Mnuchin: "We Want To Make Sure Bad People Can't Use Bitcoin To Do Bad Things"

Back in September 2015, when we first predicted that bitcoin would enjoy an exponential price increase as first the Chinese and then everyone else realized that the cryptocurrency is nothing less than the digital equivalent of borderless Swiss bank account, bypassing capital controls with ease and enabling money laundering anywhere and everywhere, its market cap was $3 billion. It is now $230Bn.

Today, a little over two years later, the US Treasury has figured this out, and on Friday Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he will work with the Group of 20 nations to prevent cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin from becoming the digital equivalent of an anonymous Swiss bank account.

"We are very focused on cryptocurrencies," Mnuchin explained, pointing to discussions with other regulators within the U.S. government and later stating: "We want to make sure that bad people cannot use these currencies to do bad things."

Speaking at the Economic Club of Washington, Mnuchin said that the Financial Stability Oversight Council, a government body that assesses financial system risks, has formed a working group focused on cryptocurrencies, and explained that "In the United States — and people may not realize this — under our laws, if you have a wallet to own bitcoins, that company has the same obligation as a bank to Know Your Customer. So, in the United States, we have rules for anti-money-laundering, for all different types of entities, we can track those types of [transactions]. The rest of the world doesn’t have that. So one of the things we are working very closely with the G-20 on is making sure that this doesn’t become the Swiss numbered bank account."

During the remarks, Mnuchin also suggested that the Federal Reserve is unlikely to develop its own digital version of fiat currency – a topic under discussion at a number of central banks worldwide – in the near future.

"The Fed and we don't think there's a need for that at this point," Mnuchin said.

Mnuchin added that he was worried about heightened levels of speculation in the bitcoin market. "The other concern I have is, there’s a lot of speculation in this, and I want to make sure that consumers who are trading this understand the risks,” Mnuchin said. “I am concerned that consumers may get hurt."

Apparently he was far less concerned about consumers buying the S&P at all time high valuations.

More to the point, yes the US will gladly tax crypto trading now that the total market cap of all "coins" is $700 billion, and no, it has no intention of cracking down on bitcoin or other cryptos.

Mnuchin also said that Mnuchin also said that he is “not at all” worried that Russia may use cryptocurrencies to help its banks avoid international sanctions. An adviser to President Vladimir Putin is reported to have said that sanctions against Russia have created a need for digital currencies as officials there fear expansions in 2018.

As we reported in December, Russian PM Dmitry Medvedev signed a decree allowing the government to classify purchases by the Defense Ministry, Federal Security Service and Foreign Intelligence Service as state secrets.

“This idea that Russia or Venezuela can thwart the pressure from sanctions just by developing their own cryptocurrency is silly,” lawyer Erich Ferrari of Ferrari & Associates told Bloomberg. "It’s like trying to do it by using cash. Yes you can do it more easily with cash, but it doesn’t mean you’re evading. It’s harder to get caught."

Full remarks below

Comments

HenryKissinger… Troll Magnet Jan 12, 2018 12:32 PM Permalink

oh ZH'S you are gonna love this:
Every digital payment service should abide by KYC and cooperate in all law enforcement initiatives regarding cybercrime conspiracy, or it should be shut down.
Virtual currencies who refuse to know their customers or freeze accounts of those engaged in criminal conspiracies should be subject to Treasury Executive Office for Asset Forfeiture (TEOAF)
. DAVOS 2018

https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2017/12/how-to-civilize-the-dark-web-eco…

In reply to by Troll Magnet

nope-1004 Arnold Jan 12, 2018 1:48 PM Permalink

"We want to make sure that bad people cannot use these currencies to do bad things."

What is "bad"?  It either needs to be defined properly or it is like the war on terror:  Simply an emotional reaction with no boundaries and no escape.

There is no "bad" as it relates to money.  There is only using other forms that will dilute Washingtons control.  Remove the word "bad" from his statement and the truth comes out:

"We want to make sure that people cannot use these currencies to do things."

In reply to by Arnold

Obadiah inosent Jan 12, 2018 12:43 PM Permalink

Lets differentiate "Jews"  and those that SAY they are "Jews" but DO LIE

Revelations 2: 9 I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan.

and here

Revelations 3: 9 Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee.

and here

John 8: 44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

Here try this video for more info
https://youtu.be/OsETpgkv_Sk?t=840

In reply to by inosent

sarz JimmyJones Jan 13, 2018 7:22 AM Permalink

JimmyJones, you are letting Jews off too easy. All Jews are participants and beneficiaries in the screwing of non-Jews. There are thirteen times as many Jews at Harvard as is justified on merit. Look up the work of Ron Unz. Do you think they go to temple every Saturday? Unz, a Jew himself, more than pays his dues as a human being. But most Jews don’t. We do have a Jewish problem.

