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国际资讯监管与政策

交易所视自我报告为无物,SEC的下一次整顿将至?

美国证券交易委员会(SEC)交易和市场部主管Brett Redfearn对数字资产交易所自我报告(Self-reporting)的低提交率表示担忧。在接受CBS采访时,Redfearn称加密货币交易所的提交率为 “低于预期的(underwhelming)”。

在SEC主席Jay Clayton明确表示ICO中使用的代币和数字资产是证券并且应向SEC注册后,Redfearn表达了这样的情绪。根据URAllowance总裁Chris Butler的说法,交易所不愿意向美国证券交易委员会自我报告的主要原因是监管加密货币市场的法律含糊不清。

他说:

“交易所知道自我报告会对它们的底线产生影响。在国会议员给代币和ICO明确的法律定义之前,交易所会抵触自我报告,但不会违法。”

此外,根据GlobalSpy首席执行官Jori Falkstedt的说法,交易所未能遵守SEC的自我报告要求,也可能是因为它们想要增加平台上交易活动。

Falkstedt指出:

“目前交易所并没有自我报告,这是因为它们的平台上拥有的ICO数量越多,交易所越有利可图。这自然会增加交易所面临SEC未来整顿的风险。”

又一次整顿?

根据SportsFix首席执行官Carl Kirchhoff的说法,监管对于保护投资者和增强公众对美国境内加密货币交易所运营的信心是非常必要的。

今年3月,美国证券交易委员会对未经注册的ICO公司进行了大规模的整顿,80多家公司被传唤。 Redfearn的言论已经引起了市场上的紧张情绪,投资者正在为即将到来的交易所整顿做准备。

Butler警告说,在没有向SEC报告的情况下,在美国出售代币的交易所可能会在不久的将来陷入法律泥潭中。他认为,监管加密市场的法律缺乏清晰度只是一个暂时的漏洞,即将被填补。

一旦发生,SEC将会对该国的违规交易所采取措施。 Redfearn向市场人士保证,SEC正致力于加强加密监管,预计未来几个月将出台更多指导方针。

Falkstedt同意Butler的观点,表示受监管的加密货币行业将类似于银行业。

他说:

“加密行业未来会更像银行业。将要求进行法定的反洗钱和高敏感政治人物调查,这些程序将使加密行业更加合法合规。”

尽管如此,Bank52的首席执行官兼联合创始人Thomas Labenbacher认为SEC应该放慢脚步。他说:“关于‘整顿’,我们更希望是持续性的、经过成熟考虑的,并且能对指导方针和法规不断完善。我们都在一个新的领域,但加密货币和ICO已经从早期的‘狂野西部’时代向更加商业化和更具法律框架的时期迈出了一大步。我们鼓励交易所自我报告,希望诸如SEC等机构推出明确的指导方针。如果这样做了,‘整顿’的想法应该大大减弱。”

一个可行的选择

加密货币行业存在很多困惑。一直以来,交易所运营时都没有考虑到它们需要向证券交易委员会报告,而监管机构则认为不然。 OptDyn的创始人兼首席技术官Alex Karasulu认为,交易所可能会采取一些保守的方式来遵守SEC的法规。

他说:“有些公司正在考虑一种独特而又保守的方法,即将证券交易委员会的合规要求直接植入在代币合同中,无论它们是证券还是效用代币。合规所需的功能包含批准代币层面的交易,并且这些交易是基于KYC / AML验证、公民身份和经认可的投资者身份的。这些要求使效用代币直接符合美国证券交易委员会法规D和S项。”

尽管这种做法会引起摩擦,但它将让交易所在可能来的整顿中处于更加安全的位置。

“这是一个非常保守的方法。这将引起业内一些风潮,同时引发更大的代币摩擦。但交易将是安全的,因为合规直接建立在代币层面上。无论交易所做什么,代币都会自动监管自己。一旦尘埃落定,美国证券交易委员会给出适当的指导,这种合规要求可以通过调整代币合约来放宽。”他补充道。

Brett Redfearn, Director at the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Trading and Markets Division, has raised concerns over the lack of self-reporting by exchanges trading in digital assets. In an interview with the CBS, Redfearn termed the level of self-reporting to the SEC by cryptocurrency exchanges as ‘underwhelming’.

