‘Big Short’ analyst on crypto: “I don’t see the purpose…”

The real-life Mark Baum hasn’t been talking to the right people…

Steve Eisman – the man who made a killing shorting the housing market in 2008 and served as the basis for Mark Baum, the character played by Steve Carrell in the film adaptation of Michael Lewis’ book The Big Short: Inside The Doomsday Machine – isn’t going to be making any moves into cryptocurrencies any time soon. At least, that is, if you believe his recent comments to the Chartered Financial Institute’s conference, where he stated his belief that digital currency has only become popular for two reasons: “speculation and money laundering”.

“I don’t see the purpose of it,” he went on to say. “What value does cryptocurrency actually add? No one’s been able to answer that question for me.”

Eisman, later admitted that he doesn’t “know what I’m looking at… I have no interest”, but did wonder why governments aren’t regulating the sector more actively. Coming from the man who spotted, and made a fortune from, financial institutions running amok in the latter half of the noughties, that’s a striking thought.