Gary Gensler Asks SEC Staff to Fine-Tune Crypto Compliance — Says ‘Vast Majority Are Securities’

Gary Gensler (chairman of the U.S Securities and Exchange Commission) revealed that he had asked staff at SEC to improve compliance for crypto tokens and intermediaries. He stressed that most crypto tokens are securities.

Gary Gensler, Chairman of the SEC, on Crypto Regulation

Chairman of the U.S Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Gary Gensler spoke about compliance and crypto regulation at Thursday's SEC Speaks conference by the Practising Law Institute.

He stated that the core principles in the SEC's statutes are applicable to all securities markets, which includes securities and intermediaries in crypto market.

The vast majority of the almost 10,000 tokens on the crypto market are securities. Securities laws cover the sale and purchase of these thousands upon thousands of crypto security tokens.

Gensler acknowledged that not all crypto tokens meet the definition of security. Gensler stated that these tokens are likely to be a small percentage of total crypto market value, even though they could represent a substantial portion.

He indicated, for example, that bitcoin, which is the largest cryptocurrency in terms of market capitalization by market cap, is a commodity and falls within the purview the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.

During his speech on Thursday, the chairman of SEC described bitcoin:

Bitcoin, the first crypto-token, has been called "digital gold" by some. It trades like precious metals, but is also a rare, digital store of value.

Gensler noted that certain people within the crypto industry had called for more "guidance" regarding crypto assets. Gensler stressed that the Commission has "speak with a very clear voice here" for five years through the DAO Report and the Munchee Order, as well as dozens of Enforcement actions all voted by the Commission.

The SEC boss stressed the importance of investor protection.

I have asked the SEC staff for assistance in working directly with entrepreneurs to register their tokens and regulate them as securities.

He acknowledged that only a few crypto security tokens had been registered under the current regime. However, he said that it may be appropriate to be flexible with existing disclosure requirements due to the nature of crypto investments.

Gensler explained that crypto intermediaries are being investigated. "I have asked staff to work closely with intermediaries to ensure each of their functions — trade, broker-dealer and custodial functions — are registered," Gensler said.

He concluded that he looked forward to working alongside crypto projects and intermediaries seeking to comply with the laws. I look forward to working alongside Congress on different legislative initiatives, while keeping the strong authorities we have currently.

Gensler revealed:

I have asked staff to use our regulatory toolkit in order to fine-tune compliance with crypto security tokens, intermediaries, and other entities.

The SEC announced Friday that it will establish a special office to review files related to crypto assets.

What did you think of Gary Gensler's comments? Comment below.

By: Kevin Helms
Title: Gary Gensler Asks SEC Staff to Fine-Tune Crypto Compliance — Says ‘Vast Majority Are Securities’
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Published Date: Mon, 12 Sep 2022 03:30:06 +0000

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