Jordan Belfort, the former stockbroker better known as ‘The Wolf of Wall Street,’ argued that investors who buy bitcoin (BTC) now will “almost certainly” profit. However, this is not the first time Belfort commented about bitcoin and its future – admitting that he has changed his mind about the coin – and his track record has so far been mixed.
Belfort’s recent prediction for how bitcoin will perform going forward was shared during a video interview with Yahoo Finance at the very end of June. “With reasonable luck, I think if you take a 24-month horizon you’ll almost certainly make money,” Belfort said during the interview. He added:
“If you take a three or maybe five-year horizon, I would be shocked if you didn’t make money because the underlying fundamentals of bitcoin are really strong.”
Asked for his top three investment picks for “a long-term play,” Belfort replied by recommending “bitcoin,” “ethereum,” and “bitcoin” as his first, second, and third favorite picks.
The praise of Bitcoin as an investment asset marks a sharp turnaround for Belfort, who as recently as in 2018 was of the opinion that bitcoin is based on the ‘greater fool theory’, advising holders to get rid of their coins before they lost all value.
However, that was not the only time Belfort predicted bitcoin’s demise – and, over time, his comments would slowly transform into more positive ones.
“It’s a bubble, for sure,” Belfort said on CNN in December of 2017, while also adding a stark warning about other cryptoassets, saying that “people are using the success of bitcoin to create these massive pump and dumps.”
“Remember in the Tulip bubble, when they started trading futures on tulips […] you got another move up, and then all of the sudden ‘baaam!’, it collapses, and it’s all over,” Belfort said.
“Bitcoin is all based on the greater fool theory. I know this better than anyone in the world. I’m not proud of that, but I do,” Belfort said in a YouTube video he uploaded to his channel.
“You can be pro blockchain technology, and not pro-Bitcoin. They’re not the same thing. It would be one thing if Bitcoin owned blockchain technology and everybody had to license it, that would be a different story, but there’s nothing proprietary about Bitcoin,” he claimed back then.
He added that the market price at the time – around USD 6,100, is “not even close to the bottom,” and said that “it hasn’t even crashed yet.”
“I was a scammer, yes I was,” Belfort said in an interview in September of 2018, where he also sounded the alarm on the risks he sees with bitcoin.
In the interview, Belfort explained that his old firm partly engaged in “the manipulation of stocks,” and admitted that he “had it down to the science.”
“This is exactly what’s going on with bitcoin,” he said.
"I was a scammer, I was," Jordan Belfort, the Wolf of Wall Street says. Now he's sounding the alarm on bitcoin in "Bitcoin: Boom or Bust." Find highlights and links to the full documentary here: https://t.co/jWWYXNMr87 #BitcoinBoomOrBust #CNBCCrypto pic.twitter.com/0t3n9zZ4E8
— CNBC (@CNBC) September 1, 2018
Fast-forward to the beginning of 2021, Belfort still appeared hesitant about bitcoin, predicting that it would eventually suffer from some kind of regulatory attack by the government.
“How would they allow this to become something that could so easily be used to launder money,” he asked during an appearance on The Rubin Report YouTube show, before adding that he thinks “the technology itself is really elegant, really useful.”
It is worth noting that Belfort, at this point, also started to appear optimistic on the price prospects of bitcoin itself.
“If the US government doesn’t step in to squash it, I think it can go much higher,” he said.
In March of 2021, in the midst of that year’s bull run, Belfort was turning bullish on the original cryptocurrency, saying in an interview with Fortune that he believed the coin could reach USD 100,000 by the end of the year.
Among the arguments he used for the claim was that bitcoin had a “much bigger base of buyers than ever before,” and that it has “a fixed, finite supply.”
A few months later, in July of the same year, Belfort once again updated his prediction for bitcoin, saying that he sees bitcoin at between USD 45,000 and USD 70,000 by the end of the year.
In the above-mentioned June interview, Belfort explained that he stands by his previous Bitcoin statements made at the time he “really hated” crypto, except for one – that BTC would go to zero.
“Living an empowered life,” he argued, is based on observation, learning new information, adapting, and growing.
The bottom of the 2018 bear market came in December that year when BTC briefly dipped below USD 3,200. The journey to last year’s all-time high marked a more than 2,000% rally for the number one crypto.
At 6:40 UTC on Friday, bitcoin traded at USD 20,643, down 70% from the USD 69,044 all-time high seen in November last year.