The Rise of Bitcoin – Mark Hart

Featuring Mark Hart

Mark Hart is one of the biggest thinkers around in the macro world and as he debates the pros and cons of Bitcoin with Raoul Pal, understand how hedge funds are approaching the cryptocurrency revolution. In a fast paced interview, the investing icon also zeros in on what’s getting him excited in global circles, from bombed out Greek assets to the burgeoning and soon to be legal markets in North America for marijuana. Filmed on May 23, 2017, in Orlando.

Published on
9 June, 2017
Macro, Crypto-currencies, China
59 minutes
Asset class
Crypto-currencies, Currencies, Equities


  • MS

    Marvin S.

    17 1 2018 22:53

    1       0

    Good Job Mark!

    I am a very happy shareholder of Mark's fund. Worth and Mark are smart. Pay attention all.

  • BK

    Brian K.

    20 12 2017 21:00

    2       0

    Please have Mark on quarterly

  • JV

    Jens V.

    14 11 2017 13:10

    1       0

    Brilliant! Lots of great ideas and perspectives.
    True that Bitcoin is useful for large transfers - and there isn't a good alternative for that cross borders. And in most countries not within borders either.
    Mark is definitely a great thinker and an original mind, and Raoul did a great job as always. Thanks.

  • BK

    Brian K.

    31 10 2017 16:38

    1       0

    Will we look back at bitcoins valuation as a mania ? Probably, but its real if you cash out prior to the implosion.

  • AK

    Alexander K.

    22 8 2017 22:27

    0       0

    Very cool interview Raoul. Mark seems such a chilled guy.

  • JS

    John S.

    10 8 2017 23:35

    0       0

    Mark seems like a great and brilliant guy. I really enjoyed it.

  • SW

    Steven W.

    26 7 2017 12:18

    0       7

    No Mark, we have ransomware because of bitcoin. The anonymous international payment is what has spurred ransomware and other frauds.

  • MS

    Mark S.

    16 6 2017 05:20

    6       0

    I like Mark Hart, but I am Canadian, Justin Trudeau is an idiot!!! He's got no education relevant to his post. The only reason he got the job is because of his last name.

  • TC

    Thomas C.

    14 6 2017 11:59

    4       0

    Brilliant - just brilliant !!

  • PR

    Peter R.

    14 6 2017 04:27

    3       4

    I have a hard time accepting bitcoin as a store of value. To me a store of value is something that can be easily measured and recognised i.e. Gold, Silver, diamonds, property, patents etc. Their value should be relatively stable and retain their real value over time. Bitcoin is more like a lottery ticket or electronic pixy dust. Couple that with low transaction speeds at ever higher costs. Sorry Mark, to me it looks like a future train wreck.

  • AS

    Adam S.

    13 6 2017 19:01

    2       0

    Have had long Cannabis view for a long time now but boss won't bite (still a junior) what do people think of: $ACB, $APH, $WEED, $ZYNE, & $BLO ?

  • KE

    Kenan E.

    13 6 2017 16:24

    3       0

    I think Bitcoin was nice to develop the blockchain-technology. But it will fail because of the monopolization issue. It is also completely corrrect to do the development as open source. BUT a working digital currency has to ensure that the mining / driving of the network is done by a huge number of nodes (why not every (coin)-network participant?) so it is practically not manipulatable. So why not develop a digital currency where every participant HAS TO provide a little computing power to do the "mining"? I think that would actually work. Different miners in the past already got over 50% of the "mining-power". I think that proves that bitcoin ALREADY failed. If there is an attack-vector it has to be eliminated. I currently do not see how this could happen with bitcoin.

  • KE

    Kenan E.

    13 6 2017 15:57

    1       1

    OK guys -- we know how many bitcoins will be around in x years... BUT ONLY if no one changes the code! THAT's ONE the problem with crypto-currencies. Another is the monopolization of mining (aka driving the network) as seen . If there are only a handful of miners you get a REAL problem. This only works if there are a lot of different small entitities who conduct the mining otherwise it simply fails (aka can be manipulated by the guys who have the monopoly).

