The Bitcoin (BTC) thread

JayJuanGee

Crow
Gold Member
Does anyone have experiences with Coinify, the new partner that allows CC or bank transfers for crypto buying through the ledger app? Does that require all the identity verification? I see that it is out of Denmark. What about other exchanges now that coinbase is somewhat problematic? Is the Winklevoss creation (Gemini) any good?
I have not really heard anything about Coinify besides just making a quick glance at the website, and I may have heard their name, previously. MOst of the time there is going to be some level of KYC requirements, these days.

Gemini tends to be pretty good, and I have used their service since 2015, but the fees are a bit higher at Gemini than coinbase... but of course, if you are getting more worried about Coinbase for their ongoing shenanigans of going down at busy times and even some of their seeming issues with cooperating with the feds in terms of tracing, then those could be reasons to boycott their services.

Some people talk about the cash app which is connected with square app and swan bitcoin as other possibilities. As far as I know, cash app and swan do not have both in and out services, so it is good to make sure that you establish some relationships with exchanges in which you can get out of bitcoin, too, in the even that you might want to use that service, but yeah, sometimes when BTC prices are going all crazy, then trying to get out might end up having some issues, but if you can exchange into dollars at least (at a time that you want to get out), then maybe it does not matter as much if it might take a week or two to get the transfer to go through to your bank, but I think that Gemini would be o.k. with getting you the money quickly as long as you are already an established customer.

Don't get me wrong, I hardly sell any of my BTC in major amounts, but I have always valued having and maintaining avenues in which that I would be able to cash out, if I needed to.. of course, if you are just cashing out small amounts here and there, then there are less likelihoods that you are going to run into issues, but if you have a large amount of BTC and you want to run it through an exchange in which you have only recently established a relationship, then some red flags might get raised, so I think that it is good to prepare for those angles.

I was a bit saddened by a lot of the shutting down of Localbitcoin options, at least in the USA, and I think that the same thing happened in some other westernized locations, too, so Localbitcoins used to be a more prevalent option to attempt to engage in direct buys/sells of BTC.
 

Talus

Pigeon
Tales from the Crypt: A Bitcoin Podcast: #158: Marshall Holbrook
https://overcast.fm/+KiHouLxRM
Great podcast recommendation. The future for pow mining is going to be intimately tied to the energy sector. Every form of wasted energy is going to be turned into hash rate in the next decade. It's going to open up all types of possibilities for innovation. But with that, it will also become a game that only big players can play. Hence, warehouse mining will soon be no more lucrative than running a solo rig in your basement.

The real play in this sector will be nuclear power. But that won't hit the drawing board until the BTC cap is in the multi trillions.
 

Leads

Robin
Anyone care to comment on Travala (AVA) ? It's a hotel/flight site that lets you pay with bitcoin. It's currently around 30 cents a share and I've heard it's well hitched to BTC. Ideally, I like to strike the lottery here but I'm at pre school level in general with the stock market and it seems this is all too advanced.

I also just signed up for Webull which was $100. Any guidance is helpful.
 

JayJuanGee

Crow
Gold Member
Anyone care to comment on Travala (AVA) ? It's a hotel/flight site that lets you pay with bitcoin. It's currently around 30 cents a share and I've heard it's well hitched to BTC. Ideally, I like to strike the lottery here but I'm at pre school level in general with the stock market and it seems this is all too advanced.

I also just signed up for Webull which was $100. Any guidance is helpful.
This thread is mostly meant to be about bitcoin, and sure there are all kinds of companies that might have some connection with bitcoin, but still seems to be deviating a bit outside of the topic of this thread if you are wanting to weigh the pros and cons regarding the companies that you listed as ones that you are looking at.

Personally, I suggest to almost any guy that he analyzes his own financial situation to attempt to assess how much he feels comfortable to afford to invest into bitcoin, and that is generally investing directly into bitcoin rather than various related bitcoin businesses. Whenever you add another layer, then you are likely adding another layer of risk and complexity.

