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Cryptocurrencies Are ‘Complete Fraud’, Citron Research Founder Andrew Left Says

Andrew Left, founder of Citron Research and one of the world’s best known short-sellers, on Monday described cryptocurrencies as a “fraud.”

Asked at a conference about fraud in financial markets where he saw potential fraud, Left told the audience: “I think crypto is just complete fraud, over and over and over.”

He did not say whether he had investments in cryptocurrencies.

Left built up his brand as one the most prominent short-sellers, but last year announced his company would stop publishing research highlighting companies’ shortcomings and shift to writing about companies he thought might be worth buying.

The move followed a backlash against Left after he said the stock of video game retailer GameStop was not worth its price.

Reuters reported last December that the US Department of Justice had launched an expansive criminal investigation into short selling by hedge funds and research firms, including Citron, which has denied any wrongdoing.

“As the DOJ, you know, hopefully, one day development will realise that this boogeyman, or short sellers, doesn’t exist,” Left said when asked about the investigations.

Back in June, Reserve Bank Governor Shaktikanta Das described cryptocurrencies as “clear danger” and said that anything that derives value based on make believe, without any underlying, is just speculation under a sophisticated name.

The government is in the process of finalising a consultation paper on cryptocurrencies after gathering inputs from various stakeholders and institutions.

Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has been flagging concerns about cryptocurrencies, which are seen as a highly speculative asset.

In the recent months, cryptocurrencies, which are not back by any underlying value, have witnessed massive volatility amid global uncertainties.

While regulatory clarity is yet to emerge with respect to the cryptocurrency space in the country, the government is working to finalise a consultation paper on cryptocurrencies with inputs from various stakeholders and institutions, including the World Bank and the IMF.

Cryptocurrency is an unregulated digital currency, not a legal tender and subject to market risks. The information provided in the article is not intended to be and does not constitute financial advice, trading advice or any other advice or recommendation of any sort offered or endorsed by NDTV. NDTV shall not be responsible for any loss arising from any investment based on any perceived recommendation, forecast or any other information contained in the article.

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