In an interview with CNBC last week, chairman Rostin Behnam of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission said that Bitcoin and Ethereum are commodities.
Discussing the regulation of cryptocurrencies by the CFTC and the SEC and how the two agencies are cooperating, Behnam said:
“This is a little bit of an age-old issue between the CFTC and the SEC. We have a great relationship historically … Within this space, in my view, it makes sense for commodities to be regulated by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission and securities to be regulated by the SEC.”
When confronted with SEC Chairman Gary Gensler’s claim that most crypto tokens are considered securities, Behnam stressed that the largest cryptocurrencies are commodities. He said:
“Well, I can say for sure bitcoin … is a commodity. Ether as well.”
Commenting on last weeks crypto market sell-off, Behnam said:
“A lot of people got hurt. A lot of value was lost in the market, and there really are no customer protections right now.”
In conclusion, the CFTC Chairman said that both his agency and the SEC aim to work towards regulating the crypto sector in a thoughtful way, to protect customers and financial stability. He clarified that both agencies are doing the best they can as he discarded any allegations of disagreement between the two agencies.
Nevertheless, there are coins that are securities, the CFTC boss noted. He said:
“There are plenty of community coins. I think it makes sense that each agency has jurisdiction over commodities and securities respectively.”
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