President and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta Raphael Bostic recently took a negative stance toward cryptocurrency investments at the annual meeting of Hope Global Forums, urging the US public to avoid digital currencies, as Bloomberg reported today, March 27.
At the meeting considered to be “the largest gathering of leaders in the world on behalf of empowering poor and underserved communities”, Bostic expressed criticism about cryptocurrency markets, claiming that digital currencies are not even currencies.
“Don’t do it… They are speculative markets. They are not currency. If you have money you really need, do not put it in these markets,” Bostic argued.
In March 2017, Bostic, a housing development official during the Obama administration and professor at the University of South California, was designated president of the Atlanta Federal Reserve. In 2017, Bostic was included in the The Bloomberg 50.
Bostic is not alone among Federal Reserve leaders who are skeptical of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. In January, President of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago Charles Evans argued that Bitcoin is “not money-like”, and Bitcoin investors are “swimming with all the sharks in the world because of all the anonymity.”
President Neel Kashkari of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis said in December that, “I think of it a little bit like Beanie Babies. If they were jumping in price by 1,000 times, or $10,000 each, what would we make of Beanie Babies being priced where they are?”
The US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) considers cryptocurrencies to be property, and as such they are subject to federal taxes. The IRS recently reminded the public to report any digital currency earnings, lest they run afoul of federal tax laws.