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WATCH RELATED VIDEO: SEC Chair Gary Gensler testifies before lawmakers on the plan to regulate crypto — 9/14/2021

3 Predictions on the Future of Cryptocurrency


The confusion has some in the industry calling for clearer regulations. The wild swings in crypto prices this year have enthralled and disheartened investors, alarmed Wall Street and focused the attention of regulators and lawmakers who already had cryptocurrency in their sights. With shares of Coinbase, a prize of Silicon Valley investors who placed early bets on cryptocurrency markets, swinging along with the price of Bitcoin, tech is worried too.

The soundness and stability of cryptocurrencies has gone from a fascination of early, enthusiastic adopters to a mainstream concern. One particular worry is the ability of vague tweets from a single person — Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who has mixed his personal ardor for cryptocurrencies with the electric-vehicle company's business — to send crypto prices gyrating.

Subscribe to Protocol Fintech for even more on crypto — and the latest news, analysis and research on fintech. Washington once seemed befuddled by cryptocurrency, handing out confusing rulings.

He made it clear at a recent House committee hearing that the crypto industry could come under greater regulation. The early crypto scene was dominated by libertarian types seeking to evade or defeat regulation. But now, a substantial number of players in the crypto industry have been seeking more regulatory clarity.

There are a number of areas where the industry interacts with regulators, from banking to securities to taxes. That's part of the problem: Tokens that act like securities could fall under the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission is eager to keep its oversight of currency markets. And the Internal Revenue Service wants to make sure transactions that result in gains are properly taxed.

Read more: Crypto regulation is coming. Even regulators aren't sure how. While it's unclear if or when Congress might pass legislation on the crypto industry, these agencies could have a major impact on how the industry operates. Yet key agencies still lack permanent heads, and future appointments could shift regulatory strategies considerably. One big question is who is responsible for regulating crypto exchanges.

The SEC's Gensler in his recent remarks said he was concerned about manipulation and is reviewing how to regulate crypto exchanges. Currently, crypto exchanges have no overarching regulation, as equity markets do. Coinbase, for example, is registered in most states with a money transmitter license, but not as an exchange.

The Office of the Comptroller of Currency has granted national trust charters to a handful of exchanges, but the agency's new chief has called for a review of crypto rules. Read more: Bitcoin is crashing. Coinbase is looking beyond trading. Those patchwork frameworks are designed to keep customers' money secured and guard against money laundering, but they're not meant to prevent price manipulation in the way regulations of securities exchanges and commodities futures do.

The group, which would include industry companies, would produce a report within a year on regulatory framework for digital assets. The fate of that bill in the Senate is unclear. Last year, then-Rep. Mike Conaway proposed the Digital Commodity Exchange Act , which would create new regulation of "digital commodity exchanges" under which crypto exchanges could opt in to regulation by the CFTC.

The CFTC currently oversees foreign currency exchange markets and commodities futures markets. But rules for swapping heads of cattle don't translate well to dogecoin and NFTs, and the commission currently has limited oversight of crypto trading exchanges.

That bill also would allow token sales to proceed as regulated securities under the SEC's purview and then, if they pass a certain test, become commodities overseen by the CFTC. That could resolve lingering questions about the exact point in time that a project that raises capital for a future planned token as a security offering — a SAFT — later becomes a commodity that can be freely traded, Brito said.

However, the bill did not pass and Conaway has retired; the bill would need to be reintroduced in this Congress. The question of whether XRP is a security has been hotly debated in the industry for years. The legal action could prove to be a landmark for the industry. Some in the industry believe the SEC should more clearly state what is a security — which requires a slew of regulations and investor protections — and what isn't. But the SEC seems to be fine with what it has laid out so far and what enforcement actions it has taken, Brito said.

He has a deep background in crypto and is well-liked in the industry. The Financial Action Task Force, a group of countries and jurisdictions that sets international standards related to money laundering and terrorist financing released a draft of new guidance on regulating digital assets in March. Some in the crypto industry aren't happy.

Coin Center argued that the guidelines are overly broad in requiring companies that aren't acting as custodians of cryptocurrencies to register and conduct anti-money laundering activities. Currently FinCEN requires only those controlling the assets be regulated as money transmitters.

