What is Bitcoin? | Common Sense Investing with Ben Felix | Summary and Q&A

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February 2, 2018
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Ben Felix
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What is Bitcoin? | Common Sense Investing with Ben Felix

TL;DR

Bitcoin is a decentralized cryptocurrency that relies on blockchain technology, and it can be compared to a currency or a collectible.

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Key Insights

  • ❓ Bitcoin is a decentralized cryptocurrency that relies on blockchain technology for secure transactions.
  • 🌥️ It is the largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization.
  • 💱 Bitcoin can be considered a currency, but it still faces challenges as a medium of exchange and store of value.
  • 🏅 Comparisons can be made between bitcoin and gold as limited-supply currencies with price volatility.
  • 👶 There is a debate on whether bitcoin should be classified as a currency or a new asset class.
  • 🈸 The growth of decentralized applications could impact the future value of cryptocurrencies like bitcoin.
  • 🌐 Bitcoin has the potential to become a global digital currency or serve as a safe haven asset like gold.

Transcript

It is next to impossible to avoid hearing or  reading about bitcoin. Within the past decade,   it has gone from being a fringe idea proposed  in a paper written by a mysterious author,   to being a mainstream technology that some people  are treating as a new asset class. Bitcoin is   now getting attention from the media, individual  investors, and... Read More

Questions & Answers

Q: What is blockchain technology and how does it relate to bitcoin?

Blockchain technology is an open, distributed ledger that records transactions in a public, verifiable, and permanent way. Bitcoin relies on blockchain technology to secure and validate transactions.

Q: Can bitcoin be classified as a currency?

Bitcoin can be considered a currency, as it meets the criteria of being a unit of account. However, it still faces challenges as a medium of exchange due to limited acceptance and high transaction costs.

Q: How does bitcoin compare to gold?

Bitcoin and gold can both be considered currencies, as their value comes from their currency-like functions. They both have limited supplies and experience price volatility. Bitcoin could be viewed as a digital substitute for gold.

Q: Is bitcoin solely a currency, or can it be classified as a new asset class?

There are differing opinions on this matter. Some, like Aswath Damodaran, view bitcoin as a currency, while others, like Adam Ludwin, consider it a new asset class due to its role in decentralized applications.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency that does not rely on a central issuing body or government, instead utilizing blockchain technology.

  • It is the first and largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, with a finite supply of 21 million bitcoins.

  • While it has gained popularity and media attention, it still faces challenges as a currency due to high transaction costs and price volatility.

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