European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde has not changed her opinion about bitcoin – an asset she described before as “highly speculative.”
Christine Lagarde, the European Central Bank president, stated today that it is “very unlikely” that central banks will hold Bitcoin.
Lagarde has criticized before and stated that bitcoin is “out of the question” that central banks would hold it anytime soon in a press conference call.
She reportedly added that it was thanks to the coronavirus pandemic that the digital euro is now much more realistic, and it could be ready within four years.
Lagarde stated previously that a central bank digital currency (CBDC) should integrate and not replace traditional cash, adding that it could “provide an alternative to private digital currencies” like Bitcoin and Ethereum.
The ECB’s president’s criticisms of Bitcoin are not new: Lagarde, who became the ECB president in November 2019, stated in January that the largest cryptocurrency was a “highly speculative asset” involved in money laundering and said that there had to be global cooperation to regulate it.
Before that, she also said that cryptocurrencies “pose risks” that Bitcoin did not “fulfill all the functions of money,” and that the stablecoins – crypto assets pegged to the price of fiat currencies such as the dollar – were also a worry.
However, the president has been enthusiastic about a CBDC. Lagarde stated that a digital euro currency can be “important” and could create new jobs.
The ECB is now heavily researching the benefits of such an asset and it is due to present the findings to the public to gather feedback.
The ECB even applied to trademark the term ”digital euro” last year – but the central banks still lag behind countries like China, which is now piloting a digital version of the yuan.
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