Wall Street Struggles To Gain Support For Bitcoin In Congress And By The SEC

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Resistance Mounts 

In the wake of yet another 40% plunge in Bitcoin, Wall Street Struggles for Congressional Support.

Major financial industry players including Fidelity Investments and Anthony Scaramucci’s SkyBridge Capital are pressing the Securities and Exchange Commission to approve their plans to launch funds on public stock markets that would let small investors tap into the rise of Bitcoin prices.

"Our country needs to take a deeper dive on how to deal with cryptocurrency before any regulations are put in," Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), a member of the Banking Committee, said in an interview. "The wild swings of crypto prices sound an alarm that every regulator hears."

The SEC has long taken a skeptical view of the funds, going as far as rejecting earlier proposals by the Winklevoss twins — of Facebook fame — because of worries that the agency could not guarantee safeguards against fraud and manipulation.

JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon said in House testimony Thursday that his company — the nation’s largest bank — was debating how to make it available in a safe way. But Dimon's personal advice? “Stay away from it.”

Republicans Balk Too

  • “I'm not clear yet on exactly what we should do,” said Sen. Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.), who in May launched the bipartisan Senate Financial Innovation Caucus to encourage policy development in crypto and other financial technologies.
  • Sen. Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), who with Lummis serves on the Senate Banking Committee, said he's concerned about the accuracy of the underlying reference prices for the funds because crypto trading occurs on venues that aren’t regulated by the SEC. Tillis said the fund applications “have to be scrutinized, mainly from a consumer protection perspective.”
  • “We need to figure out how we deal with this,” said Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), a member of the Banking Committee. “Otherwise you’re going to have a lot of people lose a lot of money."
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