IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Bitcoin: Money or Financial Investment?



Bitcoin has become a cultural and financial phenomenon. While many people have heard of Bitcoin, far fewer understand it. In short, Bitcoin is a digital currency, or \\"cryptocurrency,\\" that allows person-to-person transactions independent of the banking system. Bitcoin is not a physical coin that you keep in your purse or wallet. Rather, it is a virtual currency?a digital computer code you store in a virtual wallet in cyberspace and access with a computer or smartphone app. Some see Bitcoin as revolutionary because it allows people to transfer money to each other very easily (like sending an email), even across international borders. Lately, however, many people are buying this virtual currency purely as a financial investment, hoping it will appreciate, rather than using it for transactions. So which is it?currency or financial asset? Or perhaps the line dividing one from the other is not very clear.

Suggested Citation

  • Scott A. Wolla, 2018. "Bitcoin: Money or Financial Investment?," Page One Economics Newsletter, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, pages 1-6, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedlpo:00028

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: Full text
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL:
    File Function: Full text PDF
    Download Restriction: no


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Smales, L.A., 2019. "Bitcoin as a safe haven: Is it even worth considering?," Finance Research Letters, Elsevier, vol. 30(C), pages 385-393.
    2. Samuel Asante Gyamerah, 2019. "Are Bitcoins price predictable? Evidence from machine learning techniques using technical indicators," Papers 1909.01268,
    3. Thakor, Anjan V., 2020. "Fintech and banking: What do we know?," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 41(C).
    4. Hatice Karahan, 2021. "Assessing the future prospects for cryptocurrencies," International Journal of Business Ecosystem & Strategy (2687-2293), Bussecon International Academy, vol. 3(1), pages 32-37, January.
    5. Çiğdem Yılmaz Özsoy, 2021. "The Impacts of Central Bank Indicators on Commodity Prices: An Application of ARDL Bounds Test," Alphanumeric Journal, Bahadir Fatih Yildirim, vol. 9(1), pages 13-24, June.

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:fip:fedlpo:00028. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no bibliographic references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Anna Oates (email available below). General contact details of provider: .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.