For the large part of history, our mediums of exchange and stores of value have remained the same. Though a lot has changed in hundreds of years, our money and gold follow the same rules and principles as the day they were first introduced.
But major breakthroughs have lead us, for the first time, to the dawn of a new kind of currency, just as widely accepted as the existing systems and assets in place.
First, it’s important to understand how we got there.
Legal Tender: The Money Used To Buy and Sell
In technical terms, legal tender is “any official medium of payment recognized by law, that can extinguish public or private debt, or meet a financial obligation.”
Legal tender, also known as currency or money, holds a value created by the issuer. For example, the U.S. dollar is one of the most popular and powerful currencies and is issued by the U.S. Treasury to act as national currency. The dollar is used to buy goods and services, whether it’s a bite at a local restaurant, or to finance a mortgage. Money has opened up opportunities for many disadvantaged people and runs the entire country’s economy.
For all the good it has created, money has also been the root of many ills. Banks and other financial institutions can hold your money for not following their rules and has created significant inequality for many years. Some countries, such as Greece and Venezuela, have witnessed recessions and revolutions as the value of their currency plummeted.
When periods become turbulent and uncertain, people move to invest in alternatives, sometimes called “stores of value”.
Precious Metals: Rare and Valuable Investment Vehicles
Precious metals are self-explanatory — they are rare metals with high value. The most popular precious metals are gold, platinum, and silver, and can be bought by purchasing futures contracts, mutual funds, or bullion, which are physical bars or coins.
Whenever a currency experiences volatility, precious metals become attractive assets. Not only are they universally accepted as valuable, but their store of value holds consistent over time, compared to national currency.
Similar to legal tender, precious metals can fall short as a valuable asset. Significant handling and processing fees and a steep learning curve to investment make precious metals difficult for the common public to rely on.
Which brings us to cryptocurrency and crypto tokens, a radically new form of digital currency.
Cryptocurrencies: The Currency of the Future
Cryptocurrencies have made headlines in the past few years as more companies and nations recognize the value of bitcoin, the most popular cryptocurrency. Bitcoin and other altcoins have witnessed value soar exponentially since it was first introduced in 2009.
Created by the anonymous Satoshi Nakamoto, bitcoin and other cryptocurrency use some novel technology that helps secure it from some of the same pitfalls that money and gold experience.
Cryptocurrency is digital, it exists only on a digital wallet that resides on a computer or phone, so every transaction and balance is maintained on a public ledger. Cryptocurrencies are not issued or controlled by a third-party. That means no corporation or nation can set or define the value of cryptocurrency. And with cryptographic encryption, cryptocurrencies cannot be duplicated or forged.
Quintric: The Cryptocurrency of the Future
The last piece of the puzzle is an idea that combines legal tender, precious metals, and cryptocurrency in such a novel way that its impact is yet to be realized.
Quintric is a new monetary system that offers crypto tokens that 1) use the same technology used by other cryptocurrencies, 2) store value backed by gold and silver, and 3) can be used as legal tender and a medium of exchange.
The Quintric system consists of five tokens: Quint (backed by five U.S. gold cents), QuintS (backed by five U.S. silver cents), iQuint and iQuintS (for international gold and silver), and Quint X, (a special asset available to early Quint creators and investors). None incur any vaulting fees, can be used as legal tender, and should satisfy requirements to be tax-compliant. Unlike other cryptocurrencies which can take hours to transact, the Quintric tokens run on the Bitshares platform, offering unparalleled speed and efficiency.
When Quint launches, it will become a unique economic experiment, a paradigm shift from the centuries-old ways of commerce and investment. Learn more about Quintric on their website or sign up for a Quintric account here..
A Future Worth Believing In
The evolution of technology combined with the shifting global economic landscape has lead to this moment - a new way of doing business with each other, from purchasing a product from another country to investing in reliable assets.
There are bound to be challenges along the way, from national regulations to cyber threats, but for the most part, cryptocurrencies have continued to revolutionize people’s lives around the world. While the future of cryptocurrency remains uncertain, cryptocurrency will lead to an exciting and promising future.
The author is not an attorney or financial advisor. The author would like readers to note that he is a co-founder and board member at the Quintric. None of the content presented should be construed as investment advice or as legal advice.
Originally posted to Medium here: https://medium.com/datadriveninvestor/legal-tender-precious-metals-and-the-currency-of-the-future-404efd363c6c