  • TA

    Tobias A.

    13 6 2017 12:34

    7       1

    I have suddenly become aware of the geopolitical game theory involves in which countries ban and or embrace crypto. My conclusion is essentially that it is a very risky move to clamp down on them as on a global competitiveness stance you could be shutting yourself out of the new economy somewhat. And by embracing them as a secondary currency like Japan has done, this could essentially allow you to debase your currency on a more aggressive basis as the people would have an outlet to use to protect value while at the same time giving yourself a competitive advantage in world trade.
    Does anyone else have any similar thoughts on this?

  • RM

    Russell M.

    13 6 2017 02:52

    0       2

    why couldn't gov regulate tax and fee bitcoin?

  • RM

    Russell M.

    13 6 2017 02:51

    2       3

    Why couldn't government impose regulation and transaction fees

  • BK

    Bruce K.

    12 6 2017 16:10

    1       1

    It would be more than a bit scary if we relied on economic game theory to secure a blockchain. ;-) The blockchain is secured by strong public key cryptography. Owning a keypair (specifically the PRIVATE key) may represent a cryptocurrency token, or it may represent something else entirely. In the case of BTC, yes, ownership of a private key *is* ownership of the associated BTC. And we already have commercial blockchains where the private keys are NOT associated with a cryptocurrency at all.

  • XZ

    Xriva Z.

    12 6 2017 13:48

    4       1

    IMHO, taking any kind of drugs is stupid and self destructive, not a 'healthy lifestyle.' In any case, I support the legalization of all drugs (and prostitution) because it would be safer and take the $ away from the criminals . . . though some of the $ would go to the grey criminals (government.) Plus my tax dollars would not be spent fighting drug crime.

  • FH

    Faisal H.

    12 6 2017 11:26

    0       0

    I loved this! Such quality content, I've found great value from this!

  • SB

    Sam B.

    12 6 2017 01:12

    5       0

    Broadly speaking, millennials don't have enough income or net worth to raise kids or buy least not until there has been serious deflation. I have a ton of respect for Mark and I consider all his interviews to be extremely thought provoking. I just think its strange how he's now double fisting the bullish kool-aid. The biggest disagreement I have with him here is that I believe he's investing far too much confidence in governments executing successfully... with regard to both the nebulous Trump agenda and in the Chinese and the rest of the world keeping the eurodollar system intact for anything longer than just the short-term. Whatever the mysterious Shanghai Accord actually was, I highly doubt it will prove to be a durable solution...

  • sv

    scot v.

    12 6 2017 00:33

    2       0

    Is cryptocurrency decreasing the demand for Gold and Silver?

  • rs

    richard s.

    11 6 2017 21:39

    1       2

    Couple of comments/ questions that maybe someone could explain to me.
    1. I do not understand why the coins them selves should have any real value. As I understand it the coins can be bought and sold it divided pieces, So cant they be divided infinitely. Thus there is no real value cause the supply is in fact infinite not Finite.

    2. Should the Coins become any real competition for currencies such as the USD, why wouldn't institutions like the FED hammer the price by selling large quantities as is said to happen with gold.
    For all practical purposes the Federal Reserve has infinite credit at its disposal so it could simply short bitcoin at will, or any other coin APP

  • BK

    Bruce K.

    11 6 2017 21:21

    1       0
  • BK

    Bruce K.

    11 6 2017 21:21

    0       0
  • BK

    Bruce K.

    11 6 2017 20:41

    9       1

    A little clarification may be in order. The blockchain technology underlying cyber-currencies is open source software. Like Linux. As a matter of fact, one of the most robust blockchain platforms called Hyperledger is being developed under the auspices of the Linux foundation.

    Point #1 being, this super-interesting technology with tremendous potential applications is FREE. Raoul made a comment along those lines, so I wanted to add this clarifying explanation.

