsidies[edit]

Countries that have a strategic interest in another country's wars may grant war subsidies to that country.

Spoils of war[edit]

  • Looting: Looting happens when an enemy province is captured (but not re-captured or liberated). Looting a province provides an instant amount of money equal to that province's base tax. However, the player cannot gain money from looting if the province has already been looted in the past half year, or if the province borders the attacking country's territory.
  • Privateer: See privateering for more details.
  • War reparations: Upon losing a war, a country can be forced into giving 10% of its income for 10 years to the winning party. See war reparations for more details. (Art of War DLC)

Expenses[edit]

Advisors[edit]

Advisors have a base monthly salary equal to the square of their skill level, increased by 1% per game year since 1444. So, for example, a level 2 advisor in 1546 would cost 4 × (1 + 102%) = 8.08 ducats per month.

Interest[edit]

Loans have a default interest rate of 4% per year, paid monthly. The interest rate is increased by 1% for every point of negative stability, can be decreased by various events, decisions, and unique national ideas (minimum 0.25%). Interest per annum is decreased by certain ideas and policies.

Interest.png Traditions Ideas Bonuses Policies
−1.0%

Administrative idea 4: Bookkeeping
Economic idea 4: Debt and Loans
Austrian idea 3: Fugger Banking
Gutnish idea 7: Found Visby Bank
Hamburger idea 6: Berenberg Bank
Hanseatic idea 7: The Hansa Bank
Tuscan idea 3: Tuscan Banking
Innovative-Trade: The Banking System
−0.5%

Genoese traditions

Harbor Fees[edit]

Signing a fleet basing agreement with another country will cost an amount equal to 0.1Gold Icon.png[2] per month for every port belonging to the other country with a minimum of 0.5Gold Icon.png and maximum of 2.0Gold Icon.png per month.

Diplomatic Expenses[edit]

  • Subsidies: sending ducats to foreign governments
  • Support Rebels: expending ducats to increase reinforcement rate of foreign rebels (unrest risk increase occurs with any financial support above 50% support)
  • Vassal fee: Paying 10% of tax to overlord
  • Outgoing tariffs: money paid to your overlord as a colonial nation
  • War Reparations: Paying 10% of your income for the length of the 10 years. See war reparations for more details. (Art of War DLC)

Colonial Maintenance[edit]

Colonies cost money to maintain until they become full cities. Is 2 ducats + BaseTax * 0.4, so a 1BT province will cost 2.04, a 2 BT province will cost 2.08, etc... The cost is further increased quadratically for each active colony past your limit of colonists. If you have a limit of 2 colonists- the third colony will cost 100% extra, the fourth will cost 400% extra, and so on. Colonial maintenance can be reduced, but at the cost of colonial growth. At 0% funding, colonies will shrink by 125, at 50%, the colony will shrink by 25 each year, and at 100%, there is no malus to growth. Colonial maintenance does not affect growth from colonist agents.

Missionary Maintenance[edit]

Each active missionary costs 0.41~ ducats at full funding, per month, per missionary. This is increased linearly per missionaries in use. Reducing missionary maintenance reduces missionary strength, for -2% strength at 0% funding.

Land Maintenance[edit]

At full army maintenance, each fielded regiment has a monthly maintenance cost equal to 2% of its recruitment price, which includes the effects of production cost modifiers, but ignores any mercenary recruitment cost modifiers. This amount is halved when at minimal army maintenance. It is also increased by 5% for each level in military technology. If the total number of regiments exceeds the land force limit, then the overall maintenance cost will be increased by a factor of total number of regiments / land force limit. For regiment that have taken casualties, their base maintenance cost will be reduced in proportion to the losses taken, but the displayed maintenance cost will also include the cost of reinforcements. See Army#Reinforcements for details.

Naval Maintenance[edit]

Fleet maintenance works the same as army maintenance but with several exceptions. First, naval maintenance increases at discrete steps rather than continuously. It is increased by 10% at Diplomatic tech levels 0 and 3, by 20% at levels 9 and 15, and by 25% at levels 19, 22, 25, 27, 29, and 31 (total +210%). Second, each vessel type has its own maintenance modifier. Third, vessels do not cost increased maintenance to repair, but also do not cost reduced maintenance if damaged.

