Can Merchants Barter Exchange–Bartering Be An Alternative To Cash?

Written by admin on May 16th, 2011

Not a day goes by without my hearing or reading about economic, credit, or cash flow problems. That’s what happens when you work in the barter industry. Thankfully it is very refreshing to be able to talk to people I meet about the solution and not just agree with them and be part of the problem. For many small business owners they cannot even access the equity in their homes and refinance to improve cash flow, and many banks are scared to lend to those that need it.

Barter is nothing new – it’s been around since the dawn of Man – and I’m glad such an old and tried-and-tested method of doing business is actually getting its proper and fair share of the limelight in the local and national press. If one were to be totally honest, barter is the only stable part of our global economy. Look back to the economic collapse of Argentina in 2002. It took them going back to bartering to set their economy back on track. Seven years later over 500,000 people and businesses still hold strongly to barter, because they don’t trust their cash economy. Unfortunately many other western countries are teetering dangerously close to the Argentinean scenario.

That’s obviously good news for the barter industry, and especially for Merchants Barter Exchange ( with their new form of trading: MBE-barter. Like the barter our cavemen ancestors participated in, organized barter is nothing new and actually dates back to the mid-1950s here in America. The challenge has always been controlling the flow of internal currency (usually referred to as “barter dollars”) and maintaining the integrity of the barter economy (not letting members inflate prices, or take part payment in cash, or in any other way tarnish the initial reputation of the membership.)

That’s where Merchants Barter Exchange and MBE-barter stands head and shoulders above practically all the other barter organizations out there today. Because of their internal systems and “checks and balances” procedures, you will never incur any of those bad practices when utilizing MBE-barter. In fact, any member caught trying to damage the integrity of the exchange is immediately expelled from the system, thus ensuring only the very highest quality standards in the industry. Unfortunately for their competition, the only way any existing barter exchange hindered by the old way of doing things can even begin to compete on the same level is to start from scratch – that puts them almost ten years behind Merchants Barter Exchange. That’s an impressive head-start and that keeps them ahead of the pack.

Additionally, through these higher quality standards and control systems, MBE-barter allows members to conduct much bigger trades than is even remotely possible with lesser exchanges. A few examples of trades possible via MBE-barter all at 100% (something no other barter company can promote) are 0,000 printing jobs, brand new forklifts, new home and office furniture, vehicles – the list is practically endless. Because everything is transacted at the same cash price and 100% bartered, there is no difference using MBE-barter for needed goods and services as using cash or credit, except for the obvious economic and marketing benefits a member gains.

Therefore, as an alternative to cash, MBE-barter is the best substitute by far, and actually has mechanisms in place to protect existing cash business. Obviously in this Internet-age, there are many web-based barter organizations emerging, however they have simply put a “modern” face on the flawed, old ways of doing barter, which cannot stamp out blending cash and barter for trades, cannot control pricing, cannot effectively co-ordinate member trades to keep the economy balanced and flowing with integrity. In short, they probably won’t last as long as their older companions, or grow to be more than a fleeting fad.

Existing Merchants Barter Exchange members are sitting pretty and patting themselves on the back for getting involved when they did. The good news for non-members, however, is that membership is very simple and the company is expanding incredibly rapidly around the US. Most likely they coming to a city and town near you within the next twelve months (that is, if they are not already strongly established in your town!) For a nominal, lifetime membership fee almost any business can join. The rest of the costs involved with membership are minimal and predominantly pay-per-use transaction fees on purchases made.

No article concerning commerce would be totally complete without at least a slight mention of Uncle Sam. The days of tax-free barter went out the window in the 1980s when barter companies gained the same standing (third-party record keepers) as banks and credit card companies. All barter revenue is considered the same as cash as far as the IRS is concerned and all barter companies must issue 1099b forms to all members for tax reporting purposes.

The economic outlook still looks very bleak (both nationally and globally) and no educated person remotely believes an about-turn any time soon is even a concept. Dumping trillions of dollars into the pot can lead to only two certainties: higher inflation and a tax burden being passed along somewhere. It’s good news for Merchants Barter Exchange and their members, not too promising for those dependent upon the cash world, though.

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