NASTASSIA ARENDSE: We are going to be talking about bitcoin. It hit a record high, just shy of $8 000. We’ve seen some roller-coaster action, especially when it comes to the cryptocurrency in September, and this was largely fuelled by that increased scrutiny from regulators.
But to talk to me more about bitcoin is Werner van Rooyen from Luno. Werner, thank you so much for our time.
WERNER VAN ROOYEN: Thanks so much for having me.
NASTASSIA ARENDSE: We see all kinds of headlines when it comes to bitcoin. A lot of the US bank CEOs will say it’s a bubble, but they like the underlying technology that comes with it, the blockchain. What should I make of bitcoin as an investor?
WERNER VAN ROOYEN: That’s a great question. It’s a question that doesn’t seem to be going away. We’ve been in the industry for a very long time and it seems that every month or every quarter, every year, we are hitting new highs and new investors are asking, “How should I treat it, what really is bitcoin, where should it be in my investment portfolio?” My best advice to listeners would be to treat bitcoin as something completely new. It has some elements of a currency, so you can use it as a means of payment, you can relatively easily send money to a recipient and that recipient could be on the other side of the room or on the other side of the world.
But it is also a store of value. It’s something that a lot of people liken to a digital goal. It is something that is limited in availability, there is big demand for it around the world, and it’s got some practical use cases.
It is something that is closest to an asset. So it’s a new digital asset class. But the most important thing about all of that is that it is a highly speculative early time for the technology.
So I would urge listeners to be very cautious with their investment and rather just slowly and gradually start investing into bitcoin, maybe at the end of each month after you’ve paid all of your bills and you’ve done everything. Take a little bit of your leftover pocket money to buy something with it. It is certainly moving along at an amazing pace.
NASTASSIA ARENDSE: Werner, I want to actually have you in the studio so we can talk about bitcoin and untap it. I read a very interesting article that says people are buying bitcoin for the wrong reasons. It goes as far as saying that they buy it because the price is rising, in the end to be able to sell it to other people who see that the price is rising, so they get in the market.
We are running out of time but we want to get you back to talk about this thing in more detail.
WERNER VAN ROOYEN: I would love to.
NASTASSIA ARENDSE: Thanks, Werner.