We are currently in a cryptocurrency bear market and have been since December of 2017. But, hiding behind every bear is a bull market waiting to happen.
As Warren Buffett says, “Be fearful when others are greedy and greedy when others are fearful.”
There has certainly been more crypto bulls coming out over the first quarter of 2018 in prominent positions in government. Below we will look at some of the thoughts of regulators, ministers, traders, computer programmers and authors on their views on bitcoin and cryptocurrencies.
Commissioner of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), Rostin Behnam
“We are witnessing a technological revolution. Perhaps we are witnessing a modern miracle”
“Virtual currencies may – will – become part of the economic practices of any country, anywhere. Let me repeat that: these currencies are not going away and they will proliferate to every economy and every part of the planet.”
U.S. SEC Chairman, Jay Clayton
“Distributed Ledge Technology – incredible promise, it can drive efficiencies not only in financial markets… cryptocurrencies… these are replacements for sovereign currencies, replace the Dollar, the Yen, the EUR with Bitcoin.. that is not a security.”
Ben Bernanke, Former Chairman of the Federal Reserve
“Virtual currencies may hold long-term promise, particularly if the innovations promote a faster, more secure and more efficient payment system.”
Christine LaGuarde, Head of the IMF
“…why might citizens hold virtual currencies rather than physical dollars, euros or sterling? Because it may one day be easier and safer than obtaining paper bills, especially in remote regions. And because virtual currencies could actually become more stable.”
French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire
“I was a neophyte a year ago, but now I’m passionate. It took me a year. Let us show a lot of pedagogy with our fellow citizens to make France the first place of blockchain & crypto-active innovation in Europe”
German Federal Ministry of Finance, Bundesministerium der Finanzen
“Virtual currencies… become the equivalent to legal means of payment, insofar as these so-called virtual currencies of those involved in the transaction as an alternative contractual and immediate means of payment have been accepted and no other purpose serve as a means of payment.”
In other words, cryptocurrency payments will not be taxed in Germany
Malta’s Prime Minister, Joseph Muscat
“Cryptocurrencies are ‘the inevitable future of money'”
Malta’s Parlimentary Secretary for the Digital Economy, Hon. Silvio Schembri
“Binance’s presence in Malta sustains our vision, that of making Malta ‘The Blockchain Island’”
Bill Gates, Founder of Microsoft
“Bitcoin is exciting because it shows how cheap it can be. Bitcoin is better than currency in that you don’t have to be physically in the same place and, of course, for large transactions, currency can get pretty inconvenient.”
Richard Branson, Virgin
“Well, I think it is working. There may be other currencies like it that may be even better. But in the meantime, there’s a big industry around Bitcoin. — People have made fortunes off Bitcoin, some have lost money. It is volatile, but people make money off of volatility too.”
Eric Schmidt, Chairman of Google
“[Bitcoin] is a remarkable cryptographic achievement… The ability to create something which is not duplicable in the digital world has enormous value…Lot’s of people will build businesses on top of that.”
Paul Buchheit, the Creator of Gmail
“Bitcoin may be the TCP/IP of money.”
Nassim Taleb, statistician, former trader, risk analyst and author of The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable
“Bitcoin is the beginning of something great: a currency without a government, something necessary and imperative. But I am not familiar with the specific product to assert whether it is the best potential setup. And we need a long time to establish confidence.”
Peter Thiel, Co-Founder of Paypal
“PayPal had these goals of creating a new currency. We failed at that, and we just created a new payment system. I think Bitcoin has succeeded on the level of a new currency, but the payment system is somewhat lacking. It’s very hard to use, and that’s the big challenge on the Bitcoin side.”
Milton Friedman, 1976 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences
for his research on consumption analysis, monetary history and theory and the complexity of stabilisation policy.
“I think the internet is going to be one of the major forces for reducing the role of government. The one thing that’s missing but that will soon be developed, is a reliable e-cash.”
Sterlin Lujan, Communications Ambassador of Bitcoin.com
“Cryptocurrency can free people from the tryanny of the State”
Richard Brown, Executive Architect of IBM
“So my view’s quite clear. I believe cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin is the first example, I believe they’re going to change the world.”
Hal Finney, Computer Scientist and the first person to receive a Bitcoin transaction
“Bitcoin has a couple of things going for it: one is that it is distributed, with no single point of failure, no ‘mint’, no company with offices that can be subpoenaed and arrested and shut down.”
Larry Summers , Former Secretary of the US Treasury
“The people who rejected the Internet as a curiosity for scientists were on the wrong side of history, the people who rejected digital photography as really an artificial thing were on the wrong side of history, and the people who felt that nongimmicky tennis racquets were made with wood were on the wrong side of history. So it seems to me that the people who confidently reject all the innovation here [in blockchain-based payment and monetary systems] are on the wrong side of history.”
Click here to read whether we are in a cryptocurrency bull or bear market.
Warren Buffett, Berkeshire Hathaway, probably the most respected stock investor of all time, age 87
“Bitcoin is probably Rat Poison Squared”
“If you buy something like bitcoin or some cryptocurrency, you don’t have anything that is producing anything… You’re just hoping the next guy pays more. And you only feel you’ll find the next guy to pay more if he thinks he’s going to find someone that’s going to pay more. You aren’t investing when you do that, you’re speculating.”