    Point #2 being, excitement around cyber-currencies bas NOTHING to do with the aforementioned "tremendous potential applications." Trade settlement? Supply chain assurance? Anti-counterfeiting protection? All great ideas that can benefit from blockchain technology ... but these applications have ZERO connection to Bitcoin, Ether, or any of the other 500 crypto-currencies.

    Summary: blockchain technology is now separate and distinct from crypto-currencies. Hope that makes sense.

  • MS

    Matt S.

    11 6 2017 17:10

    1       4

    That was fucking awesome.

    sorry..... ;p

  • DE

    Donald E.

    11 6 2017 15:48

    0       0

    I think the point on China vs Japan savings financing OBOR is misleading at best / incorrect. Chinese Savings (49% of GDP)/ deposits in the Chinese banking system finance the offshore investment into OBOR (not Japanese savers investing in CNY bonds). A portion comes from the vast FX reserves from CIC / MOF / PBOC / AIIB which have directly financed funds specifically for OBOR (eg The silk road fund) . Banks & wealth management products (shadow banking) are THE core "buyers" of China's local denominated debts. In addition the 4 core policy banks lead by China Development Bank lend at the project level in large scale projects where China has an "edge" 1) Rail 2) highways / infrastructure 3) power / power distribution (state grid, CNOOC / Sinopec in oil) 4) technology e.g. mobile masts / Huawei......the impact is clearly visible in Sri Lanka, SE Asia, Pakistan, Mongolia, Kazakhstan / Central Asia, Africa amongst other countries..... A great product RVTV thank you

  • LW

    Landon W.

    11 6 2017 13:20

    3       0

    I have a problem with the narrative of deregulation being the reason for the market rally. Everyday, Trump's approval ratings are falling. The risk of a major political reversal seems high in 2018 and 2000. Are the odds not increasing that we see the Elizabeth Warren faction takeover and all of potential market drivers become major headwinds? Shouldn't the market begin discounting this risk? It sure doesn't seem like Trump is going to accomplish much of his agenda.

  • TS

    Thomas S.

    11 6 2017 02:28

    2       0

    I think Worth Wray called it correctly. The Shanghi Accord. It shows how governments and CBs are willing to do things under the table

  • TR

    Thomas R.

    11 6 2017 00:20

    7       1

    The one question or hurdle in my mind about Bit Coin or digital currencies and their viability at scale as a “currency” and specifically a medium of exchange, is a Government’s need to tax. Up until now all in-country use of all government currencies don’t, by their use, create a taxable transaction. Yes trading FX currencies against one another creates taxable gains and losses – but the simple every day use of a gov’t currency to buy stuff does not. I.E. If I’m in the US and want to buy a television in the US with US dollars I have in my wallet – my purchase does not create a taxable transaction for me, the buyer. Staying with the US - in the US Bit Coin is treated as a commodity for tax purposes. Currently if I have accumulated and own bit coins and I use bit coin to buy a Television – I’ve created a taxable transaction on the built up gain in my Bit Coins on its value realization in buying a TV. Multiply this transaction at scale and you create a taxation nightmare.

    In my question, I am implying that there is an element of control a gov’t has over its currency and managing it – especially if we go to the elimination of cash and go to digital currency.

    How does bitcoin or any other non-gov’t based digital currency effectively get recognized as a currency for purposes of being a medium of exchange?

    Once digital currencies get to a certain scale of use (way beyond the $70 billion they all cumulative represent world-wide now) what prevents governments from adopting their own digital currency and prohibit the use of non-gov’t digital currencies?

    Said probation could come about, perhaps by law, but from my perspective, the more practical prohibition may likely come in the form of the imposition of taxation rules and regulations on non-Gov’t digital currencies.

    I’ve thought about this same argument for gold – as gold is also deemed a commodity for tax purposes - except gold is and has been recognized as a currency worldwide and, as it is now from a practical and use perspective, the future of gold is not likely to have a primary use as a medium of exchange – but more likely to have the role of backstopping the valuation of government currency going forward. I would also assert that the current use of gold is more as a storer of value that a medium of exchange or unit of account.

