Former Goldman Sachs Banker Explains Why Wall Street Gets Bitcoin Wrong

Jamal Molla
Written By Jamal Molla
Jamal is an English teacher and freelance writer with a passion for NFTs, metaverse, crypto and technology.

A former Goldman Sachs banker, John Haar, has explained why Wall Street gets Bitcoin wrong. Haar said a fundamental understanding of “sound money” is the major reason that is preventing Wall Street from adopting Bitcoin.

John Haar is the former Asset Manager at Goldman Sachs. He argued that the lack of support for Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies from a reputable financial institution like Goldman Sachs stems from a poor understanding of how digital assets work. Haar made his views known on Sunday in an essay written to private clients of Bitcoin brokerage platform, Swan Bitcoin. Before joining Swan Bitcoin as the company’s Managing Director in April 2022, Haar spent 13 years at Goldman Sachs, a Wall Street asset management giant. The world’s largest asset manager launches bitcoin private trust.

According to the essay, Haar explained that those in “legacy finance” have a poor understanding of how Bitcoin and blockchain technology work. Their understanding of digital assets has generated negative opinions about the crypto and blockchain space. “After many conversations, I can say that if there are people in legacy finance who have a well-researched stance on why Bitcoin is not a good form of money or why Bitcoin will not succeed, I was not able to find them,” Haar noted in his essay.

Haar said he became interested in Bitcoin in 2017 after much hype about the benefits of digital assets on local media. He also said after diving into the crypto space, he’s now more excited and confident to discuss Bitcoin or any other digital assets with anyone. He noted that Bitcoin has improved on the drawbacks of gold.

Haar argued that the Wall Street’s unwillingness to learn about Bitcoin stems from six different reasons, including the lack of research on Bitcoin and its underlying principles. He admitted that becoming familiar with blockchain technology, digital assets, and its associated lexicon was overwhelming, but that financial experts in legacy finance do themselves no favors by pretending not to understand digital asset principles.

“It’s much more common for one to pretend to be well-versed on a given topic and take a strong opinion regardless of one’s underlying knowledge — and this is especially true for a topic that touches the world of investing. I believe that conditioning through governmental central planning, people generally following the consensus, only thinking about its application in developed countries, and a desire to maintain the status quo are also contributing factors,” Haar asseted.

Haar pointed out that people in legacy finance are highly knowledgeable about specialized fields like cryptocurrencies, suggesting that if they embrace digital assets, it will give users more hope of a bright future ahead of them.

“They earn a living by knowing the specifics of their corner of the financial services sector. There is little incentive for them to examine the fundamentals of the system,” Haar added.

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