Vitalik On ETFs, Crypto Adoption

Ethereum’s co-founder, Vitalik Buterin, has shared his view on the too-much emphasis being placed on the actualization of an Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) for either Bitcoin, Ethereum or any other cryptocurrency.

In a tweet, Buterin notes that enough emphasis should rather be on how to make it easier for people to buy $5 to $100 in cryptocurrency via cards at corner stores as, to him, the “…former (ETF) is better for pumping price, but the latter (ease of use) is much better for actual adoption.”

Vitalik (Youtube)

Crypto adoption has been a real topic of discussion in the space in the past few years. Many people, especially the millenials who are considered to be tech-savvy, are expected to be interested in digital-related products because of their supposed sophisticated approaches to getting processes done efficiently and effectively.

However, in the US, for example, that has not been the case. A recent study from Bankrate shows that 30% of millennials between the 18-37 age range said cash is their best form to put money they will not need for 10-plus years. They prefer cash investments in large part because the memories of the financial crisis or even the dot-com bust before that remain fresh, says Bankrate.com Chief Financial Analyst Greg McBridge, who views cash as an inappropriate long term investment.

While millennials love cash, others prefer stocks. Among Americans across all age ranges, the study shows that the stock market is the preferred choice to stash money for the long run for 32% followed by cash investments (24%), real estate (22%), gold or other precious metals (9%) and bonds (8%). Bitcoin or other cryptocurrency get the vote of just 2%.

Some of the respondents to Buterin’s tweet share perspectives which he subscribes to. He agrees with a respondent who says that being able to earn cryptocurrency seems more likely to spur adoption than being able to buy small amounts as earning them saves the user the need to deal with fiat exchange and the friction that goes with it.

He also agrees with the view that since Bitcoin and Ethereum function both as investments and as a medium of exchange, getting an ETF and the use of cards for the purchase of cryptocurrencies are important. That is, ETFs will help simplify the investment aspect while cards would serve to make the medium of exchange function posible.

“Agree, though I personally think the current level of adoption is imbalanced, ie. there’s relatively speaking too much investment and not enough usage,” Buterin states adding that people need to buy crypto at corner stores to pay for transaction fees and micropayments in applications.

He states: “I’m thinking usage of ETH for dapps. The whole proposition becomes way more viable if anyone can buy “gas” at a convenience store. For larger-scale payment use cases, as someone else commented getting paid (even if partially) in crypto seems the most sensible.”

While there are calls for more crypto-backed ATMs to be installed to enhance small purchases, the huge infrastructure investment involved as well as the volatility rates of cryptocurrencies could be a challenge. The ETF is expected to increase volume and steady the price.

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