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Day 1

My son shared his observation of and enthusiasm about Bitcoin’s rise in value with me earlier this year.  I told him what little I knew about Bitcoin, and how a few years before, I had come close to testing the waters by buying some.  But I didn’t.  I didn’t understand it.  It wasn’t easy to buy.  I forgot about it.  He urged me to reconsider—immediately.  So, I did what I often do—I dragged my feet and did a bit of research.

It did not seem to be much easier to buy Bitcoin nowadays, but I learned that there were do-it-yourselfers mining Bitcoin.  I was intrigued.  I did a bit of research.  I learned that DIY mining was quickly being taken over by corporations and networks of professional miners, and concluded that DIY mining's potential seemed low and the learning curve seemed high.  Nonetheless, I was encouraged that even publicly-traded firms had taken notice and were making investments in Bitcoin.

I found information about blockchains and cryptocurrencies, the technologies that underlie Bitcoin.  Those, in turn, helped me appreciate these technologies' potential impact on commerce.  I am about as far away as you can get from being an expert, but I learned enough to understand the growing interest in Bitcoin and cryptocurrency.  I concluded that Bitcoin or something like it (Ether, Litecoin, Ripple, etc.) will likely transform digital transactions worldwide—and not just financial transactions.

The most practical thing I learned along the way is that there is an exchange traded security, Greyscale's Bitcoin Investment Trust (GBTC), that invests in Bitcoin-related assets (at least that’s what I tell myself—I’ve only done rudimentary research). Whatever the assets, the price per share has grown considerably since I learned of it in the spring of 2017.  The price then was barely $400.  As of mid-December 2017, the price is well over $2,000.  So, I decided to double my stake and blog about it.  I will monitor the price of GBTC, pay attention to Bitcoin and cryptocurrency related information, and update this blog accordingly.


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Day 17

It happened.  On Day 3, I anticipated a big drop in GBTC's price.  It happened, but much bigger and later than I anticipated: Day 9.  By December 21st the price had fallen to $1,772 from its high of $3,463 just three days earlier.  This is clearly not an equity for anxious or conservative investors.  It closed at $2,016 on the last day of trading for 2017.  I am eager to see what 2018 has in store for blockchains and cryptocurrencies.  If you are too, share your sentiments in the comments section.  Happy New Year.

GBTC: $2,016 OSTK: $63.90 RIOT: $28.40

Day 3

GBTC opened yesterday at $2,360 and closed yesterday at $2,374.  I expected, or at least hoped for, a decline so that I could buy more.  Instead, it jumped to more than $2,500 within an hour of opening, and closed above $2,700.  Somewhere along the line, I read about Overstock's (OSTK), the online retailer, attempt to pivot their business around blockchain and cryptocurrency.  It was trading around $68, so instead of more GBTC, I opted for OSTK.  I did not look much at their plans or financials--being an early adopter of cryptocurrency and an online retailer that competes daily against Amazon was enough for me.  I simply rolled the dice.  I estimated that it could be no worse than picking Stratasys in 2013 in anticipation of the 3D printing revolution.