SEC Chairman: Bitcoin Hinders US Banking System In Combating Money Laundering

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US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Chairman Gary Gensler called Bitcoin an autonomous alternative and competitor to the traditional US banking system.

SEC Chairman Gary Gensler argued that Bitcoin was created as a “reaction” to the US financial system, as well as its competitor, undermining the global consensus on combating money laundering. Gensler’s remarks came during the DACOM 2021 Summit, a regulatory compliance and market integrity event that aired live on December 1.

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Arguing his findings, Gensler said that 40 years ago, various sanctions and regimes were introduced in the United States, which tuned the US banking system to combat money laundering. The US efforts have found worldwide support and achieved global consensus. Bitcoin is a competing autonomous alternative to the traditional financial system that undermines not only the foundations of the banking system, but also negates all the world’s achievements in the fight against money laundering. The head of the SEC noted that such competition is unacceptable and the regulator does not support it.

Throughout the conversation, the SEC chairman drew a dividing line between cryptocurrencies and digital assets.

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He recalled that he views the cryptocurrency sector as the “Wild West” and urged the founders of cryptocurrency projects “to find a way to register in order to get into the terms of reference for protecting investors.” None of the projects will be allowed by the SEC “to develop outside the principles of public policy,” Gensler added.

When talking about cryptocurrencies, Gensler drew a parallel between the US dollar and the concept of a digital currency. In his opinion, the differences attributed to them are greatly exaggerated, and the projects themselves do not require decentralization to function.

“The US dollar, euro and yen, as well as most publicly traded companies, can already be considered digital. You buy and sell digital stocks, you buy and sell digital stocks. In physical form, Treasury debt no longer exists. I usually call it digital assets. ” – he declared.

Gensler does not deprive digital assets in general of the right to exist. Ultimately, he said, it’s up to investors to decide what to invest in. The SEC’s position will depend on getting clear and simple information about the objectives of each project.

Earlier in an interview with the Washington Post, Gary Gensler said that innovations in the field of cryptocurrencies and digital assets should not undermine the stability of the financial system.

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