As the investing world continues to argue back and forth over whether Bitcoin is an acceptable store of value or nothing more than a massive bubble that has only been rivaled by the Dutch tulip mania of the 1600's, new information revealed by the President of the North American Securities Administrators Association would tend to lend some credence to the latter.
Appearing on Power Lunch today, Joseph Borg, also director of the Alabama Securities Commission, argued that Bitcoin has clearly entered its "mania phase" with people now taking out home equity loans and cash advances on credit cards to purchase the digital currency in the hopes of getting rich quick.
"We've seen mortgages being taken out to buy bitcoin. … People do credit cards, equity lines," said Borg, president of the North American Securities Administrators Association, a voluntary organization devoted to investor protection. Borg is also director of the Alabama Securities Commission.
"This is not something a guy who's making $100,000 a year, who's got a mortgage and two kids in college ought to be invested in."
"You're on this mania curve. At some point in time there's got to be a leveling off. Cryptocurrency is here to stay. Blockchain is here to stay. Whether it is bitcoin or not, I don't know," Borg said in an interview with "Power Lunch."
Of course, as we noted a few months ago, JP Morgan's Jamie Dimon has has been among the most vocal critics of Bitcoin and has frequently expressed his skepticism that international governments will allow it to survive in any meaningful capacity after someone inevitably "gets killed..."
Speaking to CNBC later in the day, Dimon said he’s skeptical governments will allow a currency to exist without state oversight: “Someone’s going to get killed and then the government’s going to come down,” he said. “You just saw in China, governments like to control their money supply.”
“You’re wasting your time with Bitcoin! Virtual currency, where it’s called a bitcoin vs. a U.S. dollar, that’s going to be stopped,” said Dimon. “No government will ever support a virtual currency that goes around borders and doesn’t have the same controls. It’s not going to happen.”
“Blockchain is like any other technology. If it is cheaper, effective, works, and secure, then we are going to use it. The technology will be used, and it could be used to transport currency, but it will be dollars, not bitcoins.”
...perhaps the Americans now levering up their largest asset in the midst of yet another housing bubble, only to turn around and purchase what could very well end up being an even bigger bubble, are the people to whom Dimon was referring???