The CEO of MicroStrategy has announced plans to buy $1 billion more of the No. 1 cryptocurrency, and the ensuing Twitter exchange between bitcoin bull Michael Saylor and gold bug Peter Schiff was met with eye rolls and “OK Boomer”-like responses on Twitter.
A Nasdaq-listed business intelligence company, MicroStrategy holds more than $2.24 billion worth of Bitcoin and has been on a buying frenzy for months as bitcoin led the digital assets bull run.
Saylor is the man who persuaded Tesla CEO Elon Musk to invest billions of Tesla’s dollars in Bitcoin. MicroStrategy holds more than 92,000 Bitcoin at an average price of about $24,000 per coin and is considered the champion of Bitcoin. Tesla bought $1.5 billion worth of bitcoin earlier this year to hold on its balance sheet. News of the buy sent the Bitcoin price rallying.
Tesla and MicroStrategy are the two largest publicly traded corporate holders of Bitcoin, and some traders say that CEOs Musk and Saylor are trying to pump the cryptocurrency and manipulate its price to avoid going underwater and be forced to sell.
On Monday, Saylor tweeted that MicroStrategy has launched an “”At the Market’ Securities Offering for Flexibility to Sell Up to $1 billion of its Class A Common Stock”.
Gold trader and longtime bitcoin basher Peter Schiff responded by tweeting that Saylor was crazy and desperate.
“You’re truly insane,” Schiff tweeted. “If #Bitcoin really will be as successful as you claim #MircoStrategy already holds more than enough to make all your shareholders rich. Your actions don’t match your words. These are acts of desperation to keep Bitcoin from crashing by buying as much you can.”
Bitcoin was trading at $40,290 as of this writing, down from a high near $64,000 in April. Its famously volatile price jumped by 10 percent in 24 hours after Musk made another market-moving tweet on Sunday, announcing that his electric vehicle company could again start accepting bitcoin transactions if “there’s confirmation of reasonable (~50%) clean energy usage by miners with positive future trend.”
Saylor’s plan to keep buying more bitcoins makes no sense, according to Schiff, who said MicroStrategy already has “more than enough” bitcoin, and if the asset turns out to be as successful as Saylor hopes, Schiff said it will make “all your shareholders rich.”
“Your actions don’t match your words,” Schiff tweeted. “These are acts of desperation to keep Bitcoin from crashing by buying as much you can.”
Many on Twitter came to Saylor’s — and bitcoin’s — defense. Willy Woo @woonomic accused Schiff of using illogical reasoning in his argument. “Do all gold bugs resort to ad hominem attacks in lieu of technical and intellectual reasoning? We saw the same in the debate with Frank Giustra,” Woo tweeted.
“Pete you’ve been the all in gold guy forever it’s hilarious that you’re giving Michael the same shit that people gave you for years,” @themovingavg tweeted.
“Saylor is like Noah who build the Ark… to save us from devastating effects of massive flood which is coming on the world financial system… Saylor is the captain of the Financial Ark navigiating the ship using BTC compass.. hop up on it and be saved or drown in the flood,” Dor Ian tweeted @DorIan_G_777.
Schiff founf the above tweet irresistible: “Correct analogy, wrong ship. Saylor is Captain Ahab, the ship is the Pequod, and #Bitcoin is his white whale,” Schiff tweeted.
Marc Lichtenfeld, the chief income strategist at The Oxford Group, said he thinks MicroStrategy is being irresponsible with shareholders’ capital by putting so much of their assets into a speculative and volatile asset. “I have never seen a company do this. This is beyond the excesses I have seen during the dot-com boom, and I think it makes them very, very vulnerable,” Lichtenfeld said in an interview with the Washington Business Journal.
This isn’t the first time Saylor and Schiff had a verbal confrontation over bitcoin. In a spat in May, Schiff said in a tweet to Saylor, “I think everything you say to promote bitcoin is nonsense.”
Listen to GHOGH with Jamarlin Martin | Episode 74: Jamarlin Martin Jamarlin returns for a new season of the GHOGH podcast to discuss Bitcoin, bubbles, and Biden. He talks about the risk factors for Bitcoin as an investment asset including origin risk, speculative market structure, regulatory, and environment. Are broader financial markets in a massive speculative bubble?