The race to make cryptocurrency trading convenient has suffered through fits and starts. Although buyers can now easily sign up for dedicated crypto exchanges, such as Coinbase and Gemini, general-purpose brokerage companies have slowly realized the market’s potential, too, especially as a device to attract new, young customers.
Since February of 2018, users of Robinhood, a mobile stock trading platform, have been able to trade cryptocurrencies, including bitcoin and ether. Fidelity, another financial services company, reportedly will add crypto trading sometime in the next few weeks, and E-trade also plans to dive into digital currencies soon.
As more mainstream financial institutions join the crypto wave, they’re gradually sliding bitcoin next to conventional investment vehicles, like stocks and bonds. Bitcoin, a digital currency, is out of place here. The cryptocurrency doesn’t pay dividends or coupons, and it will never generate positive cash flows like the companies represented by shares. It doesn’t create, well, anything—except occasional offshoots cryptos, like bitcoin cash.