Jeremy Welch, Kraken’s Chief Product Officer, Explains how Crypto Democratizes Finance, Gives Users Full Control over their Funds

Many people across the globe are now looking to break away from the “old way of investing,” according to a blog post published by digital asset firm Kraken.

The modern investor has charts, real-time news, communities, and even zero-fee trading platforms “guiding their financial decisions and behaviors,” the Kraken team notes.

They also mentioned that millions of individuals are now “looking to crypto for a better user experience.” Digital asset markets have “democratized” information sharing, “provided open, 24/7/365 access to investments, enabled new opportunities for startup investing, and allowed stakeholders a vote in the direction of innovative companies,” Kraken noted.

Jeremy Welch, Kraken’s Chief Product Officer, recently discussed some of the key market developments and commented on what’s so “compelling” about cryptocurrency markets.

Welch shared insights on community-based investing, the “influences of entrepreneur investors and what advantages crypto markets provide to consumers.”

Jeremy said that we are now seeing ‘Main Street’ traders changing up their game “versus ‘Wall Street’ suits flexing their muscle.”

Jeremy remarked:

“It’s interesting to think of a financial market as a composite of different communities. There’s something unique about crypto as a community of people that have bought into a currency or an idea.”

He added:

“The classic view of a shareholder – someone who buys stock in a company because they believe in the business – definitely supports some of the behavior that we’re seeing. A lot of those traders believe in, or identify, with those companies. In a sense just talking about shareholder rights reminds me of the communities that develop around crypto projects. In the case of crypto we’ve actually seen some of this community work happen.”

Jeremy pointed out that specifically with Bitcoin, “just drill down to Satoshi himself embedding the London Times article about the Great Financial Crisis in the Genesis block.” He argues that it was an “ultimate” statement saying “I have not been a shareholder and stakeholder in this system. I know myself and others like me were not being factored in here.”

Jeremy also mentioned that he thinks that for Satoshi, BTC was “a way to build a community and build a system that aligns more with a certain ideal.” He added that the “unique thing” about GameStop is you have this young group of customers (Millennial and Gen Z customers) – that “believe” in GameStop as a company because they had been buying its video games. These clients  “understood that market,” Jeremy claims while adding that they have “positive associations with that company.” While purchasing games has pretty much shifted to digital, the “sentiment is strong,” Jeremy noted.

He added:

“Plenty of people who purchased shares, probably aren’t regular customers of GameStop, but have an affinity with the function that they play in the gaming community. AMC is another one. People go to movies and the idea that these companies are associated with positive emotional experiences is really unique. For some of the buyers, I think the statement they were making was a little bit of a revolt, it was the community saying, ‘You know, why are you using these financial engineering techniques against a company that I have positive associations with?'”

Kraken went on to note that there’s been a dramatic surge in trading and investing activity since last year – particulary since the COVID outbreak. Many more consumers have been “gravitating toward digital asset exchanges like Kraken,” the Kraken team noted.

According to Jeremy, crypto markets are better than regular markets because they’re open 24/7/365.

He also mentioned:

“With cryptocurrencies, you’re talking about literal software that these tokens are tied to. In general, we are talking about cryptocurrencies, but there are other types of digital assets. There are NFTs and there are other types of in-game items. People are used to the digital world now. Just like you used to trade an MP3 file, it is going to become more commonplace. The interesting thing about NFTs is that they are unique. With an MP3 you can just copy and paste it, but with NFTs there will be some unique values that you can trade with them going forward.”

He added:

“Crypto gives someone a way to make that same statement that GameStop traders are making. Crypto gives you the power to say to the establishment, ‘I am taking control of my finances.’ You can take on the responsibility of self-custody. Your finances can be fully private. Or you can interact with the founders of a company and protocol and help them shape the future of a business that can impact your community. Crypto gives you choices that have been eroded over time.”

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