JPMorgan Chase CEO, Jamie Dimon has stirred yet another controversy around Bitcoin. Almost a month after he first called the cryptocurrency a fraud, Dimon took aim at Bitcoin investors calling them 'stupid.'
"If you're stupid enough to buy it, you'll pay the price for it one day," said Dimon at a global finance conference reported by CNBC. The comments came just a day after Dimon said he will not speak on the subject anymore during JPMorgan's Q3 2017 earnings call. Just a day later, he changed his mind.
"The only value of bitcoin is what the other guy'll pay for it," Dimon said according to CNBC. "Honestly I think a lot of the buyers out there are out there jazzing it up every day so you'll buy it too, and take them out."
Dimon's tirade against Bitcoin began at the the 7th annual Delivering Alpha conference, in New York City, in September. In short, Dimon took shots at bitcoin, calling it a "fraud" and speculating that bitcoin has fueled a major bubble that will eventually pop, causing a serious market catastrophe.
The New Tulip Craze?
During that conference, Dimon compared the bitcoin craze to the infamous tulip market in the 17th century, when the price of tulip bulbs grew so high that the eventual downfall of the market caused significant and lasting economic damage. "It's just not a real thing, eventually it will be closed," he said about the cryptocurrency, according to CNBC.
The executive joked that his daughter had purchased some of the popular digital currency in an effort to cash in on the rapid growth of the industry. "I'm not saying 'go short bitcoin and sell $100,000 of bitcoin before it goes down,'" he explained. Still, he continued, "it's worse than tulip bulbs. It won't end well. Someone is going to get killed. Currencies have legal support. It will blow up." (See also: Bitcoin Best Example of Irrational Exuberance Right Now: Nobel Prize Winner.)
Later that month, he also cautioned that governments may step in to further regulate or even shut down the cryptocurrency industry. His prophecy did come true as China banned bitcoin exchanges.
JPMorgan Not Likely to Get Involved
Is there a chance that JPMorgan could try to cash in on the bitcoin craze? Dimon's comments offer a terse response: he explained that he would "fire in a second" any trader at his bank who traded in bitcoin, both because "it's against our rules, and they are stupid." However, JP Morgan trades Bitcoin ETN for clients.
Dimon does not stand with a united front of investors when it comes to cryptocurrencies, however, as many of the leading figures on Wall Street have begun to warm to the leading digital currency.
Tom Lee of Fundstrat, for instance, expects the price of the token to climb to $6,000 by next year. Bill Miller, the famous value investor, reportedly owns a share of bitcoin. And Dimon's own bank has also reportedly initiated a trial project utilizing blockchain, the technology which supports bitcoin and many other cryptocurrencies, in an effort to cut down on trading costs. Bitcoin has climbed by more than 300% so far in 2017.