From Wall Street traders to hobbyists worldwide, cryptocurrencies are the latest craze sweeping the planet and even students are dropping their college funds for a piece of the action.
In a recent survey conducted by The Student Loan Report, 21.2 percent of current college students with student loan debt have used financial aid money to fund a cryptocurrency investment.
The survey was administered over the course of four days and the participants were asked the following question: "Have you ever used student loan money to invest in cryptocurrencies like bitcoin?"
More than one-fifth of college students are dipping their toes, or maybe diving in head-first, in the virtual currency space, and they are using their student loans to do it.
So how are students able to pull off such a maneuver?
Essentially they are using the money that's left after the necessary financial aid for courses has been paid off. Once the borrower's college or university's office has charged for the course fee, the remaining student loan funds are refunded via a check to the borrower and is meant to be used on "living expenses."
But there is no system in place to ensure the debtor is using the leftover money for college living expenses. Therefore, borrowers may spend that money any way they wish.
And apparently for a sizeable number of students, the best use of that money is to invest in virtual currencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, and many others.
Virtual currencies, especially bitcoin and ethereum (the two biggest), have significantly fallen off from their record-high prices, and the daily price fluctuations are more in line with normal stocks.