In the last few months, rhetoric and news coverage around bitcoin has mostly been bearish. Jon Matonis, a former director at the Bitcoin Foundation, injected a bullish tone at a recent Business Insider event in London.
At the event, he turned the conversation about bitcoin being a bubble on its head. According to him, bitcoin, which is decentralized and not subject to government scrutiny, is the pin that “will pop the bubble of bond markets and fake equity markets propped up by central banks.”
To be sure, bitcoin itself is subject to similar accusations. For example, bitcoin whales are said to be responsible for its wild price swings. Cryptocurrency exchanges have also been subpoenaed by regulators after accusations of insider trading.
For all his railing against large banks and investment institutions, Matonis is not averse to their entering the cryptocurrency ecosystem because they bring liquidity to otherwise unstable markets. Investment bank Goldman Sachs is a clearing agency for bitcoin futures and is reportedly considering setting up a Bitcoin trading desk. “They (large banks) are going to develop futures markets, options markets – I even think you’re going to start to see interest-rate markets around bitcoin. We’re used to hearing things about Libor, the index for bitcoin interest rates is Bibor,” he said, adding that bitcoin heralded a post-legal-tender age.
Governments around the world increasingly sounded ominous warnings about regulating cryptocurrency markets to prevent frauds and scams. Initial coin offerings (ICOs) are especially susceptible to such activity and, according to recent reports, Some 81% of ICOs are said to be scams. In spite of these damning statistics, Matonis is of the opinion they should not be regulated. “Let the buyer do his research. This hopefully has forced a lot of investors to do more research. No one is forcing them to invest in ICOs. If you’re worried about the risk, just walk away,” he said.
Investing in cryptocurrencies and other Initial Coin Offerings ("ICOs") is highly risky and speculative, and this article is not a recommendation by Investopedia or the writer to invest in cryptocurrencies or other ICOs. Since each individual's situation is unique, a qualified professional should always be consulted before making any financial decisions. Investopedia makes no representations or warranties as to the accuracy or timeliness of the information contained herein. As of the date this article was written, the author owns 0.01 bitcoin.