JPMorgan Chase CEO says cryptocurrency is only useful for criminals, should be “shut down”


What just happened? Cryptocurrency has been around for a lot of years now, but it still has plenty of high-profile detractors. One of these is JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon, who says its only true use case is for criminals, and that he’d “close it down” if he were the government.

Speaking at the Senate Banking Committee’s annual Wall Street oversight hearing on Wednesday, Dimon said “I’ve always been deeply opposed to crypto, bitcoin, etc.”

“If I was the government, I’d close it down,” he added.

Dimon has never hidden his distaste for digital currencies, having described them as a hyped-up fraud and Ponzi schemes in the past.

Dimon said during the hearing that the crypto industry was able to move money instantaneously without the oversight of regulatory controls imposed on bankers, such as those to prevent money laundering, tax avoidance, and sanctions violations. “The only true use case for it is criminals, drug traffickers,” he said. Dimon and several other CEOs of large banks argued that crypto firms should face the same regulations as other financial institutions.

Senator Elizabeth Warren, who has rarely seen eye-to-eye with banking industry leaders, agreed with Dimon and the others.

“When it comes to banking policy, I am not usually holding hands with the CEOs of multibillion-dollar banks, but this is a matter of national security,” said the Massachusetts Democrat.

Warren added that terrorists, drug traffickers, and rogue nations should be barred from using crypto for their dangerous activities, emphasizing that it was time for Congress to act.

Dimon might not be a fan of crypto, but his bank is a big proponent of the same blockchain technology it is based on. JPMorgan Chase’s JPM Coin stablecoin, which allows clients to make blockchain-based payments, is handling $1 billion of transactions per day, a figure that could reach $10 billion within the next two years.

Several big banking organizations and figures have spoken out against cryptocurrency. The European Central Bank once called it cumbersome, slow, expensive, and on the road to irrelevance. Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett said he wouldn’t pay $25 for all the Bitcoin in the world, and his late business partner Charlie Munger called it “evil,” compared it to a venereal disease, and said it should be banned.

Other anti-crypto names include Bill Gates, World Wide Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee, and even Nvidia.


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