European Supervisory Authorities publish joint warning on virtual currencies | FMA Österreich

European Supervisory Authorities publish joint warning on virtual currencies

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The three European Supervisory Authorities (ESAs), namely the European Banking Authority (EBA) for banks, the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) for securities and the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA) for insurance undertakings and pension funds (Pensionskassen) today issued a joint warning about virtual currencies. In the joint warning the ESAs make investors aware of the heightened risks involved when buying virtual currencies.

Virtual currencies are unregulated, and as has been witnessed in recent weeks, are subject to very high price volatilities. Furthermore, the platforms used to trade virtual currencies are unable to guarantee that consumers are able to buy or sell virtual currencies in a timely manner.

“The FMA has worked intensively on this warning, as part of European supervisory co-operation, and we fully support this warning. Consumers that wish to invest their money in virtual currencies, must be aware of the fact that they could lose their entire invested money. The term ‘currency’ is a misleading one, since virtual currencies are only accepted on a very selective basis, and are completely unregulated. Virtual currencies are highly speculative products, and we can therefore only warn against such investments,” remarked the FMA’s Executive Board, Klaus Kumpfmüller and Helmut Ettl.

The respective ESA warnings may be found at:

http://www.eba.europa.eu/-/esas-warn-consumers-of-risks-in-buying-virtual-currencies

(EBA)

https://eiopa.europa.eu/Pages/News/ESAs-warn-consumers-of-risks-in-buying-virtual-currencies.aspx

(EIOPA)

https://www.esma.europa.eu/press-news/esma-news/esas-warn-consumers-risks-in-buying-virtual-currencies

(ESMA)

The FMA already published information in November 2017 about the risks involved with virtual currencies: https://www.fma.gv.at/en/fma-spotlight-on/fma-focus-on-bitcoin-co/

 

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