His sentiments come shortly after the SEC Chairman, Jay Clayton, categorically stated that tokens and digital assets used in initial coin offerings (ICOs) are securities and should be registered with the agency. According to Chris Butler, president of URAllowance, the main reason why exchanges are reluctant to self-report to the SEC is the vagueness of laws that govern the cryptocurrency sector.

He says, “Exchange owners know that reporting will have an effect on their bottom line. Until lawmakers give tokens and ICOs a definitive section in the labyrinth of US laws, exchange owners will be going against opinion, not breaking laws.”

Further, exchanges may also be failing to comply with SEC’s self-reporting requirements because they want to boost trading activities on their platforms, according to Jori Falkstedt, the CEO of GlobalSpy.

“The exchanges are not self-reporting currently because it is more profitable for them to have as many ICOs on their platform as possible. This will naturally increase the risk of future SEC crackdown,” Falkstedt notes.

Another crackdown?

According to SportsFix CEO, Carl Kirchhoff, regulation is necessary to ensure investor protection and promote public confidence in the operations of cryptocurrency exchanges within the US.

In March this year, the SEC launched a massive crackdown on unregistered ICO companies where more than 80 companies were subpoenaed. Redfearn’s remarks are already sending jitters in the market with players bracing for an impending crackdown on exchanges.

Butler warns that exchanges selling tokens in the US without reporting to the SEC could be setting themselves up for a nasty legal battle in the near future. In his view, the vagueness in laws that regulate the crypto market is a temporary gap that will soon be resolved.

Once that happens, the SEC will catch up with rogue exchanges in the country. Redfearn has assured market players that the SEC is committed to strengthening crypto regulation, and more guidelines are expected to be issued in the upcoming months.

Agreeing with Butler’s sentiments, Falkstedt foresees a regulated cryptocurrency space, similar to the banking industry.

He says, “The crypto industry will be looking more like banking industry in future. There will be requirements to have mandatory AML and PEP investigations, these kinds of procedures will make the crypto industry more legit.”

Even so, Thomas Labenbacher, CEO and co-founder of Bank52 feels the SEC should take it slow. He says, “About a ‘crackdown’, we would rather there is ongoing, mature consideration, and steady refinement of guidelines and regulations. We are all in a new territory, but crypto and ICOs have already moved a considerable distance from the early ‘Wild West’ days, to a more business-like and legal framework. We encourage self-reporting, along with clear guidelines from organizations such as the SEC. If this is done, the idea of a ‘crackdown’ should be greatly diminished.”

A viable option

There is a lot of confusion in the cryptocurrency industry. All along, exchanges have operated without thinking they need to report to the SEC while the regulator thinks otherwise. Alex Karasulu, the founder and CTO of OptDyn feels exchanges could adopt the conservative approach being used by some players to comply with the SEC regulations.

He says, “Some companies are considering a unique yet conservative approach which involves building SEC compliance directly into token contracts, whether or not they are security or utility tokens. The functionality required for compliance entails approving transactions at the token level and are based on KYC/AML verification, citizenship and accredited investor status. These requirements make utility tokens directly comply with SEC Regulations D and S.”

While this approach will cause friction, it will put exchanges at a safer place in Karasulu’s view.

“It’s a super conservative approach. This will cause some waves in the industry while incurring greater token friction but exchanges will be safe since the protections are directly built in at the token level. Regardless of what the exchange does, tokens regulate themselves automatically. Once the dust settles and the SEC gives out proper guidance, such requirements can be eased by pulling a lever on the token contract,” he adds.

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