If you have a question about cryptocurrency for European Central Bank (ECB) president Mario Draghi, you better act fast! For its third youth dialogue, which will be hosted via video on February 12, 2018, the central bank for the eurozone is seeking questions on cryptocurrency and blockchain technology from folks ages 16-35. Questions must be submitted via Twitter or Facebook by 12:00 p.m. CET on Tuesday, January 23.
Here's a small sampling of questions that have been posed thus far:
A member of the ECB's executive board, Yves Mersch, recently called on banks to develop instantaneous payment systems to compete with the "alleged innovation brought by virtual currency schemes." Mersch counseled, "It remains to be seen whether these virtual currencies can be considered as a payment alternative for consumers – except in extreme cases like in failed states – and to what extent they can compete with the solutions market players will be able to develop in the safer and more efficient European retail payments market."
Elsewhere in the global financial realm, the International Monetary Fund's (IMF's) communications director, Gerry Rice, told reporters on Thursday, "Greater international discussion [of cryptocurrencies] and cooperation among regulators … would be helpful." Rice guardedly noted, "When asset prices go up quickly, risks can accumulate, particularly if market participants are borrowing money to buy. It's important for people to be aware of the risks and take the necessary risk-management measures."
Rice's comments came shortly after US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin shared that US regulators will be working closely with the G20 to ensure that cryptocurrency "doesn't become the [next] Swiss numbered bank accounts." For now, the IMF's boldest idea originated from Managing Director Christine Lagarde. In September 2017, she raised the possibility of adding a "digital dimension" to the IMF's special drawing rights, or SDRs.