The Weirdest Currencies of the World

Our mission at Quinn Wealth Management, LLC is to help you design a comprehensive, personalized wealth care plan that sets you on the right track toward achieving your goals. Our professional services are based on a keen understanding of your goals, needs and resources.  High-net-worth individuals (HNWIs), small-business owners and families who desire the assistance of a credentialed financial advisory specialist call upon wealth managers to coordinate retail banking, estate planning, legal resources, tax professionals and investment management. In this short article, we will deal with money – but not the kind of money you are used to. Here, we will present to you some of the weirdest currencies that this globe has ever seen.

The Strange Currencies

The Manchukuo yuan currency was used by Japanese Imperial forces during their occupation of Manchuria. This currency (1 fen and 5 fen coins) was actually made of red or brown cardboard between 1944 and 1945 due to the lack of metal. Metal, of course, was being used for the war.

Extensively used in East Africa and in the Sahara desert centuries ago, salt is one of the oldest forms of payment in the world, harking back to the barter system. Turmeric spice wrapped in coconut fibers seems more like something you'd see used on the Food Channel, but in the Solomon Islands it passes for currency.

Wooden bills may have been rough on the wallet, but they were an ingenious way that Germans devised to rebuild their economy following WWI. After the devastation of war, local townships took to printing "notgeld" (or "emergency money") on everything from wood to playing cards as a local form of payment until the Reichsbank recovered.

Bitcoin is a digital asset and a payment system invented by Satoshi Nakamoto, who published the invention in 2008 and released it as One of the world's most ancient coins ever foundopen-source software in 2009. The system is peer-to-peer and transactions take place between users directly, without an intermediary

The X-shaped trinkets, known as a Katanga Crosss, originated in the mining region of Katanga in the Democratic Republic of Congo. These crosses were the region’s primary form of currency and likely the most widely known form of ancient African currency. The crosses were cast from copper and weighed anywhere from 1 to 2.5 pounds.

Rai stones were once used as currency on the island of Yap in Micronesia. The large stones, resembling millstones, were quarried on nearby Palau. The value of the circular stones with a hole in the middle depends on the size and weight of the stone plus the difficulty in transporting them.

Canadian Tire is a nationwide tire company that is a household name. They started printing Tire Money in 1958, which come in denominations of 5 cents up to $2. They were originally intended to be used by customers for discounts at the chain. However, these notes are accepted at face value at other businesses.

Follow the overthrowing of President Mobutu in 1997, the government of Zaire (now the Democratic Republic of the Congo) faced a shortage of currency while new notes were printed. So they simply punched the deposed president’s face out of the old notes in the interim.

What's in it for Me?

Of course, the issue still stands – how to improve your personal finances? Today, stock market is the most promising venue for future millionaires. Find a good portfolio manager, find a good stock to invest (ATOR comes to mind; see more at and simply wait until you start rolling in dough. A glass of wine in that name!