Donald Trump described cryptocurrencies as a disaster waiting to happen, and lashed out at them for hurting the dollar.
“I like the currency of the United States,” the former US president told Fox Business’ Stuart Varney when asked his thoughts on crypto. “I think the others are potentially a disaster waiting to happen.”
Trump cast doubt on digital assets, and said people in the US “should be invested in our currency.”
“They may be fake. Who knows what they are?” he said in the Tuesday interview. “They certainly are something that people don’t know very much about. I have not been a big fan.”
Bitcoin proponents among others have suggested cryptocurrencies could pose a threat to the US dollar as a reserve currency and through their use in transactions, such as for trade, and in remittances.
This wasn’t the first time Trump has publicly blasted cryptocurrencies. He told Fox’s Varney in June that bitcoin seems like a scam and suggested the asset should be more regulated.
Bitcoin’s price has fallen 25% from its record high above $64,000 to about $47,500 as of Wednesday. Still, it is up 64% so far this year. In comparison, the dollar index is little changed.
US regulators and lawmakers have stepped up their attention on cryptocurrencies in recent months, as the highly volatile assets grow in popularity among retail investors.
Before Twitter permanently suspended Trump’s account, he criticized cryptocurrencies on a thread in 2019. “I’m not a fan of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, which are not money, and whose value is highly volatile and based on thin air,” he said at the time.
Although the former president isn’t big on crypto, he has a group of supporters who launched a digital token as a reaction to his loss in the November 2020 election. Magacoin, the pro-Trump cryptocurrency, has received over 1,000 sign-ups since its launch, as of July.
President Joe Biden’s administration has acknowledged the crypto boom, by contrast to Trump. Gary Gensler, Biden’s appointment to chair of the Securities and Exchange Commission, has said cryptocurrency trading platforms have become so large that they need to embrace regulation or risk losing public trust.
“There are a lot of platforms that are in operation today that would do better engaging and instead there is a bit of… begging for forgiveness, rather than asking for permission,” Gensler said in a Financial Times interview published Wednesday.