How the Quakers became unlikely economic innovators by inventing the price tag

Mostly Economics

We tend to associate economic developments with big theories and big bang reforms. But dig into economic history and you realise how small things matter much more. Infact, we take several things for granted today but when they were introduced sometime in history they created a revolution of sorts. For instance bar codes, shipping containers and so on.

Add price tags to the list as well. This video tells us how Quakers ended up inventing the price tag. The circumstances were unusual driven by morality and opposition to frequent price changes:

Belying its simplicity and ubiquity, the price tag is a surprisingly recent economic development. For centuries, haggling was the norm, ultimately developing into a system that required clerks and shopkeepers to train as negotiators. In the mid-19th century, however, Quakers in the US began to believe that charging people different amounts for the same item was immoral, so…

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About Jim Rose

Utopia - you are standing in it promotes a classical liberal view of the world and champion the mass flourishing of humanity through capitalism and the rule of law. The origin of the blog is explained in the first blog post at https://utopiayouarestandinginit.wordpress.com/2014/03/12/why-call-my-blog-utopia-you-are-standing-in-it/

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