Another Nobel Laureate has joined the likes of Nouriel Roubini in espousing anti-cryptocurrency rhetoric. CNBC reports Joseph Stiglitz calling for the “shut down” of virtual currencies. Meanwhile, large U.S. brokerage firms are announcing plans to onboard Bitcoin trading to potentially hundreds of millions of customers.
Cryptocurrencies Should Be Shut Down
Speaking to CNBC, the 2001 Nobel prize winner in economics called for the shutdown of cryptocurrencies, calling them a conduit of criminality. The former Chief Economist of the World Bank said legacy finance didn’t need to pilot to cryptocurrencies to establish a robust and functioning digital payment paradigm.
According to Stiglitz:
“I’ve been a great advocate of moving to an electronic payments mechanism. There are a lot of efficiencies. I think we can actually have a better-regulated economy if we had all the data in real time, knowing what people are spending.”
Criminals Still Prefer Cash
For Stiglitz, cryptocurrency belongs to the realm of dirty money and the ability to successfully orchestrate massive money laundering operations, like the type uncovered by the Panama Papers from 2015.
However, Stiglitz expresses the same flawed logic that cryptocurrency transactions are akin to shadowy money movements. The entire record of reports from jurisdictions across the globe shows that crypto transactions constitute a minute portion of financial crimes.
In December 2018, the National Police Agency of Japan revealed that crypto-related money laundering only accounted for less than two percent of all reported money laundering cases.
Security experts from the U.S. and the UN agree that terrorist organizations still prefer cash. Even Jihadists aren’t sold on the “shadowy” attributes of bitcoin et al.
While nocoiners like Nouriel Roubini, Warren Buffett, and now Joseph Stiglitz continue to disparage cryptocurrencies, mainstream institutions are pursuing increased investment positions in bitcoin and other major virtual currencies.
On May 6, 2019, reports emerged that Fidelity Investments was looking to offer Bitcoin trading to its 27 million customers. This news comes amid reports that brokerage giants – TD Ameritrade and E*Trade were quietly testing bitcoin, litecoin, and ether trading.