It’s probably the world’s worst kept secret. This is because most are already aware of the fact that the banking industry doesn’t view Bitcoin in a positive light. In some countries, banks are doing all they can to control or even crush the cryptocurrency movement. While America might proclaim to be the home of the brave and land of the free, freedom is not something it’s willing to allow cryptocurrencies. In a pretty damning statement, John Williams – the soon-to-be president of the New York Federal Reserve Bank – believes that cryptocurrency “doesn’t pass the basic test of what a currency should be.”
Leaning on a tired argument
Pro-establishment and anti-Bitcoin, Williams is the current head of the San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank. His arguments against the rise and adoption of Bitcoin all hinge on the tired “store of value” argument, as he claims that any viable currency has to be “something with a store of value”. He furthered that by claiming that currencies also need to be extremely resilient – almost elastic-like – in order to push through varying economic and financial conditions. It’s safe to say that it’s not the first time that the world has heard these arguments and it certainly won’t be the last.
An anti-Bitcoin bias
Williams has been happy to go on record and speak about the much-rumored anti-Bitcoin bias in the banking industry. Williams – a man that has spent his entire career in and around the banking industry – has admitted that he’s “very biased” against cryptocurrencies. He also explained the reason behind this way of thinking when he said, “The setup or institutional arrangement around Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, first of all they have problems with fraud, problems with money laundering, terror financing. There is a lot of problems there. My view is it’s more a promise of technology.”
Position of power
For a banker to bash Bitcoin so openly is – in an odd way – surprising, but what makes his comments worrying is that he expected to run the New York Federal Reserve Bank from June onwards. The power of the New York Federal Reserve Bank is undeniable, as it is the most active federal reserve by volume and largest by assets. Williams and his anti-cryptocurrency stance are soon to take the helm at the most influential financial institution in America, which is a frightening thought.
The call for clarity
Within the US, regulatory matters surrounding the crypto market remain notoriously murky. Most crypto firms don’t actually know where they stand in the eyes of regulators and even the law. Attempting to seek answers, many leading crypto investors have now asked the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to provide Initial Coin Offering (ICO) exemptions and loosen crypto regulations.
Rocky roads ahead
As a cryptocurrency market, the US has been tough to read in recent years. Sadly, with Williams and his anti-Bitcoin stance moving into a position of notable power, we only expect things to worsen in the near future.