Washington, DC— Today, President Joe Biden signed an executive order directing federal agencies to examine and report on U.S. policy around cryptocurrencies and digital assets.  Congressman Jim Himes (CT-04) released the following statement:

“I applaud President Biden for signing this important executive order and taking a much-needed step toward creating a unified U.S. policy regarding cryptocurrency and digital assets. The growth in digital assets has urgent ramifications in the national security arena as well as an impact on international and domestic financial institutions.

“The cryptocurrency environment has, to this point, remained largely unregulated. Financial markets and the global economy thrive on innovation and ease of transaction, two things cryptocurrencies supply. As these exchanges and currencies grow, however, we face an environment that lends itself to exploitation and poses risks to global financial stability.

“The most pressing concern stems from Russia’s illegal attack on Ukraine. As U.S. sanctions attempt to halt Russian aggression, cryptocurrencies afford an option for Putin and his oligarchs to move their personal wealth and circumvent our efforts. We must urgently address this issue and work with regulators and the cryptocurrency community to find ways to prevent this evasion.

“President Biden’s executive order includes a study on the creation of a U.S central bank digital currency, an issue that I have reviewed extensively as a member of the Financial Services Committee. The strength of the U.S dollar in international markets gives us powerful tools, but these could be compromised if adversaries look to other centralized digital currencies that avoid the U.S financial system. We must adapt to meet the challenges at hand, and a U.S central bank digital currency could be a much-needed addition to our toolkit. We must lead, not follow.

“President Biden’s balanced and thoughtful actions will hopefully guide the U.S. toward policy that allows cryptocurrency to flourish, while preventing bad actors from using them to evade the law.”

For more information, contact Patrick Malone at Patrick.malone@mail.house.gov.