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Published: Mar 14, 2022 4 min read
Collage of Elon Musk with a grid of cryptocurrency coins in the background
Money; Getty Images

If you were looking for a billionaire's tips for dealing with high inflation, here goes: Elon Musk says it's better to own physical items or stocks rather than cash.

"As a general principle, for those looking for advice from this thread, it is generally better to own physical things like a home or stock in companies you think make good products, than dollars when inflation is high," the Tesla CEO tweeted Monday.

But as for his cryptocurrency holdings? "I still own & won’t sell my Bitcoin, Ethereum or Doge fwiw," continued Musk, who is the world's richest person with an estimated net worth of $206 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

The price of Bitcoin, Dogecoin and other cryptos briefly spiked after the tweet.

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Consumer prices rose 7.9% on a yearly basis in February — the highest 12-month increase since January 1982, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data. Across the country, prices for gas, cars, food and more are soaring amid a surge in consumer demand and supply chain snags.

Cryptocurrency advocates tout that the immense rise of Bitcoin and other cryptos indicate that the digital asset can hedge against inflation. Michael Saylor, CEO of business intelligence company MicroStrategy, echoed this notion in a tweet to Musk on Sunday evening: "USD consumer inflation will continue near all time highs, and asset inflation will run at double the rate of consumer inflation. Weaker currencies will collapse, and the flight of capital from cash, debt, & value stocks to scarce property like #bitcoin will intensify."

But because cryptocurrency is relatively new, we haven't yet been able to see how it holds up during long-term inflationary periods.

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Elon Musk's crypto advice on Twitter

This isn't the first time Musk has shared what he's doing with his own money and belongings with his nearly 78 million Twitter followers. Back in May 2020, he said that he was "selling almost all physical possessions."

And he's certainly not been quiet about crypto. Last summer he commented that a Dogecoin update could give it an edge over popular cryptocurrencies Bitcoin and Ether, and he called Dogecoin a "hustle" on Saturday Night Live, which caused the crypto's price to plummet. More recently, Dogecoin's price jumped more than 10% after Musk tweeted that Tesla merchandise can now be bought with the meme coin.

Crypto is a volatile and speculative asset, evidenced by the fact that an offhand tweet from Musk can so quickly move its price.

If you're looking for advice on how to protect your assets as prices continue to rise, check out Money's tips on saving on groceries and gas, and how to inflation-proof your investment portfolio with I bonds and inflation hedges.

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