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Reid Hoffman: Warren Buffett 'doesn't understand' the potential for crypto technology

·Anchor, Editor-at-Large
·2 min read
In this article:
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Legendary investor and Berkshire Hathaway (BRK-A, BRK-B) CEO Warren Buffett may be missing a thing or two on cryptocurrencies, argues LinkedIn Founder and noted venture capitalist Reid Hoffman.

"Warren's argument that look, they're not productive and not generative," Hoffman said in a new episode of Yahoo Finance Presents (video above). "Warren doesn't understand the kind of tech platforms and what kinds of things could be useful for a global identity system that could be packed into a distributed ledger that's part of internet protocols, or ledgers for assets that you could have as part of you doing a number of different applications and so on."

Hoffman went onto praise Buffett's investing acumen as it pertains to investing in actual companies.

Buffett and his long-time righthand man at Berkshire Hathaway Charlie Munger aren't too far removed from trashing cryptocurrencies for the umpteenth time.

“If you owned all of the bitcoin in the world and you offered it to me for $25, I wouldn’t take it,” Buffett said at the Berkshire Hathaway annual meeting on April 30. “Because what would I do with it? I’ll have to sell it back to you one way or another. It isn’t going to do anything.”

Munger went on to describe bitcoin (BTC-USD) as "stupid and evil."

Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger at the 2022 Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholders meeting. (screenshot/CNBC)
Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger at the 2022 Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholders meeting. (screenshot/CNBC)

Buffett famously called bitcoin "rat poison squared" at the company's 2018 annual meeting.

To be sure, one aspect that both Buffett and crypto supporters such as Hoffman could agree on is that the market prices for the technology are highly volatile. And that volatility storm long inherent to the crypto patch is current back in full force.

Many cryptocurrency prices are plunging amid a broader rout in risky areas of the markets, notably in new technologies. Crypto platform Coinbase (COIN), meanwhile, has lost 45% in market value in the past month. Crypto-exposed companies such as PayPal (PYPL), Robinhood (HOOD), and Block (SQ) have lost considerable value recently as well.

Brian Sozzi is an editor-at-large and anchor at Yahoo Finance. Follow Sozzi on Twitter @BrianSozzi and on LinkedIn.

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