Central Bank discourages any kind of involvement in connection with virtual currencies: They are speculative assets, extremely volatile and risky

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The National Bank of Romania (BNR) regards virtual currencies, such as Bitcoin, as speculative assets, extremely volatile and risky, pointing out that it discourages any kind of involvement in connection with them, including from the standpoint of providing services to entities that offer investment or trading services for this kind of currencies, according to a BNR press release.

“In the context of the evolution of virtual currency schemes, and of their associated risks, the National Bank of Romania stresses the position expressed in the communique issued in March 2015, back when it warned about the high risk of losing the sums invested in such currencies. The National Bank of Romania notes a rise in the population’s interest in virtual currencies, especially Bitcoin, from the standpoint of both owning and trading them and as a business. Against the backdrop of the lack of regulation and supervision of virtual currency schemes at global level, and of their diversification, financial and reputational risks have grown at the level of the holders,” the communique reads.

At the same time, bearing in mind the recent exponential growth in the price of most virtual currencies, and of the very large fluctuations they registered over very short periods, the institution classifies virtual currencies as speculative assets that are extremely volatile and risky.

“In order to avoid the manifestation of reputational risk at the level of credit institutions, the National Bank of Romania, in its capacity as their supervisory authority, discourages any kind of involvement in connection with virtual currencies, including from the standpoint of providing services to entities that offer investment or trading services for these currencies. The National Bank of Romania will continue to monitor the evolution of virtual currencies from the standpoint of the manifestation of potential risks for the financial system, with the observation that, due to the very small volumes, these schemes do not currently represent a threat to financial stability in Romania,” the communique adds.