It’s back. After months – even years – of upward growth in a steadily simmering economy, volatility returned to the American consciousness, making a rollercoaster of the stock market this week. This on the heels of a crazy, speculative rise and fall for Bitcoin; the debut of new, even more mystifying cryptocurrencies; and the disruptive specter of blockchain lurking around the CU industry.
Is tumultuous the new normal? And, if so, how do financial institutions hold steady amid cyclonic change? Though it’s too soon to call it a trend, we wonder if a return to volatility will create nostalgia for the boring old days of slow growth. Will steady be the new sexy?
Need a counterpoint to this week’s tumultuous news? Check out our Bonus Read: the January edition of the PYMNTS Credit Union Tracker. Find out how one credit union is cultivating a community of lifelong savers – no speculation required.
The Stock Market Is Volatile Again. Get Used to It
“The fear generated by Wall Street’s sharp fall in recent days had been greatly magnified by the calm that preceded it. Before the 8 percent decline in United States stocks over the past week — which was followed by a bounce back of nearly 2 percent on Tuesday — the S. & P. 500 had gone two years without suffering a drop that large. Spoiled by this unnaturally placid stretch, many Americans had forgotten what a routine market setback even looks like.”
Bitcoin Is Tame Compared to Stock Market
Not so long ago, Bitcoin’s ups and downs were the very model of volatility. Not so much now. In fact, this writer believes that the stock market’s wild swings could make Bitcoin’s fluctuations look downright straightlaced.
Are You Preparing for the Blockchain Tsumani?
Of course, volatility isn’t all about stock market value. How about the torrent of change that blockchain technology could unleash on the credit union industry?
Could Tether Crash Cryptocurrency?
And then there’s the cryptocurrency you’ve never heard of. Tether is cryptocurrency whose value is tied to actual currency. Is this the kinder, more stable version of Bitcoin that speculators have been waiting for? Or will it wreak even more havoc?
Bank of America Bans Cryptocurrency Purchases
Bank of America is banning its customers from purchasing cryptocurrencies using its credit cards. The policy will apply to both business and personal BofA-branded cards. BofA isn’t alone, though: Several other card companies, including Capital One and Discover, are also banning cryptocurrency purchases.
BONUS READ: Building a Community of Savers
And now for something completely different: Don’t miss the cover story of January’s Credit Union Tracker. It’s about one credit union’s campaign to create a community of lifelong savers. Just in case slow, steady relationship-building sounds like a good endeavor for these turbulent times.