The draft guidelines also seem to suggest prohibiting peer-to-peer cryptocurrencies and privacy coins, Coin Center said. The guidelines would also add counter-party identification, similar to what FinCEN recently proposed in a rule that was hotly contested by Coinbase and others. FinCEN hasn't made a decision on that proposed rule yet. Read more: Andreessen Horowitz calls crypto proposal 'an ill-advised regulation'.

Then there's China. What happens in that country often has an outsized effect on the crypto market, due to China's role as a hotspot for crypto mining and a highly-active community of crypto traders on social apps like Weibo. China's regulators this week effectively banned financial institutions and payment companies from most uses of cryptocurrencies.

Chinese citizens can still trade crypto, but often need to do it through offshore exchanges. Yet the country remains interested in digital currencies, including the creation of a digital yuan.

Beyond beefing up reporting requirements, there are two categories of issues. First, what constitutes income and basis, a matter that gets complicated as the tax authorities have to figure out what to make of technical aspects of cryptocurrencies like hard forks and airdrops. Bitcoin had a hard fork in , which resulted in holders of bitcoin receiving bitcoin cash tokens.

Some reported the bitcoin cash they received as income; some reported only the sale of bitcoin cash as income; and others treated it like a stock split. Tom Emmer reintroduced a bill this week to require the IRS to create a safe harbor until it clarifies that issue. The second issue is whether cryptocurrency should qualify for a de minimis exemption. Some in the crypto industry believe there should be an exemption for crypto similar to a law for foreign currency.

The scenario envisioned is a U. This could apply not just to buying coffee with crypto that's appreciated in value, but also for other uses of crypto that are not for buying goods, such as identity verification.

For example, Microsoft has launched a decentralized identity authentication technology that uses Bitcoin. However, such technologies could require tiny transactions that currently could be taxable events, Brito said.

Exchange-traded funds exist for gold and foreign currencies, giving investors the ability to bet on or hedge risk related to those commodity prices. The SEC seems to believe that the real problem is that the underlying markets where they're trading are not safe, said Brito. Or the industry itself could decide to self-regulate and gain the SEC's confidence that way. But unless either of those things happen, Brito doesn't expect bitcoin ETFs to be approved anytime soon.

You won't hear about stablecoins on "Saturday Night Live" because they lack the potential for price appreciation or big crashes that define cryptocurrency in the popular imagination.

But stablecoins have become a large part of the crypto trading market precisely because they address volatility in crypto prices. They also hold potential for other uses such as payments. There hasn't been much change to how stablecoins are regulated. But a recent move by Facebook-backed Diem to move back to the U.

The OCC released an order last July clarifying that federally-chartered banks can custody cryptocurrency, which was seen as a positive step in mainstreaming the industry. The OCC, however, still doesn't have a permanent leader. Michael Barr, a former Treasury department official and former Ripple adviser, was slated to be nominated but was reportedly dropped due to opposition from liberal Democrats.

This story was updated Thursday at a. Pacific to include the Treasury's new rules for reporting cryptocurrency transactions. Tomio Geron tomiogeron is a San Francisco-based reporter covering fintech. He was previously a reporter and editor at The Wall Street Journal, covering venture capital and startups. Before that, he worked as a staff writer at Forbes, covering social media and venture capital, and also edited the Midas List of top tech investors.

He has also worked at newspapers covering crime, courts, health and other topics. He can be reached at tgeron protocol. David Pierce pierce is Protocol's editorial director. He owns all the phones. Then, Issie Lapowsky joins the show to discuss what Spotify can and should do about Joe Rogan, and why platforms keep having the same content issues.

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A major reason for the phenomenal growth of cryptocurrency markets in recent years has been the absence of clear regulations. That might change soon. Increasingly, the U. Securities and Exchange Commission SEC is providing broad hints of its intent to enforce regulations on the space.

After years of abuse of crypto investors and innovators, the credibility of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is in tatters.

