Bitcoin considered a “speculative asset” by European Central Bank
ECB stands firm on rejecting Bitcoin and emphasizes Digital Euro development.
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The European Central Bank (ECB) is taking a cautious approach to Bitcoin. ECB Executive Director Isabel Schnabel has made it clear through the ECB X account that the bank has no intention of purchasing Bitcoin, referring to it as a speculative asset that does not fulfill the characteristics of money.
This statement comes from the ECB’s exploration of a digital euro, envisioned as a fast, easy, and secure instrument for daily payments. When asked on the ECB X account about the possibility of purchasing bitcoin for ECB as a reserve asset, she said:
“The ECB is very unlikely ever to buy Bitcoin.”
Schnabel’s remarks reflect the ECB’s cautious approach to crypto-assets, emphasizing the lack of intrinsic economic value, high volatility, and the risks associated with their use as a speculative instrument. In the ECB’s view, the market valuation of Bitcoin is based purely on speculation.
She specifically stated that:
“The digital euro is public money issued directly by the European Central Bank. Bitcoin is different – it is a speculative asset that does not fulfill the characteristics of money.”
Schnabel and the ECB are focusing on developing a digital euro, scheduled for launch in 2026, under strict regulatory supervision and control. They intend for this digital currency to co-exist with paper money, not to replace it. The ECB aims to preserve the euro’s role in an increasingly cashless society and to prevent dependence on private options.
One of the concerns regarding the central bank digital currency (CBDC) for the eurozone is personal privacy. Schabel disagreed with this skepticism by stating that:
“A digital euro would offer an additional payment option for everyone in the euro area, backed by the ECB and usable all over the euro area. Like cash, it would be simple to use and meet the highest privacy standards.”
The ECB’s stance on rejecting Bitcoin aligns with its strategic vision for a regulated and controlled digital euro, emphasizing the importance of a central bank-issued digital currency in the European Union’s financial landscape.