If you’ve ever wondered what’s all the buzz about Bitcoin and why you should care, know that it’s worth checking out, and easy to get started.
“What we’re seeing in the world is this shift towards the democratization of investments. I think that a self-trading platform allows women to make their own investment decisions, and Bitcoin serves as a tool for taking control of their own assets,” says Tanim Rasul, chief operating officer of NDAX, a Calgary-based, FINTRAC-regulated cryptocurrency trading platform where Canadians can buy, sell and store cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.
During the COVID-19 crisis, most of the world’s central banks have been printing money to pay for economic stimulus packages. The downside to all this money printing, is that it could eventually lead to inflation, notes Rasul. Bitcoin, in contrast to fiat money, he explains, “is a hedge against inflation. That’s the beauty behind Bitcoin.”
With fewer touch points and less cash being passed from hand to hand, the COVID-19 pandemic has hastened the push towards digital money. “It has really brought cryptocurrency to the forefront of a lot of investors’ minds,” says Jessica Fox, general manager of CoinSmart, a FINTRAC-regulated Canadian cryptocurrency exchange based in Toronto.
There’s been a lot of action in the Bitcoin space in the past month, with two new Bitcoin ETFs hitting the market in Canada: the Purpose Bitcoin ETF (TSX:BTCC) and Evolve Fund Group’s Bitcoin ETF (TSX: EBIT).
It’s becoming apparent that business leaders are starting to see the appeal of cryptocurrency. One of the most prominent examples is Tesla, which recently announced it had bought $1.5 billion worth of Bitcoin – part of a plan to invest in alternative assets, including digital currencies and gold. With corporations like Tesla and large institutional investors moving into cryptocurrency, it makes it even more important for ordinary investors to educate themselves on this topic, says Fox, noting that for female investors, the cryptocurrency space offers an opportunity to take control of your investing and learn at your own pace.
There are several ways to purchase Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. If you’re considering investing for the first time, Fox recommends looking for a trustworthy cryptocurrency exchange that’s FINTRAC-regulated, easy to use and provides live customer support. You can choose the do-it-yourself route, or you may want to work with your own personal stockbroker or financial advisor. Avoid using third parties, who are typically scammers who present themselves as brokers, she says. If you are “crypto- curious,” you can start out with a small amount as you become familiar with how things work.
For regular investors, Rasul suggests looking at cryptocurrency as a small part of their entire portfolio. “You don’t have buy a full Bitcoin – you can buy $100 worth. It’s quite easy to purchase,” he says, pointing to the growing popularity among Canadians of do-it-yourself investing.
There are several ways to purchase Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Rasul – a member of the NDAX founding team and an investor in the cryptocurrency space since 2014 – suggests using a Canadian-based platform, where you can buy your cryptocurrency assets using Canadian dollars.
Finally, Rasul says, it’s important to remember that “Bitcoin and cryptocurrency are a highly volatile asset. Don’t invest more than you can afford to lose.”