Crypto will be regulated as securities – ICE chief and Senator Warren

Most cryptocurrencies are likely to be regulated as securities in the United States according to Intercontinental Exchange Inc (ICE) CEO Jeffrey Sprecher and Senator Elizabeth Warren.

The renewed focus on regulating cryptocurrencies as securities comes in light of FTX’s recent implosion, which wiped out untold billions from the market, put consumer funds in limbo and soured crypto’s reputation among regulators and officials.

Speaking on December 6 at the Goldman Sachs Group Inc. financial conference, Sprecher – whose ICE runs the New York Stock Exchange – confidently stated that crypto-assets “are going to be regulated and treated like securities.”

He argued that this will ultimately result in far greater consumer protection and regulatory oversight of centralized exchanges and brokers:

“What does that mean? It means more transparency, it means segregated client funds, the broker’s role as a broker-dealer will oversee and the exchanges will be separated from the brokers. The settlement and clearing will be separated from the exchanges. .”

Sprecher also argued that new regulation was not necessarily needed for crypto, as the legal frameworks are already there when it comes to securities, and they are “only going to be implemented more strongly.”

Senator Warren wants to crack the whip

Cryptoskeptic Senator Elizabeth Warren is working on a crypto bill that would reportedly give the Gary Gensler-led Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) most of the regulatory authority over the crypto space.

According to a Dec. 7 report by online news outlet Semafor, which cited two unnamed sources close to the matter, Warren’s crypto bill is still in its early stages but aims to cover a range of issues, including tax, regulation, national security and climate.

Warren is said to be looking to impose regulatory obligations such as audited financial statements and bank-like capital requirements in particular.

While specific details of the bill were not disclosed, Alex Sarabia, a spokesperson for Warren, confirmed to Semafor that the senator is looking at the SEC.

“She works on crypto legislation and believes that financial regulators, including the SEC, have broad existing authority to crack down on crypto fraud and illegal money laundering,” Sarabia said.

There has been a long-running debate among regulators about which cryptoassets should fall under the category of a commodity or a security, with Bitcoin (BTC) being the only resource that is unanimously viewed as a commodity due to its truly decentralized nature.

Related: US CFTC commissioner calls for new category to protect small investors from crypto

Ether (ETH) has also been discussed as a commodity at times, but with far more pushback. Notably, the head of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), Rostin Behnam, recently backtracked on his view that ETH is a commodity while speaking at an invite-only crypto event at Princeton University. He now believes that Bitcoin has that status.

Over in the crypto world, MicroStrategy founder and Bitcoin maximalist Michael Saylor has gone one step further by essentially calling for the shutdown of all non-BTC cryptoassets, claiming they are “committing securities fraud.”

During an appearance on the PDB podcast on December 6, Saylor reiterated his opinion that assets such as Ripple (XRP), ETH and Solana (SOL) are all unregistered securities as they were issued and controlled by centralized entities.

Painting a scenario he would like to see, the fervent BTC maxi noted “the best thing for the world would be for the SEC to shut everything down.”

Of course, Twitter users mocked him for making such comments: