Jamie Dimon is just one finance leader not buying the bitcoin hype as it heads back to its record high. Here are 18 other skeptics.

Jamie dimon jpmorgan
JPMorgan CEO, Jamie Dimon. Mike Blake/Reuters
  • JPMorgan boss Jamie Dimon is well-known for his skepticism towards bitcoin.
  • That is despite heavy institutional adoption of cryptocurrencies, especially in bitcoin and ethereum.
  • Jerome Powell, Michael Burry and Jack Ma are among the financial leaders who might agree with him.

While more and more Wall Street firms and retail investors are embracing bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, JPMorgan boss Jamie Dimon isn’t playing along with the crypto mania.

He recently slammed the digital asset as “worthless,” and questioned whether its supply can in fact be capped at 21 million. Previously, he’s said he wouldn’t care even if bitcoin’s price soars tenfold.

Bitcoin traded around $US60,000 ($AU80,890) in the week to October 16, nearing its record high of $US64,863 ($AU87,447), and is up more than 100% so far this year.

Meanwhile, institutional adoption of digital assets has strengthened as long-term term investors continued to buy into bitcoin and ethereum.

Many influential tech billionaires – such as Elon Musk, Mark Cuban, and Mike Novogratz – have heaped praise on cryptocurrencies for their potential. In the financial world, the picture is different, and there are several leaders who can’t find a good word to say about digital assets.

Here are 18 big financial players who are also big bitcoin skeptics.

1. Jerome Powell
Jerome Powell
Fed Chairman Jerome Powell. Pool/ Getty Images
“They’re highly volatile — see bitcoin — and therefore not really useful as a store of value and are not backed by anything.”

“It’s more a speculative asset that’s essentially a substitute for gold rather than for the dollar.”

March 2021

Source: CNBC

2. Michael Burry
Dr. Michael Burry
‘Big Short’ investor Michael Burry Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images
“$BTC is a speculative bubble that poses more risk than opportunity despite most of the proponents being correct in their arguments for why it is relevant at this point in history.”

March 2021

Source: Insider

3. Janet Yellen
Janet Yellen
Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images
“I don’t think that bitcoin is widely used as a transaction mechanism.”

“It’s an extremely inefficient way of conducting transactions, and the amount of energy that’s consumed in processing those transactions is staggering.”

February 2021

Source: Insider

4. Warren Buffett
Warren Buffett
Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett CNBC
“Cryptocurrencies basically have no value and they don’t produce anything. They don’t reproduce, they can’t mail you a check, they can’t do anything.

“And what you hope is that somebody else comes along and pays you more money for them later on, but then that person’s got the problem.”

“In terms of value: zero.” 

February 2020

Source: Insider

5. Neel Kashkari
Minneapolis Fed President Neel Kashkari speaks during an interview at Reuters in New York, United States on February 17, 2016. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid/File Photo
Minneapolis Fed President Neel Kashkari. Thomson Reuters
“I was more optimistic about crypto or bitcoin about five or six years ago. So far, what I’ve seen is 99% … let me be charitable, 95% fraud, hype, noise and confusion.”

August 2021

Source: Insider

6. Bill Gates
Image
Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates Jason Lee/File Photo/Reuters
“I do think people get bought into these manias, who may not have as much money to spare, so I’m not bullish on bitcoin, and my general thought would be that, if you have less money than Elon, you should probably watch out.”

February 2021

Source: Insider

7. Christine Lagarde
Christine Lagarde European Central Bank ECB
President of the European Central Bank Christine Lagarde Thomas Lohnes/Getty Images
Bitcoin is a “highly speculative asset which has conducted some funny business and some interesting and totally reprehensible money laundering activity.”

January 2021

Source: Insider

8. Charlie Munger
Charlie munger
Vice Chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, Charlie Munger. AP Images / Nati Harnik
“I don’t welcome a currency that’s so useful to kidnappers and extortionists, nor do I like just shoveling out a few extra billions and billions of dollars to somebody who just invented a new financial product out of thin air.”

