SEC CHAIR GARY GENSLER UNDER FIRE FOR CRYPTO DEFINITION CHANGE
Gary Gensler, Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), faces scrutiny as the star witness before the full US House Committee on Financial Services. Among the topics to be discussed is Gensler’s recent policy change, which alters the statutory definition of a securities exchange to include cryptocurrency and digital asset exchanges.
This move by Gensler prompted SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce to file a robust dissent. Peirce wrote that the release « undermines fundamental First Amendment protections, » and even went as far as to title her rebuttal, « Rendering Innovation Kaput. »
The dispute over the definition of an exchange is only one item on the Financial Services Committee’s agenda. The committee will also revisit a SEC declaration from last March calling on digital asset custodians to change the way they report liabilities and assets—which some lawmakers said increased potential losses.
Meanwhile, the Subcommittee on Digital Assets, Financial Technology and Inclusion will take up draft legislation relating to stablecoins. The draft bill includes extensive definitions, establishes requirements at the federal and state level to issue stablecoins, and sets up standards for interoperability, reporting, and enforcement. The legislation also calls for a two-year moratorium on new stablecoins until a study can be completed.
Those expected to testify include Circles’ CEO, Dante Disparte, and Chief Strategy Officer and Global Policy Head, Jake Chervinsky, Chief Policy Officer at the Blockchain Association, Columbia Business School adjunct assistant professor, Austin Campbell, and Adrienne A. Harris, Superintendent of the New York State Department of Financial Services.
While comprehensive, the proposed bill still needs more work, according to Jeremy Allaire, Co-founder and CEO of Circle. Allaire called the proposed bill « a product of bi-partisan efforts » and « the first comprehensive proposed law for Payment stablecoins. » Allaire advised followers to tune into the hearing and tackle the open and challenging issues with the bill to ensure the role of the dollar in the world is secured.