Bitcoin is a commodity with many similarities to gold, and the volatility that has sparked investor concern stems mainly from its lack of liquidity, said Jeff Currie, global head of commodities research for Goldman Sachs Group Inc.
“I don’t see why there is all this hostility to it,” Currie said in an interview on Bloomberg Television. Bitcoin is “not much different than gold” because it doesn’t have liability attached to it by definition, like a security.
The cryptocurrency topped $11,000 Wednesday, marking an almost 12-fold gain for the year, before retreating later in the day. In comparison, gold has climbed about 12 percent this year. Investors are divided about bitcoin, with the likes of Warren Buffett calling it a “real bubble,” and billionaire venture capitalist Peter Thiel saying critics are underestimating it. Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz said “bitcoin is successful only because of its potential for circumvention, lack of oversight,” and ought to be outlawed.
Currie said most people who trade bitcoin don’t see the currency as interchangeable with gold, and that there are important differences between the two…