So, for example, you might look at you budget and your cashflow for the next six month, and you might see that you have $3k available to invest right now, and you have another $3k that you are projecting to have available from your cashflow. So that would be $6k for that whole period or $1k per month. Therefore, you could dollar cost average $250 per week into bitcoin for the next 6 months or create some kind of variation of a DCA type plan that might front load part of it, buy on dips or just pure DCA techniques.

Of course, personal budgets and circumstances are going to vary, but I think that each guy has to figure out his own situation including considering his cashflow, his other investments, his view of bitcoin as compared with other investments, his timeline, his risk tolerance and his time, abilities and skills to research including tweaking his strategies, his allocations including deciding whether or not to trade, too.

I personally, believe that anyone new to bitcoin might consider a 4-5 year minimum starting time for their investment, and of course it tends to take a while to build wealth, but any guy who is attempting to build wealth is likely also engaging in a certain amount of ongoing research and tweaking of strategies and maybe even figuring out reallocation or how to allocate various resources, which can take a decently long time to build up a meaningful sized investment nestegg, and I would recommend investing directly into bitcoin rather than those side companies (of AVA and Webull), but maybe that is just me because I don't know anything about those companies and likely they are a topic for another thread, anyhow.
 

JayJuanGee

Crow
Gold Member
Bitcoin is basically following the stock market it seems. It's going to be a volatile few years.
By now, Burner, I am sure that you have heard about bitcoin's dominant and seemingly credible price prediction theories which are 1) stock to flow model, 2) four year fractal and 3) s-curve adoption based on metecalfe networking principles. If you are ignoring the actual longer term BTC price prediction models and zooming in on some kind of apparent short term correlation, you may well end up either getting yourself reckt or failing and/refusing to identify either bitcoin fundamentals or an opportunity that is staring you right in the face.

I cannot be sure if you are just venting nonsense currently, burner, or if you really believe that bitcoin is correlated to traditional markets in the longer term, even if we might see some short term correlation but even that short term correlation should not be completely convincing if you really attempt to understand what you are looking at.

So, maybe I am posting for other members, rather than you, burner... because really you should know better by now, but may be it could be fruitful to figure out if you are changing how you are placing your bets burner? Maybe you can short term profit by identifying some short term BTC correlation, in the event that you are able to avoid getting reckt? Are you willing to share some of you current strategies to disclose if you are making any adjustments to your strategies?

You likely realize that my strategies are not really changing too much, which is largely just maintaining my BTC investment by selling small proportions as the price goes up and using those proceeds to buy back if the BTC price goes down, and even though I am not quite too confident about short term BTC price moves, I have decent levels of confidence that BTC is likely to perform as good if not better than the rest of my portfolio in the coming 18months or so... but anyone new to bitcoin is likely better off to take a 4 year DCA approach, anyhow, since I largely established my investment in the 2014-2016 time frame... so still seems good to take a 4 year or longer approach to BTC, if you happen to be a newbie in bitcoin.... if you happen to have been investing less than 4 years in bitcoin, then maybe you could still be building your position, perhaps?

The longer you have been investing in bitcoin, the more that it seems to distinguish itself from other assets. Here link to a website showing an example of two years DCA into bitcoin versus other assets (gold and equities), and of course the site lets you pick other DCA timelines as well (even if it does not allow you to custom in less than yearly increments beyond one year)
 

JayJuanGee

Crow
Gold Member
Hey acco: Are you suggesting that we might continue to be consolidating in a $4k to $10k zone (narrowing of course) for the next year or so?

I really doubt that we are going to be stuck in that range for that long, but hey you never really know. I have always recommended ongoing accumulation of BTC no matter what the price which would include DCA, buying on dips and HODL... and of course, guys might have some other various ways that they accumulate, including maybe waiting for dips.. but I think that would be a risky strategy without incorporating at least some amount of DCA along the way.. while accumulating BTC.

