If these BNPL apps were to offer Bitcoin trading, it would match the sector’s focus on young people’s financial habits.
A survey by Finder.com, which recently started offering crypto trading, found that roughly one in six Australians owns a cryptocurrency. Among Generation Z (born between 1997 and 2012), 31 percent of those surveyed held part of the asset class as an investment.
However, despite its growing popularity, the crypto sector remains largely unregulated, leading some to argue for a legal system to protect consumers.
So how do you regulate a sector that was deliberately built outside of the existing system as an alternative to traditional money?
NSW Liberal Senator Andrew Bragg is leading an investigation into this tricky issue and has heard from a number of parties including cryptocurrency firms and regulators.
Central banks, including the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA), are on the side of Bitcoin skeptics.
The RBA told the investigation that cryptocurrencies “can be very volatile, making them a poor store of value”. It added that “many observers” had predicted that crypto might only end up having “niche uses” and that many … ‘s current valuations are unlikely to be sustained.
But even if we accept that crypto assets are high risk, there is a valid argument that, as regulations become more popular, they should at least give consumers and businesses more certainty about what they are dealing with.
With this in mind, several players in the industry are supporting a licensing system for crypto operators and clearer laws governing the “custody” business of managing assets.
Fred Schebesta, CEO of Finder.com.au, an avid Bitcoin fan, even suggests making Australia an “innovation zone” for crypto assets to enable a new industry to grow.
He argues that investors can handle the volatility and says that it should decrease over time as Bitcoin matures. “I think volatility is something people are aware of,” he says.
One thing that looks pretty certain is that the bitcoin debate is not going to go away. Indeed, Square’s dual listing is likely to put it in the foreground.
- The advice in this article is general in nature and is not intended to influence readers’ decisions about investment or financial products. You should always seek your own professional advice, taking into account your personal circumstances, before making any financial decisions.