-- Bitcoin fell slightly Friday and remained on track for a weekly loss with little positive catalysts to prompt buying.
Bitcoin fell 0.85% to $10,385, retreating from a session high of $10,760.
St. Louis Federal Reserve President James Bullard added to the recent wave of criticism from U.S. officials on cryptocurrencies as he suggested that some digital coins were being used to carry out “illegal or quasi-legal” activities.
“Cryptocurrencies may unwittingly be pushing in the wrong direction in trying to solve an important social problem, which is how best to facilitate market-based exchange,” Bullard said.
Several lawmakers called on Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) Wednesday to halt its development of Libra until Congress and regulators had the opportunity to assess concerns around the social media company's cryptocurrency.
That echoed comments from U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, who on Thursday claimed that there are “billions of dollars of transactions going on in bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies for illicit purposes.”
The comments come against the backdrop of criticism leveled at Facebook’s plans to launch its Libra project, following the social media company’s testimony on Capitol Hill earlier this week.
But there were some positive takeaways for crypto fans from the hearings.
U.S. Congressman Patrick McHenry, who represents North Carolina's 10th District, told lawmakers that attempts to stop the progress of decentralized digital currencies like bitcoin would be a losing battle.
“The world that Satoshi Nakamoto, author of the bitcoin whitepaper envisioned, and others are building, is an unstoppable force,” McHenry said.
“We should not attempt to deter this innovation; governments cannot stop this innovation, and those that have tried have already failed,” he added.
Other cryptos also followed bitcoin’s slide lower. XRP fell 0.98% to $0.3164, Ethereum lost 1.92% to $217.95 and Litecoin dropped 3.86% to $96.22.