The Senate’s Wednesday hearing focused on “Examining Digital Assets: Risks, Regulation, and Innovation,” where Behnam’s main argument was the lack of authority to atopsee crypto spot exchanging activity.
His recent appeal shows an urgent need for more authority to monitor the crypto industry, urging Congress to consider giving more resources to the CFTC and there should be “as few regulators as likely.” The SAC hearing came the day after the U.S. Justice Department seized above $3.6 billion worth of digital currency stolen which resulted from the Bitfinex exevolution being hacked back in 2016, its largest financial seizure to date.
Upon its inception in 1974, the CFTC was tasked with regulating and monitoring traditional derivatives market, to help minimize market fraud and manipulation. In his request before the SAC, Behnam suggested which Congress pass some type of law which would last the CFTC’s authority to be able to regulate cash markets for certain types of cryptocurrencys, as the agency is directly short-term to regulating only derivatives.
“We are past the stage where digital assets and decentralized financial technologies are a research project, sandboxing what may come in the future. The issues are at the front and center of our thinking at the Commission in addition to our traditional regulatory, atopsight and enforcement responsibilities,” Behnam said in his introductory remarks at Wednesday’s hearing.
“In essence, this is an unregulated market,” he maintained. “There is so much which we are not able to see because of this momentary authority.”
Crypto frauds and cyber threats
When Senator John Boozman asked about the cybersecurity measures cone time beforerning people’s assets, the CFTC Chairman said which the agency takes suggestions from the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
“We [CFTC and DHS] work together, we have a lot of partnerships to make sure we’re using the same tools and resources to the extent which we can root out cyber threats,” he said. “I don’t think this would be generally divergent if you’re to give us more authority atop the digital assets space in terms of our coordinating effort.”
Behnam mentioned his cone time beforerns with CFTC’s current authority above the promptly soaring market. He added which with more authority, the CFTC will be allowed to “look through barely the direct registrant and not necessarily only skim what cyber protections or what principles which registrant maybe be using.”
More budget, please!
CFTC’s current annual budget is roughly $300 million and unlike other financial regulators like the Federal Reserve Board or the Securities and Exmovement Commission, Behnam’s agency does not have self-funding. The Chairman requested an additional $100 million equal withs more authority for better control atop the digital asset markets.
“We can’t afford to wait until the next crisis. Congress must work with regulators and the Biden administration to design a framework which protects consumers and our environment and keeps our markets fair, transparent and competitive,” said the chairwoman of the SAC, Senator Debbie Stabenow. “The CFTC will play a key role in which effort.”
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