A Bitcoin is a unit of value on a certain decentralized, public ledger called a blockchain.
The first entry in this ledger was created in 2009, after the first version of the underlying software
The software, and the theory behind it, were created by one or more anonymous people using the
name Satoshi Nakamoto.
Today, the software is an independent, open source project with contributors from around the world.
Experts are divided on whether you should invest in Bitcoin.
Since it doesn't produce anything—like gold—experts like Warren Buffett refuse to invest in it.
Others see it as the ideal money or store of value, superior to gold in terms of divisibility, ease of transfer, safety, supply, ....
A prominent threat is that many countries have banned its use, including three of the top ten economies.
While government bans may not stop Bitcoin transactions or mining, they can diminish demand, and price, for the coins.
See our thoughts on Bitcoin.
Historical mean annual return: 594.5%
Min / max annual return: -76.7% / 4500%
Last 10 years mean annual return: 590.8%
Last 5 years mean annual return: 59.0%
Table of total yearly returns of bitcoin
Click here for other historical returns.