Speaking at TechCrunch Sessions: 2022, Microsoft founder Bill Gates slammed cryptocurrencies and said that he was neither 'long or short' on them. Gates also took the opportunity to mock some non-fungible tokens at the event.
Gates' comments come at a time when the cryptocurrency market has shrunken to a third of its peak value it had reached just towards the end of November last year. Companies engaged in cryptocurrency trades that were splurging millions of dollars in advertisement earlier this year have now announced up to 20 percent staff layoffs fearing a 'crypto-winter' ahead.
Bill Gates opposes cryptocurrencies, again
This isn't the first time Gates has vehemently rejected cryptocurrencies. Last year in an interview with Bloomberg, Gates also said that while the likes of Elon Musk and his company Tesla may invest in Bitcoin, an average investor should not follow their lead and invest as well.
He also warned that people who do not have much money to spare also buy into these manias, CNN reported. Gates said these digital assets were "100% based on greater fool theory," where investors make money on worthless or overvalued assets as long as people were willing to bid higher on them.
Gates also took a jab at non-fungible tokens (NFTs) that were all the craze last year. A long list of celebrities from the world of sports, entertainment, and beyond paid top dollar to acquire a digital image of a Bored Ape collection. Gates' comments were ripe with sarcasm when he said, "expensive digital images of monkeys [will] improve the world immensely."
Where does Bill Gates invest his money?
Gates also revealed that he was more of an old-fashioned investor and preferred to put his investments in asset classes like a farm that has output or a company that makes products.
Last month, we reported that while the world's richest billionaires have lost a combined $115 billion, Gates's losses at $15 billion were comparatively lower. After quitting a day-to-day role at Microsoft, Gates has diversified his investment largely through Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway holdings.
Incidentally, earlier in May, Buffett vocalized his disapproval of cryptocurrencies when he told investors at his company's annual general meeting that he wouldn't pay $25 for all the Bitcoin in the world.
The recent high volatility of cryptocurrencies has once again raised questions over cryptocurrency as an investment avenue. While banks like JP Morgan are backing Bitcoin to yet again bounce back, another interest hike announced by the U.S. Federal Reserve recently could take down Bitcoin values to 2017, investors have warned, CoinDesk reported.
Cryptocurrency's loss could be a gain for the environment, though.
Gates on how his Breakthrough Energy has had success in shifting smart talent from stuff like derivatives trading to tackling the big challenges in climate tech: pic.twitter.com/ZZPSavruuy— TechCrunch (@TechCrunch) June 14, 2022
Cryptocurrency transactions have a huge environmental impact, and if a low crypto market propels people towards climate change tech, then that should be a welcome change, right?