Charlie Munger on Bitcoin at Michigan Ross

More than a year ago the Dean of Michigan Ross sat down with Charlie Munger and asked him about Bitcoin.

You know it’s one thing to think that gold has some marvelous store of value because man has no way of inventing more gold or getting it very easily. So it has the advantage of rarity. Believe me, man is capable of somehow creating more Bitcoin. They tell you they’re not going to do it, but they mean they’re not going to do it unless they want to. That’s what they mean when they say they’re not going to do it. If they tell you they have rules and they can’t do it, don’t believe them. When there’s enough incentive, bad things will happen.

It’s bad people, crazy bubble, bad idea, luring people into the concept of easy wealth without much insight or work. That’s the last thing on earth you should think about. If it worked, it would be bad for you because you would try and do it again. It’s totally insane.

And by the way, I’ve just laid out a wonderful life lesson for you. Give a whole lot of things a wide berth. They don’t exist, you know: crooks, crazies, egomaniacs, people full of resentment, people full of self-pity, people who feel like victims. There’s a whole lot of things that aren’t going to work for you. Figure out what they are and avoid them like the plague. And one of them is Bitcoin.

Charlie Munger Talks Bitcoin with Michigan Ross Dean Scott DeRue

The investment office at the University of Michigan thought otherwise considering their recent investment in crypto.

The University of Michigan’s $12 billion endowment plans to add money to a cryptonetwork technology fund managed by Andreessen Horowitz as more institutional investors begin to explore the market for cryptocurrencies.

Andreessen Horowitz, a Menlo Park, California-based venture capital firm, would receive an additional investment from the endowment to its CNK Fund I, according to the university’s agenda for the Feb. 21 Board of Regents meeting. The endowment committed $3 million in June and didn’t specify the amount it plans to invest.

University of Michigan Boosts Investment in Cryptonetwork Fund, Bloomberg

The business school community at Michigan Ross is still trying to figure out how useful the technology behind Bitcoin will be.

Cryptocurrencies are the most obvious, and so far the most popular, application of blockchain. Supporters believe that it’s more secure than other methods of electronic financial transactions. This appeal has generated intense interest from those hoping to invest early in a potentially world-changing technology.

Bitcoin, the most popular cryptocurrency, has generated tremendous hype over the last couple years. It promised a completely secure way to make financial transactions online, untroubled by regulation or oversight. Investors loved the idea, and prices skyrocketed — at first.

Questions quickly emerged — is Bitcoin more a currency or a commodity? The process of “mining” new Bitcoin is complicated and obtuse; it also requires a great deal of computing power and energy consumption. Some say the community of users controls the process, but it does so with no regulation or oversight. Additionally, merchants have been slow to accept Bitcoin as a payment method.

The Big Blockchain Question, Dividend Magazine

Blau Hall on the Michigan Ross campus.
Twitter @MichiganRoss

Post by Marcelino Pantoja