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Bitcoin Price Driven More by Speculation Than Utility: BitPay CEO

BitPay CEO Stephen Pair has stated that speculation drives a substantial part of bitcoin’s current valuation, while the actual use of the crypto market leader as a currency is responsible for only a relatively small fraction of its price. Speaking on CNBC’s Squawk Box, Pair revealed that BitPay intends to change this situation significantly over the next few years.

In his words:

“A very big component of the price is certainly speculation. It’s investors speculating on the future usage and adoption of this technology. A small component of the price is actual utility, and that’s what BitPay is focused on — using the platform and delivering products to our customers that they find valuable.”

Expected Predominance of Blockchain Payments

Speaking further, Pair stated that BitPay believes that mass adoption is a key driver of the future price of bitcoin, and it is focused entirely on building supporting infrastructure to make this possible. Responding to a question from the host about his opinion on the impact of the long-awaited bitcoin ETF on the asset’s price, he said that he there are many catalysts for bitcoin to hit the highs of late 2017 apart from ETF adoption or launches.


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In his view, BitPay’s current transaction volume of about $1 billion a year should ideally grow to $10 billion or $100 billion annually in a few years as more and more customers begin to expect cryptocurrency payment support across a wide range of everyday retail and transaction applications. When this happens, according to him, the bitcoin price will be driven to highs comparable to December last year.

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BTC/USD | Bitstamp

Significantly, Pair revealed that in his opinion, blockchain adoption would expand far beyond the cryptocurrency space and become accepted as the default database style. Within a three to five year time frame, Pair said, everyday users will be able to go into a restaurant or retail establishment and reasonably expect support for a blockchain payment.

He also predicted that this would extend beyond bitcoin as more and more blockchain-hosted assets would become default means of storing and transferring value.

In his words:

“Our thesis at BitPay is that most digital assets will be issued on a blockchain and most payments will be issued on a blockchain. We are building a platform for that future. Remember this is not just about bitcoin or the various tokens that we see today. It’s also about issuing dollars or euros on a blockchain. So we’re not just talking about payments denominated in bitcoin terms when we speak about blockchain payments. We’re talking about all kinds of digital assets that could be used for that payment.”

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