By Josiah Wilmoth
A former top US financial regulator said that he wishes he had invested in bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies while he was cautioning investors against buying these assets.
Ex-CFTC Chief Regrets Not Investing in Bitcoin Back When He Was Warning Against Its Risks
Bart Chilton has had a change of heart on bitcoin.
The former regulator, who served as commissioner of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) from 2007 to 2014, said on Thursday that he wishes he had invested in cryptocurrencies back when he was warning people about the risks of these asses as investment products.
“I wish I had been investing when I told everybody to be careful,” said Chilton, who disclosed on CNBC that he now owns bitcoin and ethereum. “I had a lot of my friends that said, ‘You told me not to invest.’ They would have been millionaires.”
Chilton was one of the first regulators to call for the federal government to regulate bitcoin, an asset he once referred to on national television as a “house of cards” due to the lack of basic consumer protections present in the spot markets.
Last year, he warned that this lack of regulation was a “blind spot” for cryptocurrency enthusiasts that could lead to governments placing outright bans on cryptoassets.
Bitcoin Futures Having ‘Governing’ Effect on Ecosystem
Despite these previous warnings, Chilton is now bullish on the future of cryptocurrency. What is the reason for this change of heart? The launch and growing institutional interest in bitcoin futures contracts.
As Strategic Coin reported, bitcoin futures launched last month on two regulated US exchanges, providing institutional investors with exposure to bitcoin on a marketplace overseen by the CFTC.
Although trading has been thin compared to the spot markets, it has been steadily growing, and Chilton said that the recent bitcoin price decline is evidence that the futures markets are having a “governing” effect on what has largely been a “Wild West”-type environment for investors.
“There’s a lot of craziness out there, but as we go forward on CME and Chicago Board Options Exchange [I think] it is a first step at regularizing,” he concluded.
Featured Image from CNBC