BoJ Governor Slams Bitcoin as ‘Speculative’ while Central Bank’s Assets Quadrupled to $6.5T Under his Aggressive Easing
Despite keeping both long and short-term rates low and stable, the Bank of Japan couldn’t achieve its 2% inflation target, which it still won’t be able to, by the time Haruhiko Kuroda’s tenure ends in April 2023.
Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda’s views on Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are the same as other central bankers.
“Most of the trading is speculative, and volatility is extraordinarily high,” Kuroda said in an interview Thursday. “It’s barely used as a means of settlement,” he added.
While he doesn’t have anything different from his peers to say about cryptos, he did differentiate cryptocurrencies from stablecoins.
But these fiat or asset-backed coins must meet legal standards and healthy governance codes as well, so they could become a convenient way of payment in the future, Kuroda said.
While the central bank official is busy slamming cryptocurrencies, total assets held by the Bank of Japan have risen to 714.56 trillion yen ($6.5 trillion) in fiscal 2020.
Under Kuroda’s aggressive monetary easing, total assets have quadrupled in these eight years, growing to 1.3 times the size of the country’s economy.
Despite the ultra-loose monetary policy, the BOJ has yet to achieve its 2% inflation target, which will still be unattainable by the time Kuroda’s tenure ends in April 2023, as per BOJ projections.
Japan’s consumer prices actually declined by 0.4% year-on-year in April 2021, following a 0.2% drop in the prior month — representing the seventh straight month for a fall in consumer prices.
Of the BOJ’s assets, government bonds totaled 532.17 trillion yen ($4.84 trillion), up 9.5% from a year earlier, and loans to financial institutions marked a 2.3x increase to 125.84 trillion yen ($1.14 trillion).
To keep both short-term and long-term interest rates low and stable, BOJ has already gobbled up large amounts of government bonds, owning over 40% of those outstanding.
And this has been the reason why people have been chosen to invest in Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies. As we reported, Ray Dalio, founder of Bridgewater Associates, when he revealed that he owns some Bitcoin, said he would rather own BTC than government bonds.
According to Dalio, should cryptocurrencies continue to gain traction, investors might decide to invest in them, too, rather than bonds.