Elon Musk calls Bitcoin ‘bs,’ sends rival Dogecoin up 20 percent

2

Elon Musk called Bitcoin “bs” in a series of bizarre weekend tweets that also sent the price of a rival cryptocurrency soaring.

The world’s second-richest man appeared to question the legitimacy of all cryptocurrencies during an early morning rant before later toying with the idea of converting the cash on Tesla’s balance sheet into digital money, which has been on a tear.

“Bitcoin is almost as bs as fiat money,” he wrote at 4:24 a.m. New York time, referring to a term for government-issued currency that’s not backed by a physical commodity like gold.

The US dollar and other major currencies around the world are considered fiat currencies. Musk has previously taken issue with governments printing large amounts of money — he said in May that “massive currency issuance by govt central banks is making Bitcoin Internet [ghost] money look solid by comparison.”

Musk simultaneously generated some buzz around Dogecoin, which is named for a famous internet meme featuring a shiba inu dog. The alternative cryptocurrency was launched in 2013 and has a market value of about $622 million, a tiny fraction of Bitcoin’s $423 billion.

“One word: Doge,” Musk tweeted. He also changed his bio on the site to say “Former CEO of Dogecoin.”

Dogecoin’s price surged as much as 20 percent to its highest price since early July after Musk’s tweet, according to cryptocurrency news site Coindesk. The coins were trading up about 9 percent as of 2:01 p.m. Monday but were still worth less than a penny at roughly $0.0049.

A few hours later, the Tesla CEO tossed about the idea of converting the cash on Tesla’s balance sheet into cryptocurrency in an exchange with Michael Saylor, a big Bitcoin backer who’s also the CEO of business-intelligence firm MicroStrategy.

Saylor — whose company has bought more than $1 billion worth of Bitcoin this year — tweeted that Musk should “do your shareholders a $100 billion favor” and convert Tesla’s balance sheet from dollars into the digital currency.

“Other firms on the S&P 500 would follow your lead & in time it would grow to become a $1 trillion favor,” Saylor wrote Sunday in response to a risqué meme Musk posted suggesting Bitcoin was a female seductress trying to tempt chaste men.

That prompted Musk to ask, “Are such large transactions even possible?” Saylor replied that they were, but Musk didn’t inquire further on Twitter.

Musk’s tweetstorm comes amid a dizzying rally for Bitcoin that sent it above the $20,000 mark for the first time last week.

The tech billionaire’s cryptic tweets make it tough to suss out his actual views on cryptocurrency, but one offers a hint. When a follower speculated that Bitcoin’s price will crash but also reach $50,000 in the next five years, Musk replied, “Sounds about right.”

“Bitcoin is my safe word,” he joked in the early-morning rant before following up about 20 minutes later by adding, “Just kidding, who needs a safe word anyway!?”

View original post