Gold once gave our American currency, and many other currencies around the world, stability. Each unit of money was tied to the per-ounce price of gold, and gold’s intrinsic value meant that the value of money fluctuated far less than it does today under our fiat currency system.
Some have called Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies the modern equivalent of gold. In some ways this statement rings true, yet there are distinct and notable differences between Bitcoin and gold that warrant discussion.
The term remittance is not one that you hear every week, let alone every day, and even if you are familiar with the term, you may not understand the nature of the beast that is the remittance industry. In fact, the results of our survey How Well Do Americans Understand Money? could be taken to indicate that widespread unfamiliarity with the remittance industry is a near-certainty. It’s not a knock on anyone — who could be reasonably expected to spend their free time researching the ins and outs of remittance?
Wire transfers are a term synonymous with the banking industry, but as more and more people come to understand how banks and other financial institutions bleed them through inescapable fees, wire transfers should fall further and further out of favor. And as consumers explore alternatives to wire transfers that do not require them to throw money down the drain — because these alternatives do exist — they may come to discover the benefits of exchanging funds via cryptocurrency.
We recently issued a survey titled How Well Do Americans Understand Money? to 1,000 Americans to gauge their overall knowledge of the nation’s financial system. If our survey’s respondents are even moderately representative of the population at large (and we have a feeling that they are), there is a notable deficit in several areas of finance-specific knowledge in America.