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Former Goldman Sachs CEO Acknowledges That Crypto Is “Happening”

Though Bitcoin has been at its most oversold point since March 2020, long-term investors haven’t taken their eyes off the ball.

Ex-Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein believes the crypto industry is “happening”, having matured significantly in 2021. As a result, he suggested that now could be a great time to invest, much like other devotees buying this week’s dip.

A Rapidly Growing Ecosystem

Blankfein aired his thoughts on the industry in an interview with CNBC’s Andrew Sorkin on Monday. Sorkin asked whether Blankfein’s past, more sceptical perspective on the industry had changed given recent developments.

The entire crypto market has collapsed in recent weeks, with Bitcoin now trading almost 50% below its November high. Altcoins have suffered even worse, with Ethereum under $2500 and Solana under $100 at writing.

Despite this, Blankfein’s opinion has grown more optimistic over the past 12 months – not less.

“I can’t predict the future, but I think it’s a big thing to be able to predict the present. What is happening. I look at crypto, and it is happening,” he said.

Lloyd Blankfein Says He Knows Why the Market Is Moving - The New York Times
Lloyd Blankfein. Source: New York Times

Blankfein admits that he’s no expert and that his views on crypto are “evolving” over time. However, he compared his scepticism of cryptocurrencies to how he felt about mobile phones 30 years ago: He didn’t understand why such a technology could be helpful until it became what it is today.

Last year, the former CEO doubted Bitcoin’s ability to fly with regulators to facilitate criminal activity. Indeed, some criminals have used cryptocurrencies for ransomware attacks, and authorities are acting against it. However, he mistakenly referred to Bitcoin transactions as “anonymous” when they’re actually “pseudonymous”, which can help fight financial crime.

“As a pragmatist, and somebody who’s skeptical of my own views… when there’s trillions of dollars contributing to it and whole ecosystems growing around it… I would certainly want to have an oar in that water,” he concluded.

Banks Ape Into Crypto

Despite Bitcoin’s connotation as a bank-killer, many investment banks actively embrace the asset. For one, Goldman Sachs is offering various crypto-related services to its clients, including a Bitcoin trading desk. This month, the investment bank deemed Bitcoin the top capital market of 2022.

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Meanwhile, Sparkasse – an association of over 400 German savings banks – plans to introduce Bitcoin buying services to over 50 million clients. Shortly after its announcement, two other German banks started considering such services.

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