Warren Buffett’s opinion of bitcoin has evolved. In a recent interview, he described the cryptocurrency as ingenious but also called it a delusion. While admitting that his opinion of bitcoin has been upgraded, the CEO of Berkshire Hathaway asserted that “it attracts charlatans.”
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An ‘Ingenious’ Delusion
Berkshire Hathaway chairman and CEO Warren Buffett voiced his updated opinion about bitcoin in an interview with Cnbc’s Becky Quick on Monday. Emphasizing that his position on the cryptocurrency has not changed, he asserted:
Bitcoin, it’s ingenious. And blockchain is important. But bitcoin has no unique value at all. It doesn’t produce anything. You can stare at it all day, and no little bitcoins come out or anything like that. It’s a delusion, basically.
The 88-year-old investor and businessman has repeatedly criticized cryptocurrencies over the last few years for having no value. Ahead of a Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder meeting last year, he told Quick that bitcoin is “probably rat poison squared.” According to Cnbc’s archive, he also used words such as a “mirage,” “not a currency,” and “tulips” to describe the cryptocurrency at the time.
Noting that Buffett’s stance on bitcoin has “gone from rat poison squared to a delusion,” Quick commented, “That’s kind of an upgrade.” Buffett did not disagree. He replied with “Well, yeah, you know, who knows where we’ll be next year.” The Oracle of Omaha admitted:
It was a very ingenious thing, to figure out how to have limited supply and make it harder and more expensive to create, all that sort of thing … This was explained to me by people a lot smarter than I am, but they say blockchain does not depend on bitcoin.
Bitcoin ‘Attracts Charlatans’
However, Buffett had more insults on hand for the cryptocurrency. He claims that bitcoin “attracts charlatans,” noting that “If you do something phony by going out and selling yo-yos or something, there’s no money in it — but when you get into Wall Street, there’s huge money,” CNBC quoted him as saying.
Buffett is not the only one still skeptical of bitcoin. The publication noted that among those who have questioned bitcoin’s legitimacy are Bill Gates, Nouriel Roubini, Robert Shiller, and fund managers Ray Dalio and Howard Marks. J.P. Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon has also openly criticized the cryptocurrency. After calling it a fraud in 2017, he admitted in 2018 that he regretted that statement, and recently his company unveiled a plan for its own dollar-linked stablecoin.
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