First, we heard if you bought $5 of bitcoin 7 years ago, you’d be $4.4 million richer and with bitcoin surge, cryptocurrencies top $100 billion in market capitalization.
However, in a marked turnaround this week, we find that bitcoin falls to near one-month low with $12 billion wiped off value since record high 30 days ago. As appealing as a cryptocurrency untethered to a centralized issuing body like the Federal Reserve may be, its value at this stage of development can best be described as optimistically hypothetical. While bitcoin’s explosion has created market capitalization bigger than some large U.S. companies like Ford, John Deere and Delta, its future is still unknown. In June, billionaire Mark Cuban likened the dizzying growth of bitcoin as a “bubble” and “more religion than asset.”
May marked the seventh anniversary of bitcoin. According to Fortune, “The early months of 2017 have been particularly heady days for bitcoin. Since the beginning of the year, the value of the cryptocurrency has surged as it gains legitimacy in countries like Japan. Investors have also come to see the currency as something of a safe haven asset amid geopolitical turmoil – and there’s been plenty of that in recent months, in both Europe and the United States.” In our article, Will the Coder in the Basement Replace the Banker, we addressed the concept of a cryptocurrency like bitcoin disrupting everything we know about financial markets and banking. While the theory of an independent cryptocurrency has power in its potential, is bitcoin the vehicle to fulfill that promise? With no competitive currency other than traditional exchange models as a benchmark, bitcoin still remains an unknown quantity.
What is not in question at this stage is the underlying engine that drives Bitcoin. Blockchain technology is on the precipice to influence and impact nearly every industry across the globe – from banking to brands, healthcare to retail. Any industry that tracks transactions and processes data will be disrupted. With an unimpeachable thread of transactions that practically eliminates fraud and malfeasance from the process, blockchain technology is transparent and reliable in a way that other transactional methods are not. It’s simultaneously decentralized, responsible and secure. According to Blockchain Will Disrupt Every Industry published this week, Vala Afshar, Chief Digital Evangelist for Salesforce, says, “Trust is foundational to all businesses, and blockchain enables entities to seamlessly establish trust and transparency at scale.”