That's why Bitcoin is not a gold alternative | 10/11/19

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Many Bitcoin fans praise the crypto currency as "digital gold". But there are also good reasons to say that Bitcoin has or will achieve gold status.

• Bitcoin is considered a crisis currency by many
• Experts: Bitcoin is not gold-Replacement
• Future open

In crisis countries such as Venezuela, Argentina or even Hong Kong, the existing national currencies are suffering from high inflation and / or are subject to strict capital restrictions. For these reasons people are looking for a safe alternative there. Against this background, Bitcoin enjoys a growing popularity there, because it is not controlled by any central authority. In addition, it is regarded as a store of value to escape a further increase in inflation.

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This development is supported by crypto fans such as the famous Winklevoss twins Tyler and Cameron, who praise the Bitcoin as the Gold 2.0. In early 2019, the Bitcoin bulls even stated, "We believe Bitcoin is better at being gold than gold."

Bitcoin lacks important gold properties

But there are also many critics who warn that the Bitcoin is not really a safe haven in times of crisis and therefore not a gold substitute.

One of them is Markus Brunnermeier. "The Bitcoin is not really a good store of value because of its strong volatility," quotes the news agency "Bloomberg" the economics professor. In addition, there is no fundamental benefit for Bitcoin, whereas gold is used in industrial production.

However, for Brunnermeier, who teaches at the prestigious Princeton University, Bitcoin may be "a suitable means of payment for certain transactions", such as bypassing capital controls such as those in China.

In addition, the bitcoin is still so young that it simply does not know how the world's most popular cryptocurrency behaves in recessionary times. By contrast, gold has historically "established itself as a back-up, a hedge, and a store of value," said John Griffin, a finance professor at the University of Texas at Austin.

The consumers decide

Even with consumers, the Bitcoin has not yet reached a gold status. According to a survey by ING Groep NV, only 28 percent of respondents believe that Bitcoin is the future of investing. A year earlier, in 2018, there were still 32 percent who were convinced of it.

But that does not mean that Bitcoin has no potential. Rather, his future – also because of his openness to all possible interpretations and possible uses – seems to be completely open.

For example, crypto analyst Sam Doctor told Bitcoin, "Ultimately, it comes down to becoming a store of value if market participants agree that it is a value store." And further: "Until that happens, the question remains unanswered, and I do not think there is an objective criterion or objective time to answer that question definitively, except in retrospect."

Editors finanzen.ch

Source: Andrew Angelov / Shutterstock.com, Lukasz Stefanski / Shutterstock.com

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