When it comes to technology, I’m not exactly what you would call an “early adopter.”
I used the foldable phone until 2015.
My mom bought me a Kindle a few years ago, and I basically used it as a favorites list of books that I would eventually buy physical copies of until I lost it (sorry, Mom).
Last year, I finally moved from using a pen and paper planner to keeping track of my days with Google Calendar. I still hate it, even though I’m often on time.
Since cryptocurrency – essentially, a digital currency made up of data rather than dollars where value is determined by supply and demand within its network rather than a government entity – came onto the financial scene about a decade ago, to say I wasn’t interested in that would be an understatement. I was terrified. I didn’t even get a credit card until I was 26, for goodness sake.
Now these invisible units of code with names associated with meme are worth thousands of dollars and can be exchanged like cold, hard cash? My kind heart can never.
I may not have a choice, though. Michael Seymour, advisor to the exchange office at Luxolo Financial in Portland, said cryptocurrencies are inevitable in modern society.
“As more commerce and community are driven by digital technology, participation simply requires owning and spending cryptocurrencies,” Seymour said. “Although there are still some dramatic price fluctuations in the short-term future, the long-term value of bitcoin continues to rise. Countries and companies around the world are investing in bitcoin. It is redefining global commerce.”
Seymour may be biased as he works in this field, but cryptocurrency has its clear advantages. It’s separate from monetary policy, so it’s protected against inflation or political instability (but a bad investment or a bad breakout could lead to you losing everything, with no bank to back you up). Cryptocurrencies are not under the control of any government or financial institution, so they cannot be confiscated, confiscated or restricted from their owners.
There are risks, though. The value of the cryptocurrency fluctuates by thousands of percentage over a short period of time for seemingly no reason at all. However, Seymour said, over time, we will see this volatility level out – as we have with financial assets throughout history.
“Cryptocurrencies are much more volatile than other assets, but this is a time perspective,” Seymour said. “When the shares were first issued, there was the same kind of extreme volatility.”
Not all types of cryptocurrency are created equal. While meme cryptocurrencies like Dogecoin and Shiba Inu can be risky, long-term cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin have been some of the best performing investments over the past decade.
“There is a lot of value invested in Bitcoin, it is really starting to stabilize,” Seymour said. “Overall, now that Bitcoin has more than $1 [trillion] The ever-increasing valuation and adoption by individuals, institutions, and governments alike, the global bitcoin market indicates strength, stability, and long-term longevity. “
Plus, with that risk comes the potential for reward.
“There is no other asset class where you can make 100,000 percent gains over the course of the year,” Seymour said. “This happens regularly with cryptocurrencies.”
Well, well, I’ll bite off. How does a girl get her hands on bitcoin?
The first step, Seymour said, is to acquire a cryptocurrency “wallet,” which is a web- or smartphone-based application that is secured with a username, password, and binary authorization. Apps like Atomic Wallet and Exodus Wallet are easy to use for beginners.
Then buy cryptocurrency. There are a number of different types to choose from. Bitcoin is the most popular one, but Seymour said he also deals with Ethereum, and there are many others to choose from if you’re feeling up — higher risks could lead to higher returns, after all.
You can buy cryptocurrency by going to a Bitcoin ATM. Maine Bitcoin LLC has kiosks all over the state where you only need to show up with cash and your digital wallet. You can also buy from online companies like Swan Bitcoin and Coinbase, although these platforms often come with their own fees and setup instructions.
Don’t be afraid of big price tags either. You can buy part of a unit of cryptocurrency, up to eight decimal places.
Seymour said it would be “around $500” to start investing in crypto if you want to see some real returns, but first-time investors in crypto should only put in what they can afford to lose.
“For some people that’s going to be $10 and that’s honestly enough,” Seymour said. “10 dollars gives you an account set up with some kind of exchange or some app on your phone and you start seeing how things work and you can pay more attention to market activity that gives you enough confidence to try more”
Once you have a cryptocurrency, you can use it to pay for goods or services, as an increasing number of small merchants and large companies accept payments in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. You can also contact a service like Luxolo to help you invest your currency further.
Or, if you’re like me and your toes are getting wet, you can keep a few bitcoins in a wallet on your phone and see how the investment grows over time.
If I can detect Google Calendar, I can definitely find out.