The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), which is one of the top U.S. crypto regulators, is bolstering its regulatory power with the new Office of Technology Innovation, according to remarks by CFTC Chairman Rostin Behnam on Monday, 25 July.
Behnam said this new office would grow from what was once the agency’s LabCFTC, a FinTech team.
He noted that there were several reasons for the change, including the scale of the market, the vulnerability of retail investors, and recent setbacks in the crypto industry. As such, he said there was a greater need for regulation, adding that while congressional lawmakers were working on their own plans, the CFTC wanted to solve crypto and various issues on its own.
“Regulators need to be nimble, and new challenges may require us to dig deeper, to take a different look at how our organic bylaws support our growth alongside the markets we regulate,” Behnam said. “In the absence of new legislative authority, we at the CFTC continue to examine how we can work to protect markets and investors within the limits of our existing authority.”
The CFTC statement noted that the office will be made up of specialists. Current CFTC employees will also be able to browse and gain more industry experience.
In June, PYMNTS wrote that the senses. Cynthia Lummis and Kirsten Gillibrand had introduced a bill that would give regulatory authority over crypto markets to the CFTC and create a “comprehensive regulatory framework” for digital assets.
See also: CFTC Director Tells Congress Agency Is Ready For More Crypto Oversight
At the time, the senators said that “most digital assets are much more similar to commodities than to securities, so the bill gives the CFTC clear authority over the cash markets of applicable digital assets, which aligns well with their current proficiency in other commodity markets.”
“Digital assets that meet the definition of a commodity, such as bitcoin and ether, which account for more than half of digital asset market capitalization, will be regulated by the CFTC,” they said.
However, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) would have authority over assets considered securities under the bill.
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