The Impact of the Slave Trade By the 1600s slavery made modern Europe. Nation-states had begun to spread their influence across the globe, especially in Africa, the Caribbean, and the Americas. The Transatlantic Slave Trade was in full operation as profits, financial systems, and nation-states grew against the backdrop of human loss. Europe prospered on the economic foundation provided by slavery. Ultimately two different legacies emerged--one of wealth juxtaposed against the human cost.