Gary Gensler speaks to the European Parliament about bitcoin and crypto regulation

The chairman of the US Securities and Exchange Commission, Gary Gensler, made remarks on Bitcoin in front of the European Parliament.

Today in front of the European Parliament, Chairman of the US Securities and Exchange Commission, Gary Gensler, made remarks equating Bitcoin with the early Internet in terms of world paradigm shift technology.

In a virtual speech, Gensler told the European Parliament’s Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs that Bitcoin is effectively bringing European and American markets closer together, The Block reported.

“I think the transformation we’re going through could be as big as the internet was in the 1990s,” said Gensler.

The SEC chairman also stressed the fact that Bitcoin is limitless and its markets will not be closed: “It operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.”

Gensler’s speech to Parliament was a notable attempt to tie U.S. bitcoin and fiat regulatory interests together with the larger global financial markets.

“Our global markets are inextricably linked, and money flows between them in microseconds. New financial technologies continue to change the face of the financial world for investors and businesses. I know this is a topic that interests this committee, ”he said.

Regarding the emergence of Bitcoin and cryptocurrency, Gensler commented, “This innovation was and could be a catalyst for change in finance and money, and it could continue to be.”

Much of Gensler’s remarks echoed statements he made earlier, including, “I would like to point out that financial innovation does not thrive outside the framework of public policy for long throughout history.”

The interesting thing about this statement is that Bitcoin is itself agnostic to public policy. There is nothing the government can do to restrict the popular entrances and exits, and Gensler knows this, having taught courses on this at MIT.

In his speech, Gensler particularly emphasized the risk that unregulated crypto exchanges pose to the public, as well as the general use of stablecoins as a way to circumvent political goals. Neither of these remarks appeared to be aimed at Bitcoin.

Regarding the proliferation of unregulated, unbroken crypto scam exchanges, he commented, “This asset class has been rife with scams, fraud and abuse in certain applications.”

The chairman’s speech to the European Parliament takes place just a month after his speech at the Aspen Security Forum, in which he made new comments that draw the dividing line between Bitcoin and its wide field of imitators.

Elsewhere, Gensler posted new remarks shedding light on how the SEC might respond to the many exchange-traded funds (ETF) proposals now pending review by the agency, signaling that those who are looking to Bitcoin futures may have the highest chance of approval, which spurred the filing of many Bitcoin futures ETFs in August, including Galaxy Digital, VanEck and Invesco.

The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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