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Tue 29 Oct 2019 12:23 PM

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Cryptocurrencies in 'Darwinian' stage, says Swiss private bank Julius Baer

Julius Baer's chief strategy said that cryptocurrencies are still more like gold than a currency

Cryptocurrencies in 'Darwinian' stage, says Swiss private bank Julius Baer

Christian Gattiker-Ericsson, the chief strategist and head of research and investment solutions at Swiss private banking group Julius Baer.

Cryptocurrencies are still lacking in the trust that will enable them to compete with traditional fiat currencies, according to Christian Gattiker-Ericsson, the chief strategist and head of research and investment solutions at Swiss private banking group Julius Baer.

In an interview with Arabian Business, Gattiker-Ericsson said that the “killer” application of cryptocurrencies that will allow for their wider acceptance has still not been discovered.

“We are still in this Darwinian selection process where different business models get tried and tested, but we haven’t seen something that was a clear winner,” he said.

Gattiker-Ericsson added that many cryptocurrencies “still struggle with the fact that they have limited or plateauing supply patterns, which actually make them more like a gold than a currency”.

“It’s still a key topic,” he said. “Someone needs to be able to transfer the trust that is inherency in a currency, central banks and governments to put this into the virtual, decentralised world.”

On a wider level, Gattiker-Ericsson said that the underlying blockchain technology has a “whole variety of potential appliances”.

“It will possibly change the rules of the game,” he added. “It’s still something we’re exploring. It’s like another frontier we’re approaching.”

In a March 2018 interview with Arabian Business, Julius Baer CEO Bernhard Hodler likened cryptocurrencies to “gambling”.

“I think it’s a lot of speculation. There’s a lot of volatility, and nobody knows which cryptocurrencies will make it,” he said. “I personally think some will make it, because the idea behind it isn’t completely bad, but we do not advise our clients to speculate in the cryptocurrency field.”

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