Alternatives to money

From, the Money Wiki

Alternative currency is a term that refers to any currency used as an alternative to the dominant national or multinational currency systems (usually referred to as national or fiat money). Alternative currencies can be created by an individual, corporation, or organization, they can be created by national, state, or local governments, or they can arise naturally as people begin to use a certain commodity as a currency. Mutual credit is a form of alternative currency, and thus any form of lending that does not go through the banking system can be considered a form of alternative currency.

When used in combination with or when designed to work in combination with national or multinational fiat currencies they can be referred to as complementary currency. If the use of an alternative currency is limited to a certain region, it is called a local currency.

Often there are issues related to paying tax. Some alternative currencies are considered tax-exempt, but most of them are fully taxed as if they were national currency, with the caveat that the tax must be paid in the national currency. The legality and tax-status of alternative currencies varies widely from country to country; some systems in use in some countries would be illegal in others.

Examples of alternative currencies

See also



  • Thomas H. Greco, Jr., "Money: understanding and creating alternatives to legal tender". White River Junction, Vt: Chelsea Green Publishing, 2001.
  • M. Raddon, "Community and money: men and women making change". Montreal: Black Rose Books, 2003.
  • Bernard Lietaer, "The Future of Money". Random House: published January 2001.

External links

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