If You’d Invested $100 in Bitcoin in 2011, Here’s How Much You’d Have Now | The Motley Fool

The first Bitcoin ( BTC -0.43 % ) was mined 13 years ago. For the first three years, it was worth less than a penny. But in 2011, it crossed a major milestone when it achieved parity with the U.S. dollar .
At the time, many people scoffed at Bitcoin and argued it could never be used as a mainstream currentness or a long-run investment. But if you had taken the contrarian opinion and bought a hundred Bitcoins with $ 100 that year, your investment would be worth a whopping $ 4.32 million nowadays .

How did Bitcoin silence the critics?

When Bitcoin was created, the mind of using computer chips to mine a digital currentness seemed bizarre and absurd. But in commit, it was n’t all that different from using industrial machinery to mine valued metals .
A Bitcoin logo on a computer screen.
just like gold, Bitcoin is a finite resource. As more Bitcoins are mined, it becomes increasingly difficult and less cost effective to mine raw Bitcoins. In the early on days, Bitcoin could be mined with higher-end personal computer graphic processing units ( GPUs ).

But today, Bitcoin ca n’t be efficaciously mined with regular GPUs due to the time and energy required to mine a unmarried Bitcoin. alternatively, expensive devices known as application specific integrated circuits ( ASICs ) are now required to mine a brace supply of Bitcoins. still, the same economic logical applies to Bitcoin and precious metals : Miners can only make money if the costs of the machinery and undertaking do n’t outweigh the metallic ‘s market value .
furthermore, Bitcoin ‘s algorithm limits its life production to 21 million Bitcoins. It ‘s normally estimated that the death Bitcoin will be mined by 2140 .
As more people grasped these concepts, they started to measure Bitcoin as an asset aboard gold and other cherished metals. furthermore, the anonymity and security of Bitcoin transactions, which is enabled by a distribute ledger technology called blockchain, besides made it an appealing alternate to fiat currencies for fiscal transactions. A growing number of investors besides started touting Bitcoin as a potential hedge against inflation .

The future of Bitcoin

After Bitcoin achieved parity bit with the U.S. dollar, more investors, analysts, entrepreneurs, and even governments jumped aboard the bandwagon .
Pure-play Bitcoin mine companies like Marathon Digital ( MARA -10.20 % ) and Riot Blockchain ( RIOT -8.38 % ) appeared, cryptocurrency exchanges like Coinbase ( COIN -7.86 % ) grew, and the inaugural Bitcoin exchange-traded funds ( ETFs ) hit the market.

Bitcoin evangelists like Jack Dorsey and Mark Cuban drummed up even more enthusiasm from mainstream investors, while a growing number of retailers started to accept Bitcoin as a requital option. El Salvador even became the first gear country to officially accept Bitcoin as a legal crank death class .
ARK Invest ‘s Cathie Wood recently predicted Bitcoin ‘s price would hit $ 560,000 by 2026 — which would make your initial $ 100 investment worth $ 56 million. Wood believes Bitcoin can reach that eminent price target if all institutional investors allocated just 5 % of their portfolios to the cryptocurrency .

But it’s not all sunshine and rainbows

Bitcoin ‘s future might seem rose-colored, but there are inactive a lot of challenges to overcome. Government regulators across the world have been rolling out bans, restrictions, and taxes for Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Countries could besides develop their own digital currencies pinned to their own decree currencies as a feasible alternative to cryptocurrencies .
The environmental monetary value of mining Bitcoin, which caused Elon Musk to turn against the cryptocurrency last year, besides raises crimson flags. The dutch economist Alex de Vries estimates that miners, should Bitcoin ‘s price hit $ 500,000, will be pumping out more than 617 million metric unit tons of CO2 annually — which exceeds the carbon paper output of countries like Brazil and the U.K .
meanwhile, the volatility of Bitcoin could prevent it from ever being used for casual transactions. If fewer retailers adopt Bitcoin as a payment choice, it could fail as a currency and continue to be used as a inquisitive investing .

Is it too late to buy Bitcoin?

Bitcoin ‘s volatility has prevented it from being an effective hedge against inflation over the past few months. But that could change in the future if Bitcoin ‘s price stabilizes and the regulative headwinds wane.

I think investors should have some exposure to Bitcoin, but it should only occupy a low-single-digit share of their portfolios. That way, you ‘ll profit if Bitcoin ‘s price skyrockets, but you besides wo n’t suffer any permanent wrong if the bubble pops .
 

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Category : Finance

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