CFTC Chairman Rostin Behnam made this statement during a Senate hearing on March 8th, stating that
Behnam’s statement comes after the CFTC settled with stablecoin issuer Tether in 2021, where Tether was determined as commodity.
The Debate Over Regulatory
The debate over regulatory control of cryptocurrency assets continues to heat up as US market regulators . The (CFTC) has once again asserted that Ether and stablecoins are commodities and should come under its purview.
Behnam’s recent comments have solidified his opinion on the classification of Ether, which had previously wavered. His comments contrast with those of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Chair Gary Gensler, who claimed that
“Everything other than Bitcoin”
is a security, a statement that has been disputed by multiple crypto lawyers.
The SEC targeted stablecoin
The differing opinions of market regulators could lead to a conflict over regulatory control of the cryptocurrency industry. In mid-February, the SEC targeted stablecoin issuer Paxos, stating that it may sue the firm for violating investor protection laws. Alleging that its Binance USD stablecoin is an unregistered security.
The regulator similarly targeted Terraform Labs and called its algorithmic. Stablecoin TerraUSD Classic (USTC) a security, which could serve as a roadmap for future.
However, the SEC’s crypto clampdowns have faced pushback from industry players such as Circle founder and CEO Jeremy Allaire. Who believes that stablecoins should be overseen by a banking regulator, not the SEC.
The regulatory uncertainty surrounding the classification of digital assets and the potential for a regulatory clash could have significant implications for the future of the cryptocurrency industry.