For a while now, CNBC has been controversial in the Bitcoin and crypto community. Since it began heavily covering the space in 2017, which came as BTC was skyrocketing, pushing past price milestones of $5,000, $10,000, and so on, the outlet has been known to make bad calls on the cryptocurrency.
In fact, one analysis completed by cryptocurrency personality and trader Jacob Canfield revealed that CNBC’s coverage of the Bitcoin market was a counter indicator 95% of the time in much of 2018. In other words, when the prominent outlet published an article or segment claiming BTC would head higher, it fell. The inverse was also true.
The counter indicator has purportedly struck again. As noted by analyst Ceteris Paribus, who cited data from Messari’s OnChainFX, Bitcoin has rallied strongly against cannabis stocks in the past four months.
In fact, since February 22nd, which is when CNBC published a quote from a “wealth advisor” that said investors should dump their BTC for weed stocks, Bitcoin has rallied by a jaw-dropping 167%. In that same time frame, some of the “hottest weed stocks”, which were then being buoyed by Canada’s legalization of the substance, lost much of their value. In fact, since the CNBC report, Tilray has lost 45%, as CannTrust lost 71%.
For those who missed the memo, the article in question was this one, during which Carol Pepper of Pepper International opined that stocks relating to the substance would not mirror the “Bitcoin frenzy”, implying that she doesn’t expect for cannabis to go boom and bust as BTC did.
(Bitcoin has since recovered, of course. But at the time, many in the mainstream had deemed the cryptocurrency fad “dead”.)
What’s weird is that CNBC’s social media team has continued to push the article on their feeds, despite the fact that the advisor’s warnings have been proven to be inaccurate and baseless.
Not All Bad News
It is important to note, however, that CNBC has hosted a series of “good takes” on cryptocurrency. Case in point, Joe Kernen, one of the hosts and anchors of the “Squawk Box” show, has become somewhat of an outspoken bull of Bitcoin. Ever since Facebook unveiled Libra, Kernen has been somewhat optimistic about Bitcoin’s prospects.
Most recently, the personality questioned U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin’s take on cryptocurrency. During an interview, Kernen argued to Mnuchin that cash is used for illicit activity just as much, if not more than Bitcoin, questioning the Treasury representative’s warning that cryptocurrencies may soon face “very, very strong” regulation.
Another prominent Bitcoin bull that has recently graced CNBC is Chamath Palihapitiya, a former Facebook executive and a minority owner of the Golden State Warriors. Speaking to millions, Palihapitiya argued that Bitcoin is the perfect insurance against questionable fiscal policy and macroeconomic risk, urging viewers to purchase BTC.
Title Image Courtesy of Andre Francois Mckenzie Via Unsplash