Legard of ECB calls for regulating bitcoin’s “fun business” – tech2.org

Legard of ECB calls for regulating bitcoin’s “fun business”


FRANKFURT (Reuters) – The European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde called for global regulation of bitcoin on Wednesday, with the digital currency being used in some instances for money laundering activities and which needed to be closed to any loopholes.

Bitcoin has come out of its niche in recent years and is now bought by ordinary people, investment funds, and even large corporations. Some have also taken loans to buy more cryptocurrencies, whose value has increased nearly tenfold since last March.

But its largely anonymous nature has raised concerns that it may be used for money laundering and other illegal activities.

“(Bitcoin) is a highly speculative asset that has held some fun businesses and some interesting and totally malleable money laundering activity,” Legaard said in an interview at the Reuters Next Conference.

Lagarde did not provide specific examples of money laundering cases but said she understood that there was a criminal investigation into the illegal activity. He was not elaborate.

The cryptocurrency sector is still mostly mildly overlooked or unregulated, although global standards have emerged on areas such as anti-money laundering (AML).

She joined several regulators around the world to implement global regulations of cryptocurrency.

“There should be regulation. It has to be implemented on a global scale… and agreed because if escaped there will be used, ”Lagarde said.

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Reporting by Alessandra Galloni, Francesco Canepa and Balazs Korani; Editing by Catherine Evans

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