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Swiss National Bank Chairman expresses caution on adding Bitcoin to reserves

Swiss National Bank, financial news

Thomas Jordan, the Chairman of the Swiss National Bank (SNB), voiced his skepticism on Friday regarding the proposal to include bitcoins in the national bank’s reserves. This statement came amid a push from certain groups to amend Swiss laws to permit cryptocurrencies as a legitimate part of the country’s reserve assets. Jordan outlined potential disadvantages, notably emphasizing the environmental concerns associated with bitcoin, such as the high levels of carbon emissions from its mining and transaction activities.

Jordan elaborated on why the SNB has hesitated to incorporate bitcoin into its reserves, which already contain a mix of assets including gold, foreign currencies, bonds, and stocks. He pointed out that the decision against adding bitcoin was based on significant reasons, notably its energy-intensive mining process. In his address to the bank's annual general meeting, he stressed the criteria for reserve assets: liquidity, sustainability, and ease of transactions, implying that bitcoin does not fully meet these standards.

A campaign group is actively encouraging the SNB to diversify its reserve assets by including bitcoin, and they are pushing for this proposal to be decided through a national referendum. The group argues that incorporating bitcoin could help preserve Swiss neutrality and sovereignty while also broadening the investment portfolio of the SNB, potentially adding a layer of security and diversity to the nation’s financial defenses.

Luzius Meisser, a member of the campaign and associated with Bitcoin Suisse, criticized the SNB’s current investment strategy at the meeting. He highlighted the significant losses the SNB has suffered from its investments in government bonds from other countries. In contrast, he argued that bitcoin presents a lucrative investment opportunity that the bank has overlooked. Meisser contends that investing in bitcoin could strengthen the Swiss franc and bolster the independence of the SNB by reducing reliance on less profitable government bonds and embracing the high-return potential of bitcoin.

To drive his point home, Meisser invited the audience to consider a futuristic scenario aimed at evaluating the long-term value of traditional currency versus bitcoin. He posed a hypothetical situation where one could send a valuable asset to descendants in the year 2099, asking whether they would prefer to inherit €50,000 or a single bitcoin. For Meisser, the choice clearly favors bitcoin, highlighting his belief in its enduring value and potential as a significant asset for future generations.



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