Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein is a bitcoin skeptic but refuses to say the cryptocurrency has no future.
“It’s not for me, I own no bitcoin,” Blankfein said June 19 at the Economic Club of New York (video below). “Goldman Sachs as far as I know…has no bitcoin, but if it does work out, I could give you the historical path why that could have happened.”
Blankfein noted that he’s not like other bitcoin skeptics like billionaire Warren Buffett, who predicts cryptocurrencies will certainly “come to a bad ending,” as the Inquisitr previously reported.
Lloyd Blankfein: It’s Arrogant To Dismiss Bitcoin
“I’m not in this school of saying that…because it’s unfamiliar, this can’t happen,” Blankfein said. “That’s too arrogant.”
While Blankfein clearly does not like cryptocurrencies, he’s less willing to dismiss the market like other avowed bitcoin opponents, such as Bill Harris, the founding CEO of PayPal and former CEO of Intuit.
Harris famously called bitcoin the greatest scam in history and a “colossal pump-and-dump scheme,” as the Inquisitr reported.
The entire virtual currency market has been under extreme pressure recently amid a string of high-profile hacks of crypto exchanges and heightened regulatory crackdowns.
Bitcoin has been slammed as being a speculative bubble akin to reckless gambling due to its erratic price swings since last year.
A recent study by University of Texas finance professor John Griffin concluded that bitcoin prices have been artificially inflated through market manipulation.
In his 66-page research paper entitled “Is Bitcoin Really Un-Tethered?,” Griffin said at least 50 percent of the increase in bitcoin prices in 2017 was manipulated using tether, a cryptocurrency pegged to the U.S. dollar.
Professor Griffin, who specializes in spotting financial fraud, cited evidence suggesting there was coordinated price manipulation designed to keep bitcoin prices artificially high.
Griffin said the alleged market manipulation also artificially boosted the prices of other cryptocurrencies.
Bitcoin prices, which started January 2017 at roughly $1,000 a coin, soared to almost $20,000 in December 2017. It has since tumbled to about $6,700 despite numerous analyst predictions that it would rebound this month.
In May 2018, the U.S. Department of Justice launched an investigation into bitcoin price manipulation. The move has been praised by some cryptocurrency evangelists, including the Winklevoss twins, Cameron and Tyler, and Mike Novogratz, the founder of startup crypto merchant bank Galaxy Digital.
Proponents of greater regulatory scrutiny say some regulation of the currently unregulated market will help the industry by ridding it of con artists and legitimizing the market.