First Jamie Dimon publicly slags Bitcoin, then Goldman Sachs announces it is considering a trading operation dedicated to it. What is the cryptocurrency industry thinking?
Alex Mashinsky, CEO Celsius
“The amazing appreciation of cryptocurrencies in the past two years has greatly surpassed even the booming public market which are hitting new highs almost daily. Even GS can’t sit idle and see this asset class balloon without them. Over $150B in capital is now invested in this asset class and this number is expected to grow 10x over the next decade.”
Rob Viglione, Co-Founder of ZenCash, the privacy coin for borderless, decentralized communications and transactions
“The fact that Goldman Sachs is considering the launch of a bitcoin and digital currency trading operation is excellent news for the industry and shows that the firm continues to lead its peers. The big news here — whether GS moves forward with this or not — is that cryptocurrency markets seem to be reaching the minimum level of maturity required for institutional money. That’s a significant milestone, and could well signal a step-function type boost to liquidity, depth, and all the other important characteristics that make for modern capital markets.”
“It’s becoming apparent that bitcoin has matured past the point where people’s knee-jerk reaction is, “oh that’s used for drugs and money laundering”. With the recent conversation focused on blockchain technology, bitcoin has passed a threshold of legitimacy needed for a reputable institution to at least dabble in. Goldman has many alternative investments already that we would find surprising. They were close to putting $300 million into “celebrity bonds”—bonds backed by Bob Dylan royalties, and they have made bets on the recidivism rates of Rikers Island inmates. So the threshold for an investment bank just has to be high enough that they can justify it to their clients. Apparently, Bitcoin has just crossed that line.”
Bharath Rao, CEO of Leverj, the decentralized exchange for cryptocurrency derivatives
“The returns on cryptocurrency have been nothing short of spectacular, and we are excited to see mainstream institutions entering this space. Among Wall Street firms, Goldman was one of the first to recognize the potential of bitcoin and the blockchain. Realizing crypto would be a significant part of the financial future is one thing; acting on it is another. A large financial institution will not jump straight into a market until it has checked the boxes for the necessary operational readiness, regulatory certainty, and technical depth.”