    Thanks RV

  • MT

    Michael T.

    10 6 2017 22:59

    2       0

    Wow. What a cool interview. It was super refreshing to hear good arguments that contradict the current narrative.

  • MC

    Mike C.

    10 6 2017 20:06

    0       1

    Will add....Mark starting to talk like a tech. VC...important shift in thinking/interpreting what is happening in our economy.This is one of the shifts folks....constant efficiency is a net positive to wealth creation/growth but they may not appear so bullish on traditional metrics. Step back, have a broad look at what's going on folks. Don't let the FUD break you down.

  • MC

    Mike C.

    10 6 2017 19:47

    7       2

    Being involved in Bitcoin for 4 years now, what I see is that you either get it or you don't....I witnessed the exact same transformation happening in the early internet days. Takes time for people to understand ubiquitous decentralized distributed systems because we've all been brainwashed to believe we need a keeper and gates. Mark understand the new age phenomena.....if you can't see this paradigm shift, it will/is happening without you!!

  • DL

    Douglas L.

    10 6 2017 17:53

    0       0

    Great conversation between Raoul and Mark. If you listened to the recent Real Vision podcast, you'll note that Raoul closed out his Bitcoin trade after three years. Raoul mentioned that he experienc

  • AH

    Andreas H.

    10 6 2017 17:50

    4       0

    I slept a night over that interview. Bitcoins: this was filmed in may, so he was right there is going to be a run! Further more he is substantially bullish on other themes (Greek stock market, housing, Biotec) and he was very bearish a year ago on a lot of things (China). He has shifted his opinion and I like that flexibility a lot. Good views on demographics too. A lot of others have turned bullish (and bearish on gold, Peter Brand and others...), so I start to wonder how long this will work, 2-3 Years and the pain trade (which is still up!) might be over, everybody is then in the market(s) and things turn around... Bitcoins are a beast, I got out of them a week ago with a 650% gain, I know I will regret it, not having the stomach to ride them a bit more...

  • AS

    Andrew S.

    10 6 2017 15:08

    6       0

    Newsflash: You can own both gold and Bitcoin.

  • JM

    James M.

    10 6 2017 14:39

    7       0

    Be grateful if anyone can answer one question. May be naive but I put it out there anyway. CBs have used seemingly infinite (Of course we can argue if it is or not) fiat to buy public assets best example being SNB and BOJ buying Apple and Japanese ETFs. Whats to stop them doing the same with any digital currency at any price and therefore controlling the instrument?

  • SR

    Steve R.

    10 6 2017 09:07

    8       7

    So Mark's thesis for an increasing bitcoin price is because of FOMO! Because a fisherman in Zimbabwe can earn more in a day buying bitcoin than in a month selling fish. WTF! Are you serious? Sounds like a pyramid scheme to me. Funny how everyone I know in the bitcoin space is mega hyper-bullish, see no negatives at all, nothing. But that's because they all have a vested interest in keeping the hype going long enough for them to get their money out before all those late to the party get wiped out! I have total respect for Mark, but I feel he's been brainwashed by the bitcoin cryptomainacs. Their whole thesis is based on pure greed. Its just like 'investment extremism'!

  • JV

    Jonas V.

    10 6 2017 08:08

    10       0

    For what it's worth, I own gold but never used it to circumvent capital controls. I have used bitcoin though for that purpose. Wiring money to Brazil takes days and you need to physically go to the bank to sign paperwork if it's more than $2000. Plus you pay a financial transaction tax. No need for any of that with bitcoin! Other blockchains, gold, some initiative in India... aren't going to resolve my problems.

  • NS

    Nathan S.

    10 6 2017 04:41

    2       0

    Thanks Mark and Raoul, great discussion. Very timely regarding Bitcoin. One (hopefully helpful) comment for Mark regarding deductibility of business expenses for US cannabis companies (ie. s 280E issue), the bigger companies can and do structure around this.

  • RA

    Robert A.

