Gary Cohn, the former Goldman Sachs executive who led Donald Trump’s National Economic Council until last month, weighed in on bitcoin and blockchain technology on Tuesday.
“I’m not a big believer in bitcoin,” Cohn told CNBC’s Bob Pisani in an interview. “I am a believer in blockchain technology.”
He then made a bold prediction about the future of the tech, telling the network:
“I do think we will have a global cryptocurrency at some point.”
Cohn clarified that this global cryptocurrency would not be “based on mining costs and costs of electricity and things like that,” a reference to the power-hungry mechanism that bitcoin and other blockchains utilize.
“It will be a more easily understood cryptocurrency that will probably have some blockchain technology behind it, but it will be much more easily understood how it’s created and how it moves and how people can use it,” he remarked.
Cohn was prompted by a question about Goldman Sachs’ decision, revealed last week, to launch a bitcoin futures trading desk.
“Look, they can do whatever they want. They can do whatever’s in their shareholders’ best interest,” Cohn replied.
Cohn became Goldman Sachs’ president and chief operating officer in 2006. He remained in the post through the aftermath of the financial crisis, which his firm was widely seen as contributing to through its mortgage-backed securities business.
When Trump took office in January 2017, Cohn left Goldman to serve as director of the National Economic Council. In March 2018 it was reported that he would resign, a decision that likely reflected his opposition to the Trump administration’s proposed tariffs. Cohn left the post on April 2.