The Bitcoin Pizza: History's Worst Investment Blunder
On the evening of Saturday, May 22, 2010, computer programmer Laszlo Hanyecz paid 10,000 bitcoins for two Papa John’s pizzas, marking the first-ever retail purchase implementing the digital currency.
He would have been better off paying cash.
You see, at the time, the bitcoin (BTC) was valued at less than half a penny.
But in the years that followed, Bitcoin's appreciation in value marked the greatest explosion in price exhibited by any commodity in all of recorded history.
"It wasn’t like bitcoins had any value back then, so the idea of trading them for a pizza was incredibly cool. No one knew it was going to get so big," said Hanyecz in an interview with The New York Times.
On the day The New York Times interviewed the software engineer — around the seventh anniversary of that transaction — the bitcoins Laszlo had used to buy his pizzas were worth a staggering $180 million.
That's because the value of the digital coin — today the most prevalent in the world — had grown by a factor of 2 million, or 200,000,000%.
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If you had invested $100 into Bitcoin in 2010, your stake would be worth more than $200 million at today's prices.
A decade later, hindsight has made us all much wiser, of course, and I don't think a day goes by that Laszlo doesn't think back to his fateful pizza purchase, imagining what else he could have done with that money.
But with Bitcoin's historic ascent, investors, mathematicians, and monetary theorists have started to look much closely at this little-understood commodity.
Today, it's much less mysterious, and there are events in the evolution of Bitcoin that we can see coming from a greater distance than we could years earlier, when only computer nerds and black-market merchants had any interest.
One such predictable event, which is coming up in just the next few days, is referred to as a "halvening."
After this threshold is crossed, Bitcoin miners will receive half of the bitcoins per number of operations performed by their Bitcoin mining rigs.
This modification will effectively make it twice as hard to create a bitcoin and will stem the production rate, which is headed for an ultimate conclusion at some point in the coming decades.
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The effect on market value is bound to also be significant because, as fundamental economic theory dictates, a decrease in supply will inherently drive up pricing.
For Bitcoin enthusiasts, this will be one of the most important days in recent memory, and, as I mentioned earlier, the final countdown is on.
What will happen exactly is hard to predict. With so many people trading Bitcoin nowadays, chaos abounds, but you can bet that every producer and holder across the world will probably not sleep until it's all over.
Will Bitcoin double in value overnight? Will it triple?
Anything is possible. The key to not missing out on this historic opportunity is being informed and ready to act before the moment the halvening takes hold.
My colleague, Jason Stutman, has been on the Bitcoin bandwagon since before it entered the mainstream. He's an expert in BTC and all other major cryptocurrencies and has been closely monitoring this situation for months.
He recently published a detailed analysis of this event and the likely consequences for the members of his service Technology and Opportunity.
If you're interested in getting ahead of this event and leveraging it to your full advantage, I suggest you get a firsthand look at his report ASAP.
You'll get the exact time (to the minute) of the halvening as well as a thorough explanation of what it entails and how it will affect the market.
To those properly positioned, this information could be worth millions.
Fortune favors the bold,
His flagship service, Microcap Insider, provides market-beating insights into some of the fastest moving, highest profit-potential companies available for public trading on the U.S. and Canadian exchanges. With more than 5 years of track record to back it up, Microcap Insider is the choice for the growth-minded investor. Alex contributes his thoughts and insights regularly to Wealth Daily. To learn more about Alex, click here.
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