Seeking End to Anonymity, Austria May Regulate Bitcoin Like Gold

Hartwig Löger, the Finance Minister of Austria, is suggesting that his country and the broader European Union regulate Bitcoin the way it regulates gold and financial derivatives.

Löger’s stance on cryptocurrencies suggests that at least some financial regulatory bodies may preemptively embrace and regulate the public use of cryptocurrencies.

His reasoning appeared to be that authorities should incrementally find ways to control cryptocurrency usage before they potentially destabilize existing fiat currency payment infrastructure.

“The cryptocurrencies are in the process of massively damaging the reputation of the financial market and jeopardizing the reputation of a young but very important sector for the financial market of the future,” Löger said.

Löger stressed that the Austrian financial world is clamoring for regulation.

They warned, even “demanded” that Austria’s central bank, the Oesterreichische Nationalbank, as well as Austria’s Financial Market Authority (FMA), regulate the use of cryptocurrencies, he said.

The hope is that regulation will offset the risk of destabilization and the specter of more efficient money laundering.

“Cryptocurrencies are significantly gaining importance in the fight against money laundering and terrorism financing. That’s an important aspect for the changes we support. We need more trust and more security,” said Löger.

Cryptocurrency regs

Cryptocurrencies are created anonymously online without the supervision or backing of central banks, financial regulatory bodies or governments.

They are also be traded and transferred anonymously with no regulatory supervision.

Löger, arguing from the stance that cryptocurrencies are ostensibly here to stay, offered several benefits that could come about from regulation and treating Bitcoin “similar to the trade in gold and derivatives.”

For one, under such potential cryptocurrency regulations, investors and speculators trading Bitcoin in financial markets would have to identify their trading partners — ending anonymity.

Cryptocurrency trading in excess of €10,000, about $12,220, would have to be reported to the anti-money laundering and financial intelligence units of the Austrian government.

Online cryptocurrency exchange trading platforms would be overseen by the country’s Financial Market Authority.

Initial coin offerings, fundraisers designed to raise capital for potential cryptocurrency-centric enterprises, would have to be initiated via prospectus, pending FMA approval.

Löger did not indicate a timeline for introducing such proposals for legislative approval.

Bitcoin and Gold Slaying Stocks: Why Not Own Both?

The Bitcoin vs. gold battle rages on as the two are best-performing assets of 2020. The price of gold is up 26% this year, while Bitcoin has soared 87% —

Companies Pile On Debt. Big Headaches Later for Investors?

How have companies handled the cash crunch during this pandemic? I came across an insightful in-depth research report this past week that had a few interesting charts on this. See

Potential Options Payoff in Post-Covid China Rebound

The Chinese economy is starting to show signs that it is rebounding better than other economies around the world. China was the first country that had to battle the COVID-19

Retirement Income Tip: Buy High-Yielding Dividend Stocks

Imagine a scenario where you can make money while you sleep. Sounds too good to be true, right? Enter high-yielding dividend stocks. Now, there are lots of stocks in the

Beat the S&P 500 with These Specific Stocks

Today I'm going to briefly discuss a major error that most stock market participants make on a regular basis and ways in which you can substantially increase your stock returns.

Iaccino: Dollar Down, Stocks Higher, Plus PayPal Meets Bitcoin

A renewal of federal stimulus on top of monetary stimulus after the election is likely to support the stock market, says Bob Iaccino, editor of the Stock Think Tank. The

investor or pay off debt

Invest or Pay Off Debt? In a Pandemic, I’m a Stock Buyer

If you were to tell someone that you were putting any extra cash you had into the market instead of paying off debt, they might think you have lost your

bitcoin mass adoption

Bitcoin Mass Adoption Can’t Be Far Off — That Means Surging Demand

When you look at past technological developments — from the 19th century industrial revolution through the introduction of the telephone, personal computers, Internet, and smartphones — there is a typical

stocks overvalued

Is the Stock Market Overvalued? Not By This Measure

You many have heard the term “TINA” mentioned in various financial and investment commentaries in recent months. This is an acronym for “There is No Alternative.” It is built around a

clx options

Options Play: Take Advantage of Bearish Sentiment On Clorox (CLX)

We are in the middle of a global pandemic and one of the best weapons against the virus is cleaning surfaces with bleach. If we were to ask 100 people

This Predicts Bitcoin Price — and It’s Uncannily Accurate

Many investment advisors are beginning to recommend some exposure to Bitcoin (BTC) and some alternative (alt) coins, such as Ethereum (ETH). But the biggest hurdle for many analysts is how

retail spending

Retail Spending Shoots Higher, Suggesting Stocks Will Follow

Data released today by the U.S. Department of Commerce indicate that sales at U.S. retail stores rose sharply during September. Specifically, that data indicate that U.S. retail stores rose during