White House Releases First Framework on Cryptocurrency Regulation

The Biden White House has just released its first-ever framework on what crypto regulation in the U.S. should look like — including ways in which the financial services industry should evolve to make borderless transactions easier, and how to crack down on fraud in the digital asset space.

The new directives tap the muscle of existing regulators such as the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, but nobody’s mandating anything yet. The long-awaited direction from Washington has, however, captured the attention of both the crypto industry as a whole — and of investors in this nascent asset class.

The framework follows an executive order issued in March, in which President Joe Biden called on federal agencies to examine the risks and benefits of cryptocurrencies and issue official reports on their findings.

For six months, government agencies have been working to develop their own frameworks and policy recommendations to address half a dozen priorities listed in the executive order: consumer and investor protection; promoting financial stability; countering illicit finance; U.S. leadership in the global financial system and economic competitiveness; financial inclusion; and responsible innovation. Together, these recommendations comprise the first, “whole-of-government approach” to regulating the industry.

Brian Deese, director of the National Economic Council, and national security advisor Jake Sullivan said in a statement that the new guidelines are meant to position the country as a leader in governance of the digital assets ecosystem at home and abroad.

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