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Crypto and fintech, according to the SEC’s chairman, might be as disruptive as the internet

The head of the United States SEC, Gary Gensler, gives his suggestions before the European Parliament on crypto-asset regulation.

Gensler Addresses The Parliament

On September 1, Gensler spoke to the Parliament’s Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee. Therefore, emphasising the role financial technology play in globalising economic flows and weakening walled national markets:

“I think the transformation we’re living through right now could be every bit as big as the internet in the 1990s.”

The $2.1 trillion cryptocurrency markets, according to Gensler, are a “truly global” asset class with “no borders or restrictions”. It’s open seven days a week, 24 hours a day.”

Gensler’s Opinion on Crypto’s Environmental Impact

Gensler generally kept to the same pro-regulation script he’d been preaching for weeks. However, he did stray into uncharted territory when Finnish lawmaker Eero Heinäluoma inquired about the environmental impact of crypto assets.

The Bitcoin network consumes more power than the Netherlands and Sweden combined, and it exceeds “the overall greenhouse gas emission reductions of electric automobiles,” according to the politician.

Describing Bitcoin’s environmental impact as a “significant challenge,”. Gensler also pointed to the growing popularity of more energy-efficient Proof-of-Stake (PoS) based crypto networks. Therefore, it concluded that as PoS adoption grows, concerns about crypto’s carbon emissions will focus on Bitcoin.

Gensler on DeFi

The head of the Securities and Exchange Commission emphasised the need of developing strong public policy frameworks. Therefore, to balance encouraging crypto assets and decentralised finance innovation while ensuring solid investor safeguards.

DeFi platforms, according to Gensler, “provide direct access to millions of investors” without the need for a broker to act as a middleman between the public and the protocol, but this comes with significant dangers. He said that DeFi and crypto have been “rife with fraud, frauds, and abuse” and that the investing public is vulnerable due to the lack of “clear investor protections duties on these platforms.”

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