Yellen became famous in the cryptocurrency community last year as the target of the now infamous “Buy Bitcoin” session. Also last year on the nature of Bitcoin, she commented that though the cryptocurrency has seen a remarkable growth in recent months, it is still a “highly speculative asset” and “not a stable source of value.” She also noted that Bitcoin remains a very small part of the overall payment system.
“Coins like bitcoin are not considered legitimate currency, owing to their lack of ability to store value, and limited scope in everyday transactions,” said Yellen during an interview at the 2018 Canada FinTech Forum in Montreal.
“It has long been thought that for something to be a useful currency, it needs to be a stable source of value, and bitcoin is anything but. It’s not used for a lot of transactions, it’s not a stable source of value, and it’s not an efficient means of processing payments. It’s very slow in handling payments. It has difficulty because of its very decentralized nature,”
Satoshi Portal CEO Francis Pouliot was present during Yellen’s speech and was one of the first to take to social media to criticize her statement, saying: “Janet Yellen just delivered a 5-minute rant against Bitcoin to Montreal financial industry VIPs. She went through all of Nouriel’s talking points. The Official NPC guidelines to Bitcoin FUD, courtesy of the FED. Full video coming tonight. Buy Bitcoin. Audit the Fed.”
Yellen’s comments aren’t a far cry from those made by Nouriel Roubini earlier this month, who described the cryptocurrency industry as “the mother and the father of all financial bubbles.”