As the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) continues to scrutinize crypto industry players, including Robinhood, Binance, Coinbase, and Ripple, the Chair of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), Rostin Behnam, warns of an impending surge in enforcement actions. 

Crypto Faces Inevitable Wave Of Enforcement Actions

At the Milken Institute’s 27th annual Global Conference, Behnam emphasized the lack of regulatory framework and transparency within the growing crypto industry, which he believes will inevitably lead to more fraud and manipulation cases.

Behnam anticipates a “cycle of enforcement actions” within the next six months to two years, driven by the rapid appreciation of digital assets and heightened interest from retail investors. 

As a regulator, Behnam expresses concerns about the absence of clear rules and tools typically employed by regulators to maintain market integrity. Without proper regulations in place, Behnam argues that fraud and manipulation will persist.

The recent issuance of a Wells Notice by the SEC against Robinhood further highlights the regulatory pressure faced by industry players. 

Dan Gallagher, Chief Legal, Compliance, and Corporate Affairs Officer at Robinhood, expressed disappointment in the SEC’s decision, asserting that the assets listed on their platform are not securities. Gallagher remains confident in Robinhood’s position and its commitment to regulatory compliance.

SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce, on the other hand, is known for her pro-crypto stance. She has previously criticized the lack of clear rules and the SEC’s skeptical approach towards cryptocurrencies. Peirce advocates for improved and updated regulatory frameworks that allow the industry to thrive and encourage innovation.

CFTC And SEC Lock Horns 

During his remarks, Behnam further emphasized that without action from Congress and increased regulatory transparency, enforcement agencies are likely to resort to lawsuits. 

The CFTC Chair acknowledges the challenges of getting legislation passed but notes the momentum and desire from lawmakers to close regulatory gaps, particularly in stablecoin legislation.

The ongoing interagency conflict between the CFTC and the SEC regarding classifying major cryptocurrencies further complicates regulatory matters. 

The CFTC recognizes cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin as commodities, while the SEC’s current stance, led by Chair Gary Gensler, limits the commodity classification solely to Bitcoin. 

This discrepancy has sparked debates within the industry, with legal experts suggesting that the CFTC’s position challenges the SEC’s authority.

The need for comprehensive regulatory frameworks becomes increasingly apparent as the crypto industry continues to evolve and gain mainstream attention. 

The outcome of ongoing enforcement actions and regulatory developments will significantly shape the industry’s future, impacting market participants and investors.

The 1-D chart shows the total crypto market cap’s valuation at $2.27 trillion. Source: TOTAL on

Featured image from Shutterstock, chart from

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