Here are 8 myths about cryptocurrencies that Australians actually believe to be true, and why they’re wrong.
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It seems Australians are very much interested in Bitcoin (CRYPTO: BTC) but don’t know a whole lot about it.
Comparison site Finder conducted a survey this month that showed 25% of Aussies will either own or plan to own cryptocurrency by the end of this year. But 20% don’t know how to buy it.
And remarkably, 56% falsely believed Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA) chief executive Elon Musk invented Bitcoin.
Bitcoin was in fact created by an anonymous developer with the alias Satoshi Nakamoto.
Nakamoto’s identity has been the topic of furious debate in the past decade. Some, like Australian academic Craig Wright, have claimed they are the real Nakamoto — but no contender has entirely convinced the crypto community.
Musk denied he was Sakamoto in a tweet back in 2017.
8 myths about Bitcoin that Aussies believe in
The Finder study also found many other misconceptions that Australians believed regarding Bitcoin.
Here are the 7 biggest ones other than the ‘Elon Musk inventor’ theory:
“Bitcoin is not taxed”
The majority of Aussies (59%) think this, even though cryptocurrency profits are taxed as either income or capital gains — like any other asset.
“There’s an unlimited number of Bitcoins to be mined”
Programmatically, Bitcoin is limited to a maximum pool of 21 million, but 44% of Australians think there is an infinite source.
According to Finder, there are currently about 18.6 million in circulation. While there are many active miners at the moment, due to technical reasons experts don’t expect to hit the 21 million cap until the next century.
“Bitcoin has been around for more than 15 years”
Not quite. While 44% of Aussies believe this, the cryptocurrency was first distributed in 2009. It was the first-ever implementation of blockchain database technology, and sold for a fraction of a cent initially.
It’s now worth $55,552.
“There are fewer than 100 cryptocurrencies”
Thanks to the explosion in popularity over the past 4 years, many different cryptocurrencies have been developed. There are now more than 4,000 currencies in circulation, according to Finder, and this number is growing weekly.
The second most prominent cryptocurrency, Ethereum (CRYPTO: ETC), has been on fire lately. A Bezinga survey this week found investors thought it would actually outperform Bitcoin through this year.
“One Bitcoin is worth more than $100,000”
Bitcoin’s value has surged in the past 5 years — it was just $600 in May 2016. But it hasn’t quite reached six figures yet. The highest it has been was around $83,000 earlier this year.
“You can’t buy things with Bitcoin”
Although Musk opened up Tesla to accept Bitcoin earlier this year then withdrew that capability just last week, there are still many businesses that will accept it.
There are even Australian services like Living Room of Satoshi that allow you to receive a portion of your salary as Bitcoin.
“There are physical Bitcoins”
Even though 22% of Australians believe there are Bitcoin coins or notes, this is entirely false. The currency exists exclusively in digital form using blockchain technology.
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Tony Yoo has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia’s parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. owns shares of and recommends Bitcoin and Tesla. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.