Jamie Dimon: 'Retirees, grandmothers, lower-income folks' have been hurt by crypto

The JPM CEO said in a televised interview Tuesday that it was the government’s responsibility to protect investors.

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JPMorgan (JPM) Chief Executive Jamie Dimon minces no words when it comes to his views on cryptocurrencies.

The Wall Street boss, who in September famously called the digital tokens “decentralized Ponzi schemes” at a regulatory hearing, again reiterated his criticism of crypto assets during an interview with Fox Business Network.

“I called it a decentralized Ponzi scheme because people were just hyping it – hyping it, and hyping it – and they’ll write tons of books on this, the money that was stolen out of it, what people knew and didn’t know,” he said when asked about what lessons were learned on crypto after the collapse of FTX.

WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 22: JPMorgan Chase & Co CEO Jamie Dimon arrives for a Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee hearing on Capitol Hill September 22, 2022 in Washington, DC. The committee held the hearing for annual oversight of the nation's largest banks. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 22: JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon arrives for a Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee hearing. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Dimon, in the interview aired Tuesday, as well as in the past, differentiated his skepticism of crypto assets from his views on blockchain technology as a form of expediting financial transactions. His bank has worked on building out its own custom blockchain and token, JPM Coin, which aims to facilitate client payment transfers.

Meanwhile, he said that cryptocurrencies have made people “hysterical,” and that it was the government’s responsibility to protect investors.

“A lot of people got hurt [by crypto],” Dimon said. “These were retirees, grandmothers, lower-income folks, and it was a shame.”

The bankruptcy of fallen cryptocurrency exchange is estimated to have wiped out $9 billion worth of crypto investments, according to figures from blockchain analysis firm Chainalysis.

“It should have immediately been put in some kind of regulatory framework so that there’s some investor protection,” he said, adding that regulators were starting to come up with safeguards, but now “the barn door has opened” for them to do so.

In a separate interview with CNBC last month, Dimon likened crypto tokens to “pet rocks.”

“I have no interest in it, by the way, so I hate talking about it,” Dimon said in the interview with Fox Business on Tuesday.

Alexandra Semenova is a reporter for Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter @alexandraandnyc

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