White House: first legislation for cryptocurrency regulation

On Friday, September 16, the White House published a new framework with directives on greater control of cryptocurrencies and digital assets, with the aim of framing them within a new regulatory framework.

The Biden administration is concerned about increasing volatility and, in particular, the recent decline in cryptocurrencies which has led to problems across the finance landscape. The framework, the first of its kind targeting cryptocurrencies, specifically focuses on measures that could be taken to change the financial services industry, make transactions easier and crack down on fraud.

“Digital assets pose significant risks to consumers, investors and businesses. The prices of these assets can be highly volatile,” says the Biden administration. The current global market capitalization of cryptocurrencies is around one third of the peak in November 2021 ″.

The new guidelines will be updated by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC): therefore no new authorities will be established. In addition, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Federal Trade Commission are called upon to redouble their efforts to monitor consumer complaints and to enforce unfair, deceptive or abusive practices. However, no warrants have yet been issued, with the framework lacking effectiveness and clarity, according to some.

Biden also reserves the right to consider whether to invite Congress to amend the Bank Secrecy Act by extending laws against the transmission of unlicensed money to digital asset service providers. According to a White House fact sheet, the opportunity to include digital asset exchanges and non-fungible token platforms (NFTs) is also being considered.

Ultimately, the aim will be to intensify investigations into digital asset market misconduct and redouble enforcement efforts by strengthening coordination between agencies.