Not long ago, the senator mention of cryptocurrency would get you laughed out of the room by most people, but today this new form of money and currency has started to take the world by storm. Despite being so new, cryptocurrencies are now accepted by tens of thousands of merchants and many countries are considering adopting them as official currency as well. Although it’s clear that cryptocurrency isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, what does the future hold for this fledgling industry? Let’s take a look at where cryptocurrency could be in 10 years.
Bitcoin and cryptocurrency
Bitcoin is a currency that was created in 2009 by an unknown person using the alias Satoshi Nakamoto. Transactions are made with no middlemen – meaning, no banks! Bitcoin can be used to book hotels on Expedia, shop for furniture on Overstock and buy Xbox games. But much of the hype is about getting rich by trading it. The price of bitcoin skyrocketed into the thousands in 2017. Just like any other investment (or speculative bubble), cryptocurrencies as an asset class should be considered high risk and researched thoroughly before buying in.
If you’re looking for possible investments beyond traditional stocks, consider cryptocurrency or ICOs as alternative investments. Just make sure you know what you’re getting yourself into. Do your research thoroughly before putting your money down. Many cryptocurrencies have failed after gaining initial traction — IOTA was one of them… And there are many scammy ICOs out there who only have tokens on offer rather than any actual network or product (the difference between them and a traditional IPO). And remember: blockchain is here to stay — but exactly how cryptocurrency plays a role in society remains yet to be seen!
Advantages of cryptocurrency
Money can be moved from one country to another without any loss in value. For example, you can transfer money from China to Thailand and not lose any money because it is no longer worth what it was when it left your possession in China. Unlike banks or other financial institutions, cryptocurrency allows you to transact without middlemen and make payments directly with anyone in a matter of minutes or hours. You also have more control over your funds when dealing with cryptocurrency than you do through banks. It’s easy to see why cryptocurrencies are drawing so much attention these days: It solves problems that many of us have identified for years, and its popularity continues to grow each day.
Disadvantages of cryptocurrency
Cryptocurrencies have come under fire from critics, who claim that they facilitate illegal activities and money laundering schemes. There’s no denying that there are criminal elements in crypto. Some studies have shown that 42% of bitcoin owners used their crypto for illegal purposes, but to use crypto for money laundering you don’t need to be an investor at all – anyone can use it. As a result, governments across Europe and Asia have started cracking down on cryptocurrencies; earlier in 2018 Russia officially banned them, following China’s ban last year.
Is cryptocurrency will replace the dollar?
Let’s kick off with a big, fat disclaimer: Cryptocurrencies are not a sure thing. Nor is blockchain. And to be clear, I am not qualified to make predictions about any form of cryptocurrency becoming world-dominant or replacing government-backed fiat currencies. It’s just not in my wheelhouse. Instead, I’ll limit myself to talking about whether cryptocurrencies will exist in 10 years and whether you should invest in them now—if that kind of thing is something you feel like doing. If it isn’t then I totally understand and have no qualms with that at all! So without further ado… No, crypto won’t replace national currency in 2022. Or 2024 for that matter (or 2027 for that matter). For me personally, I think there needs to be some more market growth before we can even begin to talk about traditional currencies going away forever. In short? No way — but 10 years is still very early on in the life span of most technologies and ideas so stay tuned! Investing right now may prove lucrative over time (as many already have), but it may also result in great losses — as was very recently seen following Bitcoin’s plunge late last year; its drop continued well into January of 2018 after starting late November 2017 (just check out Bitcoin’s page on Wikipedia ). As far as its overall direction over time, however… Who knows?
Where to learn more about cryptocurrencies
Like paper money and gold before it, bitcoin is a currency that allows parties to exchange value. Unlike its predecessors, bitcoin is digital and decentralized. For many people, that makes it better as a unit of account than fiat currencies — which are backed by governments and central banks that can inflate away their worth — and better as a store of value than volatile cryptocurrencies like Ethereum (whose coins experienced massive gains in 2016 but also crashed violently). I’m not saying you should or shouldn’t invest in cryptocurrency. You can certainly still make lots of money trading them. If nothing else, spend some time educating yourself about cryptocurrencies so you know what questions to ask your adviser or broker if they offer these products. Decide what strategy works best for you—and remember that when it comes to investing, there’s no such thing as setting it and forgetting it with any kind of product or strategy regardless of how many promises they hold at first glance! Whatever your approach ends up being: Enjoy learning about something new!
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