Facebook says no Libra without U.S. approval

Facebook says no Libra without U.S. approval

Facebook says no Libra without U.S. approval

Speaking at the House Financial Services Committee today, CEO and Founder Mark Zuckerberg said that although he believed Libra would be the best vehicle to encourage greater financial inclusion, the social media giant would step out of the Association should United States regulators fail to approve it.

"I get that I'm not the ideal messenger for this right now", Zuckerberg said in his opening remarks.

Mark Zuckerberg has tried to reassure sceptical lawmakers about the safety of Facebook's new digital currency, Libra.

Rep. Maxine Waters, the California Democrat who chairs the panel, said that Facebook's cryptocurrency project Libra "create many concerns" and argued that maybe Facebook should be broken up.

"At the Federal Reserve, we will continue to analyze the potential benefits and costs of central bank digital currencies, and look forward to learning from other central banks", Fed Gov. Lael Brainard said in a speech last week.

Lawmakers from both parties and top regulators - including Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin and Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome H. Powell - have criticized Facebook's plan for the new currency. They warn that it could be used for illicit activity such as money laundering or drug trafficking.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) questions Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Cambridge Analytica, fact-checking and white supremacy in a hearing on Capitol Hill. It was not set to be a trial of Zuckerberg or Facebook's discrimination policies. This settled with a group including the American Civil Liberties Union, the National Fair Housing Alliance and others, but Facebook still faces an administrative complaint filed by U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies plummeted as Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg tried to defend his beleaguered digital currency Libra - a project rapidly losing institutional support as it hits one regulatory hurdle after another.

The statement would mark the first time the company has made an on-the-record pledge to lawmakers to only move ahead if USA regulators are satisfied. Marcus leads the Libra project.

Several high-profile companies that had signed on as partners in Facebook's governing association for Libra have recently bailed, spelling a potentially rough road for the project.

During questioning, Zuckerberg noted that a major competitive threat is coming from a Chinese public-private partnership and that "they are very focused on building this and exporting it around the world".

"For the richest man in the world to come here and hide behind the poorest people in the world, and say that's who you're really trying to help", he said.

Facebook is trying to make its ambitious plan to create a new digital currency, called Libra, palatable to USA lawmakers by amping up fears around China's financial dominance.

Zuckerberg and other Facebook execs have made the China argument before as a way to fend off criticism of their own firm. Meanwhile, New York Attorney General Letitia James announced Tuesday that her probe of Facebook for violating antitrust regulations is now backed by attorneys general from 47 states and territories.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren, a leading critic of Facebook, posted a deliberately false ad on the social network earlier this month to prove the dangers of the current system.

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