Daily Management Review

Waiting for the end of the world: Bitcoin vs Gold


The discussion about gold and bitcoin is complex and is still in its infancy, given that humankind has been using gold for 2700 years as money, and bitcoin has been around for a modest 8 years.

Purely from the investment point of view, bitcoin has absorbed a significant amount of funds that could settle in investment in gold.

One sub-group of investors in gold, whose position, on the one hand, is overly exaggerated, and on the other hand, is excessively derided in the mainstream media, are those who are ready for a catastrophic collapse that may occur in the future through the accumulation of food, weapons and "long-term" methods of storage of welfare, and so on. And if the distribution of wealth in gold a few years ago surprised nobody, now this subgroup of investors are increasingly turning to bitcoin.

Wendy McElroy has prepared for many of the end-of-the-world scenarios: annual food volumes are already stored in the basement on her farm in Ontario. Her survival plan also depends on the availability and working condition of the Internet: some of her funds, in case she needs them after the alleged collapse, is stored in bitcoin. People like she prefer to keep increasing amounts of their money in intangible internet wallets, instead of storing banknotes and gold bars in their bins and safes. They will not be able to reach to their money when the network breaks down due to a catastrophe, but it clearly does not scare them. They are convinced that bitcoin will live through any economic crisis, a global pandemic, and a nuclear war.

It is a seeming contradiction for people like McElroy, as a global breakdown will lead to the fact that the Internet will collapse. Nevertheless, the ability of bitcoin to remain outside the control of central banks remains its key attractive feature.

It may seem contradictory that the most ardent supporters of the bitcoins are people who are led by the conviction that social and political disasters will eventually collapse the state infrastructure. Bitcoin has not yet become widely used as a payment method.

Supporters of bitcoin, in turn, have a different view, considering bitcoin the future of the finances, which in the past year have grown 10-fold, as bitcoin proponents praised bitcoin as an alternative to any currency.

Used to send and receive online payments, bitcoin is similar to payment networks such as MasterCard or PayPal, only that it operates based on decentralized technology not controlled by regulators or central banks. Bitcoin was born from the concept of a society free from governments, which is the key factor that attracts those who seek unimpeded admission to their capital in case something terrible happens with the banking system.

"Not long ago, bitcoin advocates were shouting about the growth of the crypto currency, and now they are all pouring money in it." As long as the network exists, people will continue to use bitcoin," said Tom Martin, a manager of an Internet resource for those interested in development of skills needed in case you have to survive.

In addition to silver, stocks and gold, he invests in bitcoin and similar currencies, which are worth using, because it is easier to carry out transactions, they are more difficult to steal, they are the best protection in case the fiat currencies such as the dollar collapse.

At the same time, many note the growing dependence on the blockchain and the Internet, the revival of which will become a priority area after the disaster.

Yes, electricity and the Internet may be less reliable or more expensive, but they will be available. Increasing dependence on the blockchain will make them the highest economic priority. They will also become the top priority in the military sphere.

In October 2016, the Pentagon made it clear that it was actively studying blockchain technology "to create military computer systems protected from unauthorized access, including those used to control America's nuclear weapons." Other countries will undoubtedly do the same.

Nevertheless, bitcoin proponents who are preparing for the collapse have accumulated enough food and supplies that can support them for months, if not years, and they expect that after a disaster there will be some kind of leadership structure that will give priority to ensure that the network is uninterrupted.

"For a while it can be difficult, if not impossible, but as soon as everything starts to return to the usual course, it will start functioning in the usual mode." This technology does not need a certain place or a specific person in order to survive, "said Rob Harvey, an investor in bitcoins, who is preparing for a natural and nuclear disaster by teaching survival skills.

Various internet forums are discussing pros and cons of investing in the crypto currency. Meanwhile, bitcoin has grown above $ 8,000.

It is increasingly less possible to hear conversations about the role of gold as a means of saving well-being, especially because, like gold, bitcoin attracts its supporters with their anti-inflationary features. Deliveries of cash from the US mint were reduced to a ten-year low in 2017.

"It definitely influenced the market." People see that Bitcoin’s prices are skyrocketing to the moon, no one would ever assume that gold prices will soar, "said Philip Newman, a researcher of sales of precious metal coins.

At the same time, the limited transportability of gold is considered its negative quality.

It is expected that 20 thousand libertarians who will hold a meeting in New Hampshire in the framework of the Free State project will also ditch precious metals. They like bitcoin, because it is not created by the government, unlike the usual currency.

"You can use bitcoin in economic transactions in a way that gold would never be used, because gold is a physical thing, and many people do not know what to do with gold if they get it in exchange for a cup of coffee," said Matt Phillips, president of the project.

The digital currency destroys the dependence of society on the state, which uses its monopoly to issue money to dominate the economy, making it a natural defence against catastrophe.

If everything boils down to this, then the rationale and investment situation for gold and bitcoin are similar enough, so common sense suggests that bitcoin proponents preparing for a catastrophe will somehow take both.

However, if the yield of bitcoin exceeds the results of gold, it is not surprising that bitcoin supporters are committed to digital currency. They just "follow the money." However, as in everything and always, there will come a time when too many people will be on one of the two sides of the boat and there will be a sharp change in performance. A very important question is, will this happen when bitcoin reaches $ 10 thousand, $ 13 thousand or $ 50 thousand?

source: indianexpress.com