IMF looking into crypto currencies; US says won’t allow illicit trade

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Bitcoins sit on top of a collection of U.S. one dollar bills in this arranged photograph in London, U.K., on Friday, Jan. 29, 2016. The International Monetary Fund extolled the potential benefits of virtual currencies and said they warrant a more nuanced regulatory approach, at a time when the future of bitcoin, the most well-known example, is in doubt's. Bitcoin traded at about $379 on Jan. 20, about a third of its peak in 2013. Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Speaking here at a session on remaking of global finance at the World Economic Forum (WEF), US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said, “We will make sure crypto currencies are not used for illicit activities.”

IMF chief Christine Lagarde on Thursday said the multilateral financial institution is looking into issues relating to crypto currencies to understand potential risks and benefits, even as the US made it clear it will not allow any illicit trade through this route. Speaking here at a session on remaking of global finance at the World Economic Forum (WEF), US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said, “We will make sure crypto currencies are not used for illicit activities.”

Asked whether IMF would heed the G20’s call to look into crypto currencies, as suggested by French President Emmanuel Macron here yesterday, Lagarde said in the same session that the body is accountable to 189 countries and not just 20 though it works closely with the G20 nations. “We have already started analysing the issues concerning crypto currencies including risks and potential benefits,” she said.

Lagarde further said any dark trade that involves money laundering or anonymity is unacceptable. She, however, added that she is hopeful of something good coming out of the entire exercise as innovative technologies always help if implemented and used properly and positively.

“Innovations are certainly going to help a lot on inclusion as we have seen world over,” she said.

 

Source: PTI