It’s a journey that started in 2019, accelerated in 2020, and is beginning to arrive at its destination in 2021. We take a look at how crypto is finally making the move from the underground into the mainstream in 2021.
Cryptocurrencies are now becoming broadly accepted by financial institutions – from governments, to major banks and gaming companies using NTFs. Things are now moving quickly, and 2021 could not only be the year where cryptocurrencies become an accepted part of the financial landscape – it could very well be the year it becomes an integral part.
When cryptocurrencies first came on the scene with bitcoin back in 2009, the majority of serious investors, and those in the financial sector barely even took notice or acknowledged its existence. As more digital currencies popped up, and they started to gain a small following from young tech-enthusiastic investors, the financial world did slowly begin to take notice.
However heads weren’t really turned until 2017, when Bitcoin started to surge, and more and more investors jumped on the bandwagon. The surge was largely driven by small-time retail investors though. When the bubble finally burst in December of 2017, and the price dropped, most professional investors felt they had been proven right – decentralized currencies, without an underlying physical asset or the trust of a global bank, will never make sound investments.
That gradually started to change over the following 24 months, with that change accelerating in 2020 amidst the Covid-19 pandemic. The Indian government used crypto to distribute aid, JPMorgan and other major banks revealed billions of dollars in crypto assets, and more and more financial experts spoke out in favor of the cryptocurrencies they had once dismissed as a fleeting fringe investment trend.
Bitcoin has started to surge once again, only this time with a difference – it’s no longer solely being backed by a fringe class of millennial hipster investors. The big guys are on board now. And the result – Bitcoins record high value isn’t going anywhere this time!
What we’ve also seen in 2020 and in the early stages of 2021, is that growing popularity is now correlating with a growing understanding. This is true for both the retail traders who once hopped on the 2017 bandwagon, and the professional investment class who once dismissed it all together.
The retail traders have been more cautious and done their research at large this time around. Meanwhile the ageing Wall Street traders have come to acknowledge that Bitcoin, and its imitators, might just be the future of money – and not just a flash-in-the-pan craze created by a bunch of millennial nerds.
The spikes in consumer interest, knowledge and confidence in crypto over the past six months or so, owes a lot to the public endorsement of some key companies and financial figures. Among them being Anthony Scaramucci, MasterCard, Tesla and JP Morgan.