Crypto's outlook in Washington is darkened by ransomware attacks

Sena. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., during a news conference at the U.S. Capitol in Washington on March 1, 2021. Foto: Bloomberg/Stefani Reynolds.

Just a few months ago, crypto enthusiasts were hopeful that Washington was warming to digital assets. But cyberattacks demanding bitcoin ransoms, wild trading and rebukes from regulators have eroded their optimism.

The timing couldn't be worse. Policymakers are poised to make a number of critical rulings on virtual tokens in the coming months -- decisions that may reveal how deep of a hole the industry has to climb out of. Potentially under consideration are whether to approve a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund, allow crypto mutual funds and grant banking licenses to financial firms...

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