- SoftBank’s founder, Masayoshi Son, might have saved $130 million if he paid attention to Warren Buffett.
- The famed tech investor lost that amount on a bitcoin bet gone wrong, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal.
- Watch bitcoin trade live.
“Be fearful when others are greedy and greedy only when others are fearful,” said the legendary investor Warren Buffett in 2004. In other words, buy low and sell high — and don’t follow the herd.
If SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son had listened to Buffett’s advice, he might have saved $130 million on a bitcoin bet gone wrong. The technology investor lost that amount by buying bitcoin near the height of the digital currency’s mania and selling after it crashed, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal.
Son invested near the peak of bitcoin’s speculative craze, when the cryptocurrency traded as high as $20,000 a coin, according to The Journal, citing people familiar with the matter, though the exact prices that Son bought and sold at were unclear. Bitcoin is now trading near $5,500, up roughly 45% year-to-date.
While the reported bitcoin bet was done with Son’s money and not SoftBank’s, the news contrasts with his lofty reputation. The Japanese businessman leaped to prominence when his $20 million bet on Alibaba soared to a value of more than $100 billion. On the back of that success, Son raised $100 billion for SoftBank’s Vision Fund to invest in technology companies.
Even if Son missed Buffett’s general advice on investing, he could have done well to listen to Buffett’s specific warnings on crypto investing.
“Cryptocurrencies will come to bad endings,” Buffett said at Berkshire Hathaway’s annual meeting in 2018. “There’s nothing being produced in the way of value from the asset.”
He continued: “It’s something where people who are of less-than-stellar character see an opportunity to clip people who were trying to get rich because their neighbor’s getting rich buying this stuff neither one of them understands.”
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