Bitcoin, according to Gary Gensler, chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), is a commodity. He emphasized that the SEC, the CFTC, and banking regulators will work together to oversee the cryptocurrency industry.
In an interview with Mad Money host Jim Cramer on CNBC on Monday, SEC Chairman Gary Gensler clarified his views on cryptocurrencies, in particular bitcoin.
“This asset class is very speculative. When asked about cryptocurrencies, Gensler said, “We’ve known this for a long time. He explained that when people invest in “bitcoin and hundreds of other crypto tokens,” they hope for a return, “just like when they invest in other financial assets” that are securities, citing the “ups and downs of this speculative asset class.”
Chair Gensler stressed that many of these “crypto financial assets” have “the key attributes of a security.” He added: “Some of them … are under the Securities and Exchange Commission.” In contrast, citing what his “predecessors and others have said,” he described:
Some, like bitcoin, and that’s the only one I’m going to say … are commodities.
The SEC chief noted that besides BTC, he is not going to discuss other crypto tokens specifically.
Gensler’s statement agrees with the chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), Rostin Behnam, who said last month that bitcoin (BTC) is a commodity. However, Behnam further said ether (ETH) is also a commodity.
Bitcoin proponents welcome Gensler’s clarification. Digital assets manager Eric Weiss tweeted: “Gensler is the 2nd consecutive SEC Chair to declare that bitcoin is a commodity, making it all but impossible for this classification to be altered in the future. Very significant indeed.”
The pro-bitcoin CEO of Microstrategy, Michael Saylor, opined: “Bitcoin is a commodity, which is essential for any treasury reserve asset. This allows politicians, agencies, governments, and institutions to support bitcoin as a technology and digital asset to grow the economy and extend property rights and freedom to all.” The Nasdaq-listed software company has amassed 129,218 bitcoins for its corporate treasury.