What is Coinbase? Cryptocurrency exchanges, explained

Cryptocurrency alternate Coinbase went public this week, fetching an $85 billion valuation, and spurring bitcoin and ether to all-time highs. Did we lose you already? Learn on.

What precisely does a cryptocurrency alternate do?

It’s the place you go to purchase, promote, or retailer cryptocurrencies. Coinbase trades bitcoin and 50 different cryptocurrencies that you simply’ve by no means heard of, and it additionally does numerous explaining to customers about crypto markets and the ins and outs of what’s occurring with them.


Why is it lastly time to care about crypto markets?

Keep in mind the Nineties when newfangled net firms like Netscape went public, and everybody breathlessly watched for affirmation that an organization with no bodily product was price dollars? Similar idea right here. Coinbase is the primary main cryptocurrency firm to go public and due to this fact a take a look at of whether or not it’s actual or not. Spoiler alert: it’s actual.

So what occurred?

On Wednesday, Coinbase started buying and selling on Nasdaq below the COIN (cute!) ticker image. Its share value went on a curler coaster that peaked at $429 per share and ended the day at $328, surpassing expectations of $250. As of Friday morning, it’s buying and selling at $339, up about 5% from the earlier shut.(Cryptocurrency values themselves are additionally typically curler coasters.) Bitcoin and one other cryptocurrency, ether, additionally hit document values.

What does this imply?

Cryptocurrency has gone mainstream. It’s for actual.

What does this imply for me?

It’s time so that you can change into fluent in crypto-speak. As in, you must have the ability to title 4 cryptocurrencies and their approximate values.

Is Coinbase actually price $85 billion?

In contrast to all of the tech firms that go public with out having turned a revenue, Coinbase is positively within the black, profiting over $730 million in the first quarter of this year, however its earnings are additionally considerably unpredictable, as a result of it is tied to wildly unstable cryptocurrencies. In Q1 2020, the corporate earned 22 times less ($32 million) in profits. Would you say that an organization on monitor to revenue $3 billion this 12 months is price $85 billion? Perhaps not a lot. This largely signifies that traders are simply enthusiastic—maybe, um, as a result of a lot of them personal property in cryptocurrency.