Financial analysts, the world over believe that the Cryptocurrency market is rapidly evolving and is slowly carving a niche for itself in the mainstream market. However, with widespread fluctuations, over very short durations, investors are now second-guessing their investment decisions.
2021 was a momentous year for the Cryptocurrency market, with a host of Cryptocurrencies reaching their all-time high evaluation, the first-ever Bitcoin ETF being approved by the SEC (United States), the rise of Dogecoin – propelled by Elon Musk and meteoric returns yielded by NFTs. On the bleaker side, mining and trading of Cryptocurrencies were banned by certain countries, including China, Iraq, and Bangladesh. With the Crypto market capitalization crossing the $3 trillion mark in November 2021, there exists a clear opportunity for the further expansion of the market. With high risks associated with Crypto investments, let's take a deeper look at what works in favor of and against these markets.
Protection from Inflation: Regular currencies are at the mercy of inflation, resulting in fluctuations in their valuation. Since Cryptocurrencies are operated through an ASCII computer file that places a fixed limitation on the quantity of Cryptocurrency in circulation, an increase in demand results in an increase in value, protecting from long-term inflation.
Self-governed & Decentralized: Cryptocurrency transactions are stored on hardware by miners and developers, with there being a direct causal relationship with accurate ledgers and the fees they receive in turn. With Cryptocurrencies being held by either developers or certain corporations, the decentralized nature ensures an absence of monopoly, while also keeping a tab on excess outflow – a feature that Fiat money controlled by governments lack.
Cost-effective mode of transactions: Cryptocurrencies are built in a way that ensures nominal or zero transaction charges, in turn preventing the influx of third-party payment processors.
Ease of fund transfer: Not having too many unnecessary mediums, payments made in the Crypto market are processed at warp speed, greatly benefiting investors.
Illegal transactions: With Crypto market transactions being highly encrypted and difficult to trace, they have often been misused, for instance, as means of payment for items listed on the dark web.
Data loss: In a bid to make Crypto wallets safer than storing money in the traditional methods, developers introduced a slew of measures, including concealed ASCII documents and impassable cyber security protocols. However, this puts investors in a predicament, as loss of wallet key credentials results in them being locked out.
Monopolized power: Decentralization is a boon and a bane, with creators/organizations yielding unfair monopoly power when it comes to circulation, as was the case with Bitcoin in 2017.
High energy consumption: Owing to the immense computational power required to mine Cryptocurrency, the carbon footprint generated is a huge snag in the system.
Coming with its set of pros and cons, the Crypto market should be ventured into with extreme precaution, after factoring in one's short-, mid and long-term goals, along with individual risk-taking capabilities. For investors looking to reap benefits from surplus funds, we at Motilal Oswal offer a range of instruments, suited to each investor’s unique needs.
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