Morgan Stanley chairman and CEO James Gorman has claimed that bitcoin “doesn’t quite deserve the attention it is getting”, at a time when the cryptocurrency is nearing its all-time highs.
In an interview with CNBC this morning, Gorman opined that bitcoin “is punching above its weight” while insisting that speculation is the cause behind the cryptocurrency’s gains this year.
When asked if bitcoin wasn’t a “speculative bubble”, he stated:
Something that goes up 700% in a year – it’s by definition speculative. So anybody who thinks they’re buying something that’s a stable investment is deluding themselves. It might go up another 700% but it could easily not. So bitcoin is by definition speculative.
His remarks today carried over from previous statements in September when the banker called bitcoin a “fascinating development” that’s inherently “more than just a fad.” Gorman doubled down on that stance today and acknowledged that both “acceptance” and “usability” of the cryptocurrency is growing. “Clearly, it isn’t going away,” he said.
“Is it a needed new form of storage value? I’m not so sure,” he continued, hinting that regulators and central banks may not adopt a hands-off approach in the long run.
In his previous remarks, Gorman revealed he wasn’t invested in bitcoin personally. Asked if bitcoin should be ruled “illegal”, the influential Wall Street banker said: “No, I don’t.”
Gorman joins a cadre of other bankers and financial figures who have been asked about bitcoin in a year where the decentralized cryptocurrency has firmly permeated into the mainstream and society as a store of value among retail investors. Earlier this month, Societe Generale deputy CEO Severin Cabannes said bitcoin is “very clearly” in a bubble while Credit Suisse CEO Tidjane Thiam stated bitcoin is “the very definition of a bubble.” Asked about bitcoin’s price gains this year, legendary investor Warren Buffet said there’s a “real bubble in that sort of thing.” The most infamous quote of all is left to JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon, who said bitcoin is “a fraud.”
Featured image from YouTube/Bloomberg.