UK watchdog’s Bitcoin ban slammed as ‘misguided’ 

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The UK financial regulator’s Bitcoin crackdown underscores its misguided approach to cryptocurrencies – which are the future of money – the CEO of one of the leading independent financial advisory and fintech organisations has said.

The damning analysis from Nigel Green, chief executive and founder of deVere Group, comes as the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) published its final rules banning the sale of derivatives and exchange-traded notes (ETNs) that reference certain types of crypto assets, such as Bitcoin, Ether and Ripple (XRP) to retail consumers.

“This move by the FCA underscores the regulator’s rather misguided approach to cryptocurrencies,” Green noted, adding, “whilst the FCA is not stopping people buying Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies directly, it is banning the sale of products based on their prices.

Green continued, saying that the regulator does express some valid concerns in its new rules, which is welcomed.

“However, rather than banning, the FCA should be regulating the booming and unstoppable sector.

“This market, thanks to its exponential growth, needs a robust and enforceable regulatory framework. It needs scrutiny.”

The deVere CEO added that the staggering pace of the digitalisation of economies and every aspect of our lives highlights that there will be a growing demand for digital, global, borderless money.

“Already digital currency is almost universally regarded as the future of money – and we need a joined-up approach to tackling those who undermine it,” he said.

“In this regard, most major financial institutions already have or are preparing to establish crypto desks. It is why more and more retail and institutional investors are piling into the market. And it is why tech giants, like Facebook, amongst others are getting involved.”

Green concluded that the tide is not going back. Traditional, fiat, paper currencies are not the future.

“Therefore, regulation – not a ban – is necessary. This will provide further protection for the growing number of people using cryptocurrencies, it will help stamp out criminal activity, the less potential risk there will be for the disruption of global financial stability, and the more opportunities there will be for economic growth and activity in those countries which introduce it.

“The FCA should be leading the way on the future of money.”