Janet Yellen Admits Crypto Has Advantages and also mentions that Treasury is working on crypto regulation.

Photo Credit: REUTERS (Jonathan Ernst)

Cryptocurrency has advantages, according to US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen. Yellen said that cryptocurrency has grown by leaps and bounds and is now “playing a significant role” in many Americans’ investment decisions and that the Treasury Department is working on regulatory recommendations for healthy innovation.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen talked about cryptocurrency in an interview with CNBC Friday. She was asked about cryptocurrency, given that Russia has said it is considering accepting bitcoin as payment for energy resources.

Yellen replied:

Crypto has obviously grown by leaps and bounds and it’s now playing a significant role, not really so much in transactions, but in investment decisions of lots of Americans.

She proceeded to explain that President Joe Biden’s executive order tasks the treasury department and other federal agencies with “thinking about the regulation of crypto.”

When asked about whether she is still skeptical about crypto, the treasury secretary commented: “I have a little bit of skepticism because I think there are valid concerns around it. Some have to do with financial stability, consumer-investor protection, use for illicit transactions, and other things.” She added:

On the other hand, there are benefits from crypto and we recognize that the innovation in the payment system can be a healthy thing.

“We would like to come out eventually with recommendations that will create a regulatory environment” for healthy innovation, she opined.

Earlier this month, Yellen revealed that the Treasury will monitor crypto to see whether it is being used to evade sanctions by Russian individuals and entities. “We will continue to look at how the sanctions work and evaluate whether or not there are leakages, and we have the possibility to address them,” she said.

However, a senior official with the department subsequently said that the Treasury does not see that crypto could be used in a large-scale way to evade sanctions.