Billionaire investor and notable philanthropist Warren Buffett has never had very kind words for Bitcoin and cryptocurrency, having made a comparison to “probably rat poison squared.” Yesterday, Buffett again railed against the emerging asset class — with a slight qualification to his opinion.
In a CNBC interview , the Berkshire Hathaway CEO said that Bitcoin was “delusional” but called “blockchain ingenious”:
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.
Buffett also said that the asset class has a tendency to attract “charlatans”:
It attracts charlatans. 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.
Anthony Pompliano, a vocal crypto enthusiast who often offers his own take on the views from the likes of Buffett, tweeted:
Warren Buffett just said “Bitcoin is ingenious…but Bitcoin has no unique value at all. It doesn’t produce anything. You can stare at it all day & no Bitcoins come out or anything.”
REMINDER: Buffett has sat on $100+ billion of cash for last year and a half that has same issues
— Pomp 🌪 (@APompliano) February 25, 2019
Crypto investors will not be surprised to hear this from Buffett, who has long taken a negative view on cryptocurrencies, and is in the same group as several other businessmen and economists who see little value in a decentralized currency.
The common argument posed by Buffett is that Bitcoin has no intrinsic value, comparing it to the Tulip bubble. Friend and fellow businessman Charlie Munger holds the same view as Buffett, calling it a “turd.”
And while investors hope for the market to break out of its bear run and eventually reach mainstream adoption, Buffett said that he wouldn’t be surprised if it isn’t around in 10 to 20 years. As Buffett put it: “[I] can say almost with certainty they will come to a bad ending.”
Then again, Buffett also said about his slight change in view on Bitcoin and blockchain: “Who knows where we’ll be next year?”