I run a web platform that helps people buy and sell digital assets (like Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies). In 2016, I knew little about the industry, and today I lead one among the foremost digital asset marketplaces within the U.S. I’m evidence that anyone can study crypto.
For the foremost part, the planet of crypto has operated during a strange lane all by itself, confined to Twitter and Telegram private chats. But in 2020—amid the coronavirus pandemic—interest in crypto has boomed. Whether it has been TikTok cheering on DogeCoin or a twenty-something hacking into high-profile Twitter accounts and posing for Bitcoin, 2020 might just be the year everyone from teens to nonagenarians learns about cryptocurrencies and digital money.
There are a couple of factors contributing to the present change, and that they are important enough that Americans should be listening. First, government payments to individuals and businesses alike are weakening the U.S. fiat (physical cash) system. Second, large banking institutions like JPMorgan Chase are condoning and even welcoming digital currencies onto their platforms. And third, more Americans are home, witnessing the discrepancy within the market’s growth and therefore the nation’s percentage.
The weakening dollar
With numerous sports and enormous events cancelled and lots of Americans receiving government aid, the U.S. features a captive audience for financial change. While most things we took without any consideration have halted, two things have stayed the same: the web and therefore the exchange of cash.
What has changed notably is that the value of cash, especially the U.S. dollar. As Americans still receive public financial assistance and businesses utilize Payroll Protection Program (PPP) loans, the inherent value of the dollar is dropping. Earlier in the week, the U.S. Dollar Index reported that the worth of the dollar dropped to its lowest level since May 2018.
What does this mean? More people will hedge their bets on currencies that act outside the confines of the dollar and buy other fiat currencies. However, we also are seeing more people invest in cryptocurrencies: Some even had an influx of tangible deposits of $1,200 within the weeks after initial stimulus checks were received.
The best performing asset of the last decade wasn’t Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, land investment trusts (REIT), or real estate—it was Bitcoin. When the simplest performing asset doesn’t even exist in traditional banking models, banks get interested.
In May, the most important retail bank in America, JPMorgan, which has historically been a staunch opponent of Bitcoin, announced it’s already processing crypto transactions on its platforms and has plans to make JPM Coin, a digital currency tied to the dollar, that might expedite global payment transfers. In June, CoinDesk reported that PayPal and Venmo could be joining the crypto community by offering direct sales of cryptocurrencies. Earlier in August, we saw Goldman Sachs usher in a replacement head of digital assets to proportion its crypto operations.
Crypto—once reserved for the gamers, coders, and early tech millionaires—is now an area where more people have the chance to participate in an alternate system where they will have more control over their wealth. Anyone with a smartphone can access crypto without expecting banks to open up or for an open-end credit to be mailed to them. What’s more, because crypto is decentralized and uses a public ledger to notate payments, there’s a chance for A level of transparency government assistance programs don’t provide.
The disconnect between actual wealth and therefore the stock exchange
Many Americans remain unemployed and feel the disconnect between the stock market’s success and therefore the financial reality of their lives. New personalities entering the crypto world—from Paul Tudor Jones to William Shatner to Olympian Christie Rampone—are helping initiate an honest conversation about whether our financial systems are helping or hurting us all.
These names also are a crucial part of showing everyone that cryptocurrencies and digital currencies are real. Although there might not be a Tom Brady of crypto thanks to the very fact that the originator of Bitcoin is anonymous, everyone who talks about cryptocurrencies and digital assets helps validate the industry. Because crypto and Bitcoin were built to be decentralized and without one administration, there are impassioned contributors across the world who work constantly to enhance access to digital assets. I expect that soon there’ll be more who come to the fore to supply credibility to crypto and digital assets, as their relevance and benefits are unavoidable.
The future of Bitcoin
Whether or not you’ve heard of Bitcoin, it is a word and an idea that’s not going anywhere. there’s a reason why the foremost prestigious university endowments, like those affiliated with Harvard, Stanford, and MIT, all invest in crypto funds.
Crypto is building in credibility. If for no other reason than curiosity, investigate Bitcoin and digital assets and see what most are talking about. After all, crypto will keep going while we are locked in our homes—a surefire sign that, pandemic or not, crypto may be a huge a part of our future.