Shark Tank’s Kevin O’Leary Is Waiting for Regulators to Come Down Hard on Bitcoin
While O’Shares ETFs’ chairman is ready to miss out on the golden opportunity, preferring to live in his bubble, Bitcoin hit $24,700 on Christmas. Meanwhile, Pomp feels “we're underestimating the psychological shift,” which will result in more capital flow into this asset.
So, this week, Mark Cuban’s Dallas Mavericks offered a special merchandise discount for Bitcoin buyers.
Yes, the same Cuban who sees bananas as more valuable than Bitcoin offered the fans of Mavs an opportunity to pay with Bitcoin through BitPay. However, for Bitcoiners, spending their BTC simply doesn’t make sense when the digital asset is trading near its all-time high of $24,400.
But Cuban’s buddy Kevin O’Leary who also appears on Shark Tank says what Cuban believes is that “bananas are a bigger common currency and he's probably right.”
O’Leary appeared on CNBC on Thursday to talk about Bitcoin when he yet again shared his doubt about BTC as he said, “there is no evidence” of the world’s largest digital asset having a “reverse correlation to correcting markets,” as such it can't be used to protect capital.
He pointed out how in March 2020, when all the market sold-off, from stocks to gold, “if you owned bitcoin you got slaughtered and you had a lot more volatility than the S&P.”
The Fear of Regulator
While Bitcoin as a concept of a digital currency is one that would work, “it's not even a single-cell amoeba if you took all of the market cap of bitcoin, totally irrelevant,” he said.
While O’Leary sees Bitcoin’s $445 billion market cap as an issue, the crypto market and many high-profile names like Paul Tudor Jones, and JPMorgan among others see it as a huge opportunity because BTC has so much capital to acquire.
According to the chairman of O’Shares ETFs, “it's fun if you're an individual, high net worth person that wants to just play with it” and put capital into it. “But the financial markets deal with regulators and you can only operate within the confines of those rules,” he said.
“No institutional sovereign fund investor has asked for an index of all of the cryptocurrencies”, he said. Interestingly, just this month, the S&P Dow Jones and CBOE announced that they will be launching the crypto index next year.
The reason why these institutional sovereign fund investors don’t want to jump on the Bitcoin bandwagon, according to O’Leary is “they fear the regulator.” He added,
“I'm waiting for the day that one of these regulators comes down hard on bitcoin. Grown men are going to weep when that happens. You'll never see a loss of capital like that ever in your life, it'll be brutal and I'm just saying you got to get ready for it to that point.”
Underestimating the Shift
O’Leary’s remarks have been in reaction to Bitcoin proponent Anthony Pompliano, who also appeared on CNBC to talk about how the huge amount of BTC bought by Grayscale and corporations like Square and MicroStrategy are “not coming back out into the market.” Pompliano, co-founder and partner at Morgan Creek Digital Assets said,
“People are basically taking Bitcoin off the market and so you don't need tons and tons of new interest but I actually think that we're underestimating the psychological shift that investors have gone through. This is because of the four trillion dollar marketing campaign run by the US government for the devaluation of the US dollar in 2020.”
“Investors are listening… they're paying attention and they're choosing to move their capital into an area where they can protect their wealth and Bitcoin serves not only a store of value but also an asymmetric type potential return,” he said adding that we just haven't had such an asset and “as people wake up and understand it they're going to continue to see more and more capital flow into this asset in the coming years.”