I was thinking about this tonight and I realized, I think, why this might exist.
Animal Crossing has earned reputations over the year. For one, the reputation of being the same game over and over again, but for another, it's often called semi-mockingly a "debt simulator."
My guess is that by decreasing the value of money, the hope of the game's creators was that they could allow players to have more freedom with how they spend their cash as opposed to nearly all of your money going into Nook's, and to allow you the freedom to create and destroy public works as your thoughts about how the town should be design change.
To put it another way: in other games, money was a limiting factor on your creativity. You were, as such, very limited on how you went about designing your town until the very end of the game. Here, with the reduced value of money, the limiting factor is instead time. In as little as a month, it's possible to have your debts paid off and a thriving city, so you're free to spend the game how it was supposed to be played: designing the clothes you want, living in a house completely of your design, renovating a town that can be managed at your whim.
In order to prevent people from just accessing everything from day two, then, the game was intentionally given a very slow start so that even with inflation in play it still felt as though every day opened up a new level of freedom. Take the last week, for instance. Assuming you downloaded the game at midnight, your schedule went something like this:
- June 9, morning: Became mayor. Planted tree. (day 1)
- June 9, afternoon: Sought approval rating. Paid off tent. (day 2)
- June 10: Spoke to Tortimer about island. Created first public work. (day 3)
- June 11: Gained access to island and Happy Home Showcase. (day 4)
- June 12: Continue exploring island, getting a wetsuit if there wasn't one the day before. (day 5)
- June 13: "Holy crap, something new!" - Gardening store begins construction (day 6)
- June 14: Opening of Gardening Store (day 7)
- June 15: Cyrus awakens; Bug-off (day 8)
- June 16: Joan returns, allowing 'official' access to the Stalk market; beginning of rainy season (Coelacanths!) (day 9)
- June 17: Began construction on Dream Suite. (day 10)
- June 18: Spoke to Sable for the tenth time, unlocking QR reader; The Nook upgrade. (day 11)
...and so forth. Shift most of these things back a day for people who got the game physically. But even if it was small, every day granted to something new to do except days 5 and 6 (which came after the megaton day 4 and you probably spent destroying the natural habitats of uninhabited islands.)
I concede I'm not completely sure that that's how today and tomorrow are going to work, but all three of those things should be somewhere in the general vicinity of the next couple days, and not long after, you basically gain the ability to construct half of the city. You might've also unlocked Katrina already if you have twenty friends, since she probably appeared last week (and if she didn't, you likely were just as graced with Redd, or if you're really lucky, both.)