SEC Seeking Crypto Attorney


News broke this weekend that the SEC is looking for a hired gun to take on the notion of cryptocurrency as a security or other asset.

“The successful candidate will reportedly be tasked with establishing ‘a comprehensive plan to address crypto and digital asset securities’ in coordination with TM staff and members of other SEC offices and divisions,” writes Marie Huillet today. “The new hire would be expected to develop and maintain expert-level industry knowledge of crypto and digital asset securities as well as related products, and to serve as the division’s point of contact for domestic and global regulators, market participants and the wider public.”

It’s easy to assume that this new person will primarily serve as a liaison or central channel for all of the regulatory uncertainties and communications over how crypto will be handled.

For example, take a look at how another CT writer characterized the hiring of the SEC “Crypto Czar” Valerie Szczepanik back in June of last year.

“There is now a go-to office and a go-to officer,” wrote Kirill Bryanov, “who is set to become a liaison between the regulator and the industry.”

But the qualifications sought in this current job opening show that the individual must also be savvy to how to actually handle these types of assets in today’s market.

Huillet cites these other “crucial responsibilities” outlines in SEC documentation around the talent search:

“applying knowledge of federal securities laws to digital asset securities and crypto matters, i.e., broker-dealer, exchange, clearing agency and transfer registrations, exchange product applications, sales and trading practices, etc.”

Meanwhile, breaking news from another part of the world gives us an example of what happens when regulatory processes break down or stall around crypto currency

As you might expect, this can lead to exchanges and institutions basically taking their ball and going home.

Announcements from Coindelta, an exchange operational in India, show that under regulatory pressure, the exchange is folding and pulling out of the market.

“It has been really difficult for us to operate Coindelta exchange for the last 6 months. The curb on the bank accounts by RBI has made us handicapped in order to provide seamless deposit and withdrawal services. There has not been any significant progress in the Supreme Court case which makes it difficult to predict when we will see the regulation.”Coindelta leaders reportedly wrote in explanation of the withdrawal.

This type of heartburn really isn’t good for officials who want to promote crypto competition on the world stage.

 Meanwhile, in America, investors are looking carefully at SEC actions. Commissioners themselves have been kind of all over the board in terms of the response to cryptocurrency.

Could the new hire bring some clarity to future SEC regulation of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies?

We’ll see.