On October 23, bank JP Morgan mentioned bitcoin in a report on the company’s investment plans. Recent cryptocurrency news seems to have sparked some optimism. Surprisingly for such a conservative institution!
In 2017, JP Morgan described bitcoin as “a fraud that will collapse”. An opinion shared by several states and investment banks. Yet, on 23 October 2020, it published a report saying quite positive things about the bitcoin. This time, the top cryptocurrency is seen as an attractive “long-term” investment, just like gold in terms of a safe haven. The bank justifies this decision through several points.
For starters, PayPal’s cryptocurrency announcement has generated excitement. From now on, it will be possible to use bitcoin as an alternative currency, with more simplicity. The “millennials” are also cited as the main target. The financial giant specifies:
“Cryptocurrencies derive value not only because they serve as stores of wealth but also due to their utility as means of payment. The more economic agents accept cryptocurrencies as a means of payment in the future, the higher their utility and value,”
In addition, the firm explains that the upside potential in the long term is considerable insofar as it is this generation will become, over time, an important component in the financial markets.
Bitcoin, the gold of the 21st century?
Bitcoin has a huge advantage over gold: its usefulness. It is, for example, very easy to exchange, store or evaluate it. In addition to constituting a store of value, it can also represent a real means of payment, especially in countries experiencing high inflation.
Nevertheless, JP Morgan estimates that the “physical gold market” represents a capitalization of 2.6 trillion dollars, against 242 billion for Bitcoin. Thus, the top cryptocurrency still has a long way to go, if it really wants to compete with gold.
According to JP Morgan, however, bitcoin is still in the development stage. Indeed, only 7% of Americans have ever bought bitcoins. Likewise, some large markets, like Canada, do not yet have a formal legal framework. The margin improvement of bitcoin is still substantial in the coming years.
After Square and PayPal, it is now traditional banks that are interested in bitcoin. It is no longer seen as a scam, but rather as a viable asset over the long term. On the other hand, there are still many stages before a possible massive democratization, as JP Morgan points out.