He is a millionaire of Dogecoin. And he doesn’t sell.

His friends were concerned when Glauber Contessoto decided to invest his savings in Dogecoin last February.

“They were all like you were crazy,” he said. “It’s a joke coin. It’s a meme. It will crash.”

Their skepticism was justified.After all, dogecoin is Joke — A digital currency launched in 2013 by two programmers who decided to disguise the cryptocurrency epidemic by creating their own cryptocurrency based on a meme about the Shiba Inu puppy Doge. And investing money in ambiguous cryptocurrencies has historically been like throwing it into a bonfire.

But 33-year-old Contesoto, who works for a hip-hop media company in Los Angeles, is not an ordinary buy-and-hold investor. He uses stock trading apps like Robin Hood to pursue large profits with risky speculative bets and is one of the many thrill-seeking amateurs who have jumped head-on into the market in recent months. It is a person.

In February, after reading a Reddit thread on the potential of Dogecoin, Contesoto decided to go all-in. He made the most of his credit cards, borrowed money using Robin Hood’s margin trading capabilities, and spent everything on digital currencies. .. Then, when Dogecoin became an internet phenomenon that surpassed the value of good companies like Twitter and General Motors, he relentlessly looked at his phone.

What is the value of his Dogecoin holdings today? Approximately $ 2 million.

On the surface, Contesoto, who has dropped out of college and hasn’t received formal financial training, is a lucky gambler who steps into the casino and bets all his chips on a single roulette spin to leave the millionaire. It seems that there is no difference.

But he is also winning a new kind of hyper-online by applying digital attention economy skills (meme sharing, buzz development, endless streams of content for social media) to financial markets. It is also a symbol of investors.

These investors, mostly young men, do not act rationally among the old-fashioned business people sense. They’re not based on underlying fundamentals or Wall Street analysts’ estimates, but looser criteria such as how interesting they are, how futuristic they are, and how many celebrities are tweeting about them. Choose an investment based on. Their philosophy is that in today’s media-saturated world, attention is the most valuable product of all, and what attracts it in large numbers must be worth something.

“Memes are a millennial language,” Contessoto said. “Now, prepare a meme that matches the currency.”

A friendly bearded hip-hop fan, nicknamed Jaysn Prolifiq, Contesoto is a first-generation immigrant whose parents came from Brazil to the United States at the age of six. The family was suffering from money and he vowed to be rich. He discovered his love for hip-hop music as a teenager and moved to Los Angeles after school, where he got a job earning $ 36,000 a year as an entry-level video editor while trying to book up-and-coming gigs. .. The upcoming rapper he knew.

His dream was to save enough money to buy a house — a house where he and his hip-hop friends could live together while making music.

But that kind of cash was elusive, and he spent years hitting the couch while trying to save enough for a down payment.

In 2019, he launched a stock purchase on Robin Hood, a commission-free trading app. He stuck to well-known big companies like Tesla and Uber, and when those deals made money, he bought more. And in January 2021, he was fascinated by a group of Reddit traders raising GameStop’s stock, squeezing hedge funds betting on video game retailers, and making millions of dollars in the process. it was done. (He tried to take part in the GameStop trade, but it was too late and he eventually lost most of his stock.)

Immediately after the GameStop story, Contesoto was browsing Reddit when he saw a post about Dogecoin. He has heard about the currency before. (For Dogecoin fans, Elon Musk, what Pope Francis loosely says for Catholics, called it the “People’s Code.”) But as he did more research, he joked about Dogecoin. I was convinced that the friendly image might be the next GameStop.

“Dogecoin has the best brand of all cryptocurrencies,” he said. “When you put all the symbols of Ethereum, Bitcoin and Litecoin in front of you, everything looks super tech and futuristic. And Dogecoin looks like this: Hey everyone, what’s wrong?? “

He imagines that beginners investing in cryptocurrencies for the first time may be drawn to something fun and recognizable, and that Dogecoin may eventually become a kind of ramp to the larger world of cryptocurrencies. I am.

