This guest post comes from Chris Mettler, CEO of Compare Cards, a credit card comparison and financial responsibility website. CompareCards.com continues to educate consumers on the pros and cons of the credit cards available today.
Have you ever wondered how the cash in your wallet was created? Why the color green was chosen for all paper currency and whether or not the money you possess will be worth anything in 5 years, 50 years or 500 years? Well wonder no more as I’ve laid out seven common questions about money and their answers.
Why is a Piggy Bank Called a Piggy Bank?
There two schools of thought on this one. The first and most believed reason for the term “Piggy Bank” comes from Middle English. The word “pygg” referred to a kind of clay used for making pots and jars. Most people saved their money in jars hundreds of years ago, and as the English language developed, the term “pygg jar” evolved into the beloved term “piggy bank”.
The second, less likely possibility comes from Germany. Countries in Western Europe have always used the symbol of the pig as good fortune, and thus keeping money in small banks that look like a pig would bring good fortune, thus piggy banks were designed.
Who knows … perhaps one day we’ll call them Smarty Piggy banks!
Why is Money Green?
Cash hasn’t always been green, but when the United States decided to shrink the size of currency, they also found an ink that made it next to impossible to counterfeit. The ink used to print currency had a green tint to it, was plentiful (and cheap) and had good psychological components to its color. The color green represents prosperity, growth and positivity whereas a color like red would represent the opposite. To this day, the exact makeup of the green ink used is as mysterious as the recipe for Coca Cola.
Why Does Money Smell So Good?
As stated previously, cash is made up of cotton and linen. As I write this, I have a white Yankee Candle burning in my office titled “Clean Cotton”. For whatever reason, the smell of fresh clothing, especially cotton is pleasing to the senses.
Does Money Grow on Trees?
No way Jose. Because money is made up of cotton and linen, you won’t see any of it growing on the cedar tree outside. But if you know of any cotton fields next to your home, you’re one step closer to being a billionaire! (Don’t get any ideas)
Why Does Money Survive the Washing Machine (unlike other paper)?
You wouldn’t know it to look at it, but US paper currency is made up of 75% cotton and 25% linen. Unlike regular printing pager, money thrown in the washing machine would actually survive because the fibers are woven so close together. It’s as if you were washing a small cloth rather than a piece of currency (but be careful to test, because the ink could make sure you wear the color green for a while!)
Can Money be Mailed?
Sending cash through the mail is always a risky proposition, but it’s 100% legal. The United States Post Office will insure any package you send (for a nice fee of course) but if you send your cash uninsured and it is lost, you’re out of luck.
Will Cash Eventually Disappear?
The word eventually would suggest that at some point in time, the answer is yes. There will be a day in the future when all cash no longer exists, but that day is quite far away. In fact, cash has made a bit of a comeback in recent years due to the financial collapse of 2008 and Americans vile towards big banks.
Online purchasing has become increasingly popular and virtual currency like BitCoins (www.BitCoins.com) are starting to gain traction. Still, don’t expect people to burn their cash anytime soon.