Crypto Weekly: revving up the regulators
STORY: From tough talk on crypto at a G20 summit, to why bitcoin may finally be catching on for payments, these are the week’s big stories in the world of virtual money.
G20 nations could be edging towards tougher regulation of cryptocurrencies.
At a summit in India, the idea won support from both the U.S. and the International Monetary Fund.
India might want to go even further, saying banning cryptocurrencies should be an option.
Shaktikanta Das is governor of India’s central bank:
“There is now wide recognition and acceptance of the fact that cryptocurrencies, or crypto assets, or crypto products, or by whatever name you call it, they involve several major risks to financial stability, to monetary systems, to cyber security issues.”
The IMF has also laid out its nine-point action plan for how countries should treat crypto assets.
Point number one: don’t make bitcoin legal tender.
That will sound pointed in El Salvador, which was the first country to do just that.
Other advice includes stepping up oversight of all cryptocurrency market players.
And crypto may finally be catching on as a means of payment.
U.S.-based BitPay says its transaction volumes jumped almost a fifth last year.
Rival CoinsPaid said its volumes were up almost a third in the final quarter.
Bitcoin’s use for payments has been hindered by its wild volatility, but advocates say its speed and low cost are now winning users.