We have deliberately chosen to limit our presentation, for pedagogical reasons, to the four fundamental periods represented by the emergence of Bitcoin, Ethereum, Libra and CBDCs (Central Bank Digital Currency) because no other event (derived or similar project) has had such an impact on the global economy. Here, we present to the readers a possible configuration of the blockchain sector based on a four-part analysis, followed by a concluding proposal.
Time 1: Bitcoin (2008)
The Bitcoin blockchain was originally designed for a single purpose: to create a decentralized, peer-to-peer system for exchanging monetary value, freeing itself from third parties that are the financial institutions.
Admittedly, legally, Bitcoin in most countries is not considered as currency. The European Central Bank (ECB) thus consistently reminds us that the Euro is the only legal currency.
On an economic level, the debate continues to rage over the real status of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. The discussion has become classic. Money fulfills three functions: a medium of exchange, a unit of account and a store of value (savings).
We can argue indefinitely about whether these three criteria are present in the case of Bitcoin (and other global cryptocurrencies). It is true that more and more merchants accept Bitcoin (medium of exchange and unit of account), but it is also true that the “store of value” function has become predominant. Moreover, cryptocurrencies are subject to speculative movements (notably through trading platforms), bringing them closer to the nature of (risky) investments.