The greatest trick played on modern society is calling a whole bunch of different instruments with different credit ratings and characteristics “money”, and conflating them. It is a neat trick, and very useful in some situations, for instance when businesses invoice each other and make payments.
It is much more convenient to say “Please send me money” than to say “Can you tell your bank to reduce its debt to you, such that my bank increases its debt to me?” But by using these more accurate words, we can already get a sense that no asset, or instrument, moves all the way from end to end, but rather there are some coordinated accounting adjustments that make the appearance of an asset moving.
Conflating these different instruments and bundling them into one called “money” has enormous positive effects – it has reduced friction and created a common language which is used across the world to enhance trade.
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