The conception of the first ever cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, has created a breakthrough in business industries and stirred the world of the stock market. Since then, cryptocurrency vs. stocks has become a subject of endless debates. 

Due to the drastic increase in price and growth of cryptocurrency in the market, some investors are eyeing digital currency as part of their investment. Adding up the value of all cryptocurrency out there, it could sum up to a total of $1 trillion. Some suggest that by 2023, it could reach up to $11 trillion. 

But no matter how they compare the two, crypto and stocks have distinctive differences. You can easily tell them apart. If you are a new trader, here are some things you need to know about cryptocurrency vs. stock market.

Cryptocurrency Overview

Cryptocurrency is a decentralised digital currency which utilises the blockchain technology – a public ledger that stores data and transactions without intermediaries. It is not regulated, controlled or distributed by the government or any financial institution.

It is acquired through digital mining – a process wherein computers or ASIC(Application-Specific Integrated Circuit) devices are used in solving complicated mathematical algorithms in exchange of a token which converts to digital coins.

The first cryptocurrency ever created is Bitcoin. It was invented by an individual or group masked under the name Satoshi Nakamoto in 2008. It was launched and introduced in the market in 2009.

It was not used until 2010 wherein the first ever purchase was done by a person who traded 10,000 cryptocurrency to 2 boxes of pizza. The value of cryptocurrency rises from $100 to its highest this year amounting $62,000. Nowadays, cryptocurrency has a store of value and can be traded, mined, and invested.

What is stock and how does it work?

Stock market can be a scary environment for some people who do have a little knowledge or limited experience. The stories of investors losing 50% of their investment portfolio can be extremely terrifying.

Just like any other investment, the stock market carries great risk, but if approached with knowledge and discipline, it can be one of the most efficient sources of profit and great returns. 

Stocks is a representation of your ownership equity in a company or firm. As a shareholder, you were given residual claims in the corporation’s gains and earnings as well as voting rights. 

On the other hand, the stock market has to do with investors coming together in a public venue to buy and sell shares. Nowadays, electronic marketplaces for exchanges already exist. 

Supply and demand determines the share prices. Bids and order flows are organised by specialists in order to maintain a fair and orderly market.

Differences between cryptocurrency and stock

There are several differences between a cryptocurrency and a stock. One of the best ways to understand the differences is by holding the asset or trading it.

You can do this in one swipe via a brokerage platform like Immediate Edge because you can access both digital assets using it. That said, let’s  examine the clear disparities between both.

Anonymity 

Cryptocurrency is known to offer anonymity.  Your digital assets can be kept in a wallet that can be a virtual or cold wallet in the form of a USB drive. Anonymity has advantages but also exposes you to risks. There might be a possibility that you might lose or forget your password or security key, giving an opportunity to hacking and identity theft. 

Length of existence

Stocks have been in existence for two centuries. It was most famous in New York City, particularly in Wall Street. On the other hand, cryptocurrency is just new, only existing for more than a decade now. Binance, the largest cryptocurrency exchange, was launched in 2017 while Coinbase, the second largest player, in 2012. 

Trading volume 

As of May 2021, the trading volume of Binance is just over $50 billion while Nasdaq – a small portion of global stock trading – has five times the trading volume compared to the latter. 

Liquidity 

In terms of liquidity or the ability to trade assets at will, investors find stocks liquid since there are more traders in the global market. On the other hand, with cryptocurrency, liquidity depends on the form of crypto. Bitcoin is considered to have the highest liquidity as compared to other biggest cryptocurrency. 

Volatility 

Both cryptocurrency and stocks can be volatile, and can be subject to price fluctuations. They are both unpredictable, and you can never really tell the best time to trade.

However, in the stocks market, investors are given access to sources of information giving them ample time to make decisions before purchasing.

On the other hand, cryptocurrency is more volatile. It can undergo sudden price fluctuations without warning, which can lead to huge wins as well as great losses. 

Cost of Trading

Buying and selling stocks may cost an investor to pay transaction fees. Crypto also incurs substantial charges and exchanges may cost fees that vary from crypto to another. 

Regulations

Stock market is regulated by national and government agencies such as the Securities and Exchange Commissions (SEC) in the U.S., whose job is to oversee and regulate stocks and the stock market. This ensures transparency at its highest level. 

On the contrary, cryptocurrency is decentralized and not regulated by the government or any institution. The decentralized network using blockchain technology ensures the integrity of the cryptocurrency.

Hours of Trading 

The stock market trading is open on weekdays during business hours, while cryptocurrency exchanges operate 24/7, every day and even on holidays.

The takeaway

Remember that, as discussed, both parties have their strengths and weaknesses. As the stock market is known to be government-regulated, which makes it subject to inflation, cryptocurrency’s high volatility makes the currency itself subject to drastic price fluctuations. 

If you are new to the trading business, you must always note that cryptocurrency and the stock market are two different assets that play varied roles within an investment portfolio. Choosing the right exchange depends on your goals and risk tolerance, as well as your current financial state.

Do not invest an amount that you can’t afford to lose. And most importantly, research and always seek experts’ advice before you decide to invest or enter the trading business.

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