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诺奖得主席勒:比特币仍旧难逃泡沫属性

全新的互联网金融模式国际资讯

诺奖得主席勒:比特币仍旧难逃泡沫属性

在上周召开的世界经济论坛(WEF)上,主持人询问诺贝尔奖获得者Robert Shiller是否支持比特币,这位耶鲁大学经济学教授反问说是否可以持半支持态度。Shiller说他很欣赏这项技术,但他认为目前这种技术的疯狂传播已经湮没了其本身的价值。

Shiller是行为经济学的支持者,写出了有关投机泡沫的开创性著作《非理性繁荣》(Irrational Exuberance)。他认为人们并非总能保持理性,他们受某些经济思维影响,往往被情感驱使。上个月他在《纽约时报》上写道,神经科学和心理学可以就比特币这样的现象提出深刻见解。

比特币是一种全球性狂热,但这种狂热主要由散户投资者推动。如今,大名鼎鼎的华尔街慢慢也在加入这场狂欢,某种程度上这得感谢比特币期货,比特币期货与比特币不同,可由受监管的机构自由交易。

Shiller表示,他曾参与讨论芝加哥商业交易所集团(CME Group)的期货合约,该合约允许交易商在某个日期后对某资产的价格进行预测,最初他对这一合约表示反对。不过,他在达沃斯的小组讨论中暗示,如今他已经改变了想法,因为比特币期货可能更容易赢过比特币,甚至可能减缓价格波动。他说,这样一来比特币狂热者就再也不能控制比特币了。

与Shiller共同参与小组讨论的其他成员(如瑞典央行副行长Cecilia Skingsley)似乎认为比特币更像是类似数字黄金的资产,而不是一种有用的货币。就目前而言,作为一种方便的交易手段,比特币价格过于昂贵、易于波动。

比特币的其中一个承诺是中央政府无权像阿根廷等地一样让比特币贬值。Skingsley说,各国央行在许多情况下都受法律约束,具有保护价格稳定等特点,许多银行也确实都曾这样做过。

Shiller认为,传统法定货币可以被改善,但他建议把目光投向加密货币以外的东西,如把指标作为价格稳定基础的智利unidad de femento。

 

When a moderator at the World Economic Forum (WEF) asked Robert Shiller if he’s pro-bitcoin, the Yale economics professor asked if he could be half-pro-bitcoin. The Nobel Prize winner said he admires the technology, but thinks it has gone viral for reasons other than some underlying, fundamental value.

“It looks selfish to me,” Shiller said during a panel at the WEF in Davos, Switzerland. The cryptoasset that started a global phenomena has fallen about 40% from its peak, but the economist suggested it’s still more like a speculative bubble containing a contagious idea about getting rich.

Shiller, a proponent of behavioral economics, wrote a seminal book on speculative bubbles, Irrational Exuberance. He has argued that people aren’t always rational, a tenant behind some economic thinking, and instead are driven by emotion. Neuroscience and psychology could provide insights into phenomena like bitcoin, he wrote last month in the New York Times (paywall).

Bitcoin is a global mania, but the craze has mainly been driven by individual retail investors. Big-time Wall Street types are getting closer to joining the party, in part thanks to bitcoin futures—which, unlike bitcoin, are readily traded by regulated institutional firms.

Shiller said he was part of the discussions about the launch of these CME Group futures contracts—which allow traders to speculate on an asset’s price at some later date—and initially opposed them. He hinted during the panel discussion in Davos, however, that he had changed his mind because futures might make it easier to bet against bitcoin, potentially smoothing out its price swings. That way, bitcoin can no longer be taken over by “enthusiasts,” he said.

Some of Shiller’s fellow panelists, such as Swedish Central Bank deputy governor Cecilia Skingsley, seemed to think bitcoin is more akin to an asset like digital gold than a useful currency. For now it’s too volatile and expensive to be a convenient means of exchange.

One of bitcoin’s promises is that a central authority doesn’t have the power to debase it, such has happened to paper currencies in places such as Argentina. Skingsley said central banks are in many cases now bound by laws to protect features like price stability and that many of them have a strong record of doing so. “We still have a very competitive product,” she said.

Shiller agreed that traditional fiat money could be improved, but he suggested looking outside the world of crypto to things like Chile’s unidad de femento (PDF), which uses indexing as a basis for price stability.

“There are other ideas,” he said. “We’re over-emphasizing bitcoin.”


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