Once you get to your target BTC accumulation level, then maybe at that point, you can start to play some other strategies as well.... and I have frequently suggesting getting to somewhere between 1% and 10% of your quasi-liquid assets as a decent BTC accumulation target level - and of course the more bearish or bullish you are about the asset will also affect at what end of the range you might target accumulating to.
 

ginsu

Robin
I always watch Bob loukas video's on the rare occasion they are out, do put 1.5x speed otherwise it takes too long.
He goes for quality over quantity and he also gives his public address so you can check if he did make the investments he says he did.

@JayJuanGee You made give some great info in your comments, there isn't really much more to it than what you wrote. Don't complicate things if you're not an experienced trader. Which i definitely am not, so i'm sticking to a strategy like outlined by Bob loukas.

As for the relation to the stock market yes its entirely possible. It is being manipulated by big players at this time. They have motivation to do so and opportunity. Now especially with the free money the central banks are handing out to their buddies. They are certainly putting next to the stock market some of it into bitcoin also. And to manipulate it for short term profits too in order to accumulate even more. This will lessen with time though as bitcoin gains more adoption and the capital needed to push the price up or down will become too great to affect it in the significant ways we see now. The short term or surface level price is manipulated but under the surface the real value of bitcoin and adoption is slowly building. Ignore the surface/short term unless you are a day trader and keep your eyes on the big picture.
 
Like Loukas I expect something to happen around mid to late 2021 if the 4 year cycle is a real thing. The real trick is finding a way to put yourself into a coma until such time.

Bitcoin is holding up value well and I attribute it to the effects of the halfening. The only X factor now is the global pandemic and QE.
 

JayJuanGee

Crow
Gold Member
I always watch Bob loukas video's on the rare occasion they are out, do put 1.5x speed otherwise it takes too long.
He goes for quality over quantity and he also gives his public address so you can check if he did make the investments he says he did.
I just watched that 43 minute video by Loukas, and perhaps it could be described as a kind of cyclical BTC prediction model that attempts to project BTC prices in four 4-year cycles (16 years)... . that strangely start in about 2011-ish... so Loukas seems to have skipped an analysis of the first 2 years of bitcoin's price action which is fair enough, since bitcoin really did not have much of a price or even a meaningful ability to reasonably find price in the first couple of years of its existence...

So, it seems that Loukas sees the existence of cyclical and secular bear cycles in bitcoin, so cyclical cycles are not as large of drops of the BTC price and don't really drop below previous highs of the previous cycle, but a secular bear cycle would perhaps last longer and go lower than the earlier highs, but would be a likely phenomenon for any asset class, including bitcoin.

Loukas has some decently good ideas, even though towards the end, he does provide some reasonable criticisms of the stock to flow model, .. and in that regard, Loukas might be showing a bit of his attempt to treat bitcoin as any other asset class and down playing bitcoin's paradigm shifting special nature (as a money... which has never really been done previously).

I don't have any real problems with anything that Loukas is saying, except that maybe his suggestion that there might only be one or two more cyclical cycles upwards before there comes a longer down secular bear cycle down.. so maybe those kinds of assertions are a wee bit more bearish than some of the bitcoin is designed to pump forever theories.. which also can be considered as reasonable in a bit of an exaggerated way.. .

@JayJuanGee You made give some great info in your comments, there isn't really much more to it than what you wrote. Don't complicate things if you're not an experienced trader. Which i definitely am not, so i'm sticking to a strategy like outlined by Bob loukas.
Certainly, I am not suggesting that guys trade BTC, and the primary best strategies are to figure out your own particular circumstances so you can figure out how much of a position that you want to take in bitcoin which thereafter should result in accumulation of BTC up to the accumulation point that you want to achieve and then perhaps ongoing DCA, buying on dips and HODLing. More advanced strategies might result in some trading to attempt to offset and perhaps take advantage of BTC's volatility, but I had not suggested selling high quantities of BTC until you have either first established a position or maybe even over-established to some extent.


