BlackRock investment firm CEO Larry Fink argued that cryptocurrencies are going to revolutionize the way that the world does business.
After saying that cryptocurrencies are an “index of money laundering than anything more than that,” BlackRock CEO Larry Fink offered some praise for the emerging technology at the Davos World Economic Forum event.
“It’s going to transform how we do our business,” he added. “We should not turn our backs to it; we should embrace it and work toward a global solution because if we don’t work toward a global solution it will create systemic risk.”
BlackRock is the largest investment firm in the world with $5.7 trillion under management as of July 2017. They are known for their popular line of iShares exchange traded funds.
Other important figures commented on cryptocurrencies at the event. U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said that he wants to make sure that digital assets aren’t being used for illicit activity before adding that digital wallet and exchange companies will be regulated like banks in the United States.
“[I]n the United States, our regulation [says that] if you’re a Bitcoin wallet, you’re subject to the same regulation as a bank,” he said. “We want to make sure that the rest of the world…has the same regulations. We encourage fintech, we encourage innovation, but we want to make sure that all of our financial markets are safe.”
International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde had less favorable things to say about cryptocurrencies. She brought up potential issues with “anonymity, lack of transparency and the way it in which [cryptocurrency] conceals and protects money laundering, financing of terrorism, and also some dark trades.”
“We have already started monitoring, analyzing, surveying risk associated with the development of cryptocurrencies [as well as] the potential benefits of it,” Lagarde added.