Billionaire Ray Dalio, the founder of the world’s largest hedge fund, Bridgewater Associates, says it’s “amazing” what bitcoin has accomplished but believes the cryptocurrency is not going to be an effective money, a store of value, or a medium of exchange. Nonetheless, he stressed that “we are in a world in which money as we know it is in jeopardy.”
Billionaire Ray Dalio on Bitcoin
Billionaire investor and hedge fund manager Ray Dalio, who founded the world’s largest hedge fund, Bridgewater Associates, and previously served as its co-chief investment officer, has offered his view on bitcoin in an interview with CNBC Thursday. Referring to the world’s largest cryptocurrency, he said:
I think it’s been quite amazing that for 12 years it’s accomplished … But I think it has no relation to anything … It’s a tiny thing that gets disproportionate attention.
Noting that bitcoin’s total market value is less than a third of Microsoft’s stock, whose market cap stood at $1.92 trillion on Friday, Dalio asserted: “Biotech and many other industries are more interesting than bitcoin.” The billionaire opined:
It’s not going to be an effective money. It’s not an effective storehold of wealth. It’s not an effective medium of exchange.
“But we are in a world in which money as we know it is in jeopardy … We are printing too much, and it’s not just the United States, all the reserve currencies,” he continued, mentioning problems with the euro and the Japanese yen in particular. “And so in that world, the question is, what is money and how’s that going to operate? So when we look at something like China’s renminbi, and then you take the digital renminbi, I think you’re going to see that become more and more a thing,” Dalio shared.
The Bridgewater Associates founder stressed, “if you want a digital currency, you have to do something different” from bitcoin. However, he noted: “I don’t think that the stablecoins are good because then you’re getting a fiat currency again.” He added:
What would be best is an inflation-linked coin. In other words, something where basically you would say, okay, this is going to give me buying power because every individual wants. What do they want? They want to secure their buying power.
“The closest thing to that is an inflation index bond and so on,” Dalio said. “But if you created a coin that says, okay, this is buying power that I know I could save in and put my money over a period of time, and then I can transact in anywhere, I think that that would be a good coin,” he continued. “So I think you’re going to see probably the development of coins that you haven’t seen that probably will end up being attractive, viable coins. I don’t think bitcoin is it.”
Many People Disagree With Ray Dalio
Following Dalio’s interview, many people took to Twitter to disagree with him. Some people noted that Dalio just described bitcoin while others pointed out that Bitcoin has been around for more than 14 years, not 12 like the Bridgewater founder said.
“An ‘inflation-linked currency’ is nonsense,” bitcoin proponent Robert Breedlove commented. “Lesson for Ray Dalio: Money’s buying power is preserved through the integrity of its supply. Bitcoin has a perfectly integral money supply of 21M. In the long run, bitcoin is the perfect money for preserving buying power over time.”
Gabor Gurbacs, strategy advisor at Vaneck/MVIS tweeted: “Ray Dalio is wrong about Bitcoin. I respect Ray’s work and like his books, but his comments on Bitcoin are under-researched and disappointing.” Gurbacs added:
Ray’s views particularly on bitcoin market sizing, reach and importance are concerning. Tens of millions of people use bitcoin around the world, particularly in emerging markets. Bitcoin’s censorship resistance is game-changing.
Dalio used to have a more bullish outlook on bitcoin. In January 2021, he said: “I believe bitcoin is one hell of an invention. To have invented a new type of money via a system that is programmed into a computer and that has worked for around 10 years and is rapidly gaining popularity as both a type of money and a storehold of wealth is an amazing accomplishment.” In February last year, he confirmed that he has “a tiny percentage” of his portfolio in cryptocurrency.
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