The internet, cryptocurrencies, user-friendly trading platforms, and a pandemic-induced glut of spare time have gelled into a perfect storm that has redesigned retail trading as something that feels more like a game, and has transformed social-media friendly investors into quasi-influencers.
Israeli trading platform eToro, which launched in 2007, has been pioneering what the industry calls “social trading” features for over a decade. Users on the platform can follow other traders, check out their performances over time and, if they are keen, copy them. The most copied popular investors are rewarded by eToro with perks and a monthly payment.
As the world’s health conditions deteriorated – to wit: during the Covid-19 pandemic – more and more people popped up on eToro. In the first quarter of 2021, the platform gained more than three million new users, passing 20 million global users in June 2021. “I do see it increasingly among the younger generations: they have a sort of ‘don't care’ attitude towards losing their money, towards investing in risky things,” Smith says. “This meme culture and joking about their investments – I think it's gonna be a strange future, but I'm excited for it as well.”
- Raw materials are integral to the Energy Transition. Creating the energy complex of the future will require raw materials. In this piece, we’ll focus on natural gas which is a key enabler to reducing carbon emissions today and keeping energy prices in check while we invest in the technology and infrastructure necessary to attain net zero in the future.
- The Energy Transition will be inflationary. The inherent limitations of renewables, rising input costs driven by geology and capital scarcity (see point 3 below) and the introduction of carbon pricing will result in structurally higher energy prices going forward.
- The Hypocrisy of Divestment and ESG Investing. Refusing to invest in responsibly sourced enabler commodities increases global emissions while exacerbating income inequality on a global basis, thus resulting in outcomes that run directly counter to the stated objectives of these policies.