  • Counter-intuitively, War Taxes do not increase tax income. Instead, they decrease army and navy maintenance by 20% each.
  • With Art of War, mothballing allows your naval units to be left unusable in your docks for lower maintenance and giving your ships 5% hull damage per year of being mothballed.

Loans[edit]

Taking a loan grants an amount of money equal to 12 months' income by default. Acquiring the National Bank idea in Economic Idea Group can trigger an event in which loans can be changed to grant money equal to 6 or 24 months' income.

An unlimited number of loans may be taken at any time, although each loan taken increases inflation by 0.1. A loan may be paid back in full, plus the total remaining interest owed, at any time during the loan period. If a loan expires and the borrower cannot (or chooses not to) pay the principal, the loan will be extended for an additional 5 years at the current interest rate, and inflation will increase by an additional 0.1.

Loans from countries[edit]

Countries that have a strategic interest in another country's wars may grant loans to that country.

Interest of loans from countries[edit]

It's set by the country granting the loan.

CB for cancelling loan[edit]

If the borrower refuse to pay the principal when a loan expires, the lender gets a 12 month CB "Cancelled Loan" against the borrower.

Note: As of 1.4, players are unable to grant loans to AI countries. This was because the AI often didn't pay it back, and it turned into a "Give me a CB" button.

Bank loans[edit]

Interest of bank loans[edit]

See #Interest

Bankruptcy[edit]

If the combined monthly interest of loans exceeds a country's monthly income, the country will be forced to declare bankruptcy.


Bankruptcy gives a number of negative effects:

Entering bankruptcy also reduces inflation by 25%, reduces stability by 3, reduces legitimacy to 0, and reduces all monarch power to 0. All of your mercenaries, advisors and loans are also dismissed.

  • Financial Ruin

There are two events related to bankruptcy. Note that these events don't automatically cause bankruptcy; it's entirely possible to receive them without going bankrupt.

At war:

Trigger:

  • Has at least 1 active loans
  • Has at least 2 provinces producing gold
  • Is at war
  • Inflation is more than 20
  • Does not have the country flag Bankruptcy

Mean time to happen

  • Base mean time to happen of 600 months
  • Multiplies value by 0.9:
    • Inflation is more than 25
  • Multiplies value by 0.9:
    • Inflation is more than 30
  • Multiplies value by 0.9:
    • Inflation is more than 35
  • Multiplies value by 2.0:
    • Has the idea National Bank
  • Multiplies value by 0.8:
    • Has at least 3 provinces producing gold
  • Multiplies value by 0.8:
    • Has at least 4 provinces producing gold
  • Multiplies value by 0.8:
    • Has at least 5 provinces producing gold
  • Multiplies value by 0.85:
    • Has at least 2 active loans
  • Multiplies value by 0.75:
    • Has at least 3 active loans
  • Multiplies value by 1.15:
    • Has the Treasurer advisor
  • Multiplies value by 1.1:
    • Has at least 1000 ducats in the treasury
  • Multiplies value by 0.95:
    • Has less than 500 ducats in the treasury
  • Multiplies value by 0.95:
    • Has less than 250 ducats in the treasury

Option: We are on the verge of bankruptcy:

  • Sets the country flag Bankruptcy
  • Changes stability by -3
  • Changes treasury by -1000 ducats
  • Random owned province:
    • Spawns 2 revolt size of peasant rebels
  • Changes inflation by 5

Alternative:

Trigger:

  • Has at least 2 provinces producing gold
  • Inflation is more than 15
  • Has the idea Viceroys
  • Does not have the idea National Bank
  • Does not have the country flag Bankruptcy

