Bitcoin price was heading back downward all weekend long and dropped to $245 on Sunday, after several days above $250. Then, the deliveries of the WSJ morning edition start hitting the street, and it’s fortunes turn right around, peaking at over $270. Did many investors have buy orders on BTC at $250, and they started getting pulled first thing Monday morning? Sure. Does that explain its passing $270 on Monday night? No. So I’ll happily give WSJ the credit for its bull run. Not the first time the media has influenced a commodity price, and it won’t be the last. Maybe they’ll cut it down in April, and BTC will have to give back the gains? Won’t be the first time for that either.
Also Read: Bitcoin Price Making Higher Highs
The article itself was interesting in that it was formatted for a three-way perspective, from the author’s side, which strangely goes totally unnamed but takes an objective narrator’s view. Then there is Campbell R. Harvey, a professor of finance at Duke University in Durham, N.C., who takes the pro-Bitcoin side of it’s abilities as a currency. He is opposed by Eric Tymoigne is an assistant professor of economics at Lewis & Clark College in Portland.
Here are some of the highlights, starting with Mr. Harvey:
“True, bitcoin isn’t backed by any central authority. But that doesn’t matter. Bitcoin exists because users assign value to it. To say it violates the rules of finance because it lacks a central issuer is problematic on many levels. Governments don’t “guarantee” stability of their currencies—look at the ruble and Swiss franc. Similarly, the fair price of a Bitcoin, as measured by the discounted value of future cash flows, may be zero. But the same is true of fiat currencies, including the euro and U.S. dollar. No commodity underpins the value of a euro or dollar. You tend to lose money when you hold cash. This doesn’t deter people from holding cash.”
And Mr. Tymoigne had this to say about the digital currency:
“Bitcoins pose a huge liquidity risk. Ultimately, anyone with bitcoins has to convert them into a national unit of account—dollars, say, or euros—to pay taxes or personal debts and to make other transactions. Their extreme volatility makes them a bad bet if one plans to buy a house in a few years, is saving for college or has regular payments on, say, a mortgage or car. If bitcoins were a large asset in a portfolio, the investor’s solvency would be at risk. This certainly would be the case if bitcoins were promoted for poorer individuals who don’t have access to banking today.”
The article is an entertaining read, so feel free to use the link above. To have at least three people contribute to an article that is featured on the very top of the Monday Edition of the Wall Street Journal says quite a lot about how far Bitcoin has come in financial circles. It is moving the crowd, and this article seemed to move the crowd closer to it. There is no such thing as bad publicity.
What is always absent from these debates is the simple fact that Bitcoin is far from a static technology. Multi-signature wallets were created in 2012, and was implemented worldwide last year. Any innovations or improvements come from the end user, not a centralized leadership, one of the many advantages of Bitcoin. There are tens of thousands of people working on improving Bitcoin with new applications every day. And with every successful addition to the ecosystem, all Bitcoin users benefit. Whatever Bitcoin is today, it will be better than that six months from now, a year from now, two years from now, and it never stops growing, adapting, and improving. Bitcoin has come light years from where it was five years ago, and it’s only just a fraction of what it can be to the world. Personally, I’ll bet on the horse that is improving every day for several years over the one that never improves unless forced to do so.
When was the last time a fiat currency let the end user add a new idea to improve its usefulness? Why not? Is it because it was poorly designed, or because it was a deliberate act to wield power over the user? Bitcoin doesn’t ask you to make those distinctions. It’s up to you what a Bitcoin can be. A political statement, a long-term investment or a new information highway. A currency, a commodity, or a technological tour de force. It is all of them. The potential designations are many. The opportunities are endless. And it looks like a few more people realized that today thanks to the Wall Street Journal.
Glad to see them open some prime real estate on their publication to such an important discussion. Balanced journalism works.
Photo provide by kiosko.net and Shutterstock.
Do you give the Wall Street Journal credit for the Bitcoin bull-run Monday? Share above and comment below.
Last modified: March 3, 2015 09:33 UTC