“In the end, we all start buying and selling memes, and I feel that Dogecoin will take the lead,” he said.

His investment treatise may seem strange, but it’s hard to discuss the results. Even after the recent crash after Mr. Musk starred in “Saturday Night Live” (which he joked that Dogecoin was a “hustle”), Dogecoin remains a very lucrative deal. The $ 1 invested in Dogecoin on January 1st is today worth $ 203. That’s a lot more than an equivalent investment in Bitcoin, Ethereum, or S & P 500 stock.

The rise in Dogecoin’s stratosphere has also fueled many complaints among crypto enthusiasts who see it as a nasty sideshow that masks the more serious use of cryptocurrencies. One of the original creators of Dogecoin Denied the coin, And even Mr. Musk Investor warned Don’t over-guess with cryptocurrencies. (Mr. Musk recently revolutionized the crypto market again after him. Announcement Tesla will no longer accept Bitcoin. )

So what describes the durability of Dogecoin?

There is no doubt that Dogecoin mania, like its predecessor GameStop mania, is due, at least in part, to the combination of boredom in the pandemic era and the eternal charm of gambling scams.

However, more structural forces may be at work. Over the past few years, rising housing costs, record student loan debt, and historic low interest rates have made some young people economical by slowly climbing their career ladders and saving salaries on salaries. It’s hard to imagine achieving stability. Their parents did.

Instead of a ladder, these people are looking for a trampoline. This is a risky and volatile investment that can lead to life-changing plunges or quickly return to where it started.

Contessoto is a major case study. He currently earns $ 60,000 a year at work. I’m living a decent life, but I can’t afford to buy a home in Los Angeles, where the median home costs nearly $ 1 million. He drove a beat-up Toyota and lived a modest life for years. But in his thirties, he didn’t have a house in his name yet, so he decided to go looking for something that could change his destiny overnight and ended up at the Dogecoin door.

Recalling the method he used to pursue wealth (working hard, saving money, and saving some money from all salaries), Contesoto gave evidence of a fraudulent system to the general public. I see it.

“I feel like TV professionals, old generations of old money and wealth. No one gets too rich because they are trying to scare people and stay safe,” he told me. Told.

His new motto is “Scary money doesn’t make money,” he said.

Much about Mr. Contesoto’s investment philosophy will offend traditional financial advisers. But the wildest thing is that despite his remarkable progress, he hasn’t cashed millions of dollars in Dogecoin yet. He believes the price of the currency will continue to rise and he does not want to miss future profits by selling too soon. (If his earnings are classified as long-term capital gains and are taxed at a lower tax rate, he will sell 10 percent of his stake next year.)

Instead, he branded himself as a Dogecoin expert, adopting nicknames such as “The Dogefather” and “Slumdoge Millionaire”, and creating YouTube videos to promote Dogecoin to others.

“I’m bullish because they come to the Dogecoin community,” he said. “If this exceeds my expectations of Dogecoin and achieves it in two months, imagine where it would be in a year.”

Of course, like any volatile investment, Contesoto’s possession of Dogecoin can lose most or all of its value, and his dream of owning a home can be out of reach again. Already, Dogecoin prices have fallen almost 50% from record highs, saving hundreds of thousands of dollars from Contesoto’s portfolio.

However, gamblers rarely leave the table when they first lose, and Contesoto’s commitment to “HODLing” (an acronym preferred by crypto traders for “hold for a dear life”) is He is pushing him through the recent market turmoil.Earlier this week he Post Screenshot of his crypto trading app. Indicates that he bought more. And on Thursday, when his Dogecoin holdings fell to $ 1.5 million, about half of their peak, he posted another screenshot of his account on Reddit.

“If I can hodl, you can HODL!” I read the caption.

He is a millionaire of Dogecoin. And he doesn’t sell.

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