European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde described cryptocurrency as “worthless” during an interview. Lagarde, who has had a negative attitude towards cryptocurrencies, reiterated her view claiming that it is “not based on anything” and should be subject to strict regulation. Lagarde further argued that investing in bitcoin and altcoins could leave people “terribly frustrated” because the industry lacks proper rules. The comments of the European Central Bank chief and French politicians arrived on the back of a massive sell-off across the cryptocurrency markets that began in early May.
Lagarde’s comments on crypto assets were shared on the Dutch TV show College Tour, where she was addressing a mostly student audience. When asked about investing in her youth, she said, “I have said all along that crypto assets are highly speculative and risky assets. If you want to invest there, that is your choice.”
“But what really worries me when it comes to crypto assets is that these investments are made by people who have their eyes wide open about the fact that they can lose everything.”
“My very humble estimation is that it is worth nothing, is not dependent on anything, and there are no underlying assets to act as an anchor of safety. The day we take out CBDC, a digital Euro – I will guarantee. So, the central bank will be behind it and I think it’s very different from many of those things.”
Last year, Lagarde said bitcoin was used to carry out “reprehensible” money laundering activity. The French banker and politician has repeatedly called for stricter regulation of cryptocurrency within the European Union and has criticized Bitcoin’s energy consumption.
However, there was a twist in Lagarde’s cautionary tale. The European Central Bank chief said she is “watching” the fate of cryptocurrencies “with extreme caution” as her son went against her advice and invested in tokens. “He is a free man,” she added. Lagarde denied owning coins and stated that she wanted to “practice what I preach”.
However, she added, “The fact that my son is investing in Bitcoin does not change my view of whether or not Bitcoin is money.”
Cryptocurrency is an unregulated digital currency that is not legal tender and is subject to market risk. The information in the article is not intended to be and does not constitute financial advice, business advice or any other advice or recommendation of any kind provided or approved by NDTV. NDTV will not be liable for any loss arising from any investment based on any recommendation, forecast or any other information contained in the article.