Crypto Trading Picks up Pace in November Despite High-Profile Detractors

2023 is coming to a close and a lot of crypto traders, much like Holiday shoppers, are looking at now as the time to buy. Trading platform Robinhood reported that crypto trading in November was 75% higher than October while equities trading remained more or less flat. There is no doubting that cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum, and cryptocurrencies in general, have had a nice run in 2023 but it seems as though that run might not yet be finished.

In many ways, this past year was somewhat of a coming-of-age period for crypto. There were plenty of scandals to contend with, most notable of which was the arrest, indictment, and conviction of FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried. Despite the less than savory headlines and rocky waters, crypto appears to have emerged stronger than ever. As the United States draws ever closer to mainstream adoption, there are still plenty of detractors, some of which spoke in front of Congress this week.

Jamie Dimon Sings His Same Song

Of all the high-profile individuals who have spoken out against cryptocurrency over the past decade, few have been more outspoken than JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon. This week he took to his soapbox again, this time in front of US lawmakers. While being questioned by Senator Elizabeth Warren, Dimon said, in part, “I’ve always been deeply opposed to crypto, bitcoin, etc. The only true use case for it is criminals, drug traffickers … money laundering, tax avoidance. If I was the government, I would shut it down.”

While Jamie Dimon has always held this attitude towards cryptocurrency and its potential adoption into the mainstream of US banking and financial systems, his very company is heavily invested (and continuing to invest) in blockchain technology. Jamie Dimon was just one of many CEOs on Capitol Hill this week and though there was nothing groundbreaking talked about or unveiled, there was some consensus regarding crypto companies like Coinbase needing to be subject to the same financial regulatory laws as US banks. The subject of the day was anti-money laundering legislation. The fear held by both politicians and US banks alike is that criminals and terrorist organizations can do business in the US without anyone being acutely aware of it, thanks to the anonymous nature of cryptocurrency.

Talking about this very subject, Senator Warren commented, “When it comes to banking policy, I am not usually holding hands with the CEOs of multibillion-dollar banks, but this is a matter of national security. Terrorists, drug traffickers and rogue nations should be barred from using crypto for their dangerous activities. It is time for Congress to act.”

Action from Congress is something the crypto world has seldom seen. There are plenty of pieces of legislation either in the works or working their way through committee right now, but they are numerous, fragmented, and not seen as being overly significant. The fact of the matter is that cryptocurrency regulation is a divisive issue everywhere, but especially in the US. This is not something that is going to change in a hurry, but if Congress does decide to start taking the crypto issue seriously, 2024 could be a very big year.

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