Mean time to happen

  • Base mean time to happen of 600 months
  • Multiplies value by 0.9:
    • Inflation is more than 20
  • Multiplies value by 0.9:
    • Inflation is more than 25
  • Multiplies value by 0.9:
    • Inflation is more than 30
  • Multiplies value by 0.8:
    • Has at least 3 provinces producing gold
  • Multiplies value by 0.8:
    • Has at least 4 provinces producing gold
  • Multiplies value by 0.8:
    • Has at least 5 provinces producing gold
  • Multiplies value by 0.95:
    • Has at least 1 active loans
  • Multiplies value by 0.85:
    • Has at least 2 active loans
  • Multiplies value by 1.15:
    • Has the Treasurer advisor
  • Multiplies value by 1.1:
    • Has at least 1000 ducats in the treasury
  • Multiplies value by 0.95:
    • Has less than 500 ducats in the treasury
  • Multiplies value by 0.95:
    • Has less than 250 ducats in the treasury

Option: We are on the verge of bankruptcy:

  • Changes stability by -3
  • Changes treasury by -1000 ducats
  • Random owned province:
    • Spawns 2 revolt size of peasant rebels
  • Changes inflation by 5
  • Sets the country flag Bankruptcy

Inflation[edit]

Inflation is an increase in the price of goods over time. In gameplay terms, inflation makes all expenses cost more. Low levels of inflation (around 10%), though not ideal, are reasonable. Around 20% or higher, this could signify an economic catastrophe, and measures must be taken to avoid total collapse.

On contrary with real life inflation, in game one does not mean constantly increasing prices, however it is a flat increase in your expenses. In real life certain incomes would increase with inflation as well. This reflects that the in game "ducats" have a constant value over the course of centuries and serve as an absolute indicator of value. In the real history the value of gold was just as volatile as anything else. The in-game inflation simply represents the inflation over the time between collecting income and spending it, therefore representing that the income has lost value while it was sitting in the player's treasury.

Gaining inflation[edit]

Inflation is increased by the following:

  • Each loan taken or extended increases inflation by +0.10.
  • Income from gold increases inflation by 0.50 per year times the proportion of income from gold. (The mechanism seems to be based on gold standard.)
  • Monetary compensations claimed in a peace treaty cause a one-time increase of inflation.
  • Selling provinces to other nations
  • Receiving gifts from other nations
  • Various events can increase inflation.

Reducing inflation[edit]

Passive[edit]

Several effects reduce inflation over time.

  • The Master of Mint advisor reduces inflation by -0.1 per year.
  • The Tax Assessor unique building reduces inflation by -0.05 per year.
  • Various events, decisions, triggered modifiers, and mission rewards can reduce inflation.
Inflation reduction.png Traditions Ideas Bonuses Policies
+0.10 yearly Colonial traditions
Mexican traditions
Economic idea 3: National Bank
Andean idea 3: Tears of the Sun
Brazilian idea 3: Mines of Minas Gerais
Dutch idea 1: Found the Amsterdam Wisselbank
+0.05 yearly Austrian idea 3: Fugger Banking

Counting House

The "counting house" building is listed as having -0.10% inflation per year. This isn't entirely correct. (As of 1.6.2) this actually means -0.1 inflation per year if 100% of your provinces have a counting house. The benefit you gain is proportional to the number of counting houses you have:

Inflation reduction = ( [number of counting houses] / [number of provinces] ) × 0.1%
e.g. ( 20 counting houses / 50 provinces ) × 0.1% = 0.04% per year

Note: This number is rounded down when displayed, but its unrounded value is used in all calculations.

e.g. 20 provinces with only 1 counting house provides 0.005% inflation reduction per year, but it will be displayed in the interface as "0.00".

Active[edit]

If passive means are unavailable or insufficient, the Reduce Inflation button in the budget panel reduces inflation by -2.00 in exchange for -75 Administrative Power.

Reduce inflation cost.png Traditions Ideas Bonuses Policies
−33%

Full Economy Focus
−15%

Aragonese idea 6: Reforming the Administration
−10%

Bavarian traditions Innovative idea 5: Resilient State

Footnotes[edit]

  1. See in /Europa Universalis IV/common/defines.lua: DIP_PORT_FEES = 0.1, -- DIP_PORT_FEES
  2. See in /Europa Universalis IV/common/defines.lua: DIP_PORT_FEES = 0.1, -- DIP_PORT_FEES
Economy