As for the relation to the stock market yes its entirely possible. It is being manipulated by big players at this time. They have motivation to do so and opportunity. Now especially with the free money the central banks are handing out to their buddies. They are certainly putting next to the stock market some of it into bitcoin also. And to manipulate it for short term profits too in order to accumulate even more. This will lessen with time though as bitcoin gains more adoption and the capital needed to push the price up or down will become too great to affect it in the significant ways we see now. The short term or surface level price is manipulated but under the surface the real value of bitcoin and adoption is slowly building. Ignore the surface/short term unless you are a day trader and keep your eyes on the big picture.
Sure.. lots of ongoing crazy happenings in the macro scenery.... and big picture should suggest that bitcoin continues to be a good investment, and I continue to suggest that anyone getting into bitcoin would be good to have a five year time horizon minimum, but of course, some guys might want to play around with shorter time horizons and maybe trying to profit in different kinds of shorter term ways, which might be gambling more than long term investments, but to each his own, in that regard.. and not what I have generally been recommending.
 

ginsu

Robin
Loukas has some decently good ideas, even though towards the end, he does provide some reasonable criticisms of the stock to flow model, .. and in that regard, Loukas might be showing a bit of his attempt to treat bitcoin as any other asset class and down playing bitcoin's paradigm shifting special nature (as a money... which has never really been done previously).

I don't have any real problems with anything that Loukas is saying, except that maybe his suggestion that there might only be one or two more cyclical cycles upwards before there comes a longer down secular bear cycle down.. so maybe those kinds of assertions are a wee bit more bearish than some of the bitcoin is designed to pump forever theories.. which also can be considered as reasonable in a bit of an exaggerated way.. .
You're right he does seem to treat it like that. i guess that is because his strong point is in talking about investing. There are already so many guys out there ( like below ) who preach bitcoin and explain the mind blowing possibilities for it to change the lives of everyone on the planet for the better. I think he does understand this but chooses not to talk about, in that way he can speak to a larger audience And doesn't turn of skeptical people.

He does predict a more long term bearish trend after the next couple of cycles, but he doesn't mention what he thinks will happen after that as it is too far away to matter right now. If you're just looking to capitalize on the big swings that happen in these yearly cycles then there is no point to mention it in such a video. So its not necessarily negative just his reasoning for focusing on the next 2 cycles only. As btc gets bigger and more solid the cycles will keep lengthening and become less volatile. A longer bear cycle can be a result of btc being a success and is not necessarily a bad thing and if it reaches that point will predictably return to a long bull cycle after that. His point about government interference being the main driver for that bear cycle is realistic. But BTC's succes is not measured in the next 5-10 years depending on how government might try to take advantage or work against it but in the 20 - 50 or 100 years. It either goes to levels we cannot imagine now or it will go to 0 there is nothing else. I plan to just keep a certain amount forever locked away and let my children figure out its worth.

No one really knows how it will actually turn out, but if you do the math and it finally clicks there is no other way currently than to see bitcoins value keep going up over the long term. Apart from any black swan event or government interference.

I'm surprised there are not more people talking about BTC here now, with all that's going on in the world now ( money printing,financial system meltdown ) is the time where people should be looking at ways to preserve/grow their wealth.

 
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Pointer

Woodpecker
I think it's safe to say that Bitcoin has become just another stock. It follows too much the ups and downs of the major indexes for my liking.
Look at today's chart, if Bitcoin is supposed to preserve wealth it should go up or stay constant on red days.

The problem is that risk remains high while gains are hard to come by. There are penny stocks that are more attractive than Bitcoin at this point.
 

JayJuanGee

Crow
Gold Member
I think it's safe to say that Bitcoin has become just another stock. It follows too much the ups and downs of the major indexes for my liking.
Of course, you are free to have your own opinion and to express it, but I think that you are failing and refusing to look very closely at bitcoin if you believe that it is correlated to the stock market merely based on short term price movements. But do what you like, and I suspect that you may well be missing out on one of the best investments of a lifetime that is largely open to anyone who can appreciate it for what it is.

