The “2018 Economic Report for the President” has recently been published with a whole chapter dedicated to cryptocurrencies like bitcoin, ethereum, and the future of blockchain regulation.
Every year the U.S. Congress publishes an economic report that discusses a variety of subjects that affect the economy such as technology, opioid abuse, employment rates, and the stock market. This year’s “2018 Economic Report” features a whole chapter focused on bitcoin, initial coin offerings (ICOs), and blockchain technology. Chapter nine is called, “Building a secure future, one blockchain at a time.” The congressional study takes note that last year cryptocurrencies had entered a mainstream awareness phase.
“Blockchain technology — providing cybersecurity and many other potential benefits—broke into the mainstream in 2017 driven by widespread interest and surging valuations in digital currencies such as bitcoin and ethereum,” explains the report.
The Study Compares Cryptocurrencies to the Internet
The economic study is meant to use analysis and create conclusions in order to assist individual government committees and Congress. Chapter nine calls 2017 “The Year of Cryptocurrencies,” and the technology’s phenomenal rise is considered a significant economic event that stands out to the report’s researchers. The study also emphasizes how well traditional stocks did last year, but they did not compare to digital asset markets.
“While both stock market measures experienced strong growth, cryptocurrencies dwarfed their performance,” explains the government research.
The buzz surrounding digital currencies resembles the internet excitement in the late 1990s when people recognized technology companies could change the world — Many internet companies launched and their valuations took off in short order — Many failed, but a few succeeded spectacularly and challenged the conventional ways of doing business.
Regulations Must Curtail Crypto-Growing Pains and Misuses
Of course, the report details that control is needed for these nascent technologies. It also highlights the possibility of fraud within the ICO market but recognizes how well the crowdfunding solution performed last year. Further, the paper explains how there has never been any evidence of anyone “hacking a blockchain’s underlying protocol, but digital currencies are still vulnerable to theft.” The report details that U.S. officials must combine efforts to combat “growing pains and misuses.”
“Policymakers, regulators, and entrepreneurs should continue to work together to ensure developers can deploy these new blockchain technologies quickly and in a manner that protects Americans from fraud, theft, and abuse, while ensuring compliance with relevant regulations,” the 2018 economic report researchers conclude.
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