7th December 2023 – (New York) During a Senate Banking Committee hearing on Wednesday, JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon expressed his strong opposition to cryptocurrencies, including bitcoin, and suggested that they should be banned. Responding to questions from Senator Elizabeth Warren, Dimon stated, “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.”
Dimon further emphasized his stance by stating, “If I was the government, I’d close it down.” These comments reflect his ongoing criticism of cryptocurrencies, although JPMorgan itself is actively involved in blockchain technology, which underpins the cryptocurrency industry valued at $1.6 trillion.
In the past, Dimon has referred to Bitcoin as a “hyped-up fraud,” although he later tempered that statement. He has also compared it to a “pet rock.”
During the hearing, Senator Warren questioned Dimon and other CEOs of major banks about the need for crypto companies to adhere to the same anti-money laundering regulations as traditional financial institutions. Interestingly, Dimon and the other banking leaders agreed with Warren on this point, demonstrating a rare moment of unity between the industry and the senator, who is often critical of the banking sector.
Warren highlighted the national security implications of crypto usage by terrorists, drug traffickers, and rogue nations, and called on Congress to take action. She stated, “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. It is time for Congress to act.”