Of course, the more resources that you have and the more access to technology, the easier it is to take an investment into bitcoin.. for example, someone from a very poor country and without very good access to the internet might not either be able to appreciate the value of investing in bitcoin or to be able to have meaningful access to technology or information that allows them to readily invest in bitcoin, even if it is merely $5 per month or whatever modest amount of discretionary income might be available to such a person.

Look at today's chart, if Bitcoin is supposed to preserve wealth it should go up or stay constant on red days.
You likely need to zoom out a bit.

Do you understand that in the short term, liquid assets can be moved fairly easily, and not only does bitcoin have a fairly liquid ability to buy/sell it, it also has a market cap that makes it relatively easy for a fairly small amount of wealth (relatively speaking) to move the price greatly in either direction.

The problem is that risk remains high while gains are hard to come by.
The longer that you have been in bitcoin, the more likely that you are profitable by engaging in mere dollar cost averaging... so the longer the period, the more likely that you are going to outperform any of the other asset categories, and the shorter the time period the less of a difference there is likely to be... So surely any guy could get confused by focusing upon short term timeframes and attempting to make comparisons or figure out what to do, especially if he is either skeptical of bitcoin or if he gets too much of his information from various mainstream sources that tend to be very misleading about finances and about bitcoin more specifically.

Of course, do your own research and make your own decisions regarding how much, how or when to invest in bitcoin, if at all.

By the way, look at a dollar cost averaging comparison of bitcoin as compared with gold and equities markets, and I find quite a bit of difficulty proclaiming long term correlation, even if you might see a decent amount of short term correlation. So for example this chart shows the difference between investing $50 per week or $200 per month into bitcoin as compared with stocks and gold in the past 5 years. Bitcoin shows a bit more than a 7.5x price appreciation during such period. Gold shows about 34% price appreciation during that time, and equities shows about a 17.5% price appreciation during that same period.

Like I mentioned if you choose longer periods of time, the differences are larger, but if you choose shorter periods of time the differences are not as great, even though bitcoin still does outperform traditional assets, even on the shortest of the periods (6months) that are allowed within that particular website.


There are penny stocks that are more attractive than Bitcoin at this point.
 

joost

Kingfisher
What people fail to understand is that Bitcoin is quite liquid. During a crisis/recession people will sell it to cover expenses.

COVID-19 period is a good example. If you became unemployed and you need to pay rent/food you'll sell the liquid assets first. FIAT (cash) if you have savings then stocks, Bitcoin...
If you don't have liquid assets, you'll end up having to sell your car or house at a heavy discount since you need money FAST.

When I see on Twitter a bunch of Bitcoin retards praising a father who incentivizes his young daughter to give all her savings (a few euros) to buy BTC, it's just plain stupid. You should teach your kids to be prepared for every scenario.

BTC is at a 50% loss since its ATH (almost) 3 years ago. If the economy is really in shambles, many Bitcoin holders will end up having to sell their coins to cover expenses.


Am I bearish? Not really. I like the tech and just like stocks, I like when they go down so I can get them for "cheaper". I think having 10% of your portfolio in BTC is a good bet. Price is trending down so hope to buy more sats.


And @JayJuanGee
Are you informed about the Grayscale Trust? Apparently they're buying the equivalent of all new minted coins and they're not going to sell their positions. Seems like they created an ETF (like Gold's GLD).
If so, I would like to hear your opinion about it.
 

JayJuanGee

Crow
Gold Member
Response part 1: I had to divide my post into two parts because the new form seems to have a 10,000 character limitation (sucks to be me. A long poster). :sad:

What people fail to understand is that Bitcoin is quite liquid. During a crisis/recession people will sell it to cover expenses.
I cannot really disagree with the thrust of your sentiment, here, joost; however, it still seems to me that we cannot just attempt to suggest that people are only failing to understand Bitcoin in a certain kind of direction - because people are still failing to understand bitcoin in the sense of the extent to which it might catch on at all or serve as a hedge (in other words how much it might correlate to traditional assets). Of course, in short term emergency thinking, people are going to tend to really want to get rid of assets that they are uncertain about the level and the direction of the volatility - however, if people were to have some strong conviction that the volatility would be in the upwards direction, then they would be less inclined to get rid of such asset, even if it happens to be very liquid... so that seems to be part of the gravitation towards dollars (maybe even other forms of cash, too), at least in the short term because they are merely attempting to hold value while all assets seem to be cascadingly plummeting.


