Adena Friedman, CEO of Nasdaq, remarked on April 25th that the second largest stock exchange in the world would be open to setting up a cryptocurrency exchange in the future. This news has not only brought hope to crypto enthusiasts, but also had other people wondering whether cryptocurrency could become a regular feature of modern life in the technological age. There are many reasons to think it can, and Friedman’s comments certainly do not come out of nowhere.
The doubts that circle bitcoin, and the now upwards of 1,500 other coins that have followed in its footsteps, have always concerned its viability as a genuine currency. The surging price of bitcoin in late 2017 is what grabbed the headlines, but under the surface there were stories about bitcoin revolutionising online gambling and Microsoft starting to accept bitcoin payments in its online store. Companies such as Wirex are also now revolutionising the world of bitcoin debit cards, so being able to spend bitcoin in physical shops could be a common occurrence by the end of 2018.
CryptoSupermarket Director, Michael Charalambous says: “Bitcoin is now nearly a decade old and it seems more people are starting to take the idea of a decentralised and anonymous currency seriously. Especially as recent revelations about Facebook and Cambridge Analytica have driven up concerns about how people’s private data is collected and used, cryptocurrency shielding transactions from prying eyes is only going to seem more attractive.”
This brings everything back round to what Friedman’s comments suggest: cryptocurrency might soon have fought its way to the point where it is a mature market suitable for the financial institutions that once derided it. Once cryptocurrency becomes a regular feature of day-to-day life, the focus will move away from it being a volatile, risky asset, to a legitimate payment method and an exciting investment opportunity.
The .com bubble did not kill the internet. It is possible that the fallout of 2017 may still have some major crypto casualties, but prices seem now to have stabilised and Friedman’s confidence in cryptocurrency is understandable. There’s more than enough reason to think that cryptocurrency could become increasingly integrated into all our lives in the coming years.
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