Bitcoin has matured as an asset and it will eventually be disrupting gold, according to brothers Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss, who operate the Gemini cryptocurrency exchange. The brothers gave their views about digital currency’s future during an interview with Liz Claman on Fox Business Network’s “Countdown Closing Bell.”
Claman was reporting live from the Sky Bridge Alternatives (SALT) Conference in Las Vegas, a conference on macro-economic trends.
Claman introduced the brothers, whom she described as two of bitcoin’s biggest backers, displaying a line chart showing how bitcoin and the U.S. dollar have been trading in opposite directions, with bitcoin trading at a more stable rate. She introduced the brothers noting that their Gemini exchange has been trading for six months.
Claman also played a clip from an October interview with the brothers talking about how cryptocurrency will allow people to exchange currencies at airports without having to pay high exchange fees.
The brothers explained that their Gemini exchange trades both bitcoin and Ether, the latter being the currency of the Ethereum network.
Gemini recently received the New York State Department of Financial Services’ approval to trade Ether in addition to bitcoin, CCN reported. The brothers hope their platform will become the “Nasdaq for bitcoin buying and selling.”
“People are definitely knocking on the door; the volume has gone up dramatically in the last few days” in the first three days of trading, Tyler said.
Claman asked about bitcoin’s volatility, which Cameron said is a thing of the past that was due to regulatory uncertainty. But the advent of licensed exchanges like Gemini have brought a lot more certainty. He said bitcoin has been a lot less volatile recently than gold.
“Bitcoin is acting like a mature asset,” Tyler noted, adding that there is a lot of liquidity. The digital currency has come a long way from its beginning when many people were wary of it over security concerns and its association with criminal activity.
As for Ether, “Ether is the token of the Ethereum network, which is focused on disrupting contract law. Trading began on Monday and it’s our second cryptocurrency to add to Gemini,” Cameron said.
“We are the first ever licensed operator in the world where you can buy and sell bitcoin and Ether, which we think are effectively call options on the future of two major technologies,” Tyler said. He said bitcoin will disrupt gold and the Ethereum network is going to disrupt contract law. “These are the tokens and assets in how to invest in that future.”
Claman said it would seem that the hedge fund world is interested in cryptocurrency, but the banking world might be threatened by it. Cameron responded that he didn’t think the banking world would be threatened by cryptocurrencies. He said fiat currencies are here to stay.
In addition to bitcoin disrupting gold, cryptocurrencies will become the norm as the government will control the U.S. dollar, Tyler said.
He said the dollar will continue to be controlled by the government, but it will go onto its own blockchain.
“I think really what will happen is you’ll use a combination of bitcoin, Ether, your devices, the ‘Internet of Things.’ We’ve got billions of devices coming online. They’ll never exchange value with PayPal, credit cards or ACH [Automated Clearing House], but they will use cryptographic tokens…I think fiat currencies will become digital…Your speed of options will increase. I think fiat currencies will become digital. .. bitcoin will be one piece of that larger puzzle… Cryptocurrency is here to stay. Gemini is a picks and shovels company of that future.”
“Bitcoin’s actually verifiable to the blockchain,” Cameron added. “That’s one of the reasons we think it’s going to disrupt gold.”
Because the brothers were involved in the foundation of Facebook, Claman asked them where they stand on free speech, an issue that has been raised about Facebook recently. Some people have claimed that Facebook has suppressed conservative views.
“Free speech is one of the most important principles of our country,” Tyler said.
Cameron said Facebook was intended to be an open algorithm, so if Facebook has not lived up to this, he can see why people would be disappointed. The brothers both said they have not paid close attention to everything that people have said about the current Facebook dispute.
Featured image from Flickr.