The blockchain/crypto week in quotes

Here are the comments and tweets that caught our eye this week

“While I believe in the underlying technology and believe in the crypto movement, when prices get stupid, I sell. A lot of my friends in crypto just couldn’t let go. They were saying, “This is going to change the world.” Revolutions don’t happen overnight. I’d be walking down the street, and people would come up to me wanting to take selfies. That’s when I started to think, OK, this is weird. It’s got to be close to the top.” Mike Novogratz

“You should outlaw it (crypto assets). I am personally surprised that regulators haven’t stepped in harder.” Allianz Global Investors Chief Executive Andreas Utermann

“It is clear that during 2018 the investment banks led by the power brokers of Wall Street have been behind the 85% drop in cryptocurrency market cap in a concerted effort to buy the dip and then we will witness the pumping of the prices soon enough, because they can and they will.

We have witnessed a systematic approach supported by broadcasters who are close friends of the banks , CNN, CNBC, and the new crypto press Coindesk and Cointelegraph, that sold out for profit rather than defend the crypto economy on which they were founded, to spread good news and encourage adoption, decided to propagate the fear on behalf of Satan, as greed once again took over from libertarian motives.” Nick Ayton

“The right way to think about cryptocurrency coins is as lottery tickets that pay off in a dystopian future where they are used in rogue and failed states, or perhaps in countries where citizens have already lost all semblance of privacy. It is no coincidence that dysfunctional Venezuela is the first issuer of a state-backed cryptocurrency, the petro.” Harvard University Professor of Economics and Public Policy Kenneth Rogoff

“An area where the SEC and staff have spent a significant amount of time relates to distributed ledger technology, digital assets and initial coin offerings (ICOs). I expect that trend will continue in 2019. A number of concerns have been raised regarding the digital assets and ICO markets, including that, as they are currently operating, there is substantially less investor protection than in the traditional equities and fixed income markets, with correspondingly greater opportunities for fraud and manipulation.

I believe that ICOs can be effective ways for entrepreneurs and others to raise capital. However, the novel technological nature of an ICO does not change the fundamental point that, when a security is being offered, our securities laws must be followed.

In an effort to centralise and better coordinate the staff’s work on these important issues, the SEC recently announced the formation of a new Strategic Hub for Innovation and Financial Technology (FinHub) within the agency. Staffed by representatives from across the Commission, the FinHub serves as a public resource for FinTech-related issues at the SEC. As the FinHub and our other activities demonstrate, our door remains open to those who seek to innovate and raise capital in accordance with the law.” US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Chairman Jay Clayton

“Many billionaire investors in traditional financial markets remain optimistic about the long-term upward trend in crypto. The simple fact is that these high-profile investors can manage losses that arise from movements in high-risk emerging assets as they are only a proportionately small part of their overall portfolios, and they believe in the value that will be created in the long term. However, as we are witnessing now, retail investors do not have the same sort of approach and so these movements lower are causing, even forcing many to liquidate their holdings.

What is worth remembering is that this is not the first “cycle” that we have seen in Bitcoin with the last nine years producing five such cycles with an average of an 85% drop from the high to low (something in percentage terms we are not too far away from now). 2018 may not have been the year that many in the industry wanted for crypto and the short-term signs look like there may be some more pain to come. It will be interesting to see if the festive period, which traditionally sees volume in other asset classes dry up and volatility increase, is mirrored by the crypto market or whether there’s a strong end to the stormy year.” David Thomas, Director and Co-Founder, GlobalBlock

“The US Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) consultation into Ethereum comes as no surprise as the SEC already ruled that Bitcoin and Ether are not securities earlier this year. It was only a matter of time before the CFTC made its own judgement as it has jurisdiction over both futures and commodities – the only two options under which crypto assets, not akin to securities, can be classified.

It is particularly positive to see that the CFTC has called for a public consultation in the first instance. The best way to implement regulation within the crypto industry is by having people who know the market advise and guide any regulations being drafted. In doing so, it means that regulations can be formed with proper consideration and there is less chance of stifling the innovation of the blockchain technology underpinning these cryptos.

As the CFTC wants to better understand the differences between Ethereum, Bitcoin and other altcoins in particular, it is likely that a ruling on the crypto market is close at hand. Bringing regulation to the current Wild West of crypto would be a huge boost to the industry, as it will legitimise it, improve standards for exchanges and enable institutional investment in this market.” Kevin Murcko, CEO, CoinMetro

“It just feels like it (cryptocurrency) gets talked about a lot, wherever you go in the UK, and as MPs we have a duty to understand it. Only recently I met with the RNLI, which is now accepting charitable donations through cryptocurrency – if we can do that, what’s to stop us being able to pay council tax and other bills with Bitcoin?” Eddie Hughes, Member of Parliament for Walsall North


Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the author should not be considered as financial advice. We do not give advice on financial products.

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