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European Union Central Bank Will Not Add Bitcoin to Reserves, Says Bitcoin Is Not a Currency

The European Central Bank recently held a Q&A session in which they took questions from Twitter users. The Q&A session saw the ECB decline to recognize Bitcoin as a currency, quoting the ECB’s Chief Economist. Moreover, the ECB also said that it would not add any Bitcoin to its currency reserves.

ECB Chief Economist: “Bitcoin is not a currency, it rather is a very volatile asset”

This question came as a private query in the ECB’s regular Twitter-sourced questions. Specifically, the ECB administers this public questioning scheme under the “#AskECB” hashtag. 

The question, likely brought about by the increasing number of organizations turning to crypto in order to diversify their currency reserves, came from by Juuso Ilomaki. His tweet read “does [the] ECB have plans to add #Bitcoin to its reserves?”.

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The ECB’s Twitter account seemingly answered through its fresh Chief Economist, Philip Lane. Lane began his role in June of 2019, and has previously served as the Governor of the Central Bank of Ireland. The concise reply read:

“Lane: No. Bitcoin is not a currency, it rather is an asset and it is very volatile #AskECB” 

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This statement should not come as too much of a shock for anyone following the ECB and its lukewarm response to crypto. Late last week, however, an ECB executive revealed that Facebook’s unveiling of its Libra crypto was a cryptocurrency “wake-up call” for the ECB.

Nonetheless, Lane’s most recent comment seems to disparage any hope that the ECB was about to dramatically reverse its stance on cryptocurrencies. With that said, however, the Twitter response to Lane’s comment has been quite negative.

Commenters and Bitcoin proponents quickly noted that Bitcoin, and other cryptocurrencies, are already widely available to use for purchases. As such, Lane’s comment that Bitcoin is “not a currency” has already seen widespread criticism.

One of the top-voted comments replied that “currency is what people choose (and agree) to use. It is not dictated [by organizations like the FED and ECB]”. Pierre Rochard, a software engineer noted for his crypto advocacy, simply answered that “Bitcoin is money”.

Yet another commenter argued that the decreasing purchasing power of the euro since its introduction is worse than Bitcoin volatility. It remains to be seen whether Lane and the ECB will take any notice of these comments, or continue refusing to recognize Bitcoin as a currency.

Image Source: Institute for New Economic Thinking