February 8, 2018 / 11:59 AM / 18 days ago

Virtual currencies need firm regulation - ECB's Mersch

LONDON, Feb 8 (Reuters) - Cryptocurrencies like bitcoin and the banks and other financial firms that trade them need to be more closely regulated, one of the ECB’s top policymakers said on Thursday.

“Any virtual currency business of credit institutions needs to be rigorously supervised to ensure that risks emerging from such activities are contained,” ECB Executive Board member Yves Mersch said at an event in London.

Mersch said that included ensuring proper protocols are in place to meet anti-money laundering and counter terrorist financing regulations.

“Furthermore, given the risks posed by leverage, credit institutions should not accept VCs as collateral (by banks),” he added. (Reporting by Marc Jones and Alastair Pal)

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