The sudden pension reform that arose in Russia, with one of its most striking moments being the proposal to raise the retirement age, makes us wonder whether everything was done so as not to postpone the time of retirement, taking into account the fact that all three of the largest sociological services of the country VTsIOM, FOM, and ROMIR give different levels of support not exceeding 20% for such a step by the government.
For example, exactly four years ago, when a barrel of Brent oil was worth $120, Bitcoin's capitalization was about $8 billion with the price for one BTC at $600. Since then, Bitcoin has risen in price by 10 times. If, for example, $1 billion of the country's reserves had been invested in it, those investments would have yielded $10 billion. Someone will say: "But who knew that this cryptocurrency, or the cryptocurrency market as a whole, would not collapse?"
Indeed, the risk was, is, and will always be high, but it is so when working with any asset. For Russia, the generally accepted truth that investments in U.S. government securities are risk-free has obviously become doubtful in April of this year, as fearing a "freeze" of Russian investment in U.S. debts, Russia's financial authorities almost halved investments in U.S. Treasury bonds, reducing them to $47.5 billion. Is it worth investing about 2% of this amount in Bitcoin, that is, $1 billion? Perhaps now there is one last chance to do it. After all, it is clear that cryptocurrencies and blockchain are not a "tulip fever" and not a new MMM. The trust that investors have in the mathematical logic of creating these cryptos is very high. Bitcoin is limited in volume, and surely no forces can change it in the next few years.
In addition, there is a clear trend towards the development of this market. In the U.S., financial regulators are approaching changing U.S. legislation to the point where the money of future retirees can be formally invested in cryptocurrencies. One of the important practical issues that needs to be solved is how to organize reliable accounting and storage of the cryptos. In principle, the question will soon be resolved by itself, since the classic NASDAQ exchange, which has all of the permissions for financial transactions, plans to open a trade in cryptocurrencies in July, and there is no doubt that the New York State Department of Financial Services will provide the next license (BitLicense) to the trading platform, the eighth in number, for the provision of intermediary services in the sphere of sales and purchases of cryptocurrencies. Let us remember that on June 18, the seventh such permission was received by Square, a financial services company belonging to one of the founders of Twitter.
But it is obvious that American pension funds are already investing clients' funds in cryptocurrencies using the opportunities of decentralized anonymous trading platforms. According to the World Economic Forum (WEF), the "hole" in global pension provision fund will grow to $400 trillion by 2050. If in 1950 there were an average of 12 working people for one pensioner, then by 2050, this figure will be 4 to 1. We note that the forecast of the WEF states that no traditional means can save the world from the fact that every year in the G7, EU, as well as in the United States, millions of people will become pensioners, who cannot feed themselves on pension payments.
You say these are boogeymen? No, the reality is even worse than that. On May 17, CNN, one of the leading American TV channels, cited the following data: 43% of American families cannot afford housing and food. It is about poverty, in which there are millions of American pensioners, and the deficit of the U.S. pension system as early as 2016 had reached $1.9 trillion, after which the authorities stopped publishing fresh data on this indicator. Poverty is not a figure of speech, but a lack of financial resources for the needy. A large-scale study conducted in the U.S. and released in June this year showed that most American pensioners eat worse than before retirement, which creates direct risks to their health.
A similar situation has developed in many countries. For example, the Australian media sources write that local pensioners do not have enough money for food because of high housing costs. A survey conducted last December in Sweden showed that 70% of Swedes do not expect to be able to make ends meet on a state pension. In addition, pension payments are taxed with income at a rate of 30%.
No country in the world has managed to cope with the problem of poverty and the deterioration of life in retirement age. This means that we need to look for new approaches to increasing the size of pension payments. Investing in the cryptocurrencies of some of the country's reserves is a way out. This method will make it possible to pay crypto pensions, that is, payments received from high yield investments, so it would not be possible to raise the retirement age. There are already non-state pension funds, which, like BitcoinIRA, also have insurance that protects customers against the risk of losing their funds. In addition, BitcoinIRA demonstrates that the portfolio is starting to include more and more cryptocurrencies based on which it is possible to build a pension future financially. In particular, on June 20, Stellar and Zcash were added to the portfolio.
In addition to the fact that longterm investments in cryptocurrencies are characterized by almost guaranteed growth, there is another important aspect, which is blockchain that will allow us to shift to peer to peer monetary communications between people. In fact, this is a resurgence in the human community of horizontal solidarity on a new basis. As noted by the influential U.S. edition of the National Review, since the 1930s, the U.S. state has taken on many social functions that were previously performed at the grassroots level within the community. Financial crises and blockchain with cryptos will eventually lead to the situation changing again, and people in old age will increasingly rely on support from their circle of contacts, which will be granted instantly, without commissions, in any amounts, and at any distance.
The possible transition of Russia's pension system to payments in cryptocurrencies (crypto pensions) may be predetermined by the fact that the blockchain, as a fundamental technology, and cryptocurrencies will lead to the disappearance of social support in its present form. Given the crisis in the world's pension system, which cannot be solved even with an increase of the retirement age, it is better for Russia to switch to new technologies as soon as possible to resolve the issue of pension provisions.
Cryptocurrencies are the phenomenon that is as important a milestone in the development of humanity as the invention of steam traction engines, weaving, and electricity, as the IMF's chief strategist Martin Mühleisen said. There is no need to wait for the Western countries to overtake Russia in the economic sector once again. The establishment of a new world financial system in place of the obsolete Jamaican agreement and the Bretton Woods system is dawning. And why raise the retirement age if world experience shows that the result is the impoverishment of an increasing number of new pensioners when relying on any traditional financial methods?