Billionaire investor George Soros has described Russia’s Vladimir Putin as presiding over a “mafia state” and called Trump a “danger to the world” in his speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Bloomberg reported.
The 87-year-old investor also dismissed cryptocurrencies terming its leading currency, Bitcoin, as a “typical bubble.” Soros, however, added that bitcoin is likely to avoid a full crash because authoritarians would still use it to make secret investments abroad.
“Normally when you have a parabolic curve, eventually it has a very sharp break,” Soros said Thursday. “But in this case, as long as you have dictatorships on the rise you will have a different ending because the rulers in those countries will turn to Bitcoin to build a nest egg abroad.”
The Hungarian-born financier’s ire was reserved for the tech giants of Silicon Valley who, he argued, needed to be more strictly regulated.
“Facebook and Google effectively control over half of all internet advertising revenue,” he told diners during his speech.
“They claim that they are merely distributors of information. The fact that they are near-monopoly distributors makes them public utilities and should subject them to more stringent regulations, aimed at preserving competition, innovation, and fair and open universal access.”
He predicted that tech giants would “compromise themselves” to access key markets like China, creating an “alliance between authoritarian states and these large, data-rich IT monopolies.”
“This may well result in a web of totalitarian control the likes of which not even Aldous Huxley or George Orwell could have imagined,” he warned.
Predicting governments would start to more heavily regulate the sector he said: “Davos is a good place to announce that their days are numbered.”
But the investor’s traditional Davos predictions do not always pan out. Last year in Switzerland he warned that the stock market rally would end after Trump’s election and that China’s growth rate was unsustainable. China’s growth has continued while US stocks are regularly hitting record highs.