Mounting tensions between the U.S. and Iran will likely lead to a rise in the price of bitcoin, the world’s largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization.
Following the killing of the commander of Iran’s Quds Force, Qassem Soleimani at the end of last week, Tehran has threatened “severe revenge” on the U.S.
It is not known how, if or when Iran will respond, but retaliation is doubtful until after the three days of mourning.
As news of the air strike last Friday broke across the globe, bitcoin increased 5 percent. In addition, the price of gold, referred to as the ultimate safe-haven asset, also increased.
Indeed, the price of bitcoin has risen in the past during times of escalating geopolitical tensions. Back in August it increased as global stocks were shaken by the devaluation of China’s yuan during the trade war with the United States.
This most recent bitcoin price hike accentuates a rising consensus that the world’s largest cryptocurrency is becoming a flight-to-safety asset.
We’re seeing bitcoin live up to its reputation as so-called ‘digital gold’. Indeed, the cryptocurrency could perhaps take gold’s crown in the future as the world becomes ever more digitalized.
As geopolitical tensions heighten, which usually rocks traditional markets, it can be assumed that an increasing number of investors will make the decision to boost their exposure to decentralized digital currencies, such as bitcoin, in order to safeguard themselves from the unrest.
The concerns surrounding the geopolitical issues, such as the U.S-Iran tensions, amongst others, could potentially lead to more institutional and retail investors diversifying their portfolios and hedging against such risks by opting to invest in cryptocurrencies.
In turn this will drive the price of bitcoin up. Due to bitcoin’s influence, other major cryptocurrencies can also be expected to receive a boost in price.
Indeed, bitcoin was one of the best-performing assets of last year, and we can expect to see its investment appeal strengthen as it becomes renowned for being a safe haven asset during times of increased geopolitical turmoil.
Nigel Green is founder and CEO of deVere Group. One of the world’s largest independent financial advisory organizations, de Vere does business in 100 countries and has more than $12 billion under advisement.
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