The bitcoin price has though manged to claw its way back over $20,000 per bitcoin—even after a serious JPMorgan price warning—helping the price of ethereum, BNB BNB , XRP XRP , solana, cardano and dogecoin rally from their recent lows.
Now, the chairman of Wall Street’s top regulator has said the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) will consider exempting crypto firms from some regulatory requirements in an attempt to tame the crypto “Wild West.”
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“There’s a potential path forward,” SEC chair Gary Gensler said during an interview with Yahoo Finance in comments that point to how the SEC could work with the crypto industry going forward and adding the agency has the authority to give exemptions to certain regulatory and disclosure requirements. “I’ve said to the industry, to the lending platforms, to the trading platforms: ‘Come in, talk to us.'”
Gensler, who has previously branded the bitcoin and crypto market a “Wild West” and this week repeated a warning that many crypto companies are “non-compliant,” said the SEC has “robust authorities from Congress to use our exemptive authorities that we can tailor investor protection.”
Earlier this year, the SEC found crypto lender BlockFi to be an unregistered investment company, reaching a settlement of $100 million.
In May, the SEC announced it had doubled the number of staff in its Crypto Assets and Cyber Unit as it tries to get a handle on the red-hot crypto market that last year ballooned to an eye-watering $3 trillion value before deflating over the last few months due to the Federal Reserve’s increasingly hawkish stance and the collapse of the terraUSD stablecoin along with its support cryptocurrency luna.
“The public is largely unprotected due to non-compliance in this space,” Gensler said. “The public benefits by knowing full and fair disclosure and that somebody is not lying to them. You know, basic protections.”
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The bitcoin, ethereum and crypto price crash has forced multiple lending platforms to file for bankruptcy and lock users out of their accounts in recent weeks as they struggle to hold back a tide of withdrawals.
“If it’s too good to be true, then maybe it is,” Gensler said, referring to sky-high yields of up to 20% that crypto lenders offer to depositors and market as safe. “There may be a lot of risk embedded in that.”