The future of money

| Print |  Email
Articles - March 2014
Tuesday, February 25, 2014

img006 digitisedBY JAKE THOMAS

In the beginning, money as a medium of exchange revolved around grain, cattle and other necessities. Next came beads, cowry shells and shiny pieces of metal. Today government-issued paper and coins are the rule of thumb. Increasingly, the entire financial system is devolving into sequences of zeros and ones.

For centuries people have relied on an unspoken social contract that assigns a commonly understood value to a recognized set of objects. But if currency has always had a physical existence, its value is defined by the community and the marketplace and is therefore ephemeral. At some level, money has always been an abstraction.

In 2014 physical currency is less tangible than ever, with money’s bling increasingly likely to be found on computer screens. As cash turns into trash, technological innovations are streamlining banking practices and commerce for businesses and consumers.

But the changes under way go beyond transactional efficiencies. As the nation’s financial system comes under increasing scrutiny, currency innovations are being touted as a solution to social and economic problems, democratizing access to capital, helping nurture local businesses and giving a boost to those near the bottom of the economic totem pole.

Oregon Business explored some of the innovations taking place in various financial institutions, from banks cautiously exploring mobile payments to cutting edge digital-currency startups still searching for a market. One thing is clear; although the future of money may be fast, easy and literally immaterial, the goals of the evolving ecosystem remain decidedly old-fashioned:  to facilitate exchange, to allow people to move goods and services and, ideally, to boost work, productivity and income.



 

Comments   

 
Guest
0 #1 RE: The future of moneyGuest 2014-03-29 12:13:24
APSJEX.com - Your reliable partner in buying or selling Bitcoin.
Quote | Report to administrator
 

More Articles

Corner Office: Marv LaPorte

January-Powerbook 2015
Saturday, December 13, 2014

The president of LaPorte & Associates lets us in on his day-to-day life.


Read more...

Reimagining education to solve Oregon's student debt and underemployment problems

News
Thursday, November 13, 2014
carsonstudentdept-thumbBY RYAN CARSON | OP-ED CONTRIBUTOR

How do we skill up our future technology workforce in a smart way to take advantage of these high-paying jobs? The answer shouldn’t focus only on helping people get a bachelor’s degree.


Read more...

Top stories in 2014

The Latest
Thursday, December 18, 2014
10-listthumb

2014 was a year of wild contradictions, fast-paced growth and unexpected revelations.


Read more...

Dan and Louis Oyster Bar opens up to a changing neighborhood

The Latest
Thursday, December 11, 2014
121114-oystervidBy MEGHAN NOLT

VIDEO: Revamping a Classic — an iconic eatery stays relevant in a changing marketplace.


Read more...

Old school: Paulsen's Pharmacy maintains old fashion ethos

The Latest
Thursday, December 18, 2014
121914-pharmacy-thumbBY MEGHAN NOLT

VIDEO: Under the radar — complete with a soda counter, the traditional Paulsen's Pharmacy looks to compete with big box retailers.


Read more...

Leading with the right brain

News
Tuesday, December 09, 2014
120914-manderson-thumbBY LINDA BAKER

On the eve of the Portland Ad Federation's Rosey Awards, Matt Anderson, CEO of Struck, talks about the transition from creative director to CEO, the Portland talent pool and whether data is the new black in the creative services sector.


Read more...

Healthcare pullback

News
Thursday, November 20, 2014
112014-boehnercare-thumbBY JASON NORRIS | OB CONTRIBUTOR

Each month for Oregon Business, we assess factors that are shaping current capital market activity—and what they mean to investors. Here we take a look at two major developments regarding possible rollbacks of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS