HPS Insights

Crypto Convos With The Milken Institute's Nicole Valentine

August 2, 2022

On the latest episode of Crypto Convos, Nicole Valentine, FinTech Director of the Center for Financial Markets at the Milken Institute, joins HPS’ Bryan DeAngelis and Jonathan Graffeo to discuss the recent crypto meltdown, its impact on legislative and regulatory efforts, and how despite this hit to the industry, “DeFi may be down, but its not out.”

The group provides context to the meltdown, with Nicole noting that this is the “perfect economic storm” and indicative of overall market volatility seen across industries, not just an isolated crisis in the crypto industry. They also discuss how this crisis compares to others, particularly the 2009 financial crisis, with Bryan and Jonathan noting that market events such as these tend to drive strong policymaker action due to the impacts felt by consumers. 

Nicole goes on to discuss the risks this crisis poses to consumer protections, as well as emphasizing the overall value of crypto to consumers, a big focus of her work at the Milken Institute. She discusses how her interest in this was partially driven by her experience living across the globe, and how she has seen first-hand the positive impact crypto has on cross-border payments. In this conversation, Bryan agrees that cross-border payments in particular are an area of traditional finance that is ready for disruption, recounting a story from a previous guest that bringing “$9,999.99 dollars on a plane would be faster, cheaper, and more efficient than wiring this money today,” showcasing the value of using blockchain to move money.

Nicole also shares her thoughts on the role of think tanks in the ongoing crypto conversation. She notes the importance of think tanks’ convening power and research to educate diverse stakeholders, and ultimately, move the needle on policy and innovation. The group concludes with their projections on what the midterm elections could mean for the fate of crypto legislation. Give it a listen and check out the show notes below!

Show Notes:

– Nicole Valentine on Twitter

– The Milken Institute’s FinTech In Focus Newsletter: July 26 Edition (Subscribe here)

– The Milken Institute’s Fintech Policy Tracker

– Nicole Valentine in Protocol’s Braintrust: “What should Michael Barr — the Fed’s newest regulator — do first?”

You can find all of HPS’ original podcast content on Apple Music or Spotify. Follow us on Twitter at @HPSInsight for more updates.

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