US Financial Regulators Urge Congress To Pass Cryptocurrency Spot Markets Legislation

A council consisting of the US’s top financial regulators is urging Congress to regulate cryptocurrency spot markets.

The Financial Stability Oversight Council, made up of the heads of the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), the Federal Reserve Board and other top regulators, issued its annual report this week.

The council says crypto assets that are not securities have limited federal regulations and urges Congress to rectify that.

“As a result, those markets may not be subject to a regulatory framework designed to ensure orderly and transparent trading, prevent conflicts of interest and market manipulation, and protect investors and the financial system more broadly. To address this regulatory gap, the Council recommends that Congress pass legislation that provides for explicit rulemaking authority for federal financial regulators over the spot market for crypto-assets that are not securities. The Council recommends that this rulemaking authority should not interfere with or weaken market regulators’ current jurisdictional remits. Legislation should provide for enforcement and examination authority to ensure compliance with these rules.”

The council also thinks crypto could present financial stability risks.

“A number of crypto-asset trading platforms have proposed offering retail customers direct access to markets by vertically integrating the services provided by intermediaries such as broker-dealers or futures commission merchants. Financial stability and investor protection risks may arise from retail investors’ exposure to some practices often proposed by vertically integrated trading platforms, such as automatically and rapidly closing out customer positions. Therefore, the Council recommends that member agencies assess the impact of potential vertical integration by crypto-asset firms.”

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