While cryptocurrency continues to make waves, more and more people are beginning to look at digital money as the path towards fortune. Unfortunately, many of the people hoping to get rich from crypto are going into debt to do it, believing it’s an intelligent risk.
Around 18 percent of people who purchase Bitcoin are using a credit card to do so, according to information shared in a survey by loan marketplace LendEDU. Out of those individuals, 20 percent aren’t paying off their balances. Google has been trending with this search phrase for several weeks, “buy Bitcoin with credit.”
The president of the North American Securities Administrators Association, Joseph Borg, a voluntary organization that focuses on protecting investors, shared that he often hears of people who’ve made financial sacrifices to enter into crypto ownership.
Some are not as extreme as others. For example, investors have transferred a portion of their money from stocks or mutual funds to purchase cryptocurrency. But many people have also taken home equity loans on their houses or entered into large credit card debt.
That impulsive behavior is rather understandable in today’s economic setting, he explains.
“We’ve inundated everyone with the idea that most Americans don’t have enough in savings — that they don’t have enough to retire,” Borg shares. “People want to make it up with anything they can. What else is being as hyped as cryptocurrency?”
Unfortunately, this risky investment strategy can leave people with even larger debt, shares Joshua Fairfield, a Bitcoin expert at the Washington and Lee School of Law.
“People are maxing out their credit cards because they think it’s going to make them a lot of money,” said Fairfield. “They’ve been right enough that people are now making ever more risky investments in cryptocurrencies.”
However, Fairfield explains that Bitcoin should be handled like any other uncertain investment, Fairfield said.
Laughingly, Fairfield said, “I’d trust it less than Apple stock and probably more than some other members on the New York Stock Exchange.”
People should never risk an asset as important as their home for volatile cryptocurrencies, according to Fairfield. Instead, a person should hold on to safer investments, which can leave room for taking some chances with other assets.
Fairfield says, “If next month everyone decides Bitcoin is passe and everyone moves to Ripple, Bitcoin goes to zero. Now you have more credit card debt, and what are you going to do with it?”