Of course, just like many of us would ask, How does Cryptocurrency work?. And if the thought of investing in the stock market scares you, you are not alone. Individuals with very limited experience in stock investing are either terrified by horror stories of the average investor losing 50% of their portfolio value.
For example, in the two bear markets that have already occurred in this millennium1 —or are beguiled by “hot tips” that bear the promise of huge rewards but seldom pay off. It is not surprising, then, that the pendulum of investment market sentiment is said to swing between fear and greed.
The reality is that investing in the stock market carries risk, but when approached in a disciplined manner, it is one of the most efficient ways to build up one’s net worth.
While the value of one’s home typically accounts for most of the net worth of the average individual, most of the affluent and very rich generally have the majority of their wealth invested in stocks. Most of the Cryptocurrency enthusiasts are expecting more from Bitcoin. Since it has one of the best features in the cryptocurrency world.
Types of Cryptocurrency
The first blockchain-based cryptocurrency was Bitcoin, which still remains the most popular and most valuable. Today, there are thousands of alternate cryptocurrencies with various functions and specifications. Some of these are clones or forks of Bitcoin, while others are new currencies that were built from scratch.
Bitcoin was launched in 2009 by an individual or group known by the pseudonym “Satoshi Nakamoto.” As of Nov. 2019, there were over 18 million bitcoins in circulation with a total market value of around $146 billion.
Some of the competing cryptocurrencies spawned by Bitcoin’s success, known as “altcoins,” include Litecoin, Peercoin, and Namecoin, as well as Ethereum, Cardano, and EOS. Today, the aggregate value of all the cryptocurrencies in existence is around $214 billion—Bitcoin currently represents more than 68% of the total value.
How does Cryptocurrency work?
In basic terms, Cryptocurrency is a digital currency that isn’t regulated or controlled by any government or other financial authority. Cryptocurrency relies on secret codes to verify transactions. While Bitcoin has entered the mainstream, there are actually more than 700 types of cryptocurrency.
We all know that in this world of cryptocurrency, the future is very unpredictable. Therefore, we can only anticipate a brighter future for this coin especially since the founders are experts in the cryptocurrency world.
To start the cryptocurrency work, buy some from an online exchange and choose a digital wallet to keep it secure.
You can save it, or use it to purchase goods and services by exchanging your secret codes. Below is a more simplified process of acquiring cryptocurrency;
Decide what types of cryptocurrency you want
There are many different cryptocurrencies out there. Which cryptocurrency is right for you depends to a large extent on what you want to do with it.
- Bitcoin was the first cryptocurrency. It’s the most well-known and the most valuable.
- If you want to use your cryptocurrency to purchase goods and services, Litecoin may also be a good choice.
- If you’re looking at smaller niche cryptocurrencies, do some research first to make sure it will suit your purposes.
Choose a cryptocurrency exchange
There are hundreds of cryptocurrency exchanges, but not all exchanges work in all countries. Different exchanges also offer different types of cryptocurrency, accept different methods of payment, and charge different fees.
- Compare 3 or 4 exchanges to choose the one that’s best for you. Make sure you understand the exchange’s interface and how to use it. Because exchanges are extremely vulnerable to hackers, carefully assess each exchange’s security.
- On crypto exchanges, higher fees don’t necessarily correspond to better service or more protection. Generally, choose an exchange that offers the cryptocurrency you want for the lowest fees possible.
Create a trading account
To buy cryptocurrency, you must register as a user and verify your identity.
To start, you’ll provide basic information about yourself, including your name, address, phone number, and email address. You’ll need to scan both sides of a government-issued photo ID to verify your identity.
- The exchange will send you a text or an email with a code you’ll use to verify your email address.
- This code is part of two-factor identification (2FA) and makes your account more secure than simply entering a username and password.
Connect your method of payment
If it’s your first time buying cryptocurrency, you’ll have to use fiat currency, which is a national currency such as dollars or euros.
Most exchanges will allow you to pay by connecting your bank account, or by using a credit or debit card. Some crypto exchanges accept payment through other payment services, such as PayPal.
Place your order for cryptocurrency
- Similarly, the exchange works like that of the stock exchange. If you’re familiar with placing an order to buy or sell a stock, you shouldn’t have any trouble navigating orders for cryptocurrency.
- You can also buy one type of cryptocurrency with another type of cryptocurrency. The values of different cryptocurrencies relative to each other fluctuate.
Pros and Cons of Cryptocurrency
As I mentioned earlier, Cryptocurrencies are systems that allow for secure payments online.
“Crypto” refers to the various encryption algorithms and cryptographic techniques that safeguard these entries. Such as elliptical curve encryption, public-private key pairs, and hashing functions.
Cryptocurrencies hold the promise of making it easier to transfer funds directly between two parties, without the need for a trusted third party like a bank or credit card company.
In modern cryptocurrency work on systems, a user’s “wallet,” or account address, has a public key, while the private key is known only to the owner and is used to sign transactions.
Fund transfers are completed with minimal processing fees, allowing users to avoid the steep fees charged by banks and financial institutions for wire transfers.
However, cryptocurrency advocates often highly value their anonymity, citing benefits of privacy like protection for whistleblowers or activists living under repressive governments. Some cryptocurrencies are more private than others.
Bitcoin, for instance, is a relatively poor choice for conducting illegal business online, since the forensic analysis of the Bitcoin blockchain has helped authorities to arrest and prosecute criminals. More privacy-oriented coins do exist, however, such as Dash, Monero, or ZCash, which are far more difficult to trace.
Central to the appeal and functionality of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies is blockchain technology. Used to keep an online ledger of all the transactions that have ever been conducted. Thus providing a data structure for this ledger that is quite secure.
Every new block generated must be verified by each node before being confirmed. Making it almost impossible to forge transaction histories. Many experts see blockchain technology as having serious potential for uses like online voting and crowdfunding.
Major financial institutions such as JPMorgan Chase (JPM) see the potential to lower transaction costs by streamlining payment processing.
At the same time, there is no central authority, government, or corporation that has access to your funds or your personal information.
How does the performance of the stock market affect individual businesses?
Occasionally, stocks may be misleading. And typically, the stock market and economic performance will often be aligned.
Thus, when the stock market is performing well it is usually a function of a growing economy. And one of the most prominent ways is by following gross domestic product (GDP).
It’s important to realize, the stock market affects individual businesses in an economy in many different ways. And that can be divided broadly into 11 global industry classifications (in short GICS).
With daily movements across the board, there can be a multitude of effects. Put your trading skills to the test with the FREE Stock Simulator. Compete with thousands of Investopedia traders and trade your way to the top!