The US authority of the financial markets, the SEC, has on Tuesday sued in civil court the first platform of exchange of cryptocurrencies of the United States, Coinbase, for non-compliance with the regulation, causing the fall of the title on Wall Street.
This is a new blow to the sector by the Securities and Exchange Commission which, failing to see Congress define a legislative framework, has taken control of the regulation of cryptocurrencies, which it considers to be under its authority. In electronic trading prior to the opening of the New York Stock Exchange, Coinbase stock lost more than 20%. Asked by AFP, Coinbase did not respond immediately.
The announcement of this action in a federal court in Manhattan comes the day after the SEC subpoenaed the world's leading cryptoasset exchange, Binance, accused of knowingly circumventing regulation to deal with US customers.
110 million users
The market watchdog accuses Coinbase of not having registered with him as an exchange platform and intermediary of transactions in cryptocurrencies. At the end of 2022, Coinbase had 110 million users and $80 billion in assets housed on its platform.
Coinbase's subpoena comes as a hearing on cryptocurrency regulation is scheduled to be held Tuesday before the House Agriculture Committee, whose interest in financial markets goes back to derivatives on agricultural commodities. Among the personalities interviewed is the legal director of Coinbase Paul Grewal.
In a statement released Monday ahead of his hearing, the leader called on the US Congress to legislate quickly to give visibility to the sector. "The United States is falling behind" by other countries with more advanced legislation, argued the jurist, and "push technology and innovators abroad due to a lack of clear rules for cryptocurrencies.»
On Thursday, two Republican members of the House of Representatives published a text supposed to serve as the basis for a bill to regulate cryptoassets. It provides that regulation could be shared between the SEC and the US Financial Products Regulatory Authority, the CFTC. Other bills have already been introduced in recent years, but none have yet reached the vote.