Warren Buffett Is Not a Fan of Online Stock Trading App Robinhood
Buffett raised existential questions over its effect on the market
Since the beginning of the year, the stock trading app Robinhood has had a moment in the sun – including its role in the unlikely stock price surge of GameStop and its CEO being interviewed by the ubiquitous Elon Musk. Robinhood has made stock trading more accessible to, well, nearly anyone with a smartphone. Whether or not that’s a good thing depends on who you talk to — for some, it’s a way of democratizing Wall Street, while for others it’s an invitation to financial chaos.
One prominent business figure who’s in the latter camp? Warren Buffett. The Guardian‘s Jasper Jolly reports that Buffett had harsh words for Robinhood at a Berkshire Hathaway shareholder meeting. “Buffett criticized the zero-commission Robinhood share-trading app, saying that it was making it easier for younger investors to view stock market investments as ‘gambling chips,’” Jolly writes.
Both Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway vice chairman Charlie Munger also expressed concern over SPACs at the meeting. Munger dubbed them a “moral failing” and voiced his concern about their effects on the world at large. While he was at it, Munger also took a swing at Bitcoin, referring to it as “disgusting and contrary to the interest of civilization.”
While these remarks are unlikely to end the ongoing debate over online trading and cryptocurrency, they do feature some of the country’s most prominent investors staking out a relatively unambiguous position. Whether or not that will change anyone’s mind over these permutations of investing remains a going concern.
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