Despite using money in our everyday lives, complaining about how much things cost and working out our monthly salary vs outgoings, there might actually be a few surprising facts you haven’t heard about money and finance. We’ve listed a few of the most interesting facts around – from a brief history to the banking system, a few shocking debt statistics and our spending/debt habits.
•The UK is one of the very few countries in the European Union that doesn’t have the Euro as the currency and still retains the age-old British Pound Sterling.
* Countries around the world spend on average £1.1trillion on education, but £1.3trillion on the military each year. It seems not a lot of people’s priorities have changed with the (financial) times.
* In 1973 New Yorkers spent $100 million buying flowers. Looks like 100million lucky ladies in 1973.
* During the Middle Ages it was a custom for wealthy families to keep their valuables in the cellars of a goldsmiths’ shop. The goldsmith would give a written receipt for these items – the items (which included gold, coins and jewels) could be redeemed at any time with the receipt. Eventually, those who didn’t fancy running back and forth to the shop every time they needed money began using these receipts for purchases. Businesses throughout Europe began accepting these receipts and the practice spread – paper receipts and paper money became legal tender, which contributed to the banking system in use today.
* The first income-tax was collected in 1914 in America. Americans paid an average per capita tax of forty-one cents, and only 1 percent of the population had to pay Taxes.
* The inflation rate has risen by 2,066.87% since 1914. By using this, something that would cost £1 in 1914 would cost around £21.66p today. But remember – your salary and earnings also rise with inflation over such a long period!
* According to statistics, the cost of housing in the United Kingdom has risen and will continue to increase, with the latest at 1.7% in the previous year. Ask your grandparents how much they bought their house for compared to your own – you might be surprised!
* The Government’s National Debt (PSDN) increasing by £353,500,00 per day.
* The Great British pound sterling is the world’s oldest currency still in use and, as we mentioned before, Britain is one of the few countries whose currency has remained the same despite being in the European Union.
* UK personal debt stood at £1,457billion at the end of June 2010 and the 12-month grow stayed at 0.8%. That means individuals all over Britain owe more money than the country produces per year.