Why Cryptocurrencies Are Firmly Entering into the Mainstream
After a decade of existence, bitcoin is now more than ever working itself out of the financial fringes and gradually entering the mainstream financial world. More individuals and institutions continue to view crypto as an alternative to standard currency, making proponents believe that digital cash is the wave of the future.
The total value of all cryptocurrencies currently stands at over $2 trillion. This sheer scale and critical mass that the digital asset class has achieved is far outpacing regulatory controls, making it difficult for financial regulators to dislodge or restrain it.
The number one attraction to cryptocurrencies is the absence of a central bank controlling inflation. In addition, the decentralized nature of bitcoin and other crypto-assets makes them more resistant to capital controls and political interference from world governments.
Central banks can print money at will has led to hyperinflation in the global economy, leading to coins and notes losing value at an alarming rate.
Cryptocurrencies Are Here to Stay
The biggest news to come out of the crypto space in recent months is the direct listing of Coinbase on the U.S. stock exchange. To many crypto advocates, the public listing of the first major cryptocurrency company on Nasdaq was a watershed moment for the mainstream acceptance of the digital asset class.
Erin Griffith, a reporter for the New York Times, hailed Coinbase’s achievement as a “coming-out party” for crypto, while tech policy site Protocol called it the most important day yet for the crypto world.
Unlike standard currencies that central banks control, cryptocurrencies are often swayed by influential personalities and investors such as SpaceX CEO Elon Musk. The fact that multiple billionaire investors such as longtime value investor Bill Miller are bullish on crypto helps legitimize digital money globally, leading to more institutional adoption.
Fintechs have also been paying attention to the potentially disruptive digital assets economy, with payment companies such as PayPal, Visa, and Mastercard now offering ways to transact in cryptocurrency.
Prospects for decentralized digital money thriving in the future are great, especially as the world grapples with hyperinflation and individuals seek more efficient ways to transfer value across borders.
Moreover, there are expanding ways to invest in crypto via funds such as the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust. Multiple fund sponsors, including Fidelity Bank and Sky Bridge Capital, are also angling to introduce the first bitcoin ETF in the U.S. to catch up to Canada, which launched the service in April of 2021.
Crypto Needs To Expand Its Use Cases
At the moment, opportunities to use crypto for real-world purchases are pretty limited. Most crypto users are putting money into the digital currencies themselves, like investing in a stock or a commodity.
While this investment strategy has rewarded early investors with enormous profits, the crypto economy is now entering a pivotal point in its life cycle to expand its use cases.
According to Erin Griffith of the New York Times, crypto needs to evolve into a mainstream payment option.
“The industry’s biggest issue — fulfilling the promise that the technology is more than just a place to park money — could take another decade to play out,” Griffith commented.