In reply to by JimmyJones

auricle BullyBearish Jan 12, 2018 12:21 PM Permalink

He wants to be able to SEIZE your crypto wallets anytime he wants. This would have a very negative effect on the crypto space if this were somehow legislated in. Notice that as the space approaches $1T market cap the greed in these assholes has taken over. They will get in and start to attempt to regulate the space. Mostly with the exchanges. 

In reply to by BullyBearish

aurum4040 auricle Jan 12, 2018 5:18 PM Permalink

There is no way they can completely control crypto at this point. The size, scope, and tech is too far advanced. Its too big to monitor something so easily anonymized. Not talking about BTC either. Crypto community is more then smart enough to outrun it each and every time. Cryptographers and developers will make looking for ways to de anonymize crypto akin to looking for a silver pin in 360° mirrored environment filled with silver hay. 

In reply to by auricle

greenskeeper carl Troy Ounce Jan 12, 2018 12:06 PM Permalink

That was my first thought as well. No one has ever used USD's to do bad things before, right?

 

The more people realize how much easier it is to move money around between places with crypto, the more its going to grow. Nothing to do with illegality either. Why the hell does it take a couple days to move money from one account to another bank? It took me like 5 min to move some LTC from CB to binance the other day.

In reply to by Troy Ounce

peddling-fiction Juggernaut x2 Jan 12, 2018 11:41 AM Permalink

Bad people huh?

Let's work on removing Central Bankers and fallen Egregore-peddling secret brotherhood members then.

Tubalcain's brothers and (((baal's and melqart's))) spawn need to be forever removed from Earth.

We double dare you to follow the guidestones.

R.C. "Christian" I will thoroughly entertain you.

Maybe it's time to share what the pretty-pretty Colombes are all about; the Masonic apron then makes lots of sense...

Is wifey aware of what you dirty seeds of Cain are doing in the Lodges? Or is wifey a swinging slut? Or maybe she is from the hoar witches seed that fornicated with the fallen angels? Because that is what this is all about.

In reply to by Juggernaut x2

Bastiat peddling-fiction Jan 12, 2018 11:53 AM Permalink

You mean bad things like abusive lending practices?  Of course that's not "bad" because, despite her staff recommending charges be filed against Munchkins bank, now senator, then A.G. Kamela Harris refused to prosecute.  Then she got something like $100,000K campaign contribution from . . .  guess who?  Somebody who had never before made a contribution to Democrat. Sounds like bad people doing bad things and buying their way out of it.

In reply to by peddling-fiction

crazzziecanuck Bastiat Jan 12, 2018 12:03 PM Permalink

It's now the ONLY American way.  If you try any other way, you're screwed or a sucker.

Seems to me that the only way to not be poor in this country is to be a fiat whore or a psychopath like Bezos.  Here's a fucker tweeting out for ideas for his philantropy while some of his full-time workers in Ohio are collecting food stamps.

Rot in hell Bezos.

In reply to by Bastiat

LetThemEatRand knukles Jan 12, 2018 11:48 AM Permalink

And as many have pointed out, the banksters don't like competition:  "Switzerland’s financial regulator said JPMorgan Chase’s Swiss subsidiary 'seriously breached' anti-money laundering rules by completing transactions with a Malaysian government investment fund that is under investigation in at least six countries."

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/21/business/jpmorgan-money-laundering.h…

In reply to by knukles

HRClinton hedgeless_horseman Jan 12, 2018 1:14 PM Permalink

1. (((They))) own the Debt Plantation

2. (((They))) control the Horizontal,  they control the Vertical: The creation of money and its ecosystem, and everything that it buys or rent (academics, politicians, military, deep state, biz people, media, sheeple).

3. The (((Owners))) are global-lusts, and will not settle for anything other than Full Spectrum Control of the planet.

Cryptos (CCs) can be "Money without masters or frontiers" -- if enough kept sheeple become free people.

Or they can become the principal tool for full control, if not enough people "Go Galt" and join the Parallel Economy for good.

Parallel Economy = Decentralized, Untracked, Free

   = Barter + PM + Gems + Collectibles + CCs 

Those who think that they are clever, will try to speculate with CCs, but all they are really doing is letting the (((fiat masters))) grow their tentacles and roots deeper. You can't be both On the Plantation and Off it.

In reply to by hedgeless_horseman