Bitcoin, Ethereum are not securities per CFTC Chair

Bitcoin, Ethereum are not securities per CFTC Chair

  • CFTC Chair Rostin Behnam says that an Illinois court confirmed that Bitcoin and Ethereum are digital commodities.
  • Behnam said that the cryptocurrencies are commodities under the Commodity Exchange Act.
  • Bitcoin, Ethereum have sustained above key support levels, BTC trades above $57,000 and Ether above $3,000 on Wednesday.

Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) Chair Rostin Behnam spoke at the Senate Committee hearing, stating that 70 to 80% of cryptocurrencies are not securities. 

Behnam spoke about the crypto asset class amidst the ongoing debate in the crypto community and the lawsuits brought by the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) and faced by crypto firms and exchange platforms.

Bitcoin and Ethereum are not securities 

Whether cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum and several other altcoins are securities has been debatable for several years. The SEC lawsuits against exchange platforms like Coinbase for unregistered securities sales and against Ripple for the sale of unregistered securities (XRP token) have intensified the debate among market participants. 

The CFTC Chair put the debate to rest with his statements at a Senate Committee hearing, early on Wednesday. Behnam said that 70% to 80% of cryptocurrencies are non-securities. Behnam addressed the asset class and his statements brought clarity to the issue. 

During the hearing, Behnam said that both Bitcoin and Ethereum are commodities, and referenced a summary judgment from a District Court Ruling in Illinois. The CFTC Chair said that the judgment

“reaffirmed that both Bitcoin and Ether are commodities under the Commodities Exchange Act.”

Behnam addressed the concern over whether the SEC or CFTC should regulate crypto. When Senator Roger Marshall talked about the turf war between the SEC and the CFTC over figuring out which digital assets are securities and which are commodities, he asked, “Wouldn’t it be simpler if we put this whole thing under the CFTC’s jurisdiction?” 

To which the CFTC Chair responded, “I speak for myself, but I’d be happy to do that. I think we have the expertise and the capacity.”

Bitcoin and Ethereum have sustained above key support levels on Wednesday. BTC trades at $57,560 and Ether above $3,000 at the time of writing. 


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