If you’re thinking about investing in bitcoin, consider these risks first – CNBC

A customer uses a bitcoin automated teller machine (ATM) in a kiosk Barcelona, Spain, on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021.

Angel Garcia | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Bitcoin was originally created to be like digital cash, but it’s real-world use case has evolved since its inception. More than anything, investors are buying it now as a speculative investment.

The price was sitting at $37,100 as of Friday afternoon and has been struggling to rebound to its May highs after Tesla CEO Elon Musk began moving crypto markets, sending bitcoin lower. The cryptocurrency is the largest by market cap, which is $693 billion as of Friday, according to Coin Metrics.

Historically, bitcoin’s demand has been driven largely by retail investors, but that narrative changed late last year as big investors and institutions began reconsidering their positions on it. Bitcoin has always and continues to suffer from reputational issues that are hard for it to shake, mostly because of its newness and therefore the lack of data or history to support its raison d’être.

If you’ve gotten caught in the confusion and misinformation around bitcoin, here are the key things to focus on if you’re considering bitcoin for your portfolio.