If it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then it probably is a duck.
The duck test implies that a person can identify an unknown subject by observing that subject's habitual characteristics.
Apply the same test to crypto-currency and we get a speculation-driven bubble that could make the tulip mania of the 17th century look like an entirely rational investment.
Earlier this week, the FCA came out with a pretty strong warning about the risks to investors of getting involved in Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs).
This article in the New York Times raises some important points about the risks of crypto-currency too; it's hilarious and terrifying in equal parts that one digital coin (Dogecoin) started as a joke went on to have a market capitalisation as high as $400m.
Socialite Paris Hilton is better known for her media appearances and (ahem) notorious home movies, but came out at the start of the month supporting an ICO from Lydiancoin, touted as the first A.I. big data marketing cloud for blockchain.
Perhaps if unregulated ICO promoters get celebrity backing and throw enough buzzwords into the mix, investors will part with their hard-earned cash regardless of the risks.
I'm not saying you have to be financially illiterate to invest in crypto-currency, but it probably helps.
When this bubble bursts, it's unlikely to have many real-world implications, other than for those inexperienced investors who believed the hype and invested more than they can afford to lose.
“The bigger this bubble goes, the bigger negative connotation it’s going to have,” he said. “It’s going to be like the dot-com bust, but on a much more epic scale.”