The United States Government owns approximately $120 million worth of Bitcoin, according to a new report from The Block. The Block’s research shows that the US government’s Bitcoin holdings are spread across multiple federal agencies, including the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the Department of Justice (DOJ), and the US Marshals Service (USMS).
The report comes as the US government is increasingly taking a closer interest in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. In July, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) charged two Florida men with running a $30 million Ponzi scheme involving Bitcoin.
And earlier this month, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) fined Bitfinex, one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, for illegally offering trading in cryptocurrency derivatives to US customers.
The US government’s Bitcoin holdings are relatively small compared to those of some major institutional investors. For instance, hedge fund manager Michael Novogratz has said that he has 10% of his net worth invested in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
And the investment firm Galaxy Digital, which Novogratz founded, is reported to have invested $250 million in Bitcoin and other digital assets.
Despite its small holdings, the US government’s interest in Bitcoin is significant. The Block’s report suggests that the government is “keenly watching” the cryptocurrency market and is “open to participating” in it.
So far, the US government has not taken any formal stance on Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies. But that could change soon: last week, a senior official at the Treasury Department said that the agency is considering regulating cryptocurrencies like securities.
If that happens, it would give the US government more power over the cryptocurrency market—and could lead to even more government-owned Bitcoin.