The price of bitcoin reached an all-time-high of almost 20-thousand dollars this week, three years after the cryptocurrency last jumped to that level.
On Monday, the value of one bitcoin surged to 19,850 dollars, although it later fell back to the 19,200 level.
Bitcoin was created in 2008 as a decentralized currency, meaning it's not issued, managed nor processed in transactions by a central bank. It relies on a peer-to-peer network where transaction data is distributed and secured.
Hailed by advocates as the future of money and borderless transactions,.. but on the other hand, questioned by skeptics on whether it's legitimate or just a get-rich-quick scheme, enabling illicit movement of money, the debate has still not been settled after more than a decade.
But what both sides can't deny is that the appetite for cryptocurrencies has been shooting up globally, spiking during November, with more institutional investors snapping them up.
We discuss these developments today with Charles Edwards, founder of Capriole Investments, and Melvin Mathews, Board Advisor of OrbitMI joining us from Germany and New York.
1. Bitcoin reached record levels unseen since December 2017 before taking a nosedive on Tuesday. What led to the rally amid the COVID-19 pandemic, and how should this be interpreted?
2. Melvin: There has been much talk over the years, on whether Bitcoin's moment has arrived, but it still hasn't stabilized. Still, we see its value just shooting up, and people are asking whether they should buy gold or bitcoin. What's your answer? Do you expect further volatility?
3. Melvin: It looks like there's been growing institutional interest in Bitcoin. Why the sudden interest and dramatic increase of holdings?
4. Charles: Pizza Hut in Venezuela is accepting bitcoins in exchange for pies and PayPal is allowing its more than 300 million customers to use the cryptocurrency. Do you see the potential for Bitcoin to really become an established form of payment in the post-pandemic era, and should it become mainstream?
5. Melvin: Could and should cryptocurrencies become mainstream means of transaction in the post-pandemic era and what advantages would they have over banks which are also developing innovative digital transaction methods?
6. Charles: There are still concerns over the legitimacy and security of Bitcoin as we hear reports of criminal networks and regimes like North Korea reportedly stealing cryptocurrencies. Are cryptocurrencies really to be trusted?
7. Melvin: Central banks and governments have been at loss on what to do with cryptocurrencies. How should they approaching this blind spot and is there a way of designing a regulatory framework that works?
8. Charles: Same question to you. Is there a way of regulating bitcoin and where do you think Janet Yellen would stand on cryptocurrency as Treasury Secretary, and Andrew Yang if he becomes commerce secretary as some speculate?
Charles Edwards, founder of Capriole Investments, and Melvin Mathews, Board Advisor of OrbitMI joining us from Germany and New York. Thank you for your time.