EU regulator tells financial institutions to impose Bitcoin limits earlier than they develop into legislation

    Though the worldwide regulatory framework set out by the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS) won’t develop into legally binding earlier than 2025, the European Central Financial institution (ECB) expects financial institutions within the European Union (EU) to begin making use of caps on Bitcoin (BTC) holdings within the meantime.

    Certainly, the ECB supervisors cited the “significant risk and boom-and-dust cycles” of cryptocurrencies, advising the financial institutions that plan to introduce them into their operations to begin planning compliance with the upcoming legislation instantly within the newsletter from February 15.

    Though they acknowledged that some financial institutions “have explored opportunities” to make use of Cryptocurrency ledger in bettering effectivity, reducing prices, and offering new providers to purchasers, the supervisors stated that digital belongings “are not widely used in mainstream banking operations” but.

    Tackling dangers prematurely

    Nevertheless, they think “the expansion of the crypto industry can also lead to crypto-asset risks spilling over into the banking sector,” and “if a bank were to acquire exposures to crypto-assets – either directly or indirectly – they would face significant risks not specifically covered by the current prudential framework.”

    Subsequently, to keep away from potential issues, the ECB advises such financial institutions:

    “The BCBS standard is not yet legally binding pending its transposition in the European Union. However, should banks wish to engage in this market, they are expected to comply with the standard and take it into account in their business and capital planning.”

    As much as 1% Bitcoin caps

    As a reminder, the committee hosted by the Financial institution of Worldwide Settlements (BIS) lately proposed that financial institutions assign the best attainable danger weight of 1,250% to unbacked digital belongings comparable to Bitcoin, which implies they should challenge capital equal to their crypto holdings, and restrict these holdings to 1% of their core capital.

    Particularly, they grouped cryptocurrencies into two teams – Group 1, which incorporates tokenized conventional belongings and stablecoins that meet classification situations, and Group 2, which refers to belongings that don’t meet classification situations and embody ‘unbacked digital assets,’ in addition to particular stablecoins and tokenized conventional belongings.

    In October, Brokers reported on BCBS’s Basel III Monitoring Report, which discovered that the full publicity to digital belongings by international financial institutions nonetheless remained comparatively low, amounting to roughly €9.4 billion or roughly 0.14% of the general crypto publicity by financial institutions all over the world, whereas making an allowance for the financial institutions that don’t report such exposures, this quantity dropped to 0.01%.

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