The cryptocurrency craze has finally taken hold as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is announcing plans to build its own digital asset.
Condemning Crypto While Creating It
The news comes at an interesting time. Recently, managing director of the Fund Christine Lagarde explained that all things crypto were “shaking” up the system. She also described digital currency users as “disruptors.”
I think the role of the disruptors and anything that is using distributed ledger technology, whether you call it crypto, assets, currencies, or whatever… that is clearly shaking the system.
At the same time, the International Monetary Fund has released a report issuing new plans for a semi-cryptocurrency that it has dubbed “Learning Coin.” The currency is designed to give staff members a “better understanding of the goods, smart contracts and transparency, and bads, such as money laundering, of this technology.”
One can argue that Lagarde is taking a two-sided stance when it comes to cryptocurrencies. For now, she claims that digital assets are ruining the financial system as we know it, yet back in November, she commended cryptocurrencies for all they could do in developing countries.
At the same time, she also claimed that these currencies were incapable of performing to their full capacities unless they were controlled by central banks. This suggests that Lagarde doesn’t fully understand what digital assets (or their technology) was designed for. Currencies like bitcoin were built to give people freedom from central banks. The technology is decentralized and created to offer people financial independence.
If cryptocurrencies were suddenly overtaken by financial institutions, they would be on the same planes as fiat, and fail to deliver all their creators have promised.
In addition, all this talk and yet the IMF is allegedly building its own coin? It sounds like the organization is taking a page right out of Jamie Dimon’s playbook.
Dimon – the CEO and chairman of banking giant JPMorgan Chase – has often referred to bitcoin as a “fraud” that was “worse than tulip bulbs.” However, his company recently announced plans to release what has been dubbed “JPM Coin,” a centralized cryptocurrency controlled by JP Morgan Chase and attached to the U.S. dollar, thereby making it a stable currency.
Boy, This Looks Familiar
Dimon has repeatedly criticized cryptocurrency – bitcoin in particular – yet he’s building his own. The IMF is now behaving in a similar fashion.
What this likely tells us is that cryptocurrencies are inching closer into mainstream territory, and banks and traditional financial groups are terrified of what they can do. Will these banks soon go out of business? How will the system change? The fear is growing, yet they can’t deny that usage of these coins is high. Thus, they’re condemning these currencies while also trying to cash in on the craze to ensure they survive… At least for now.