Bitcoin has its fair share of advocates and critics. Now, the cryptocurrency can add the CEO of Goldman Sachs to the list of detractors. However, one employee says they are open to helping investors trade in the virtual money.
As reported by The Guardian, Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein wants nothing to do with bitcoin after it dropped more than 20 percent of its value in the past day. In a recent statement, the money mogul noted the extreme volatility of the bitcoin makes it less like currency and more like a “vehicle to perpetrate fraud.”
“Bitcoin is not for me. A lot of things that have not been for me in the past 20 years have worked out, but I am not guessing that this will work out.”
After reaching a high of $11,395 per unit on Wednesday, bitcoin eventually tumbled to $9,000 during Thursday trading. This is still significantly higher than when it was trading for around $998 in January.
Other big money players seem to agree with Blankfein’s bitcoin assessment. While speaking at a conference in September, Jamie Dion, CEO of JP Morgan, said only drug dealers, murderers, and people in North Korea should be using the cryptocurrency. He even went as far as threatening to fire any JP Morgan employees that dabbled in bitcoin.
Despite Blankfein’s stance against bitcoin, Goldman Sachs spokesperson Tiffany Galvin told Reuters the firm is open to helping investors trade the cryptocurrency.
“In response to client interest in digital currencies, we are exploring how best to serve them in the space.”
While bitcoin has been around for a little less than a decade, trading the digital currency has only recently become popular among both high-risk traders and traditional investors. With recent headlines publicizing the substantial growth in value, bitcoin has become an irresistible lure for investors who don’t want to miss out.
Coinbase, a bitcoin exchange service, is experiencing an unprecedented amount of interest in their service. In one day, November 27, the company opened 100,000 new user accounts, according to report from Quartz. On the same day, competing cryptocurrency service company Blockchain.info said over more than 120,000 new accounts were opened.
Created as an alternative to government-issued currencies, bitcoin became popular as a way to make financial transactions without having to reveal a person’s identity. At first, it was an anonymous way to make a payment, but more recently, the cryptocurrency has evolved into a speculative investment for traders looking for a huge payday.