Q1 2019

www.wealthandfinance-news.com 16 Wealth & Finance International - Q1 2019 It is definitely true that the position of bitcoin, the most well-known cryptocurrency, heading into 2019 could not be more different to that at the end of 2017/beginning of 2018. In December 2017, bitcoin was trading at record highs of more than $19,000 in comparison to December 2018- January 2019 where prices fluctuate between $3,500-4,000 dollars. Similarly, in January 2018, the price of Ethereum reached more than $1,000 in comparison to the latest price forecasts in which the currency is trading at around $100. Does this mean that crypto, and its back-bone technology blockchain, are no longer profitable investments? I don’t think this is the case. In fact, investing in these technologies is still an attractive long term investment which can offer impressive returns. Forget about the bubble Many people discuss cryptocurrencies and blockchain technologies in relation to a bubble, implying that this is eventually going to ‘burst’ and collapse; however, by taking into consideration that vast amounts of industries that are now beginning to incorporate these technologies into their products or processes, it becomes apparent that it is definitely here to stay. With the new Samsung Galaxy S10 range rumoured to include a cryptocurrency wallet in the “Samsung Blockchain KeyStore”, these technologies are becoming firmly entrenched within numerous sectors and industries. Rumours of both Facebook and Google launching their own coins and entering the space only further confirms that cryptocurrencies are likely feature prominently throughout 2019. Blockchain, the technology behind bitcoin, is expected to continue to rise throughout 2019 as its applications are expanding much further than digital currency. Many emerging start-ups are utilising blockchain technologies to revolutionise their industries. Businesses are being established in the education sector, health and even agriculture to disrupt their industry by offering the latest innovations - a key sign that these technologies are here to stay. It is not just start-ups that are interested in this developing technology, but a Deliotte survey revealed that an astounding 95% of companies want to invest in blockchain, a persuasive argument to show that investments of this nature remain a smart move in 2019. Why investing in Cryptocurrencies and Blockchain is still a smart move in 2019 Entry is becoming even easier Throughout 2018 the accessibility of both blockchain and cryptocurrencies became increasingly easier as the year progressed. With more than 2000 coins currently in circulation, according to CoinBase, there are wide possibilities for investment. Investing in a smaller coin may be a smarter move as opposed to the more commonly known variants of Bitcoin, Ethereum and Ripple, as these are more likely to rise in price, whereas those who have made extensive amounts from Bitcoin will have invested in this a number of years ago. The existence of so many coins and the complex technology supporting them could be enough to put many people off as it can take time to learn enough about the markets to navigate them however help is now on hand at the touch of the button as there are many website offering predictions and advice, but you should always proceed with caution and consult independent advice if you are unsure on the legitimacy of the site. Crypto scams do exist, and many have fallen victim to these, however by using trusted sites such as Coinbase alongside organisations such as Quantatex who can actively manage your investments for you, can ensure you avoid any fraudulent activity. With the crypto and blockchain space becoming increasingly accessible, 2019 is a perfect time to capitalise on these developments before a spike in the price. Consider the long term It is undeniable that the cryptocurrency market is rife with volatility but this should not be a factor to put you off investing completely. With every investment there are peaks and troughs within the value and this is to be expected, so it is crucial to consider the bigger picture as whole as opposed to daily micro-analysing of the market. Cryptocurrencies and blockchain are becoming firmly entrenched and are being adopted by other forms of technology so, from a long-term perspective, they still prove to be a smart investment. Even though, 2017 was fraught with price fluctuations, 2018 possessed relatively more stability. I predict bitcoin to recover from its recent price weaknesses by the end of the year as the adoption of other currencies such as Ripple by banking institutions has a positive domino-effect on the price of Bitcoin. With bitcoin predicted to recover, and many currencies being ‘pegged’ to this, I firmly believe that 2019 is a prime time to invest. In addition to the monetary returns, investing in digital currency and its associated technologies will position investors at the forefront of technological innovation. With the interest in the application of blockchain technology consistently growing and the amount of coins expanding, investing early leads to more direct involvement in their future development. With many blockchain innovations and projects predicated to deliver significant and transformative benefits for future generations, it’s both an exciting and potentially rewarding sector to be involved with.

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