Leaders at the CFTC and Securities and Exchange Commission have jockeyed for additional authority to regulate the U.S. cryptocurrency market.
In a video posted July 28, SEC Chairman Gary Gensler said he's asked his staff to work with crypto platforms "to get them registered and regulated, to ensure those crypto tokens come in as well and register where appropriate as securities."
The SEC does not consider bitcoin and ether to be securities, but there is less certainty regarding smaller cryptocurrencies.
CFTC Chairman Rostin Behnam, former senior counsel to Ms. Stabenow, called on Congress to grant his agency greater crypto oversight at a July 25 Brookings Institution event.
On Wednesday, Mr. Behnam said in a statement that he supports the Digital Commodities Consumer Protection Act. "As American investors continue to demonstrate growing interest in digital assets, there is a greater need to bring these markets within the regulatory fold," he said. "We are at a critical inflection point where new legislative authority is needed to clarify ambiguities and provide a regulatory framework to the digital commodity market that protects customers, provides market integrity and certainty, and ensures financial stability."
A similar bipartisan bill was introduced in June by Sen. Cynthia Lummis, R-Wyo., and Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y, that would give the CFTC additional powers in regulating the cryptocurrency market and classify more cryptocurrencies as commodities rather than securities.