Fifteen years ago, no one mentioned cryptocurrency when discussions around investing were raised. Fast-forward to today, the crypto market has become a global phenomenon and is considered one of the major investment channels.
The crypto market is similar to the stock market in many ways, which begs the question of the main differences between them. In this article, we explore cryptocurrency vs stock markets establishing what they are, their similarities, and the major differences between them. Let's get started!
When considering the market reach of crypto trading vs stock trading, there are more advantages to crypto than stocks. You can trade crypto or stocks on select exchanges, but the access and regulations of both assets differ.
Crypto traders can engage in trading activities at any time on any day of the week, notwithstanding public holidays or major events. Crypto exchanges are open for traders to move trades 24/7 across the world.
This is not the same for stock traders; they are limited to certain hours of the day. Most stock exchanges are open from 9 am to 5 pm and only on weekdays. Although traders can use electronic communication networks (ECNs) to trade before or after the usual trading hours, some regulations restrict the ease of trading.
It takes a lot of time and energy to get started with stock trading. You must get your registrations done with your broker and secure permission to buy and sell before you can begin stock trading.
Because of the limitations in market coverage of the stock market, the crypto market generally has more reach as a trading account is easy to set up and use.
Another difference between stocks vs crypto is the factors surrounding their purchase. Anyone can buy crypto assets completely anonymously using decentralized exchanges.
The anonymity advantage that crypto provides makes it one of the factors driving its adoption. You can store your assets in a virtual wallet or a physical device like a hardware wallet when you buy some bitcoin or other crypto coin.
The demerit of anonymity in crypto is that the security of your wallets is entirely up to you. It would help if you kept your keys or passwords in a safe place to avoid unauthorized access to your wallets.
Unlike in crypto, where no personal information is required to open a decentralized wallet, you must provide some personal information before opening an account with a brokerage company.
Buying stocks on the stock market is not a private business as the exchange knows exactly who you are and where you are. There are also cryptocurrency stocks on the stock market. These crypto stocks are stocks of companies that invest in crypto like Microstrategy. When you buy crypto stocks, it's done on the stock exchange, and your trade is not anonymous.
Crypto Exchange vs Stock Exchange
The exchanges for trading are different for cryptocurrency vs stocks. For crypto, there are two types of exchanges. The decentralized exchanges like Uniswap and Pancakeswap and the centralized exchanges like Coinbase and Binance.
Crypto exchanges are newer and more abundant than stock exchanges. The first crypto exchange was created in the 21st century, while the first stock exchange, the Amsterdam stock exchange, was launched in the 16th century. The current largest stock exchange, the New York exchange, was launched in the 17th century.
Stock exchanges offer platforms for trading stocks and other financial instruments. They are designed to handle large trading volumes and provide security and transparency to stock buyers. Stock exchanges are more regulated than crypto exchanges and are less volatile. While comparing stock vs crypto, stocks are featured in a more mature market while crypto is in a newer space.
The stocks and crypto markets are regulated in different ways. One of the deciding factors investors consider before investing in either stocks or crypto is how they are regulated.
Cryptocurrencies are mostly unregulated, reflecting one major characteristic—decentralization. The power of governance in the crypto space is not in the hands of the government but the people. However, some countries fully legalize crypto, others do not license the trading or mining of cryptocurrencies.
One of the disadvantages this brings is that the security of crypto users is entirely up to them. If something goes wrong with their investment, no central authority can intervene.
Unlike the crypto market, the stock market is highly regulated. Because the government can intervene in the course of any events, investors can rest assured that their investments are protected.
Consequent to the stock market crash of 1929, which led to the Great Depression. The US established the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as a body that provides investor protection.
They require companies to disclose important information relating to their stocks which could affect the value of investors' shares. Following this, investors can access the right information to guide their investment decision-making.
Stocks or cryptocurrency - which is safer?
We've explored different factors around crypto and stocks, so between crypto vs stock market, which is safer?
A stock trader can make untold losses just like a crypt trader can. Both are open to different levels of risks, but if you understand those risks and how you can manage them. You should be able to trade crypto stocks safely.
Aside from the fact that the crypto market is fairly new, another factor that contributes to the extreme volatility of the crypto market is its design. Because crypto coins and tokens are not backed up by anything, they are susceptible to rapid price fluctuations influenced massively by market sentiments.
Stocks are less volatile than crypto and are more proven as investment vehicles. Some investors make crypto as much as 20% of their investment portfolio. Crypto is rapidly becoming a major investment vehicle and gaining a mass following worldwide.
Crypto traders can trade coins for quick profits, but this only increases the associated risks. The most important thing to note is that you don't place an amount of money you cannot afford to lose into a trade.
When you understand the different types of risks, from small to big, you're better positioned to expect any positive or negative outcome. Overall, you'll find what works best as you explore the crypto and stock market over time.