Legal Pathway for ICOs Sought by US Regulators

According to Robert Jackson, a commissioner at the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), a solution is needed to facilitate the launching of ICOs within current US securities law.

Speaking to CNBC’s Squawk Box on Monday, Jackson voiced current SEC concerns regarding the need to address ICO fraud, but suggested a legal method for raising cryptocurrency funds might be possible:

“Investors are having a hard time telling the difference between investments and fraud. Down the road, I think we will be thinking about ways to make those investments work consistent with our securities laws.”

There have been other positive voices coming from the SEC in the last few weeks. Recently, Republican Minnesota Representative Tom Emmer at an SEC Division of Corporation Finance meeting suggested that much of the furor over crypto fraud was exaggerated. He argued that regulators assumptions that decentralized networks were only used for fraud and crime, bore parallels to early explorers’ assumptions about Earth.

The US has no desire to follow in China’s footsteps by banning ICOs, but among regulatory bodies such as the SEC, there are clearly ongoing concerns over the protection of consumers, given events of the past few years.

“If you want to know what our markets would look like with no securities regulation, what it would look like if the SEC didn’t do its job? The answer is the ICO market,” Jackson said.

Although the SEC considers most ICOs as securities, and despite several warnings being issued to crypto startups for non-compliance with current rules, there is more than a suggestion of pragmatism in dealing with the issue.

Last month, SEC division head William Hinman suggested that the SEC was “meeting with participants that have these ideas of a token that shouldn’t be regulated as a security” and said that he was working with them on how they should be structured. He pointed out that the US wanted to be pragmatic in support of new technology.

In March, the SEC announced that crypto exchanges which provide ICO token trading solutions had to register with the regulator.

image source https://pixabay.com/en/startup-wall-painter-house-painter-2850272/  geralt

 

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