Shark Tank star Kevin O’Leary, also known as Mr. Wonderful, warned that regulators are coming down hard on bitcoin. In addition, he says that “even if bitcoin were to rise another 2,000%, it is completely irrelevant to institutional customers.”
Kevin O’Leary warns of cruel Bitcoin regulation, says Bitcoin is not an institutional product
Canadian investor and television personality Kevin O’Leary spoke in an interview with CNBC’s Squawk Box about bitcoin on Thursday.
O’Leary was asked if he had changed his mind about bitcoin because he thought it was “not a real currency” to invest in it and possibly buy more. “Let me be clear … I’ve been a cryptocurrency for years,” the Shark Tank star replied.
When he takes out his phone, he says: ‘here is my bitcoin wallet. Back then, all you could get was ethereum, XRP, bitcoin, litecoin, star lumen and bitcoin [cash]. I bought it at the last craze. I put $ 100 into work here. This morning it’s worth $ 52.77, because not all cryptocurrencies are clearly the same. He expanded:
I’m involved in this because it’s nice, but it’s not an institutional product … This whole market, even if bitcoin were to rise by another 2,000%, is completely irrelevant to institutional clients.
O’Leary reiterated that he owns bitcoin, saying, “I ride with it on the weekends,” but stressed that “you can not put it in a trust product … it is not relevant to the financial markets.”
He explained that ‘the real problem is if you get involved as a trustee, and it’s regulated and it’s cut in half or goes to zero, who knows what, you’ve never seen the mother of the lawsuits that come from that one. ”
O’Leary was asked to comment on how the Dallas Mavericks, the professional basketball team owned by his fellow Shark Tank star Mark Cuban, recently began offering trade discounts to customers who pay with bitcoin. “This is a different arena … where you can see the legitimacy of bitcoin from people like Mark Cuban, your partner, trying to make it a more relevant part of people’s lives,” the CNBC host said. Cuban also recently said bitcoin is more of a religion than a solution to anything.
“I know Mark pretty well, he also said he thinks bananas are a bigger currency and that he’s probably right,” O’Leary said.
My whole point is for all of us … who monitor and operate the financial industry’s multibillion dollar global industry, is it a no-brainer? It’s not even a single amoeba.
Shark Tank investor said: ‘The financial markets are about regulators, and you can only work within the limits of these rules, and therefore if we glorify something like that. [bitcoin], it actually has nothing to do with the financial markets that make the whole world work. And no single institutional investor with sovereign wealth fund I have ever talked to has told me that I am going to index all the cryptocurrencies for me. ”
He claims that the institutional investors he spoke to do not want to own bitcoin because they are afraid of the regulator, O’Leary warned:
Look what happens one day and I’m waiting for this one. I’m waiting for the day that one of these regulators comes down a bit on bitcoin. Mature men are going to cry when that happens. You will never see such a loss of capital in your life. That would be cruel. And I’m just saying you need to be ready for that.
Meanwhile, a growing number of institutional investors are investing in bitcoin. Bitgo recently said it had an “unprecedented institutional interest”, and Skybridge Capital launched a bitcoin fund expecting an “avalanche of institutional investors.” More banks have also started offering crypto services to institutional clients, such as Standard Chartered Bank. In terms of regulation, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) recently proposed new rules relating to the wallets of cryptocurrency.
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