Take 15 Series Interview Recorded 05 Mar 2021
Cryptoassets: Complex, Risky, and Exciting
Matt Hougan, chief investment officer at Bitwise Asset Management and co-author of the CFA Institute Research Foundation brief, “Cryptoassets: The Guide to Bitcoin, Blockchain, and Cryptocurrency for Investment Professionals,” discusses valuation, risks, and what watch for on the horizon.
The Take 15 Series is a collection of illuminating, short conversations with noted economists, best-selling authors, leading researchers, and successful practitioners on topics ranging from geopolitics and whistleblowing to irrationality and outlooks.
Episode Transcript (PDF)
4:00 - Philosophy to ETFs and the leap into Bitcoin
4:43 - The light-bulb moment 11:45 - Crypto: the next big disruptive area of finance
14:40 - The reason behind why there is more than one cryptoasset?
17:29 - What role, if any, should cryptoassets have in a professionally managed portfolio and individual investors?
20:26 - What should financial advisors be thinking about and should they be caring about crypto? What should they be doing about the clients in crypto?
22:30 - What Matt thinks the biggest misunderstanding about crypto is? What is the actual reality?
24:36 - What do you say to the naysayers on crypto? 26:35 - Matt discusses allegations that the benefits of blockchain are exaggerated
29:11 - Five most widely used cryptoasset valuation techniques
23:19 - What should we watch out for on the horizon?
36:24 - What Matt holds in his crypto portfolio
37:20 - Closing questions
- Ray of sunshine: long-term positive change from the pandemic
- What do you take with you on a long NASA flight?
- Flight vs. invisibility
Related articles and links:
- Research Foundation Briefs: Cryptoassets: The Guide to Bitcoin, Blockchain, and Cryptocurrency for Investment Professionals
- White paper: "The Case for Bitcoin in the Institutional Portfolio”
- Download and share Research Foundation content (free to all)
About the Speaker(s)
Matt Hougan is one of the world’s leading experts on crypto, ETFs, and financial technology.
He is Chief Investment Officer for Bitwise Asset Management, creator of the world's first cryptocurrency index fund. In that role, he helps create the index methodologies that underlie Bitwise’s investment products, and conducts fundamental research into the role cryptoassets can play in a diversified portfolio.
A three-time member of the Barron’s ETF Roundtable, Hougan was previously CEO of ETF.com, where he helped create the first institutionally oriented ETF classification and ratings system. Hougan led the sale of that business in three transactions to FactSet, BATS, and Informa, in 2015 and 2016.
He was also Chairman and CEO of Inside ETFs, the world’s largest ETF conference, where he helped guide efforts to educate financial advisors on the role ETFs and index-based investments can play in building efficient portfolios.
Hougan’s thoughts on investing have been widely profiled in the media, including in Barron’s, Bloomberg, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Institutional Investor, CNBC, and the Financial Times. He is co-author of two publications for the CFA Institute Research Foundation: “A Comprehensive Guide to Exchange-Traded Funds,” published in 2015, and “Cryptoasset: The Guide to Bitcoin, Blockchain, and Cryptocurrencies For Professional Investors.” A crypto columnist for Forbes, Hougan has been featured on Bloomberg’s “Masters of Business.”
Hougan serves on the Board of Directors of Equbot, creator of the world’s first artificial-intelligence-driven family of ETFs, is a co-founder of Advisor Circle, a product studio for growth-oriented financial advisors, and is a strategic advisor to a number of firstm, including Blockworks and StratiFi.
He graduated from Bowdoin College with a B.A. in philosophy.