SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce says it’s a shame regulators aren’t ‘taking up the mantle’ to provide rule on digital currencies

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SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce. Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call
  • “Crypto mom” Hester Peirce said it’s a shame regulators haven’t provided a cryptocurrency framework.
  • Pierce, an SEC Commissioner, told Yahoo Finance Live the lack of rules is becoming a barrier.
  • Fed Chair Jerome Powell said last week he has no intention to ban digital assets.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

US Securities and Exchange Commissioner Hester Peirce said it’s “disconcerting” the agency has yet to provide regulatory clarity on cryptocurrencies.

The Republican commissioner – dubbed “crypto mom” by enthusiasts for her support for the new asset – told Yahoo Finance Live in an interview that she’s been asking for a regulatory framework for three years and the agency “can’t seem to provide any.”

“I think this is really becoming a huge barrier to this industry being able to develop in a way that’s safe, but also in a way that allows innovation to happen,” she told the news outlet. “And it’s a real shame to me that we are not just taking up the mantle as regulators to develop a regulatory framework.”

In a previous interview with the Financial Times, Peirce said rules that are too strict, however, might harm digital innovation. Recently, Republican lawmaker Rep. Patrick McHenry proposed a bill based on Peirce’s idea to allow crypto startups to use token sales to fundraise under a limited-time exemption from some SEC regulations.

The market otherwise has been left guessing as to how to navigate the new asset class while regulators continue grappling with how to establish rules for the industry. Some financial advisors have been telling clients to invest in digital currencies because of regulatory loopholes, while some have steered clear of the space entirely.

SEC Chair Gary Gensler has been critical of digital currencies, calling stable coins poker chips and saying platforms have become too large. He has, however, been supportive of bitcoin futures, though the agency has yet to approve of any of the more than dozen ETF filings its received for them.

The US Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell has said he has no intentions of outright banning digital assets, unlike China, which has cracked down on the space.

Meanwhile, the Federal Reserve is expected to release a paper soon on a central bank digital currency. And the President’s Working Group on Financial Markets is due to recommend policies on regulating stablecoins.