Charlie Munger, Berkeshire Hathaway, age 94
“Bitcoin is worthless, artificial gold”
“I like cryptocurrencies a lot less than [Warren Buffett]…to me, it’s just dementia. It’s like somebody else is trading turds and you decide you can’t be left out.”
Bill Gates, sitting next to Buffett and Munger
“I would short [Bitcoin] if there was an easy way to do it”
Update: you can now short Bitcoin on the Bitmex exchange
Jamie Dimon, JPMorgan Chase
“The currency isn’t going to work,” he said, according to Reuters. “You can’t have a business where people can invent a currency out of thin air and think that people who are buying it are really smart.”
“Don’t ask me to short it. It could be at $20,000 before this happens, but it will eventually blow up.” he said. “Honestly, I am just shocked that anyone can’t see it for what it is.”
Update: JPMorgan have invested more than $2bn in Blockchain technology and have partnered with cryptocurrency ZCash.
“Bitcoin’s meteoric rise in a short time has dwarfed the rise seen during the dot-com bubble. We also believe that cryptocurrencies have moved beyond bubble levels in financial markets, and even beyond the levels seen during the Dutch ‘tulipmania’ between 1634 and early 1637.”
Update: Goldman Sachs have now opened a cryptocurrency trading division and are major shareholders in circle who bought the Poloniex cryptocurrency exchange for a rumoured $400m
Financial Times Editor, Robin Wigglesworth
“Its primary attraction has been its rocketing price,” he wrote. “But that has turned what might have had a kernel of value into a ‘trading sardine.’”
Peter Schiff, CEO, gold bug and chief global strategist of Euro Pacific Capital Inc.,
“This is a speculative frenzy. Right now, this is a bubble. It’s a cult. When you’re in it, obviously you need more people to believe in it, because the price can only go up if other people buy in. In that sense it’s a natural Ponzi scheme – a lot of it is just plain greed.”
“[Bitcoin] is being created but there is no real value in bitcoin; it’s all based on faith. If somebody doesn’t want your bitcoin there’s nothing you can do with it, right?”
Update: Peter Schiff’s company now accepts Bitcoin Cash as payment
Nouriel Robini, Economist
“Bitcoin is the mother of all bubbles and is also the biggest bubble in human history if you compare it to, say, the Mississippi bubble or the tech bubble or tulip mania or South Sea Bubble … Now it has crashed by about 60 percent compared to the peak of mid-December. It has crashed 30 percent in the last week and 10 percent today, and … the fundamental value of Bitcoin is zero.”
Arun Jaitley, Indian Finance Minister
“India doesn’t consider cryptocurrencies legal tender “and will take all measures to eliminate use of these crypto-assets in financing illegitimate activities or as part of the payment system” while exploring the use of blockchain technology, he told lawmakers in his annual budget speech.”
Mark Carney, Governor, Bank of England
“For many reasons the crypto-assets in your digital wallets are unlikely to be the future of money … But that is not meant to dismiss them. Their core technology is already having an impact. Bringing crypto-assets into the regulatory tent could potentially catalyze innovations to serve the public better.”
Crypto Bull or Bear? Which Are You?
Currently, we are firmly still in a crypto bear market, but the tide is turning. You can read the may reasons why here.
I think for the most nuanced take on cryptocurrencies, we should look at one of the most successful central bankers of all time and that is Raghuram Rajan, the former Governor of the Reserve Bank of India
“I think we are still watching the evolution of these kinds of currencies,” says Mr. Rajan in an interview with NDTV.
“One of the problems that we envisage with bitcoin is security issues. You’ve seen that it is not as secure as people thought they were and there have been stolen bitcoins and so on.”
“But the second issue is the fluctuation in value. For money you require a stable store of value. Something that fluctuates so much is less effective for use as money.”
However, Rajan noted that the technology used in digital currencies is promising, and they will become safer and better in future.
“Some of them are useful, some of them are worrisome and we have to see how we take on such technologies,” he said.
“I have no doubt that down the line we will be moving towards primarily a cashless society and we will have some kinds of currencies like this which will be at work.”
“Over time they will be a form of transaction, that’s for sure.”
There are 2 billion people in the world without a bank account, but mobile phones are more widespread, Solutions such as mobile payments system MPesa in South Africa, Paytm in India & Tencent in China were the first revolution. Blockchain and cryptocurrencies will likely produce the second revolution in fintech payments.
India understands the problem of the unbanked and have launched the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY), or “Prime Minister’s People’s Wealth Scheme,”in an unprecedented effort to “bank the unbanked” which has led to 300 million new no-minimum-balance bank accounts. But, I fail to see how it is going to really reduce transaction costs for micropayments. Cryptocurrencies on the other hand have an excellent chance to attempt to deliver real change.
Let’s see if a stable coin with no transaction fee micropayments linked to local currencies and mobile phone payments from cryptocurrency wallets can change the world and give better access to credit and allow easier, free payments for the poor… there is only hope.
Cryptocurrency & Blockchain Enthusiast | Licenced and Regulated Investment Manager
Cryptocurrency trading is highly speculative. The long term outcome is unknown. Any information contained in articles is for educational purposes only and is not investment advice. Please consult with a financial adviser before making any trading decisions.