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Crypto Moves — Bitcoin, Ether up; ECB says crypto a risk to financial stability; Central African Republic to launch bitcoin investment hub

RIYADH: Bitcoin, the leading cryptocurrency internationally, traded higher on Wednesday, down 1.93 percent to $29,891 as of 10:52 a.m. Riyadh time.

Ether, the second most traded cryptocurrency, was priced at $1,986, up 0.45 percent, according to data from Coindesk.

Crypto markets may pose risks to wider financial stability, ECB warns

Cryptocurrencies will pose a risk to financial stability if the emerging sector maintains its rapid growth seen over the last two years and financial firms deepen their involvement, the European Central Bank said on Tuesday.

The crypto market slumped sharply this month after the downfall of the major “stablecoin” terraUSD.

The crash has led to calls from the world’s top financial leaders for “swift and comprehensive” regulation of the sector.

The ECB in its biannual financial stability review said exposure to crypto by banks and other financial institutions on a wide scale could put capital at risk and damage investor confidence, lending and financial markets.

“Systemic risk increases in line with the level of interconnectedness between crypto-assets and the traditional financial sector,” it said.

Central African Republic to launch Bitcoin investment platform

Central African Republic will launch the continent’s first legal cryptocurrency investment hub, the presidency said, extending the impoverished country’s embrace of digital finance despite words of caution from the International Monetary Fund.

Marred by decades of conflict, the Central African Republic last month became the first country in Africa and only the second in the world to adopt Bitcoin as an official currency.

The government has so far provided little detail on the logistics of its Bitcoin vision.

The soon-to-be-launched “SANGO” crypto initiative has a website on which interested investors can sign up for a waiting list.

“The formal economy is no longer an option,” President Faustin-Archange Touadera said in a statement on Monday.

“An impenetrable bureaucracy is keeping us stuck in systems that do not give a chance to be competitive.”

There was no indication of when the investment hub would be open or how it would operate.

(With input from Reuters) 

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