As the world gazes in awe at Singapore’s meteoric economic rise, Singaporeans must abandon any concept of complacency and consolidate its investment path to ensure the growth train keeps chugging along smoothly in the future. Talking about investments of the future, you may have heard or seen the word ‘Bitcoin’ buzzing around somewhere or the other over the last couple of years. Surprisingly, for an alternative form of currency that is expected to revolutionize the world, Bitcoin awareness is rather minimal.
The rise of Bitcoin can be significantly attributed to the increased lack of people’s trust in the highly manipulated and poorly regulated financial markets that led to the global financial meltdown over the last few years. Bitcoin seeks to embrace the model of a truly ubiquitous digital currency that is independent of inflation and manipulation by any corrupt banking conglomerates or government bodies in an effort to create a borderless financial system that people can rely on.
Singapore however, happens to be positioned in a rather unique paradigm shift when it comes to its financial status and prospects in implementing Bitcoin infrastructure on a large scale. While the rise of Bitcoin in several EU countries and the United States of America is a fallout of the diminishing purchasing power of fiat currency and tremendous debt accumulation, Singapore has become one of the most lucrative and progressive financial hubs in the world.
Its business district is pulsating with vigorous economic growth and the corruption-free Singapore government’s impeccable central planning has ensured the stability of the Singapore dollar is unchallenged. Therefore, the crux of Bitcoin’s future in Singapore is primarily dependent on the people’s demand for it.
Recent surveys showed that Singaporeans showed considerable skepticism in the decentralized nature of Bitcoin. They favored government control over this cryptocurrency as they had remarkable faith in their government to control volatility in prices and guarantee against loss. Almost none of the participants in the surveys deemed absolute deregulation of Bitcoin to be a safe policy.
Another concern that must be addressed is the requirement for Bitcoin as an alternative mode of transaction when there are a plethora of payment methods available in Singapore. As an investment vehicle, Bitcoin is perhaps one of the riskiest short-term or long-term investment options. It is the most volatile currency in the world and has witnessed fluctuations to such an extent that its value has doubled or halved almost overnight.
Bitcoin has helped shield the economic well-being of several financially savvy individuals belonging to disastrous recession-hit countries like Cyprus and Greece; however, that is a result of the massive weakening power of the Euro. On the other hand, Singaporeans live in a remarkably stable and vibrant economy that offers no such cause for concern and bank on to safeguard their savings account.
So far, only a handful of Bitcoin transaction platforms have been legally authenticated by government agencies to conduct business. Here are some of the well-renowned ones Bit coin enthusiasts in Singapore can partake in:
- FYB-SG – A Singapore-based Bitcoin Exchange
- Coin Republic – For directly buying or selling Bitcoins
- Mt. Gox – Largest and most trusted Bitcoin Exchange in the world
- 24change – A fully automated 24/7 service for carrying out Bitcoin transactions
- VirWoX – A globally exclusive exchange system that facilitates Bitcoin purchase via PayPal and credit cards.
Regulatory measures are inevitable in the future of Bitcoin once its users reach a critical mass, as the global political and banking powers simply will not abandon the fiat currency model due to vested interests. This is exactly why the Bitcoin investment game has only been limited to risk-embracing speculators, mining rig makers and transaction platform infrastructure.
The uncertainty in state policies surrounding Bitcoin is the biggest contributor to its volatility. Secondly, Bitcoin owners do not have any insurance policy to avail and must also bear the risk of cyber security threats that can leave their virtual wallets ripe for the pickings in the hands of malicious hackers.
So far, the Monetary Authority of Singapore has left the doorway open for Bitcoin’s future development by refusing to regulate virtual currencies and allowing businesses to accept Bitcoins for exchange of goods and services. However, the decision is purely subjective to Bitcoin’s current status, and Singapore can also follow in the footsteps of other governments like China and crack down on all its operations if its usage becomes significant enough to warrant regulation.
So invest in Bitcoins if you have more than enough wealth to spare, but take any predictions of Bitcoin emerging as the investment choice for champions with not just a grain of salt, but a spoonful of it!
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