Stay calm through the crypto-price wobbles, says Coinbase chief

June 21, 2018
Chris Wheal

Brian Armstrong, chief executive of San Francisco-based crypto exchange Coinbase, has taken to social media to encourage investors to remain optimistic through the turbulent price swings seen in the market this year.

Brian Armstrong, chief executive of Coinbase

In a series of messages on Twitter, Armstrong impressed upon his followers that up and down cycles were the reality of all financial markets, and that they were, in fact, useful in shaking out those investors not fully-committed to the sector.

“The crypto industry is like no other I’ve seen – lots of up and down cycles,” he said. “It can be scary the first time you see it, but to us who have been in the industry for many years, it feels like old news.”

Fickle sentiment

He then went on to underline the fickle nature of cryptocurrency market sentiment, noting that trading volumes were a better indicator of the health of the market than simply focusing on price alone.

“When there is hype, people are irrationally exuberant. When there is despair, people are irrationally pessimistic,” he said.

“Neither is true. Reality is always somewhere in the middle, more correlated with real usage – transactions per day – than the price.”

Enjoy the down cycles

He added that after many years of price turbulence, he’d come to enjoy the down cycles as they helped rid the market of “people who are in it for the wrong reasons”.

He said: “We use the down cycles to build a strong foundation so we can thrive in the next growth cycle.”

Armstrong continued: “I want to encourage you all to ignore the price of crypto and the headlines which will inevitably start to come up. Our job is to rise above that, finding our own intrinsic source of motivation, to come in and do our best work, regardless of what other people think.”

Complaints to SEC

His comments about “ignoring the headlines” appeared to presage news – reported on Mashable on Thursday – that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the California Department of Business Oversight had received 134 pages of complaints.

One complainant reporting to the exchange that his funds – transferred from one Coinbase account to another – had been lost, said: “I have contacted Coinbase over seven times and all they say is that they have so many issues, they will get back to me and it is been a month.”

This appeared to be a common factor in the complaints, with one customer saying “they have effectively stolen my money” and were “ignoring my repeated attempts to resolve this matter”.

Coinbase has addressed the issues, increasing support staff by more than 150% in the past few months. As a result, the exchange told Mashable, “we are able to resolve issues faster and have decreased the backlog by 95%”.

Post written by Chris Wheal
Chris Wheal is editor of OpenLedger's news and features service. An award-wining business journalists himself, he runs a team of freelance journalists from across the UK and north America.

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