Crypto firm CEOs to testify before U.S. House banking panel on Dec. 8

Kor Thor. After publication in the Government Gazette, the Notification has become effective from 11 June onwards without retrospective effect. Essentially, the Notification prescribes that digital asset exchanges set their listing rules and prohibits the exchanges from providing services related to utility tokens or cryptocurrencies that have any of the following characteristics:. It is unique and not interchangeable with digital tokens of the same category and type at the equal amount; 4 Digital tokens which are utilized in a blockchain transaction and issued by digital asset exchanges or related persons. In addition, a digital asset exchange has to set the requirement that the digital token issuer who is the exchange itself or related person comply with the white paper and relevant rules in substance. Failure to do so could result in the delisting of such digital token from the exchange. The exchanges are required to comply and revise their listing rules in accordance with the Notification within 30 days from the effective date thereof. Interested investors are strongly advised to study carefully and thoroughly before making a decision to trade digital assets. Name lists and information on all approved products or licensed business operators are available on SEC Check First application.


President Biden’s Nominee for SEC Chairman: What Does It Mean for Crypto?

sec meeting on crypto

Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Gary Gensler has an important opportunity to undo actions taken in the waning hours of the Trump administration that threaten cryptocurrency innovation. But the agency does not allege that any of its investors were defrauded. Cryptocurrencies represent a dramatic leap forward in financial technology, because they solve the biggest challenge of electronic monetary transfers: When no physical transfer of paper money takes place, you need some way of recording transactions so that people cannot simply make transactions up, and create cash for themselves. Normally, that central place is the Federal Reserve Bank—which records and processes every credit card transaction. Cryptocurrencies like XRP are not securities.

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Regulators deliver good news for ethereum and bitcoin, but there’s less clarity for XRP

We regularly defend Fortune companies and their executives and boards before every major federal and state regulatory enforcement authority and in courtrooms nationwide. We excel at developing creative and successful strategies for responding to and, where possible, preventing government investigations and enforcement proceedings. In particular, admitting to a violation of the securities laws in an SEC settlement could lead to significant collateral consequences for the settling entity, including increased risk in parallel private securities class actions. Requiring admissions of wrongdoing in certain SEC settlements could also discourage settlement negotiations in those matters and lead to an uptick in litigated cases. That said, it remains to be seen how the SEC will actually utilize these practices.


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Video of Hearing Exchange Youtube. Washington, D. Transcript: Oversight of the U. Securities and Exchange Commission U. Senator Warren: Thank you, Mr. Now, the banks have done a pretty lousy job on financial inclusion, so I want to test out with you whether or not crypto is an improvement.

He's the CEO of Ripple, the crypto exchange whose own digital coin, XRP, The SEC also has claimed that Garlinghouse and other Ripple.

Will Gary Gensler address the Ripple (XRP) lawsuit at the SEC meeting this week?

Gary Gensler and Jay Clayton spoke, took no questions, and agreed that the multi-trillion dollar crypto innovation space is a dark, menacing threat that legitimate crypto entrepreneurs must follow opaque rules or face crippling SEC lawsuits. Many in the audience of crypto industry leaders, just maligned as crooks, were stunned. Read the Full Article Here. Regulators on the left and right rarely agree on policy.


Biden’s SEC is ready to regulate cryptocurrency

Federal government websites often end in. The site is secure. Often referred to as the "truth in securities" law, the Securities Act of has two basic objectives:. See the full text of the Securities Act of A primary means of accomplishing these goals is the disclosure of important financial information through the registration of securities.

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Thanks for contacting us. We've received your submission. A more complete picture of this utter fecklessness is playing out in federal court in lower Manhattan in a case titled Securities and Exchange Commission v. Ripple Labs. It will likely determine how much regulation there will be over the burgeoning crypto industry, and at least so far, the SEC is demonstrating why it should be nowhere near policing something reasonably described as the next Internet.

The U. House Committee on Financial Services Committee met last Wednesday [1] to discuss the rapidly growing cryptocurrency market exchange and the regulatory landscape that currently governs it. Executives from six major crypto asset companies, including Coinbase and Circle, testified at the hearing, calling for clearer standards and guidance from regulators. Among other things, the witnesses raised concerns about the current regulatory framework used to determine whether digital assets should be regulated as securities under the federal securities laws.


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