From billionaire investor Mike Novogratz to celebrities like Ashton Kutcher and Paris Hilton, bitcoin is increasingly becoming part of a mainstream investor’s wallet. It made bonafide millionaires out of those who took a bite early, and while discussions about the concept of an unregulated digital payment system rage on, there are a group of millennials who are thinking about a cashless future — and putting their money where their thumbs are.
They’re part of a different 1%, the small number of Americans who’ve not only heard of bitcoin, but are buying, selling, and trading it on their smart phones and laptops. What’s more, some millennials are using bitcoin as the basis for their long-term savings. And experts say that could shake the foundation that this country’s financial institutions have built their empires on.
Roshaan Khan, a 20-year-old senior at Virginia Commonwealth University, is one of those millennials. Khan recently invested in bitcoin and ethereum — another form of cryptocurrency — and is encouraging his friends to do the same.
“All of my net worth is in cryptocurrencies, because I see them as the best way to escalate my ability to be financially secure and pay off my student loans,” Khan said. “I like the idea of decentralization, the fact that there’s a lot less corruption and political ties. That idea appeals to me … Not having to go through banks. Having financial control over our lives again.”
Andreas M. Antonopoulos, the author of Mastering Bitcoin and The Internet of Money, is familiar with this mistrust. He says that the concept of money on the internet isn’t only obvious and appealing to millennials — it’s the one syst...