COVID-19 period is a good example. If you became unemployed and you need to pay rent/food you'll sell the liquid assets first. FIAT (cash) if you have savings then stocks, Bitcoin...
If you don't have liquid assets, you'll end up having to sell your car or house at a heavy discount since you need money FAST.
I cannot really disagree with you, but I would just like to point out, for example, if a guy might be able to project out his expenses for the next 6-12 months, and then be faced with a kind of cash flow uncertainty for the next 2 months, and if he has $10k in bitcoin and $10k in cash, but also knows that even if attempts to live in bare-minimum (not too many luxuries kinds of ways), he still has nearly $3k expenses every month. With such tight circumstances, he would likely prefer to liquidate the bitcoin so that he is holding more cash... So, surely what a guy does may well depend upon how much he has been able to already have a sufficient cash cushion and then even his reserve cash cushion get's fucked up because he had sources of cashflow dry up that he had calculated to be in a kind of "no way in hell" category of drying up, but then the previously seemingly highly improbable "hell scenario" ends up either happening or seems to be way more materially in the near term future. In those situations, a disproportionate number of people and institutions are going to end up maybe overreacting in terms of fixing their situation by either converting various assets to cash and/or hoarding whatever cash they might have otherwise spent.

So, even the governmental printing of cash ends up getting hoarded by many individuals and institutions that end up receiving it because the cashflow uncertainty situation either seems likely to continue or continues to play out.


When I see on Twitter a bunch of Bitcoin retards praising a father who incentivizes his young daughter to give all her savings (a few euros) to buy BTC, it's just plain stupid. You should teach your kids to be prepared for every scenario.
Of course, there are some people who are adding to their bitcoin in this situation rather than either selling or taking a HODL stance. I doubt that there is any one stop shopping approach, even though we likely realize that there continues to be incentives and inclinations for the market as a whole to stay in cash... At the same, time bitcoin continues to have some other sound money dynamics going on for it in the longer term, even if it can take a decent amount of time to sort through some of our ongoing short term price dynamics in all markets.

In other words, people are likely to come out in all kinds of ways in terms of how much they might be allocating to each category of assets and calculating whether they personally have comfortable allocations or whether they need to tweak in one direction or another, and of course, when people engage in public forum advocacy of their own approach or their recommendation, that recommendation might not be either nuanced enough or even account for how the circumstances of others might be different from their own including if the person making the recommendation might be taking a minority approach or even investing on a longer timeline, perhaps?


BTC is at a 50% loss since its ATH (almost) 3 years ago.
Even if largely you are factually correct, starting from the top of what now appears to have been a then blow-off top in December 2017 at $19,666 does not seem to be a great point to start your analysis of either where the bitcoin price has been or to reasonably project where it is going, based on such starting point. But, hey, if you believe that is the most relevant information in regards to where the bitcoin price is and where it might be going, then the choice is yours to accept such a framing of the bitcoin price dynamics situation.


If the economy is really in shambles, many Bitcoin holders will end up having to sell their coins to cover expenses.
I don't know about that either, even if you might be correct that some shorter term extreme moves in the overall economy and even uncertainty events might cause greater levels of bitcoin liquidation, we still would have questions regarding how low those uncertainties might drag down the bitcoin price and whether there might be BTC price support floors that are a bit higher than you, joost, seem to be giving credit. Again, you have a right to your own opinion regarding how low you believe the BTC price might go and/or whether the bottom might already be in, even within our current price range that seems to largely be bouncing in the $8,700 to $10,200 arena for about the past 2 months or so.

