The history and future of money

“Taking a glimpse into our ancestor’s connection with money might surprise some of you, especially considering the current methods we are using.”

We pay rent via bank transfer, our salaries follow the same process, and real notes and coins rarely sponsor our supermarket trips. Similarly, companies typically require spending extensive amounts of time to maintain their finances, and in some cases, you may even need bookkeeping services from a reputable company like Myob Neutral Bay to contend with the ever-changing demands of the business world.

The history of money

There is an interesting lesson to be learned in understanding how monetary currency methods have evolved over the past thousands of years.

According to archeologists, the first discovered currency belonged to King Alyattes –dating back to 600 BC. Another recorded medium of exchange was cowry shells, and this goes back to 1200 BC. In addition to these two mediums, a large part of the monetary history involves the exchange of commodities. More specifically, it’s essential to note that our ancestors heavily relied on bartering goods, most of which have become obsolete in today’s world (i.e., eggs, livestock, salt, yarn, vegetables, and many others).

People were known to use these methods as a way of obtaining goods, feeding their families, or building their small businesses. There are many reasons for which these commodities were preferred, including ease of storing, convenience, wide availability, portability, and durability. Additionally, agricultural societies required the use of efficient and quick ways of producing the needed energy for cereal manufacturing –thus cattle and other farm animals were used to generate that power.

In time came the realization that a currency system should be put in motion, and metal was initially used due to its durability. Afterward, paper money started to become the primary form of exchange due to its lightweight properties and convenience. It is interesting to know that banknotes were initially introduced in Sweden around 1661 AD. Since then, many countries adopted this popular currency system, but not every political territory has been keen to transform all its commercial supply into paper or coins. In fact, according to Banque du Liban, which is a bank located in Lebanon, a staggering 50% of the country’s wealth is kept as gold. A few years ago, the Bank of France decided to make the transition from paper money to gold as well. Although the gold standard is a feature which at this point mostly belongs to history books, some countries would prefer keeping their wealth as such rather than invest in more inflation-prone currencies.

Of course, coin and paper money are still available; nonetheless, a more famous and well-regarded form of currently comes in the form of debit and credit cards. In fact, it may seem that these monetary devices are the most popular form of exchange in this 21st century. According to a study released in 2010, the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston estimates that consumers hold a staggering 609.8 million credit cards in the United States alone.


The future of money

Another famous saying is that “history repeats itself.” If our past has thought us anything, it is that the currency system is forever changing. In fact, it’s fascinating to think of all the transformations that have taken place over centuries. Due to our technological advancements and evolving knowledge of the surrounding world, the use of money is shying away from the original roots our ancestors had in mind.

These thoughts bring the question “is our current money valuable?”. Our doubts relate to the fact that money, in either paper or commodity form has the value we, as individuals, attribute to it. In other words, money is purely objective and follows our guide. Because of this, there is no surprise that transactions over the web are more popular than ever and that virtual money such as Bitcoin is considered the currency of the future. There is no physical object in question (i.e., paper money), but rather a number we see displayed on our screens.

Because the last two decades have marked the introduction of digital money, some are under the impression that our economic system is about the change once more. This time, the future will not look to plastic debit or credit cards, but to our smartphones. For example, a surprising turn is taking place in Kenya, where numerous businesses are using mobile-based systems known as M-Pesa. Another instance is the ability to order a taxi online, paying for the pre-ordered service and not needing to carry about real money with you –creating a more profound sense of security and guarantee.

Of course, all these technological advancements are meant to increase the time we can spend on more critical tasks. The same principle applies to business, and because of this, it’s more important than ever to handle your financial health appropriately. Using reputable and reliable companies such as MYOB Natural Bay is the first step that you can take in ensuring that you improve the efficiency of your bookwork and finances. The relevance of these services relates to the free time that you will gain –needing to worry less about your cash influx and more about your customer base and the way to improve it. Additionally, you will have an idea about forecasting and identifying potential problems before they occur, giving you peace of mind.



We are entering a new era in which programmable money is taking the focus. Whereas some aspects of this change are thrilling, caution should also become a priority. As previously mentioned, cryptocurrencies are a way of exchanging money within a couple of seconds, and this is an incredible advancement we’re happy to be a part of. However, the same means can be used for illegal transactions or fraud, and we might find that in the future we will be required to pay for services which are unheard of, at the moment. In other words, the future of money can be considered a double-edged sword that will determine the creation of new and innovative work opportunities –while minimizing the need for others.

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