Several U.S. Representatives have been pushing for crypto and blockchain associated bills since as early as 2014 when Congressman Steve Stockman of Texas set up to introduce an act that would tax bitcoins as currency instead of belongings.
Most recently, a bipartisan bill was produced that projected to create a “consensus-based definition of blockchain” in October. While in September, lawmakers announced three bills, addressing blockchain development, miners’ status and cryptocurrency-related taxes.
Also in September, a group of lawmakers, including congressman Budd and Soto, asked Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) chairman Jay Clayton to clarify when initial coin offerings (ICOs) will be considered sales of securities.
Boosting Crypto in the US
Two U.S. Congressmen have introduced bipartisan bills to avoid crypto price maneuvering and boost recognition of the technology.
Representatives Darren Soto (Democrat) and Ted Budd (Republican) jointly announced on Thursday that their two bills – “The Virtual Currency Consumer Protection Act of 2018” and the “U.S. Virtual Currency Market and Regulatory Competitiveness Act of 2018” – are ultimately aimed at making the U.S. a “leader in the cryptocurrency industry.”
The bill questioned the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and other U.S. financial regulators to come up with a roadmap to better regulate cryptocurrencies in order to protect individuals and businesses.
Preventing Crypto Price Manipulation
The first bill requires research on how crypto price manipulation takes place, its impact on investors, and how to prevent such activities through regulatory changes, and in turn, protect investors.
The second bill asked regulators to investigate crypto regulations in jurisdictions across the globe and suggest any legislative changes to promote the growth of adoption of cryptocurrencies in the U.S.
Office of the Attorney General Report on Crypto
Earlier in September, the New York Office of the Attorney General released a report on cryptocurrency trading platforms, finding that many are susceptible to market manipulation “The industry has yet to implement serious market surveillance capacities, akin to those of traditional trading venues, to detect and punish suspicious trading activity,” the report stated.
The U.S. Department of Justice is also looking into crypto market manipulation, reportedly most recently focusing on whether Bitfinex exchange and Tether Ltd. have supported bitcoin’s price using the tether stablecoin.
In the joint statement, Soto and Budd said that “Virtual currencies and the underlying blockchain technology have a profound potential to be a driver of economic growth.”