    10 6 2017 03:32

    5       0

    Great job Raoul. Mark seems "easy" to interview until....he's not. I'd listen to ANYTHING he has to say---is there a house for sale between your two! Raoul, when did you learn to interview in the "suspense novel" style....has Mark covered his massive Yuan devaluation bet yet??...and what about Kyle??...Very cheeky, your leaving us hanging! IMO, seems clear he has smaller sized, been stopped out, or has exited the position. Thanks for getting Mark on as not many would ever have this kind of access to him w/o a chance meeting in the martial arts studio!

  • BS

    Brandon S.

    10 6 2017 00:47

    5       0

    The first millennials are early 30's. Lots of people waiting till mid to late 30's to have kids. They'll all be looking to move into housing at the same time.

  • CM

    Chris M.

    9 6 2017 23:40

    3       2

    You should own bitcoin so you can pay off ransomware and that it is climbing a wall of worry. This is a persuasive argument.

  • CM

    Chris M.

    9 6 2017 23:37

    4       2

    I am only 20 minutes in, but hearing some of the weakest arguments for buying an asset in Bitcoin. Tulip bulbs were one time a storage of value. Agree with earlier post, much better holding gold if storage of value is your key need. He even admits that it is in a tulip bubble.

  • FC

    Fractal C.

    9 6 2017 22:50

    0       0


  • KS

    Kim S.

    9 6 2017 22:22

    6       0

    I especially like the Greek/Cyprus ideas considering China's potential interest in that area. Any funds for a retail investor to enter?

  • AH

    Andreas H.

    9 6 2017 21:14

    4       0

    Great Interview!

  • HJ

    Harry J.

    9 6 2017 20:56

    1       2

    Bit coin = third party risk. I'll take gold every time!

  • MM

    Michael M.

    9 6 2017 20:52

    1       0

    Re: cannabis, mark is perhaps missing that generation z/homelanders are the most conservative generation for maybe a century.

  • GD

    Gustavo D.

    9 6 2017 20:33

    3       0

    This video made me think.
    The one thing bitcoin adds to this world that no asset has is security in usage without the need of trust, from anyone.
    I like gold, but i find it difficult to believe that there is no influence on its price from governing bodies or large entities. Corporations may not want to use bitcoin, but I know a lot of people who do.

  • MA

    Matt A.

    9 6 2017 19:57

    5       0

    As a millennial myself, I really appreciate Mark and Raoul's openness to discuss such trending topics like cannabis, bitcoin, and the young generation of renters and soon to be home owners. I agree mostly with everything said on cannabis. As bullish as Mark sounded on it, I think he's even underestimating the potential of legalization in the US. Not only is it a commodity, but also an ingredient in everything from medical remedies to bath and beauty products. Also, it has a user-base already built in. When it's legalized, look out!

  • EL

    Elizabeth L.

    9 6 2017 18:59

    8       0

    Absolutely great discussion. If at all possible, having Mark back at least twice a year would be great. Would of course love hearing him on a quarterly basis. His way of thinking is unique and he has the ability to see things from 30,000 feet up to take in the whole picture. I don't mind the moving around the world style discussion Thank you Mark. Thank you Raoul.

  • PH

    Philip H.

    9 6 2017 17:19

    5       0

    I totally agree that Medical Marijuana and adult use are going grow hugely over next few years. I currentlly own Canadian Bioceutical Corp. They are pursuing a "roll up" stategy in US excuse the pun!!

  • DR

    De R.

    9 6 2017 17:12

    0       0

    how about china over levered banking sector. @.@

  • TJ

    Terry J.

    9 6 2017 16:47

    2       0

    Wow! Listening to Mark, maybe it is "Morning in Amercia" again! Brilliant exchange of views from two macro giants whom I could listen to all day. I especially enjoyed listening to the discussion on bitcoin and cannabis, where the potential is enoprmous. It was Raoul who first got me interested in bitcoin and now hearing Mark waxing so positively on the cryptocurrency suggests to me we are still at the early end of the phenomenal potential it has to offer. Obviously nobody should bet the ranch, but as Raoul originally suggested a small speculation could eventually yield a very handsome dividend. Awesome insights!

