Money is just an idea - an idea of what things are worth, relative to each other. This includes the idea of what money is worth, relative to other monies.
In the mail this morning, this missive:
Dear Robert Bell,
E*TRADE is pleased to announce the launch of forex trading. You can now trade your opinion on the U.S. dollar and other world currencies.
What an interesting quote. You can trade your opinion on the U.S. dollar and other world currencies. And that is all currency trading is, isn't it? Opinions about the value of currency.
Money is not a thing. The dollar bills are just physical placeholders for the idea of money. But most of us never bother to think about this, convinced that when we chase after money, we are chasing after a thing.
And no, despite E*TRADE's generous offer, I have no intention of getting into the volatile world of currency trading. That sort of thing, like commodities and options, is best left to people to trade for a living. Amateurs can get creamed trying to play in these fields.