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SEC Commissioner on crypto: we are “striving toward common goals”

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At the annual SEC Speaks conference, SEC Commissioner Caroline A. Crenshaw spoke on the impact of the digital asset universe, and what that means for the SEC. Her speech broached the subject of the positive potential of crypto as well as some concerns she has with the industry.

Crenshaw was first clear to state that the views in her speech were her own, and did not reflect the agency or other commissioners. On the subject of the community that supports crypto, and the potential of the underlying technology, Commissioner Crenshaw noted the following:

“Because I sometimes read Crypto-twitter, I feel like I need to say at the outset that the energy and passion is pervasive and admirable. Likewise, the technology and its potential are positive. I appreciate the time, energy and intellectual curiosity that drives the ongoing development of this technology or, as I typically refer to them, digital assets”

In the same speech, commissioner Crenshaw rejected the notion of a safe harbour for token issuances,

“These are some of the reasons I do not think that a safe harbor that permits unlimited capital raising with only limited disclosures, and no registration requirement, is in the best interest of investors. Nor will it be effective at preventing a re-run of the excesses and failures of the recent past.”

She also added that only a few cryptocurrency projects have registered with the SEC and  the crypto industry needs to do a better job at being transparent when it comes to disclosing the identities of the members of crypto projects:

“For an industry that promotes transparency, I have been surprised how frequently offerings include secret identities, concealed control persons, and embellished or totally fictional teams. Requiring honest disclosures of the development team on whom investors are relying is a necessary step”

The SEC recently noted, via the mouthpiece of Gary Gensler, that they have no plans to ban crypto, and despite several high-profile legal battles between the regulator and a number of crypto companies, the SEC’s growing efforts to regulate crypto is increasingly being carried out with requests that the crypto community do their part as part of a collaborative approach. 

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 10/13/2021

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