Spain’s central bank and National Securities Market Commission (CNMV) Tuesday warned investors of the “high risk” that comes with investing in cryptocurrency.
The joint statement from Spain’s leading financial supervisors came on the heels of US carmaker Tesla’s $1.5 billion investment in Bitcoin and announcement that it could soon begin accepting cryptocurrency as payment.
The news sent the value of Bitcoin and related stocks to record highs.
But the Bank of Spain and the CNMV advised investors that the price volatility, “accompanied by a significant increase of sometimes aggressive publicity,” is “highly speculative” and could lead to the “total loss of investment.”
Although regulatory talks are ongoing, cryptocurrency is not regulated in the EU, meaning it does not have the same safeguards and guarantees as other investment products.
According to the Bank of Spain and the CNMV, cryptocurrencies “lack transparency,” and their prices are vulnerable to manipulation.
The statement also said that “cryptocurrencies may find themselves lacking the necessary liquidity,” which could mean investors wanting to get out of investments could “suffer significant losses.”
The statement also emphasized that despite Tesla’s announcement, very few establishments accept payment in Bitcoin or similar cryptocurrencies, and regulators “do not predict that will change.”
Due to the global status of the more than 7,000 cryptocurrencies on the market, if investors have any issues they need to resolve in court, “it could be costly and be outside the competencies of Spanish authorities,” the statement noted.
Similarly, the Bank of Spain and the CNMV warned people that if their login or access information to a cryptocurrency account is lost or stolen, investors could “lose their cryptocurrency, without having any possibility of getting it back.”
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