Mastercard, Coinbase, Among 40 Firms in $42 Million Lobbying Deals in Q1 2019

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Political news portal Roll Call reported this week that some 40 corporate entities had spend a total of USD 42 million in the first quarter of 2019 to lobby for blockchain and crypto related causes. It based its report on data from the Federal Election Commission.

While crypto industry names such as Coinbase may not raise any eyebrows, traditional finance names such as Mastercard have also joined Big Four accountancy firms Ernst & Young and Accenture in the lobbying chase when it comes to crypto.

The biggest spender of all was the US Chamber of Commerce, who accounted for USD 16.4 million for fintech lobbying in general. Mastercard itself set aside USD 720,000 for lobbying issues related to virtual currencies. Coinbase spent a distant USD 50,000 on the Banking Secrecy Act.

Blockcain Association director of external affairs Kristin Smith said that recognized lobby groups were already targeting existing state bills, like the Ohio Bill, to exempt crypto from securities regulations under the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC):

That’s probably been our biggest focus and it will continue to be our biggest focus for the next couple of months.”

In the previous quarter, only 33 entities had been lobbying for blockchain, so this period has seen a 20% growth in terms of the number of firms.

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