The futureof cash has limitless possibilities with new alternatives and ideas beingdeveloped in digital transactions and financial services industry with now cryptocurrenciesrapidly gaining popularity and prominence in society. An innovativeinfrastructure for digital exchange and the future of the financial sectorcould be through Bitcoin, a private synthetic cyber currency was anonymouslyreleased in 2009 following the global financial crisis. The aim of Bitcoin wasto produce a global market which can be used for a range of purchases andpayments of goods and services. Bitcoin has little intrinsic value and initiallywas only worth pennies to the dollar to currently where the price has peakedwell above $15,000 to the dollar in 2017 shown in figure 4, making it a hottopic in the future of finance. Bitcoin is the most successful digital currencyand was the world’s strongest currency between 2010-2013, even outperforminggold(Tellez 2016). There recently surge in interest in blockchain technologiesand cryptocurrencies has arisen from it being pseudonymous and decentralized.
Also,capital controls and extreme costs with associated physical currencies whichcan be unstable following the global financial crisis in 2008, has made Bitcoinprevalent and acknowledged amongst developing markets and emerging nations as afluid and low-cost substitute. The Myriad of digital cryptocurrenciesaccessible can signify rather than the movement to a central one world currencythat’s an exit opposed to our current system of centrally controlled fiatcurrency. Figure 4-Price of BitcoinSource: Bgr(Mills 2017)Physicalcash is in decline, Bitcoin could be pivotal when hedging against monetary andeconomic policies. Bitcoin resides fully on the public domain therefore itcannot be bullied or coerced into submission by central banks or governmentinstitutions as they can’t implement or loom the possibility of financialthreats or prosecution. Bitcoin has potential to benefit society in combattingany downsides in going towards a cashless society. Remittance is a keyinfluence on Bitcoin’s growth globally as Bitcoin is very efficient due to itbeing borderless. This allows distant families to access and send fundsinstantly with a 2% transaction fee rather than the 10-20% fee charged by banks(Tellez 2016).
However,Bitcoin has many issues surrounding it, from the rumours of it being used inthe black economy for illegal activities have resulted in global restrictionswith several currencies banning Bitcoin such as the Yuan. Bitcoin is slowlyintegrating globally but could struggle as Bitcoin cannot implement pricetransparency for products as it has an unstable and fluctuating exchange rate.Just imagine, the price a loaf of bread could be higher or lower simplydepending on the time or day it’s purchased. We must remove the stigmas anduncertainty surrounding Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies and society must be moretrusting in their usage in the future for society to keep striving to becomecashless. Even though society has been losing confidence in central banks andgovernments, cryptocurrencies being very young it may be too early to becertain their role for a cashless society.