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I bought $250 ter bitcoin

I bought $250 in bitcoin

Some people kill time at the airport by browsing duty-free shops. I determined to shop for bitcoin.

But very first, there are two things you should know about mij: I tend to be almost spil afraid of losing money investing spil I am of flying. On some level, I figured one fear might cancel out the other.

So last Thursday, while waiting for a flight to Nashville, I pulled up a popular application called Coinbase that can be used to buy and sell bitcoin. The virtual currency had succesnummer $Ten,000 for the very first time a duo days earlier, before retreating somewhat. News of bitcoin’s rapid rise wasgoed everywhere, including on CNN.

For 15 minutes at the airport, I refreshed the price of bitcoin overheen and overheen, watching spil it gained and lost hundreds of dollars ter a matter of minutes. I called out the price fluctuations breathlessly to my wifey, who gently encouraged mij not to be an idiot, before returning to hier tijdschrift.

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She wasgoed ter good company. JPMorgan Pursue CEO Jamie Dimon recently called bitcoin a “fraud” and suggested people who buy it are “stupid.” Warren Buffett called bitcoin a “mirage” te 2014 and warned investors to “stay away.”

And yet bitcoin has climbed more than tenfold since Buffett’s warning. Earlier this month, one collegium friend casually told mij overheen drinks he’d made ems of thousands of dollars investing ter another cryptocurrency. He said he hoped it would be worth enough one day to buy a house.

When I eyed the price of bitcoin fall to $9,500, I pressed buy, defying the wisdom of two finance titans and my wifey. One hundred dollars, or 0.0101 bitcoins. (A few days zometeen, I bought another $150.) By the time wij got to our hotel, my stake had already gone up 10%. One week zometeen, it wasgoed (shortly) up 100%. My wifey’s opinion of mij has reportedly decreased by the same amount.

It’s an investing madness, plain and plain.

You can now buy airline tickets with monthly payments

Bitcoin cracked $1,000 on the very first day of 2017. By this week, it wasgoed up to $12,000, and then it truly took off: The price topped $17,000 on some exchanges Thursday, and $Legitimate,000 on at least one. Other cryptocurrencies have seen similar spikes, however they trade for much less than bitcoin.

There’s a long list of factors people may point to ter an attempt to explain this. Regulators have taken a hands-off treatment to bitcoin ter certain markets. Dozens of fresh hedge funds have launched this year to trade cryptocurrencies like bitcoin. The Nasdaq and Chicago Mercantile Exchange project to let investors trade bitcoin futures, which may attract more professional investors.

Yet a key reason the price of bitcoin keeps going up is, well, because it keeps going up. Petite investors like yours truly have a fear of missing out on a chance to get rich quick. And when the value of your bitcoin doubles te a week, spil it did for mij, it’s effortless to think you’re a genius. But you can get burned assuming it will keep skyrocketing.

Some investors have likened the bitcoin hype to the dot-com bubble. Others, like Dimon, have said it’s even “worse” than the Dutch tulip mania from the 1600s, considered one of the most famous bubbles everzwijn.

Bitcoin ATM installed downtown

Spil Buffett waterput it back te 2014, “the idea that [bitcoin] has some fat intrinsic value is just a joke ter my view.” Bitcoin is not backed by a company’s earnings, or the strength of a government and rule of law. There’s also no rente or dividends.

Why would anyone want or need to use bitcoin?

Bitcoin serves spil a fresh zuigeling of currency for the digital era. It works across international borders and doesn’t need to be backed by banks or governments.

Or at least that wasgoed the promise when it wasgoed created ter 2009. The surge and volatility of bitcoin this year may be excellent for those who invested early, but it undermines bitcoin’s viability spil a currency.

Right now, I can use my bitcoin holdings to pay for purchases at Overstock, or book a hotel on Expedia. But if I use bitcoin to buy $25 worth of socks on Overstock today, and the price of bitcoin quadruples next week, I’ll feel like those socks actually cost mij $100. Then again, if bitcoin crashes, at least I’ll always have the socks.

Rather than a currency, bitcoin is being treated more like an asset, with the hope of reaping superb comes back te the future.

So is there anything truly valuable about bitcoin?

Yes, the technology behind it.

Bitcoin is built on the blockchain, a public ledger containing all the transaction gegevens from anyone who uses bitcoin. Transactions are added to “blocks” or the linksom of code that make up the chain, and each transaction voorwaarde be recorded on a block.

Even bitcoin critics like Dimon have said they support the use of blockchain technology for tracking payments.

Is there a legal and legitimate way to invest te bitcoin?

Bitcoin exchanges have a checkered history. Mt.Gox, once the largest exchange, shut down te 2014 after losing hundreds of millions of dollars worth of bitcoin after a hack.

Today, the leading exchange is suggested by Coinbase, a startup that has raised more than $200 million from a number of top tier venture capital firms. Square, the payments service, is also rolling out a bitcoin product.

There are also bitcoin ATMs te scattered bodegas and convenience stores around the country, through companies like Coinsource. The ATMs let you exchange bitcoin for contant, or vice versa by scanning a QR code from the digital wallet application on your phone.

With Coinbase, you voorwaarde very first give the app permission to connect to your handelsbank account. Spil with other stock trading applications, you pay a puny toverfee for each transaction, buying and selling. But the transaction can take significantly longer.

My original $100 bitcoin purchase won’t officially be ended on Coinbase until Friday, more than a week after the transaction. The price I bought it at remains the same, but I won’t be able to sell at the earliest until Friday.

If the price plummets before then, I’m out of luck. No socks for mij.

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