Bitcoin Has No “Intrinsic Value”: American Investors Weigh In
Since a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) was proposed in the U.S. markets, pundits have lauded it as the single thing that could bring the cryptocurrency market from “immature” to “mature.” Others have also touted such a vehicle as the rocketship that would bring BTC to the moon, so to speak.
Yet, members of the non-crypto public aren’t too sold on the entire idea. Per a list of comments posted on the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) webpage, specifically in regards to VanEck, SolidX, and the CBOE’s rule change, most are skeptical of what value cryptocurrency provides.
Sam Ahn of Hana Trading released a six-page, nine-point tear down of Bitcoin and the proposed ETF product, which would open the floodgates to BTC. While Ahn’s points were drawn-out, a clear theme of anti-mining, Satoshi Nakamoto cynicism, and “BTC doesn’t have intrinsic value” was apparent. The investor remarked that not only is Satoshi’s magnum opus hard for him to process, but that the cryptocurrency isn’t like gold as in “a string of 64-digits, with about 17 leading zeroes” (hash) cannot be likened to a physical item used in electronics, jewelry, and as a value store.
While many cryptocurrency diehards would deem Ahn’s comments moot, this was just the tip of the iceberg. Another respondent, Dina Pinto, remarked that she believes that BTC doesn’t deserve a “serious product,” as she sees the nascent market surrounding the digital asset as “volatile and manipulated by the very few [that use it].” Pinto adds that the leading crypto has “no real use case.”
Another commenter, one Sarah Malone of unknown affiliation, echoed the aforementioned comments to a tee, explaining that there is no value in BTC becoming a tradable financial product, let alone a medium of exchange.
Finally, one other played the “blockchain not Bitcoin” card, remarking that cryptocurrencies lack viability in many’s day-to-day, while ledgers hold immense value.
What all the aforementioned critics seem to be forgetting is Bitcoin’s value proposition in nations stricken with capital controls, hyperinflation, authoritarianism, among other societal shortcomings. This, of course, is because they are viewing BTC from the lens of an American citizen, many of which aren’t (currently) subject to irresponsible government and fiscal planners.
But in the end, the opinions of U.S. citizens is what is important in this case, as the product will be accessible to some of those stakeholders .
The Silver Lining
Yet, there was a silver lining. One user, going by Sami Santos, published an eight-point comment on March 12th that outlined the merits of Bitcoin, and why it needs a fund tracking it. Santos stuck to the normal Bitcoin advocate script, explaining that it is fast, cost-effective, unconfiscatable, and private (not exactly, but it’s pseudonymous).
The investor went on to explain that blockchain can mitigate corruption and money laundering, Bitcoin can be a “weapon” against financial inequity and inflation, and as a medium to bolster innovation of technologies.
In this case, Santos was Bitcoin’s sole knight in the crusade for an ETF product, which would entirely legitimize this asset. But will the SEC listen to him, or those who were a tad sardonic?
Photo by Anna Popović on Unsplash