If you’re a gambler, you’re probably salivating over that headline. After all, a Bitcoin today worth $800 was valued at only $13 a year ago, and at least one venture capital firm has predicted that a single Bitcoin could someday be worth as much as million dollars. Why not ask for your paycheck in Bitcoin, and reap the (potential) rewards?
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Well, up until recently, the reason was that there was no easy way to pay salaries in the popular online currency. Digital currency payment processor Bitpay has introduced a new API which will allow companies to pay salaries — whole or in part — in Bitcoin.
Andrew Couts of Digital Trends says that this is an easy way for people who are interested in Bitcoin to break into the market — but he cautions that it’s still a bad idea for the vast majority of people to ask for their whole paycheck in cryptocurrency.
“[T]he exchange rate for Bitcoin often takes major jumps and dives, sometimes by the minute,” writes Couts. “So $100 worth of Bitcoin one paycheck might be — almost certainly will be — completely different the next time around. If you’re optimistic about Bitcoin, that’s actually a good thing — if you’re paid 1 BTC in place of $800 from your paycheck one week, the next month that same 1 BTC might be worth twice as much. Or, you know, it could be worth $12.”
Bottom line: a gamble is a gamble, even if it involves a concept of money that would be right at home in any science fiction story.
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