The recent decline, of about 20%, is being blamed on technical reasons or high fees and bankrupt FTX selling its assets. But the price of crypto falls every time it becomes more accessible for two reasons. First, being traded on public markets means more information is incorporated into the price, and markets are saying it is not worth much. Second, the very fact that crypto is now a mainstream asset changes its initial value proposition; it is no longer part of the “outsider” asset class that would overtake a major government function.

Bitcoin’s price may never implode, as Fama predicts, and there might even be a few more price spikes ahead. But this is no longer the Bitcoin of 2021. And its decline since being traded on public markets does appear to validate the efficient-markets hypothesis that made Fama famous. Going mainstream has revealed its true value. Now it is just another asset class, about as exciting as a bond fund, but much more volatile and with far less ability to diversify its risk.

Speaking of mainstream: What could possibly be more ordinary than being snubbed at the World Economic Forum? It has gone from the solution to all our problems to just another dull asset. I didn’t necessarily know where all the best parties were in Davos — but I can pretty much guarantee that crypto wasn’t invited. Next year, crypto, if I’m invited back, you can be my +1.

Allison Schrager is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering economics. A senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, she is author of “An Economist Walks Into a Brothel: And Other Unexpected Places to Understand Risk.”

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