The U.S. bitcoin and cryptocurrency community has had a rough week—and its future is looking bleak.
This week, Treasury secretary Steven Mnuchin warned "significant" new bitcoin and cryptocurrency regulations are on their way, Minneapolis Federal Reserve president Neel Kashkari branded cryptocurrencies "a giant garbage dumpster," and the Department of Justice called bitcoin mixing "a crime."
However, the news has failed to much move the bitcoin price, which remains up almost 50% since the beginning of the year.Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told the Senate Finance Committee that the Financial Crimes ... [+] Enforcement Network (FinCEN) is preparing to unveil new regulations around bitcoin and cryptocurrencies. Getty Images
Mnuchin, who last year echoed U.S. president Donald Trump's criticism of bitcoin and cryptocurrencies, told the Senate Finance Committee the U.S. Treasury Department's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) is preparing "significant new requirements" around cryptocurrencies and we'll "be seeing a lot of work coming out very quickly."
"We want to make sure that technology moves forward but, on the other hand, we want to make sure that cryptocurrencies aren't used for the equivalent of old Swiss secret number bank accounts," Mnuchin said, adding FinCEN and the Treasury Department more broadly are "spending a lot of time on this."
Last year, Mnuchin warned that bitcoin will not be widely used in ten years time and that it could be considered a U.S. national security risk.
Meanwhile, adding to the assault on bitcoin and cryptocurrencies coming out of the U.S. this week, Minneapolis Fed president Neel Kashkari said cryptocurrencies lack the basic characteristics of any stable currency.
"The reason that the dollar has value is because the U.S. government has a legal monopoly on producing the dollar," said Kashkari, speaking at a Montana even...