May 2021

Source: Insider

9. Peter Thiel
Partner at Founders Fund Peter Thiel participates in a panel discussion at the New York Times 2015 DealBook Conference at the Whitney Museum of American Art on November 3, 2015 in New York City.
Billionaire tech investor Peter Thiel. Neilson Barnard/Getty Images for New York Times
“Even though I’m a pro-crypto, pro-bitcoin maximalist person, I do wonder whether at this point bitcoin should also be thought of in part as a Chinese financial weapon against the US.”

“It threatens fiat money, but it especially threatens the US dollar and China wants to do things to weaken it.”

April 2021

Source: Insider

10. Ken Griffin
Ken griffin citadel
Citadel Securities founder Ken Griffin. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson
“I wish all this passion and energy that went to crypto was directed towards making the United States stronger.”

“It’s a jihadist call that we don’t believe in the dollar. What a crazy concept this is, that we as a country embrace so many bright, young, talented people to come up with a replacement for our reserve currency.”

October 2021

Source: Insider

11. Gita Gopinath
Chief Economist and Director of Research Department at the IMF, Gita Gopinath, speaks during a news conference at the World Bank/IMF Spring Meetings, in Washington, Tuesday, April 9, 2019. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)
IMF chief economist Gita Gopinath. Associated Press
“Bitcoin is an example of a cryptocurrency that doesn’t serve the role of money at all. It’s a very speculative investment class.”

“In terms of substituting for what money is, I don’t think it comes close.”

April 2021

Source: Bloomberg

12. Nassim Nicholas Taleb
Nassim Taleb Getty Images 4
‘Black Swan’ author Nassim Taleb. Anton NovoderezhkinTASS via Getty Images
“The total failure of bitcoin in becoming a currency has been masked by the inflation of the currency value, generating (paper) profits for large enough a number of people to enter the discourse well ahead of its utility.”

June 2021

Source: Insider

13. Paul Krugman
Paul krugman
Nobel-winning economist Paul Krugman. Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images
“It’s not a convenient medium of exchange; it’s not a stable store of value; it’s definitely not a unit of account.”

“Its value rests on the perception that it’s a technologically sophisticated way to protect yourself from the inevitable collapse of fiat money, which is coming one of these days, or maybe one of these centuries.”

“Or, as I say, libertarian derp plus technobabble.”

May 2021

Source: Insider

14. Jeremy Grantham
Jeremy grantham
Jeremy Grantham, chief investment strategist at Grantham, Mayo, & van Otterloo. Bloomberg Television
“Having no clear fundamental value and largely unregulated markets, coupled with a storyline conducive to delusions of grandeur, makes this more than anything we can find in the history books the very essence of a bubble.”

January 2018

Source: Bloomberg

15. Larry Fink
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BlackRock CEO Larry Fink. CNBC/Getty Images
“I’m probably more in the Jamie Dimon camp.” — in reference to Dimon calling bitcoin “worthless.”

October 2021

Source: Insider

16. Nouriel Roubini
Nouriel Roubini
Economist Nouriel Roubini Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call/GettyImages
“Fundamentally, bitcoin is not a currency. It’s not a unit of account, it’s not a scalable means of payment, and it’s not a stable store of value.”

“Calling them cryptocurrencies is a misnomer, they’re not even assets.”

February 2021

Source: Insider

17. Jack Ma
Jack Ma
Alibaba co-founder Jack Ma Stephane Mahe/Reuters
“Blockchain technology could change our world more than people imagine. Bitcoin, however, could be a bubble.”

June 2018

Source: Insider

18. Andrew Bailey
Andrew Bailey
Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey. TOLGA AKMEN/POOL/AFP via Getty Images
“Given the volatility of the asset value, and given the fact that there isn’t a real asset underpinning them … I’m afraid if you want to buy them, then please understand that you can lose — you could lose all your money.”

June 2021

Source: Insider