Who does not know the famous story of Hans im Glück, written among others by the Brothers Grimm. It’s about how the protagonist gradually exchanges a very valuable nugget of gold for less valuable things. From horse and cow to pig and goose to whetstone, which in the end also falls into a deep pit.
Property obliges and thus makes Hans Wohlgemut happy to free himself little by little from worldly possessions. However, if your goal is to build at least a small fortune and ensure prosperity in retirement, you probably shouldn’t emulate it. However, that is exactly what many seem to be doing right now.
How Hans Wohlgemut is imitated today in the colorful world of tokens
A modern Hans im Glück could also start with a pot of gold or a valuable heirloom. At first, he strikes a decent deal with him. He buys a small business, which is worth less than the jewelry but still brings him a good monthly income.
But the work is tedious. An acquaintance persuades him to sell her the business and take an equity stake in a good public company with the proceeds. “Then I don’t have to worry about anything anymore”, thinks our Hans. He is not paid a good price, but he is happy to own quality stocks. Because they pay it a nice dividend every year.
Two or three years later, he is bored. He now knows more about the stock market and is interested in stocks with more “action”. So he throws his dividend stocks out of the portfolio. Instead, it goes into more speculative segments when experiencing a lot of hype.
The subsequent roller coaster ride in stock prices is not good for him. But he already has his next goal in mind. Everyone is talking about cryptocurrencies. The future takes shape there and everything is virtual. More companies to follow, just fluctuating prices.
So he trades his biotech, lithium, and marijuana stocks for bitcoins, ethers, and dogecoins well below their original price. And as he looks around in this virtual world and learns terms like Metaverse and Web3, he comes across NFTs (short for Non-Fungible Tokens, so “NFT-Token” is a meaningless duplication), c ie digitally protected objects.
Why own colorless bitcoins when there are other tokens that are inseparable from beautiful works of art? Without thinking twice, he exchanges his cryptocurrency holdings for a colorful collection of images, which is carefully documented in an NFT blockchain forever. Despite the complexity of the underlying technology, it works in a totally simple way. “Wonderful” thinks our Hans.
The moral of the story
Theoretically, Hans could hit a chance and make a fortune with the right NFT item. Even if you regularly read such stories on thrown articles, it is much more likely that over time the millions and millions of unique images will turn out to be as useless as the millstone in the well.
You just need to keep in mind that good marketing is what drives the success of the vast majority of virtual tokens. With targeted psychological tricks, new, inexperienced players are always recruited all over the world who invest a lot of money in virtual possessions that are often ultimately worthless.
The big trading platforms often don’t even bother to explain in their advertising what the alleged advantage behind the traded items is. It all depends on the movement of prices, just like the casino is about the movement of the roulette ball. And in the end, as everyone knows, the bank always wins.
If you think happiness lies in having nothing, then the path of modern Hans Wohlgemut might be for you. For everyone, it makes sense not to be confused by the false temptations of smart marketing people: physical assets, jobs and businesses, and quality stocks remain the top choice if you’re serious about the creation of wealth.
The article Hans Wohlgemut would trade gold for NFT tokens first appeared on The Motley Fool Germany.
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