Times seem to change right around us and we don’t see it. Evolution is slow, but it is constant. While Darwin may argue otherwise, evolution is not always for the better, especially financial evolution. Financial evolution is trending towards a cashless society, and some countries in this world seem to really want to become cashless in order to make things “easier”.

Today, four silver quarters are worth nearly twenty dollars. Are four quarters harder to carry than a purse with a twenty dollar bill or a wallet with a debit card or even a smartphone with Apple Pay? Sometimes evolution produces a platypus or a dodo, and our current digital monetary system may prove to be a bigger flop than a dodo crossed with a platypus, also known as the fictitious do-platy-do-pus.

Financial Evolution : A Platypus.
A Platypus.

Evolution not only applies to funny bird-animals, but evolution applies to furniture too. Just as Continentals and Confederate currency have become passe and nearly useless, there are certain pieces of furniture that were once common but are now facing extinction.

Financial Evolution And The Blanket Chest.

The blanket chest, also known as the hope chest, is a piece of furniture that was once very common but is now facing a slow trip down extinction road. There may be a few factors contributing to the demise of the blanket chest. Perhaps one contributing factor lies directly in the designs of modern homes. Closet space used to be very rare to non-existent in home designs fifty to one hundred years ago. You needed a place to put your blankets and linens where they would remain safe and clean.

Financial Evolution : A Modern Blanket Chest.
A Modern Blanket Chest.

Today houses are built with walk-in closets and linen closets galore. The fancier ones are even lined in cedar, just like a quality blanket chest was. Also, today’s houses have modern heating and thermostats to keep the day and night temperatures inside the home very livable, so families actually need fewer heavy blankets and they have more closets.

This is perhaps one problem for the future of the blanket chest, another is the fact that mice, rats, moths, and other vermin and varmints are much less of a threat to your blankets than they used to be, thus eliminating another need to have a dedicated blanket chest. Remember making sure you had the checkbook before you went shopping? Perhaps financial evolution and furniture evolution are not that different.

If closets and the absence of mice are dooming the blanket chest, so perhaps is the marriage age and rate in the United States. A few decades ago, many young women had what they called a hope chest, which was basically a blanket chest. The main difference between the two was the potential contents. Blanket chests held blankets, hope chests held romanticized dreams of the future.

Financial Evolution : Hope Chest
A Hope Chest Is A Slightly Different Take On A Blanket Chest.

The idea was for a young woman to collect small pieces of housewares and linens in her hope chest while she lived with her parents so that when she became married and began to live with her husband she could bring some basic wifely tools to the household. Spatulas, pans, towels, washcloths, recipe books, and maybe a bank passbook might be found in a well-stocked hope chest.

Today things work differently. There are online gift registries that make a hope chest look hopeless. The average wedding now costs more than the average American home did in 1970. Times have changed and the hope chest sales are steadily losing hope.

Financial Evolution And The TV Stand.

Just as TV’s have evolved so has where you put the TV. At first, TV’s had carts so you could roll them out to watch them. In reality, there were so few shows and so few channels that there was no real need to have a TV as a permanent part of your decor; TV’s were quite ugly, especially to the lady of the house. Quite often TV’s were kept in a closet or storage room until they were needed.

Financial Evolution : TV
A “Small” Console Television.

Next in the evolution of televisions came the console TV. As technology advanced and TV screens became bigger, and color, the televisions became too big and heavy to move. The answer to this evolutionary problem was to disguise the television as a giant wooden box complete with doors that covered the viewing screen and hidden compartments to house the channel and volume controls. There were also controls for color, hue, and vertical and horizontal hold, as well as fine tuning in channels. The operator had to adjust all of these things, and there were no remote controls.

Eventually, console TVs fell out of favor and a nice television became something to proudly display. In order to proudly display your television, you needed a television stand that would not only support your heavy state-of-the-art 27” television but make it look good, too. Black lacquer became popular. Smoked glass doors hid your VCR and cable box in a very sleek fashion. Everyone would have thought that just like linen suits and Don Johnson haircuts, television stands were here to stay.

Financial Evolution : TV
Netflix Has Changed Television.

Today we know that the proper place for a television is either in your pocket as an app or on your wall if you want to Netflix and chill. The TV stand of today is just a thin particle board shell of what used to be a substantial piece of furniture. The TV stand of today is disposable. Are we headed toward a financial evolution that is disposable? Some would argue yes.

Financial Evolution And Gold.

Gold is wealth. History has proven this again and again. If you turn on your TV today you can tune into one of the several financial channels on your cable system and find different currencies from around the world being priced in gold. Trends change and ideas come and go, gold, on the other hand, is a financial constant.

Financial Evolution : Gold
A 1927 $20 Saint-Gaudens Double Eagle Graded Mint State 66, Philadelphia Mint Rare Gold Coin.

Consider owning gold for the long-term. Today (6/8/2016) gold is just over $1200 an ounce. Chances are pretty good that gold was only a couple of hundred dollars an ounce or less when you were watching some of your earliest favorite TV shows. Open an account with ITM Trading and begin owning gold today.