By CCN.com: Contrary to statements from its cryptocurrency-bashing CEO Jamie Dimon, JP Morgan has finally admitted that bitcoin has value, albeit in the unlikely event that the world descends into a “Bird Box”-style dystopia.
Writing in a note to clients distributed this week, JP Morgan managing director and analyst Jan Loeys said that bitcoin would only be a useful asset if investors worldwide suddenly lost faith in all major currencies and traditional stores of value, including precious metals.
We have long been skeptical of cryptocurrencies’ value in most environments other than a dystopian one characterized by a loss of faith in all major reserve assets.
Outside of an apocalypse, the JP Morgan analyst said that it’s difficult to imagine cryptocurrency proving to be a better economic hedge than other alternative assets.
“Even in extreme scenarios such as a recession or financial crises, there are more liquid and less complicated instruments for transacting, investing and hedging, in part due to the scale afforded by fiat currencies’ legal tender status,” Loeys said, noting that the cryptocurrency market had failed to outperform the traditional financial markets during previous periods of economic uncertainty such as summer 2015 and February 2018.
However, Bitcoin has grown up during one of the stock market’s most impressive bull runs in history. It has never had the opportunity to distinguish itself during a true economic recession. Perhaps the bears are right, and it will fail that test too, but it’s unfair to extrapolate too much from bitcoin’s underperformance during a couple of short-term hiccups in a much longer rally.
Elsewhere in that same note, Loeys issued a bearish price forecast for bitcoin, predicting that the flagship cryptocurrency could crash as low as $1,260, representing a 64 percent haircut from its present valuation and a nearly 94 percent drawdown from its all-time high.
Maybe it has something to do with the fact that the Doomsday Clock remains at just two minutes to midnight, but this isn’t the first time this week that a prominent analyst has explored bitcoin’s utility in a potential dystopian future.
Earlier this week, bitcoin evangelist Charlie Shrem published an op-ed arguing that bitcoin would be the only currency that could survive a nuclear war. The Bitinstant founder said that bitcoin would be “highly durable” since its public ledger would remain secure as long as one full node continued to function until civilization had been rebuilt. Bank balances, in contrast, “would suddenly become meaningless” since “the banks would stop operating the day the first nuclear bombs detonate.”
“As long as there is at least one node running Bitcoin, the Bitcoin network will continue to function,” he wrote. “It is highly likely that many Bitcoin nodes would survive even the worst nuclear attack since nodes are scattered worldwide, and they could communicate with each other via satellite internet.”
Featured Image from Shutterstock. Price Charts from TradingView.
Last modified: May 20, 2020 12:53 PM UTC