Face It: Bitcoin Regulation Equals Money, CFTC Chair Says

Zinger Key Points
  • The CFTC depends on tips, customer complaints and whistle-blowers in the cases it pursues.
  • The wave of regulations on digital assets may not be all negative, Behnam says.

Bitcoin's BTC/USD price may double if the digital currency is traded on a market under Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) regulations.

That's according to CFTC chair Rostin Behnam, who supports a regulated structure in the cryptocurrency market.

“These incumbent institutions in the crypto space see a massive opportunity for institutional inflows that will only occur if there’s a regulatory structure around these markets,” Behnam told attendees of a fireside chat at NYU School of Law. “Non-bank [crypto] institutions thrive on regulation, they thrive on regulatory certainty, they thrive on a level playing field."

The remarks come amid increasing scrutiny across geographies, from Brazil to Australia to Tether's legal tussle in the U.S.

See Also: NY Judge Orders Tether To Produce Documents Proving USDT Backing

However, other governments, such as those in Japan and the UAE, seem eager to embrace Web3 and cryptocurrencies as opportunities for growth.

And Behnam believes that the wave of regulations on digital assets may not be all negative.

Institutions may "bicker" about what type of regulation is best, Behnam added. "But what they love most is regulation because they are the smartest, the fastest, and the most well-resourced. With those attributes, they can beat everyone else in the market.”

Regulating Cryptocurrencies

The CFTC's existing financing structure and resource allocation prohibit it from pursuing broader regulation of the crypto industry.

Due to a lack of funding to conduct its own investigations, Behnam pointed out that the CFTC has depended on tips, complaints from customers, and whistle-blowers in the majority of cases it has pursued, Behnam explained.

The Senate Agriculture Committee's measure to name the CFTC as the primary regulator of the cryptocurrency sector would make it clear who is in charge of overseeing the industry in the U.S., he added.

Regulations are currently handled by both the CFTC and the Securities and Exchange Commission.

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