The role of the SEC in the US cryptocurrency space cannot be underestimated as its decision on what is, and is not, a security can shape the whole ecosystem. Recently, Ripple has come into the firing line, but the blame from the XRP side is being heaped on unclear crypto regulations.
The end to this, regardless of Ripple being right or wrong, could be in sight as well known SEC commissioner and supporter of crypto, Hester Peirce has said leading candidate as the new SEC chair, Gary Gensler, would be good news.
In an interview with the Thinking Crypto podcast, Peirce said of the United States’ regulatory approach to the asset class to date: “I think we have missed the boat a bit on crypto. And I think a big piece of that comes from the failure to provide clarity in our rules.” She said.
Contrary to the persistent narrative that crypto is somehow indissociable from illegality and a desire to outwit the system, her own experience has been that industry participants want to comply with the rules, but have often struggled to do so without adequate guidance:
“Am I optimistic that we’re going to finally get to the point where we do provide more clarity? I think we have a good chance. We’re likely about to get a new chairman, Gary Gensler, who had his hearing in front of the Senate. That’s one step in the process. Then he has to get voted on. And if he does get confirmed and come to the SEC, he brings with them really deep knowledge of this asset class,” she added.
Gensler is getting ever closer to taking up the SEC nomination as the Senate Banking Committee has now voted 14-10 in favor of Gensler’s nomination being sent to the Senate floor, after two Republicans joined ranks with 12 Democrats to support the choice.
Regardless of Gensler’s nomination, Peirce has said there should be more clarity moving forward and the new nomination won’t be an automatic fix.
“The intent of having a five member commission is to have continuity over time, so that you don’t see massive swings in policy so it is important for people to know that the work of the commission is not going to change dramatically when a new chairman. The regulatory agenda may change quite a bit, but the work of the commission, its day-to-day work, will continue regardless of who’s chairman” she said.