“Money is just a way of keeping score.”
– H.L. Hunt, American businessman
Money, in one form or another, has been a factor in human interaction long before the earliest recorded history. In fact, the exchange of commodities is one of the largest contributing factors to the proliferation of the human race across the globe. But we have never been satisfied with simply trading, and thus the concept of money has evolved alongside culture and taken on numerous forms, some more practical than others.
Take a look at this brief history of how the concept of money has transformed from primitive bartering into ones and zeroes:
It’s anyone’s guess what the future of currency will hold. Based on the current trend, it seems things are trending towards physical money getting phased out and replaced by something completely digital. When looking over all of the major milestones in the evolution of money, they are all innovations spurred by inconvenience so you can imagine the management and exchange of the money of tomorrow will be extremely user-friendly, and maybe even fashionable.
Seeing as it took 4,000 years to go from primitive banks to digital currency, it is a certainty that however money evolves in the next 4,000 will look unfathomably different from the “primitive” cash we use today. The U.S. Securities and Exchange commission may not have allowed bitcoin to join the public listing of ETF (exchange traded fund) but bitcoin is bound to continue disrupting the financial industry. Stay tuned as we watch the history of bitcoin and other digital currencies unfold.