While American slaves in 1809 were sold for around ,000 (in inflation adjusted dollars), a slave nowadays can be bought for just , making replacement more economical than providing long term care.

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Chattel slavery is also still practiced in areas controlled by ISIS.

In other areas, slavery (or unfree labour) continues through practices such as debt bondage, serfdom, captive domestic servants kept in captivity, certain adoptions in which children are forced to work as slaves, child soldiers, human trafficking, and forced marriage.

Slavery is, the strictest sense of the term, any system in which principles of property law are applied to people, allowing individuals to own, buy and sell other individuals, as a de jure form of property.

A slave is unable to withdraw unilaterally from such an arrangement and works without remuneration.

Siddharth Kara has also provided an estimate of 28.4 million slaves at the end of 2006 divided into three categories: bonded labour/debt bondage (18.1 million), forced labour (7.6 million), and trafficked slaves (2.7 million).

Kara provides a dynamic model to calculate the number of slaves in the world each year, with an estimated 29.2 million at the end of 2009.

Slavery began to exist before written history, in many cultures.

The most common form of the slave trade is now commonly referred to as human trafficking.

Many scholars now use the term chattel slavery to refer to this specific sense of legalised, de jure slavery.