As a former trained financial "planner" (I have to put this in quotes, because most people who call themselves this, aren't) I would have to give the answer that no one knows, and don't invest if you can't afford to lose it all. That aside, no one knows, and don't put your retirement money into this. Aside from that, don't look to get rich quick, but in a stagnant economy, where growth is hard to find, or, indeed, some clients are simply seeking to maintain capital (i.e. trying to avoid loss due to contraction), crypto-currency related endeavours are probably a good place to look for investment. And none of this is professional advice and should not be construed as such.
To qualify the above, I think a shrinking economy is absolutely wonderful for the environment, and potentially so for many communities if they are planning for it and adapting to it (even in the third world, although it is immeasurably more difficult there). I believe economic growth is extremely destructive. (Hmm, wonder why I didn’t make it in the financial sector?) But in a contracting economy, I think that deflationary currencies, like Bitcoin, could be very useful, valuable, and productive. If the US dollar is crashing, and you want to maintain a small business, either local or international, Bitcoin is very attractive, if not essential. If you’re a large corporation, you are going to start slowly and steadily acquiring crypto-currencies, all the while probably dismissing them for as long as possible.
If trust in local, national and international banking institutions is falling apart (not for speculative reasons, but because people’s money is actually disappearing or being confiscated), alternatives like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and all the others, could have a significant impact, and not just for the small players. As I suggested, I don’t think all the large players will be left out. Some will, but others will look ahead and stay in the game. Even if this involves some companies you may not like, I see this as potentially positive, as it could allow some semblance of business as usual to continue, at the same time as things are changing forever. If a large company is able to adapt, change its business model, and compete on a truly level playing field, I welcome that. There may not be many, but there could be some.
So that’s my forecast. I don’t know if Ethereum will become a global platform that everyone thinks about like we do now of the Internet in 1993, or if it becomes the equivalent of Gopher (look it up). But I do think it looks like a good place to invest some BTC. Caveat Emptor!