Bitcoin continues its volatile run in 2018, plummeting to about half of the all-time high near $20,000 per coin it reached in mid-December. While bitcoin bulls say long-time investors are accustomed to major swings in the cryptocurrency's value, skeptics are pointing to the most recent crypto cash crash as a sign of an inevitable downfall for cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin, the largest digital currency by market capitalization. (See also: Bitcoin Can Make Smart People Broke, Too.)
In an interview with CNBC, Peter Boockvar, the chief investment officer (CIO) at Bleakley Advisory Group, stated that while he believes bitcoin is here to stay, he expects the digital currency to lose about 70% to 90% of its value within 12 months. The CIO argues that crypto is in a "classic" bubble, with signs that the air is already coming out.
"I wouldn't be surprised if over the next year its down to $1,000 to $3,000," said Boockvar. "When something goes parabolic like this has, it typically ends up to where that parabola began." This time last year, bitcoin was trading below $1,000. Even after 2018's selloff, at a price of $10,346.17 on Monday morning, the digital currency has skyrocketed more than 1,000% over the most recent 12 months.
What Would a Crash Mean?
Speaking to the larger market's response to a sustained bitcoin price crash, Boockvar indicated that any corresponding decline would be merely psychological, as bitcoin is "not something that really is that relevant in a 19 trillion dollar economy," where fundamentals will remain intact. That being said, the growing number of people in countries such as the United States, South Korea and Japan, who have been amassing credit card debt to fund the bitcoin frenzy, will suffer the most.
The CIO attributed the crypto bubble to easy money policies and money printing from central banks, including the Federal Reserve Bank, making digital currency, free from debasement and inflation, a more attractive option for investors.
"You have to wonder if we never heard of quantitative easing, would there have been cryptocurrencies?" said Boockvar. (See also: Stock Valuations Now in 'Bitcoin Territory': Filia.)
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