At a time when central banks are competing to print money, people like to look for alternatives. In addition to the classic gold, Bitcoin can be used as a money substitute in certain cases. By Daniel Eckert and Holger Zschäpitz
Universally applicable currency: the Bitcoin
Something was different in “Room77”. Last Wednesday evening, the Berlin pub was full as usual, but some guests behaved conspicuously. The classic bar rhythm of ordering, drinking and paying no longer applied to them. As soon as they had the cold beer in hand, they wanted the bill.
Trading Blog: Only afterwards was drunk and enjoyed. The atypical payment behavior of the guests had its reason on the Internet: There the online currency Bitcoin just experienced a crash. In a matter of minutes, digital money lost almost a third of its value. The Berlin “Room77” is one of the few places in the world that accept Bitcoin. So if you waited too long to pay, the beer was suddenly 30 percent more expensive.
The scene is somewhat reminiscent of the era of hyperinflation in the 1920s. Even 90 years ago, consumers could not get rid of their money quickly enough: The purchasing power of the mark halved within a day. For the old currency of the empire, this value implosion meant the end. Does the bitcoin meet the same fate? By Friday evening it suddenly lost 70 percent of its value. But even if the relatively young Internet currency should go under – the concept will live on.
Perfect currency for global markets
A digital world currency is the perfect value date for the globalized market. Consumers and savers thus have a universal means of payment: no matter where and what they buy on the Internet, the new money makes exchanges superfluous and offers a whole new level of transparency. In addition, unlike the national paper currencies, the network currency is ideally immune to the dangers of national monetary policy. Investors should therefore not write off the digital money.
Because the imponderables of the classic currency systems have not diminished. The Bank of Japan recently announced that it would radically double the money supply within two years. The US Federal Reserve is also making little move to stop the rotating presses. The basic interest in alternative currencies should therefore remain high. Still, the mood turned this week for no apparent reason.
Bitcoin wasn’t the only alternative currency to crash this week. The decline in gold was not quite as dramatic, but nevertheless striking: During the trading week, the price of the precious metal fell by six percent. On Friday, it fell below the $ 1,500 per troy ounce mark (31.1 grams) since July 2011. Calculated from the projections, the minus is one fifth – stock market operators speak of a bear market in this case. More about Trading Blog