  • RA

    Ricardo A.

    9 6 2017 16:36

    1       0

    Still incredibly smart, but I've seen a sharper M.Hale in the past ...

  • BE

    Baha E.

    9 6 2017 16:13

    1       0

    Mark is brilliant but he was wrong about China devalue. People can naturally be wrong.

  • TM

    The-First-James M.

    9 6 2017 16:03

    3       0

    Absolutely awesome. I'd forgotten how much value for money an hour long sit down with Mark Hart can provide to Realvision Subscribers! You are killing it this week Gents!

  • WB

    Wes B.

    9 6 2017 15:24

    32       0

    90 min interviews would be fine with me. Just sayin'

  • A1

    Animal 1.

    9 6 2017 15:23

    0       0


  • AA

    Ali A.

    9 6 2017 15:17

    0       0

    ... that determines intrinsic value

  • AA

    Ali A.

    9 6 2017 15:16

    1       0

    If a corporate owned a patent for blockchain technology then that would be what youd want to own. Anyone can create a blockchain nowadays, and there is nothig other than confidence and critical mass t

  • MB

    Michael B.

    9 6 2017 15:02

    6       0

    Honey Badger dont give a shit

  • JV

    JACK V.

    9 6 2017 14:47

    31       0

    2 global macro legends devoting so much time to discussing Bitcoin and Canadian Weed speaks volumes about the (manipulated) state of major markets and the difficulties of divining high conviction trade ideas (in stocks, bonds, fx, commodities) in this age of central bank interventionism.

  • DF

    Dominic F.

    9 6 2017 14:11

    14       0

    These guys have total respect for each other because they totally challenge each other, think differently and feed each others thought processes. Great to watch in itself whatever the subject matter.

  • VK

    Viresh K.

    9 6 2017 13:14

    1       0

    Wow, at the OBOR section... Mark is still the smartest guy in the room

  • VK

    Viresh K.

    9 6 2017 13:14

    0       0

    Wow, at the OBOR section... Mark is still the smartest guy in the room

  • T~

    Tshort63 ~.

    9 6 2017 13:12

    4       3

    Great debate. Never been a fan of Bitcoin as technology eats itself. Xcite, LexusNexus, @home, Yahoo, Bing, Google, and n+ etc. Combining tech and currency is a disaster waiting to happen. More akin to the tulip than to a store of value. Just my $.02. I hold physical gold. If God forbid, a kinetic war breaks out and technology is shut down by hackers or by EMP then having bitcoin will not help buy a gallon of gas where gold and silver will.

  • CS

    C S.

    9 6 2017 12:57

    9       0

    Not sure why people think the store of value and medium of exchange must be the same thing.

  • Nv

    Nick v.

    9 6 2017 12:29

    4       0

    I think Raoul won this one. Great debate

  • PN

    Paul N.

    9 6 2017 11:05

    14       1

    Key argument at the end of the 1st section. The real (bitcoin) blockchain is only necessary for applications that need extreme security/anonymity/immutability/censorship resistance. Raoul is right that the majority of data doesn't need to be stored on this (and in fact the whole 'lets record everything on the blockchain' narrative is really silly. Why record stuff on a blockchain so it can't be edited?). Now... what needs those features? Digital bearer assets like bitcoin. And when would you want a bearer asset over a registered asset? Situations where you're afraid that someone will track it or take it from you (like Julian Assange). Situations where the current financial system is corrupt or broke (like Venezuela). Situations where you want to buy something privately because it's embarrassing or illegal (like porn & drugs). Women in the Middle East who can't get bank accounts. Hackers who want to ransom your data anonymously. People who want to bypass capital controls (China). And finally, people who just want to save their damn money (Gold 2.0). As far as I'm concerned sex, drugs, and rocknroll is what will drive Bitcoin to >$100K, and institutions will adopt it as an afterthought when enough customers are using it.