So you've seen the enormous pump in bitcoin price today. You thought you'd wait till the bottom to buy. You thought, I guess, that someone would tap you on the shoulder and let you know - "Dear Sir, now is the time to buy your bitcoin." But it didn't happen. You're sick and tired of missing out. In short, FOMO is kicking in. You're ready to YOLO Market Buy the Shit out of this internet money. But you have no idea how. You're 100% ready to enter The Dark Side. In your personal, non-professional opinion, it is high time that you got some crypto exposure. But you don't know how to do that.
You probably have some friends and relatives that will start asking you questions about bitcoin and crypto this week. That's what happens after these pumps. Feel free to send them this post instead of crafting your own. I grow tired of answering this question, so I wrote this post. Now I can just send them this link.
What follows is my personal, non-professional opinion. It is not financial advice.
The first thing any one with the means to do it should do, once they make the decision to get cryptoasset exposure in their investment portfolio, is to buy and "HODL" (hold on for dear life) 1 BTC. We call it #HODL1BTC. Right now one full bitcoin will set you back around $8,000 to $9,000. That price is pretty volatile and you can, and probably should, dollar-cost average in to it by buying fractions of a BTC each day or week or month. Yes, that's right, you can own 0.00000001 BTC (1 sat). If you want to passively start accumulating some BTC while you buy your everyday groceries or whatever, try Fold. Click on that link right there and you can get 30,000 free sats from Fold. In the parlance of bitcoin, 1 sat (which is short for satoshi) is 0.00000001 BTC.
If you're reading this post, you are probably itching to go put some money somewhere, anywhere in some kind of "crypto"... You think I'm a cautious moron for wanting to dollar cost average into this. If you think that, you first need to understand why you need to act in the next few days, though. It's called the bitcoin halving and it's set to happen sometime in mid-May. Here's more about that from Bloomberg.
In order to acquire your crypto currency, you're first gonna need a fiat onramp. The best one for Americans is called Coinbase. Here's a referral code for that. Coinbase is a great private company based in Silicon Valley and valued around $8 billion in its most recent round in 2018. They are probably the most trustworthy place to invest. It's pretty much the first place anyone goes to buy more crypto when they hear it is mooning. It even suffered a temporary outage today as BTC crushed it all the way to $9400. I mean, for Chrissake, it was even in the opening credits of HBO's Silicon Valley!
Go ahead and start an account there first. Click here to get a couple bucks for you and me and get started!
O.K. So that's bitcoin. Go get 1 BTC first before you do ANYTHING else. If you still have some money left over, then you should start trying to understand Ethereum (ETH).
Ethereum, quite simply, is a bitcoin that you can program. Think of ETH as Bitcoin version 2. It's a lot more than that but, as a small-time retail investor, probably understanding the fact that ETH is a token that allows you to interact with a huge decentralized computer is honestly enough. There's a lot going on in the Ethereum space right now, specifically a whole suite of tools that comprise something called decentralized finance (DeFi) that is a challenge to the trillions-of-dollar entire financial services industry as it currently exists.
Pretty soon ETH 2.0 will happen, which essentially would be Bitcoin version 3. This network upgrade should make the Ethereum system orders of magnitude faster, enough we hope to accommodate the exponential growth of DeFi services that come out every single day. But you don't even need to know about ETH 2.0. Just know that it is coming soon. It's sort of like the Ethereum equivalent of the Bitcoin halving. And you can buy it before that happens. For now I suggest you just read this puff piece about why ETH could be worth a lot more soon. If you want a more nuanced deep dive, take a look at Ryan Sean Adams' Bankless website.
But don't let your coins just sit there. Put them to work! For that you need a Blockchain Interest Account. Think of it like a savings account. You can get one of those at BlockFi, a well-funded startup that is seeing exponential growth. You don't need to worry about your funds there, at least for the next few years. They even have insurance on the portion of their holdings that they don't lend out for yield on your behalf. You can read more about a recent funding round here on Bloomberg.
If you use this referral code, we'll both get a little extra bitcoin after the 1st month of you funding a blockchain interest account. It might even be like $50. So it's worth it!
My personal recommendation is to get 1 BTC, 32 ETH, and 50 LTC on the crypto side and store your long-term dollar savings as USDC stablecoin on BlockFi to earn 8.6% interest, which can also be denominated in BTC or ETH or USDC/GUSD/PAX, whatever you like. That should be kind of a minimum initial goal before you go off the deep end with altcoins trying to catch moons and whatnot.
Happy to talk whenever you like. Just tweet me.