Arthur Hayes, the CEO and co-founder of BitMEX, an exchange which has done almost $1 trillion in volume over the past year, spoke on the most recent episode of Laura Shin’s Unchained podcast from the CME Global Leadership Conference in Naples, Florida. Shin asked her guests what they thought the future of blockchain technology would look like.
Hayes went first, telling the story of how he had gotten involved in crypto trading. Hayes worked at Citi Bank until May, 2013. He said that when he lost that job, he got into trading Bitcoin for a living. During that time, he got into derivatives trading. About 8 months after losing his job is when he co-founded BitMEX, in January of 2014.
Then he said that he believes in the future, 24/7 trading, as we have in crypto markets but not in most stock markets, will become the norm.
What really struck me about Bitcoin and the world of crypto assets was that for the first time, you basically have access for people who otherwise wouldn’t interact with financial markets. […] I think 24/7 trading of all different types of assets is something that’s going to be the future, and that will bleed into other markets we’re all familiar with, you know, FX, fixed income, and equities.
Jury Is Still Out On Whether Cryptos Are New Asset Class: Arthur Hayes
Later in the podcast, Shin asked her guests whether crypto assets are a new asset class. Hayes said that he think it’s a “blend.” He pointed out that Apple’s cash reserves outsize the whole market capitalization of cryptocurrency. He said that currently cryptocurrency is too small to be considered a “bonafied asset class” but that in the next ten years, it “maybe” could become one.
The jury is out on whether Bitcoin is actually secure over the long run. It’s had a decade, which is pretty good, but it’s still an experiment. So I say the jury is out, but it could be a new way of raising capital and sending value around the world.
This is an interesting perspective for the CEO of a relevantly sized Bitcoin exchange to have and demonstrates what can only be termed as intellectual honesty. The hype parader or the exuberant bull in any crowd would unequivocally answer “yes” when asked if Bitcoin were a new anything. Part of the criticism of the blockchain world has been in relation to how many people seem to think it can solve virtually any problem.
Bitcoin saw a slight uptick on Monday, rising well above the $3,600 mark, potentially indicating an end to the bear run that has plagued it for weeks.
Featured image from Shutterstock. Arthur Hayes portrait from LinkedIn.