ECB’s Lagarde calls for regulation of Bitcoin’s “fun business” By Reuters

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FRANKFURT (Reuters) – European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde on Wednesday called for global regulation, saying the digital currency had been used for money laundering activities in some cases and any loopholes needed to be closed. Bitcoin has come out of its niche in recent years and is now being bought by ordinary people, mutual funds, and even large corporations. Some have even applied for loans to buy more cryptocurrencies, the value of which has increased nearly tenfold since last March. But its largely anonymous nature has raised concerns that it could be used for money laundering and other illegal activities. “(Bitcoin) is a highly speculative asset, which has done some fun business and interesting and totally reprehensible money laundering activity,” Lagarde 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 had been criminal investigations into illegal activities. She did not elaborate. The cryptocurrency sector is still lightly supervised or unregulated, although global standards have emerged in areas such as the fight against money laundering (AML). He joined various regulators around the world in calling for the implementation of global rules for cryptocurrencies. “There has to be regulation. This has to be applied and agreed to … globally because if there is a leak, that leak will be used,” Lagarde said. For more information on the Reuters Next conference, click here or www.reuters.com/business/reuters-next To watch Reuters Next live, visit https://www.reutersevents.com/events/next/register.php

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