Over the past year and a half Bitcoin has been on a spectacular run, rising in value 140% in 2016 and now an additional 49% in just the past month. This surge in value has invigorated Bitcoin backers convinced this boost in value makes Bitcoin a more credible currency, that it is a sign of the cryptocurrency’s strength. Yet the wild swings, both up and down, in the value of Bitcoin do not make it a more plausible substitute currency; they make it a speculative asset, a get-rich-quick scheme.

Is Bitcoin the currency of the future? No. There are two big problems with bitcoin as a currency: its value is unstable and its transaction processing is too slow.