Bill Gates says digital assets like crypto and NFTs are ‘100% based on greater fool theory’, calling BAYC NFTs ‘expensive images of monkeys’.
The Microsoft co-founder is the 4th richest man in the world with an estimated net worth of over $133 billion as of 2022. Shortly after Gates’ comments Bitcoin bounced more than 10% from around $20,000 to over $22,400, reminiscent of when McDonald’s mocked crypto investors and it marked a local bottom this time last year.
Similarly the Ethereum price spiked from around $1,000 to over $1,200, the main cryptocurrency asset used to buy NFTs. Solana, also used to buy NFTs, rallied even harder.
Cryptoassets are a highly volatile unregulated investment product. Your capital is at risk.
Bill Gates Crypto Criticism
Bill Gates made the comments at a TechCrunch conference on Tuesday, but has been a long time detractor of cryptocurrency.
Last year he commented on Elon Musk, who became the richest man in the world knocking Jeff Bezos off the number one spots, deciding to invest in crypto:
‘Elon has tons of money and he’s very sophisticated, so I don’t worry that his Bitcoin will sort of randomly go up or down. I do think people get bought into these manias who may not have as much money to spare. My general thought would be that if you have less money than Elon, you should probably watch out. I’m not bullish on Bitcoin.’
The Bitcoin price is 30% lower today than when he made those comments in June 2021, but did increase in value by 100% following them. Will his commentary again cause a reaction in the crypto markets?
Gates’ latest thoughts on crypto and NFT this week were:
‘I’m used to asset classes where like a farm they have output, or a company where they make products. Having an asset class that’s 100% based on greater fool theory that somebody is going to pay more for it than I do, and where it has at its heart this sort of anonymity that you avoid taxation or any sort of government rules about kidnapping fees or things – I’m not involved in that.’
The billionaire has been very vocal on climate change, and appeared to reference the potential impact crypto and NFTs have on the environment, adding doubts that ‘expensive digital images of monkeys’ will ‘improve the world immensely’.
Proponents of cryptocurrency and non-fungible tokens have stated those claims are overblown, that they are less energy-intensive than other industries and could have a positive environmental application – something Cardano has made a central part of its roadmap.
Gates did add that he has not opened a long or short position on any digital assets.
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