Bitcoin has come a long way since someone or a group of someones under the name Satoshi Nakamoto wrote a paper in 2008 about how to harness computing power around the world to create a digital currency that can’t be double-spent.
Love cryptocurrencies or hate the very idea of them, they’re becoming more mainstream by the day.
Cryptocurrencies have surged so much that their total value has reached nearly $2.5 trillion, rivalling the world’s most valuable company, Apple, and have amassed more than 200 million users. At this size, it’s simply too big for the financial establishment to ignore.
Firms that cater to the world’s wealthiest families are increasingly putting some of their fortunes into crypto. Hedge funds are trading Bitcoin, which has big-name banks starting to offer them services around it. PayPal lets users buy crypto on its app, while Twitter helps people show appreciation for tweets by tipping their creators with Bitcoin.
And in the latest milestone for the industry, an easy-to-trade fund tied to Bitcoin began trading on Tuesday. Investors can buy the exchange-traded fund from ProShares through an old-school brokerage account — without having to learn what a hot or cold wallet is.
It’s all part of a movement across big businesses that see a chance to profit on the fervour around the world of crypto as a new ecosystem further builds up around it, whether they believe in it or not.
“The one thing you can say for certain is that the advent of the