Investing 101 Your Intro Guide to Cryptocurrency Play Video Read the Article Open Share Drawer Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window) Written by Dan Miller Published Jun 7, 2021 - [Updated Jun 27, 2022] 4 min read Advertising Disclosure The views expressed on this blog are those of the bloggers, and not necessarily those of Intuit. Third-party blogger may have received compensation for their time and services. Click here to read full disclosure on third-party bloggers. This blog does not provide legal, financial, accounting or tax advice. The content on this blog is "as is" and carries no warranties. Intuit does not warrant or guarantee the accuracy, reliability, and completeness of the content on this blog. After 20 days, comments are closed on posts. Intuit may, but has no obligation to, monitor comments. Comments that include profanity or abusive language will not be posted. Click here to read full Terms of Service. Cryptocurrency is NOW supported in Mint If investing in crypto is part of your financial strategy you can connect your account in Mint to see your full financial portfolio. Here are the supported platforms: BiboxBinanceBitfinexBitMartBitstampBittrexBlockFiCelsiusCEX.ioCoinbaseCoinbase ProCoinzoomGEMINIHitBTCKucoinKrakenPaypalRobinhoodUphold How to Get Started Step 1: Log in to your Mint app and click Investments Step 2: Tap the plus sign (+) to connect an investment account Step 3: Search “crypto” or the vendor name for your investment account Step 4: Choose the vendor and enter your credentials to connect your account. Now you have a view of your crypto investments in the Mint app! New to Crypto? Cryptocurrency and Bitcoin have become increasingly popular over the past several years. More and more people are investing in cryptocurrency or considering it. Still, there is a lot of misinformation of what cryptocurrency is and whether it makes sense to include in your retirement and financial planning. There are both risks and benefits to investing in cryptocurrency and this article will explore both sides to help you make a sound decision on whether investing in cryptocurrency is right for you. What is Cryptocurrency? At its most basic, a cryptocurrency is a form of digital currency that is backed by some form of cryptography. Many cryptocurrencies are backed by something called a blockchain. With regard to cryptocurrency, blockchain is a detailed ledger of all of the different transactions of the cryptocurrency in question. The blockchain is distributed and duplicated throughout the entire network. This means that there is not one central bank or government entity that controls the cryptocurrency. This makes cryptocurrency popular with people who prefer not to have traditional bank accounts or who distrust government or banking. While there are many legal reasons to have or invest in bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies, people also use it for either illegal or other questionable activities. What is Bitcoin? Many times you might hear the words cryptocurrency and Bitcoin referred to interchangeably, but these are actually different things. Bitcoin is one of the oldest and most popular cryptocurrencies, but it is still just one of many different types of cryptocurrencies. There are many other cryptocurrencies that are out there. What are popular cryptocurrencies? Besides Bitcoin, which is one of the earliest and most popular cryptocurrencies, here are some of the other popular cryptocurrencies: EtherLitecoinStellarCardanoDogecoinChainlink What is Cryptocurrency mining? Unlike most traditional currencies, where a government or other financial institution controls the currency and has the ability to mint or print new currency, there is no central organization for most cryptocurrencies. Instead, cryptocurrency mining is the process of generating new cryptocurrency “tokens.” Cryptocurrency mining is a fairly complicated process and a detailed explanation is outside the scope of this article. When people mine cryptocurrency, they first validate a part of the blockchain, ensuring the full ledger of different transactions. Once a miner has validated a certain number of transactions, they also are performing a complex calculation to generate a 64 digit hexadecimal number less than a specified target. If they are able to do so, a miner may be granted one token. Most cryptocurrencies limit the total number of tokens available. This means that as more and more tokens enter circulation, it becomes harder and harder to mine new tokens. This is a feature of most cryptocurrencies. In theory, anyone with any computer could mine cryptocurrency, but with its increasing popularity, most new cryptocurrencies are now mined by specialized operations with high-end computers. Risks and Benefits of investing in cryptocurrency There are many different ways to invest in cryptocurrency, each with various risks and benefits. You can try to mine your own cryptocurrency, or buy existing cryptocurrency or invest in an index fund that specializes in cryptocurrencies. Currently, the value of most cryptocurrencies is extremely volatile. While you can see huge returns on investment, you’re also likely to see extreme drops in value as well. This volatility means that most investors should proceed cautiously when thinking of investing in cryptocurrency. While it can be a good idea to diversify your portfolio, you want to be careful that your investments match your individual risk tolerance. For most investors, you’ll want to make sure that your investment in cryptocurrency is quite small in comparison to the overall size of your portfolio. That will help keep your portfolio insulated from wild swings in the value of cryptocurrencies. The Bottom Line Cryptocurrencies are an alternate form of currency and aren’t under the control of a government or any central institution. Bitcoin is one of the most popular cryptocurrencies, but there are many other forms of cryptocurrency. Individuals mine new cryptocurrency tokens as there isn’t a central authority to mint currency. This process involves complicated computer calculations which theoretically, anyone with a computer can do. Mint is not a financial advisor, investment advisor, planner, broker, or tax advisor. This blog is meant for educational purposes only and should not be viewed as legal, investment, credit repair, debt management, or tax advice. Previous Post Money Market vs. CD: Which Is Right for You? Next Post How to Avoid Financial Hype to Build Financial Health Written by Dan Miller Dan Miller is a freelance writer and founder of PointsWithACrew.com, a site that helps families to travel for free / cheap. His home base is in Cincinnati, but he tries to travel the world as much as possible with his wife and 6 kids. More from Dan Miller Follow Dan Miller on Facebook. Follow Dan Miller on Twitter. Browse Related Articles Investing 101 Bet You Didn’t Know You Can Earn High Yield on Crypto Investing Bet You Didn’t Know You Could Earn High Yield on … Investing 101 What Is Cryptocurrency + How Does Cryptocurrency Work? Investing 101 What Is a Cryptocurrency Exchange? A Beginner’s G… Cryptocurrency What to Know About Getting Paid in Cryptocurrency Investing 101 8 Pros and Cons of Bitcoin Investing 101 How To Speak Crypto Investing 101 What Are The Hidden Fees of Crypto/NFTs? Investing 101 So You Want To Buy A NFT – What To Consider Investing 101 What is an NFT?