The signs are everywhere: Barter is going to be big.
- A helicopter-skiing company is offering barter in exchange for stock in tanking companies
- You can barter with a lawyer for legal services
- There’s an informational webpage on how to barter for daycare services
- General contractors are offering their services for barter
- A professional writer will – for barter – write your love letters
Indeed, the Wall Street Journal just wrote an article entitled “Barter Fits the Bill for Strapped Firms“, which states:
As small businesses find it impossible to borrow money and customers are slower to pay bills, the barter economy is becoming a crucial way for many companies to find the cash they need to keep operating.***
In 2008, about 250,000 North American companies conducted barter transactions worth more than $16 billion, according to the International Reciprocal Trade Association, a nonprofit based in Portsmouth, Va., that regulates and provides standards for modern trade and barter-service companies.
And given the worsening depression, and the prospect of a devalued dollar, barter might become essential in the future. For example, a respected economist is recommending buying gold and bottles of booze to barter once bailout-induced hyperinflation makes the dollar worthless.