Most cryptocurrencies are likely to be regulated as securities in the United States, according to Intercontinental Exchange Inc (ICE) CEO Jeffrey Sprecher and Senator Elizabeth Warren.
The renewed focus on regulating cryptocurrencies as securities comes in light of FTX’s recent collapse, which wiped countless billions from the market, put consumer funds in limbo and soured crypto’s reputation among regulators and officials.
Sprecher – whose ICE operates the New York Stock Exchange – speaking at the Goldman Sachs Group Inc financial services conference on December 6, confidently said that crypto-assets are “going to be regulated and treated like securities.”
He argued that this would ultimately lead to much greater consumer protection and regulatory oversight of centralized exchanges and brokers:
“What does that mean? It means more transparency, it means segregated client funds, the role of the broker as a broker-dealer will oversee and the exchanges will be separated from the brokers. The settlement and clearing will be separated from the exchanges. .”
Sprecher also argued that new regulation is not necessarily required for crypto, as the legal frameworks are already there in terms of securities and they are “only going to be implemented more strongly.”
Senator Warren wants to crack the whip
Crypto skeptic Senator Elizabeth Warren is working on a crypto bill that would reportedly give the Gary Gensler-led Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) most of the regulatory authority over the crypto space.
According to a December 7 report from online news outlet Semafor, which cited two unnamed sources close to the matter, Warren’s crypto bill is still in its early stages but aims to cover a host of issues, including taxes , regulation, national security and climate.
Warren is said to want to impose regulatory obligations such as audited financial statements and bank-like capital requirements.
While specific details about the bill have not been released, Alex Sarabia, a spokesman for Warren, confirmed with Sema that the senator is looking into the SEC.
“She works on crypto legislation and believes that financial regulators, including the SEC, have broad existing authority to crack down on crypto fraud and illegal money laundering,” Sarabia said.
There has been a long-running debate among regulators about which crypto-assets should fall under the category of a commodity or a security, with Bitcoin (BTC) being the only asset that is unanimously considered a commodity due to its truly decentralized nature. nature of it.
Related: US CFTC commissioner calls for new category to protect small investors from crypto
Ether (ETH) has also been discussed as a commodity at times, but with much more backlash. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) head Rostin Behnam recently hit back on his view that ETH is a commodity while speaking at an invitation-only crypto event held at Princeton University. He now believes that Bitcoin has that status.
In the crypto world, MicroStrategy founder and Bitcoin maximalist Michael Saylor went a step further by essentially calling for all non-BTC crypto-assets to be shut down, as he argued they were “committing securities fraud. “
During a December 6th appearance on the PDB Podcast, Saylor reiterated his opinion that assets such as Ripple (XRP), ETH and Solana (SOL) are all unregistered securities as they were issued and controlled by centralized entities.
Painting a scenario he would like to see, the fiery BTC maxi noted “the best thing for the world would be for the SEC to shut it all down.”
Naturally, Twitter users mocked him for making such comments:
Imagine calling yourself a “Bitcoin maximalist” and then calling something an “unregistered security” which is something enforced by governments/nation states.
Saylor is an embarrassment and the furthest thing from a cypherpunk
— sassal.eth (@sassal0x) December 7, 2022