Am I bearish? Not really. I like the tech and just like stocks, I like when they go down so I can get them for "cheaper".
I have mentioned before that thinking of bitcoin as "good tech" might get you a bit distracted from what bitcoin is offering, but if good tech is your investment thesis, so be it. Of course, perhaps you are just framing bitcoin as "good tech" and I don't deny the idea of good tech that facilitates a paradigm shifting sound money product, so in that regard, of course, I am attempting to suggest that the thinking in terms of sound money would likely bring guys closer to appreciating various aspects of bitcoin's value proposition and why it continues to demonstrate strong fundamentals, even if short-term price performance might seem way more correlated to traditional markets than would otherwise seem logically feasible.
 

JayJuanGee

Crow
Gold Member
Response part 2: I had to divide my post into two parts because the new form seems to have a 10,000 character limitation (sucks to be me. A long poster). :sad:

I think having 10% of your portfolio in BTC is a good bet. Price is trending down so hope to buy more sats.
I don't think that bitcoin's price is trending down, but then again I am neither looking at bitcoin from its December 2017 price peak of $19,666 nor its June/July 2019 peak of $13,880 because I don't consider those price peaks as being reflective of where bitcoin is at or where it is going, but sure we can have different perspectives in regards to what seems to be most relevant in terms of where bitcoin price has come from and where it might be going... whether our investment thesis is short term or longer term, and surely, I don't proclaim to be playing around with short term predictions when it comes to bitcoin, even though I don't mind talking about it or even suggesting that other guys are wrong when they attempt to assign too much certainties to various short term predictions (even if they might end up luckily getting their predictions right).

And @JayJuanGee
Are you informed about the Grayscale Trust? Apparently they're buying the equivalent of all new minted coins and they're not going to sell their positions. Seems like they created an ETF (like Gold's GLD).
If so, I would like to hear your opinion about it.
Seems that grayscale trust, aka GBTC, has been around in bitcoin as an investment vehicle since late 2013, all of the time that I have been in bitcoin.

So, in some sense GBTC has seemed to benefit from both getting in early, being a kind of historical fluke to serve as an investment vehicle that allows institutional funds to get into BTC that would have otherwise had difficulties getting into BTC. Of course in the beginning, GBTC did not have a whole hell of a lot of popularity because NOT only were few people or institutions actually investing into GBTC, it was just taking a decent amount of time and even the passage of time for people to even know about either BTC or GBTC or to consider GBTC as an acceptable investment vehicle that might even work for their circumstances... including even being available as an option within some institutional investment offerings to members using their services.

Personally, I have always been quite critical of GBTC because I thought that direct BTC ownership is better than going through a custodial service or some of the restrictions that they had placed on getting involved in their investment offerings (though I believe that the restrictions are way less stringent than they used to be, because I recall that the very first investors into GBTC had pretty high minimums and also a year long minimum holding requirement before being able to trade, and I believe that a lot of those restrictions have loosened up - even though restrictions do continue to exist which likely partially explains that trading premium that frequently exists on that product - currently around 20% trading premium, but has had a wide variation of trading premiums including short periods of around 40% as it seems sometimes happens. Crazy that.

Seems that part of the explanation for an ongoing GBTC premium has to do with liquidity limitations rather than it being a better product, and of course, if there were a BTC ETF and maybe better competition with similar products than maybe some of that price premium might come down, too including that their appearing to hold so many bitcoin does seem to become both a honeypot for corruption and even security vulnerabilities.

I don't proclaim to be any kind of GBTC expert, but I do know that some institutional investors and even individuals may have their funds tied into tax deferred investment accounts, so they might have some difficulties buying BTC directly with those funds, and GBTC might either be the only or amongst a very limited number of options in which they might be able to get some BTC exposure using funds in some of their accounts.

I do believe GBTC has been in the news a lot in 2020 based on both their assertions of their regular ongoing buying of more BTC than is produced, but also their seeming to accumulate a decently large stash of BTC.. and even questions regarding whether they are engaging in fractional reserve banking (aka rehypothecation). Here's a great thread that only recently had been started and provides a good resource for better understanding various aspects of GBTC.
 
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