One word that refuses to stop chasing you wherever you go these days is the word “Bitcoin”. Be it friends, family, colleagues or social media, this cryptocurrency seems to have grabbed everyone’s attention. And why not? A strong 1400% rally in 2017 alone is reason enough to pop your eyes out with greed and explore it as an investment option.
Ladies and Gents, Bitcoin as I type, is now trading at a whopping $19,000 in Korea.
Bitcoin: A Fintech Storm in the Making?
Two years ago I had the privilege of attending the Europe-India Conclave 2015 at The Taj Mahal Hotel in Delhi.
This conference saw some eminent speakers discuss the Future of Banking, Payments & Technology. This event was a part of the “Fintech Storm” series, the brainchild of Ms. Arifa Khan, a leading investment banker in London and a Fintech evangelist.
She spoke at length about Blockchain, the technology that lies at the heart of Bitcoins, one that facilitates the transfer of this digital currency across a peer-to-peer network in a secure manner. When I recollect that moment, I am tempted to say that on the face of it, the fundamentals of Bitcoin seem strong!
Secure Platform | Anonymity | Low Entry Barrier | Ease of Trading
Now that’s a SALE right there!
Will I take it?
Well, if I go by today’s rate of a Bitcoin, I’ll have to press PASS!
I don’t have 1007804.48 Indian Rupees to spare on one currency unit that I can’t even touch. That’s too much stress!
Yes, we’re Middle Class and I am ready to live with the Fear Of Missing Out!
If you don’t fall in that bracket, feel free to take that risk or consider hedging because Bitcoin Futures is here!
Launch of CBOE Futures Contract
The Chicago Board Options Exchange or CBOE is the first ever Bitcoin Futures Contract market and it opens today. Ticker: XBT
A single CBOE contract will be for one bitcoin unit and therefore sounds very exciting for small investors.
“Given the unprecedented interest in bitcoin, it’s vital we provide clients the trading tools to help them express their views and hedge their exposure,” says Ed Tilly, Chairman and CEO of CBOE Global Markets.
Launch of CME Futures Contract
Close on the heels of the CBOE launch will be the launch of CME Futures Contract next Sunday i.e. 17th December 2017. Ticker: BTC
CME or Chicago Mercantile Exchange is the world’s largest Futures Exchange and one CME Futures Contract will be for 5 bitcoins.
Through such Futures Contract you will be able to lock a certain price and reduce the risk element to a large degree.
So, with the element of risk somewhat addressed, are your fears fading away when it comes to investing in Bitcoins?
If not, here’s something else that could inspire you, unless you happen to be a boring and conservative middle-class person like myself.
First Bitcoin Billionaires: The Winklevoss Twins
Winklevoss twins in Tyler Winklevoss and Cameron Winklevoss need no introduction if you’re aware of the history of Facebook or have watched the Jesse Eisenberg starrer The Social Network.
Another feather in the cap of these Champion Rowers is the fact that they are now the world’s first Bitcoin Billionaires. Cameron, the one half of the Winklevoss twins, has now predicted multi-trillion dollar value for Bitcoin.
“We’ve always felt that bitcoin, given its properties, is gold 2.0 — it disrupts gold. Gold is scarce, bitcoin is actually fixed. Bitcoin is way more portable and way more divisible. At a $300 billion market cap, it’s certainly seen a lot of price appreciation, but gold is at $6 trillion and if bitcoin disrupting gold is true and it plays out … then you can see 10 to 20 times appreciation because there is a significant delta still,” reveals Cameron Winklevoss in an interview to CNBC.
A Bubble About to Burst?
Such is the volatility around this currency that some really good jokes have started trending worldwide. Here’s one that I loved the most:
A boy asked his bitcoin-investing dad for 1 bitcoin for his birthday.
Dad: What? $15,554??? $14,354 is a lot of money! What do you need $16,782 for anyway?
— Nikolarn (@TheRealNikolarn) December 8, 2017
While the jury is still out, the idea of making a quick buck seems to be enticing enough for a lot of people to take the plunge. Not a bad idea actually! Think real estate, equities, or the glittery Gold, the kind of returns that Bitcoin has delivered in recent weeks is mindboggling.
If you have that appetite for risk, I say go ahead and do it.