Bitcoin Is Money That Works '24/7/365', Unlike the Banking System, Analyst Argues

  • ADVFN.com investment website CEO Clem Chambers explains why bitcoin is money.
  • He noted that bitcoin and other cryptos are an effective medium-of-exchange, store-of-wealth, and unit of account.

Clem Chambers, the CEO of ADVFN.com, a website dedicated to private investors, recently published a blog post in which he argued that bitcoin (BTC), the flagship cryptocurrency, is actually real money.

Despite claims that bitcoin is not money, Chambers revealed in his post on Forbes that he has “made a lot of money out of crypto” and that he “can tell you categorically that” bitcoin has all the essential properties, or characteristics, of money. Traditional economists define money to be a effective medium-of-exchange (MoE), a store-of-value (SoV), and a unit account. According to Chambers, bitcoin meets all three criteria for money, in addition to “other things.”

Bitcoin Is "An Excellent Means Of Exchange"

Going on to argue that bitcoin is “an excellent means of exchange”, Chambers pointed out that users “can’t reverse a BTC payment like a payment by credit card.” This is a useful feature for merchants as bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies bring finality to transactions. Notably, Chambers mentioned “there is now a hard core of people who buy things with credit cards and ‘charge back’ months later.” These people claim that they were either not satisfied with the product or service, or even assert that they did not conduct the disputed transaction. This is often unfair to merchants as they’ve already provided their service, but will ultimately not be compensated.

However, these types of problems, or issues, won’t arise when using bitcoin, as Chamber wrote: 

You can’t do this with bitcoin. You can’t bounce a bitcoin or charge back a bitcoin. You can’t forge a bitcoin. You can’t receive it and claim you didn’t.

"No Multi-Day Banking Delays" With Crypto

Citing other advantages bitcoin and other cryptocurrency payment platforms have over traditional transaction systems, Chambers noted that “BTC arrives in minutes from distant clients” and it’s easy to confirm that the transaction, or payment, has been sent. For cross-border transfers, there are “no multi-day banking delays for payments that may or may not have been sent”, Chambers wrote. He added that users receive “an irreversible notice” their bitcoin payment has been sent out to their address.

In addition to receiving quick and conflict-free payments, Chambers noted there are services available now that allow users to “convert [their] crypto into pounds or dollars with no outrageous currency conversion” rates. Chambers also revealed that a BTC payment “worked for a US Florida client of [theirs]” - even during an emergency situation due to a “recent hurricane while the US bank was evacuated.”

While business-to-business (B2B) transactions involving fiat currencies can only occur during business hours, Chambers mentioned: 

Bitcoin is 24/7/365, the banking system is not. The blockchain works weekends, holidays and evenings, like our international sales staff and our websites.

Bitcoin Is A Store Of Value, & Unit Of Account

Bitcoin is also a SoV, and it’s “ridiculous to point out” that the flagship cryptocurrency was valued at $20,000 over a year ago and it is now trading for only $3,600 - Chambers argued. That’s because “one-yen used to be a gold coin” and if “you look at the history of money and its never-ending narrative of inflation and obsolescence”, then you are able to gain a better perspective, Chambers wrote.

Per the ADVFN.com CEO, “you can [also] use bitcoin as a unit of account.” He pointed out that hundreds of crypto exchanges are using cryptocurrencies as a unit of account and that blockchain-based cryptos are “by definition” associated with a ‘ledger’ - while tokens are “by design encapsulated on a ledger.” He remarked:

To say a bitcoin is not a unit of account is to say an abacus is not a calculating machine.

Coinbase Commerce Now Lets Merchants Accept USD Coin (USDC)

On Monday (May 20), Coinbase announced that "Coinbase Commerce", which provides non-custodial cryptocurrency payment solutions, now allows businesses to accept fully dollar-collateralized stablecoin USDC.

History of USDC

As CryptoGlobe reported on 26 September 2018, "USDC Coin" (USDC for short) was launched on that day by Goldman-funded FinTech startup Circle Internet Financial (better known as "Circle"). This is a regulated fully-collateralized dollar-backed stablecoin that was originally announced on 16 May 2018. USDC is based on an open source fiat stablecoin framework developed and governed by the CENTRE project.

Circle said at the time that the problems with existing fiat-backed solutions (such as Tether's USDT) were that they "have lacked financial and operational transparency, have operated in unregulated jurisdictions with unknown banking and audit partners, and have been built as closed-loop ecosystems and closed proprietary technologies."

In contrast, Circle's USDC stablecoin deals with these issues by "providing detailed financial and operational transparency" and "operating within the regulated framework of US money transmission laws, reinforced by established banking partners and auditors." USDC tokens are ERC-20 compatible (meaning that they run on the Ethereum blockchain); they are minted, issued, and burnt/redeemed based on network rules defined by CENTRE. 

Coinbase's Previous Involvement With USDC

On 23 October 2018, Circle announced that Coinbase (another member of the CENTRE consortium) was making USDC available to its customers on Coinbase Consumer and Coinbase Pro, and that customers could "tokenize dollars into USDC and redeem USDC into dollars through both Circle and Coinbase."

Then, on May 14, Coinbase said via a blog post titled "Expanding USDC crypto trading globally" that:

  • It was making USDC trading available on Coinbase Consumer and Coinbase Pro in 85 countries.

  • It was doing this to help "accelerate the global adoption of crypto trading" and to provide wider access to "a stable store of value."

  • There are more than 300 million USDC tokens currently in circulation today, and that USDC is supported by 100+ ecosystem partners.

  • Stablecoins "have the potential to materially improve the lives of people in countries where inflation is eroding wealth." 

  • Coinbase serves customers in 103 jurisdictions.

Coinbase Commerce and USDC

Coinbase Commerce was launched on 14 February 2018. Coinbase described Coinbase Commerce as a new service that "enables merchants to accept multiple cryptocurrencies directly into a user-controlled wallet," and that in contrast to its previous merchant products, it was "not a hosted service, so merchants have full control of their own digital currency." Four cryptocurrencies were supported back then: Bitcoin (BTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Ether (ETH), and Litecoin (LTC).

Coinbase Commerce can be "directly integrated into a merchant’s checkout flow or added as a payment option on an e-commerce platform." Initially, the only e-commerce platform supported was Shopify, but on 6 August 2018, support for WooCommerce was added.

Yesterday's blog post said that now Coinbase Commerce has added support for stablecoin USDC, thereby allowing "businesses to accept payments online in the same way they’re able to accept cash in-store." 

Here are a few things to note about Coinbase Commerce:

  • "Coinbase Commerce doesn’t charge any fees to process payments."
  • "Coinbase Commerce accounts are completely separate from Coinbase accounts."
  • "You can use the withdraw functionality to send cryptocurrency to an address associated with your Coinbase account."

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