Bill Gates says it's 'a certainty' that we will have another financial crisis similar to 2008

bill gates

  • Bill Gates said in a recent Reddit AMA that Americans should expect another financial crisis on the magnitude of the 2008 downturn.
  • Still, Gates was optimistic overall. 
  • The billionaire-philanthropist believes the world is improving and often cites the falling number of people living in extreme poverty as evidence.


The financial crisis of 2008 is considered by many economists to have been the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression.

According to Bill Gates, the US is eventually headed for another financial crisis just like it.

On Tuesday, the Microsoft founder held an AMA (Ask Me Anything) on Reddit. When a Reddit user asked Gates, "Do you think in the near future, we will have another financial crisis similar to the one in 2008?" Gates replied with a stern — but still optimistic — warning.

"Yes. It is hard to say when but this is a certainty," Gates said. "Fortunately we got through that one reasonably well."

Gates then deferred to his good friend and fellow billionaire-philanthropist, Warren Buffett, saying, "Warren has talked about this and he understands this area far better than I do."

The 2008 crisis led to the Great Recession, which saw 8.8 million jobs lost. The net worth of households across America fell $19 trillion, and the number of homeless families increased.

Gates ended his reply by saying, "Despite this prediction of bumps ahead I am quite optimistic about how innovation and capitalism will improve the situation for humans everywhere."

Gates has said he believes that the world is getting better by almost every objective measure.

Earlier this month, Gates said during a live Q&A in New York City that "it doesn't happen automatically. It's because people care. It's because of scientific inventions."

He often cites his and his wife Melinda's efforts to reduce the rate of poverty.

The proportion of the world population that lives in extreme poverty — defined as living on less than $1.90 per day by the World Bank — has fallen from more than a third of the population in 1990 to about one-tenth today, according to an editorial Gates wrote for TIME in January.

In 2016, Gates said it's possible to end world poverty by the year 2030.

SEE ALSO: Bill Gates says the world is objectively getting better — in spite of Trump's 'America First' policies

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