Why is the pound sterling important?

        The pound sterling or pound, as it is popularly known, is the official currency of the United Kingdom. It is credited to be the oldest currency in the world that has never gone out of circulation since its introduction.

         The currency was first produced sometime in the latter half of the 8th century, during the rule of King Offa of Mercia. It then quickly spread throughout the Anglo Saxon kingdom.

          During the days of colonialism, the pound was circulated in most parts of the British Empire. Even after the British left, some of the freed colonies and dominions like Barbados continued to use pound as their legal tender.

          When it was a member of the European Union, the UK could have switched the currency to the euro, but the country refused. It is the Bank of England, the central bank that has been managing the issuance of the pound since 1694.

         Presently, the pound sterling is considered the fourth most traded currency in the world, standing behind the US dollar, euro, and the Japanese yen.