The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is in the cryptocurrency headlines again, and this time it’s another one of the regulator’s operatives that has the industry guessing.
It is exchange-traded funds once more becoming the point of focus not least because of the SEC’s announcement a few days ago that it was looking for a tool to improve cryptocurrency verification methods. Last November, SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce gave the industry a little hope regarding the acceptance of Bitcoin ETFs when she announced that she saw “significant intellectual capital” being invested by both institutional investors and exchanges towards the development of a Bitcoin ETF.
Now it’s the turn of another commissioner, Robert J Jackson Jr, whose comments to the Congressional Quarterly (CQ) were due to be published on 11 February 2019, but have since been leaked. Comments in which he agrees with his colleague’s sentiments have been shared across Twitter, in which he says that he also sees investment by both institutional investors and exchanges leading towards the development of a Bitcoin ETF. Although he doesn’t let slip which ETF applications have the best chance of acceptance, he also commented:
“A fund based on Bitcoin will eventually pass muster at the Securities and Exchange Commission despite that agency’s actions to deny all previous efforts.”
It is worth noting that Pierce’s comments in November of 2018 were her own, as she made clear in her podcast at the time; views not necessarily representative of the SEC as a whole. Commissioner Jackson’s comments to CQ were not necessarily intended for publication.
Clearly, the crypto space is hotting again up after the government shutdown and once more cryptocurrency business is ending up on someone’s desk at the SEC. The financial regulator’s new announcement that it was now considering a verification tool has raised some eyebrows in the industry, suggesting that there may be some more legislation on the way. The announcement was as follows:
“The SEC is seeking information for potential sources to support the goal of acquiring data for the most widely-used blockchain ledgers, including the universe of available information and transaction details.”
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