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The Fed and SEC are Both Hurting Bitcoin: BitFury CEO

Brian Brooks – CEO of blockchain technology company BitFury – recently spoke on the state of the economy, crypto markets, and the regulatory situation. He said that both the Federal Reserve and SEC’s approaches to markets harm Bitcoin in the short term. 

Bitcoin VS The SEC

During an interview with CNBC on Monday, Joe Kernen began by asking Brooks whether regulation was a net cost or benefit for crypto. He specifically referenced Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Chairman Gary Gensler, whom he called “serious” and “very activist.”

Brooks’ response was highly critical of the chairman:

Regulation does not mean suing people,” he said. “The approach the SEC has had for the last couple of years has been to not tell anyone what the rules are in advance, but to sue people after they’ve launched a project, started a company, or listed a token.

Crypto Miner Bitfury Names Former U.S. Regulator Brian Brooks CEO - Bloomberg
Brian Brooks. Source: Bloomberg

The SEC sued Coinbase last month for allegedly listing 9 tokens that qualify as unregistered securities. However, Coinbase – and much of the broader crypto industry – contend that their tokens are not securities, but a distinctly new asset class entirely. 

Even among regulators, the debate over how to classify crypto assets continues, with the SEC and CFTC vying for authority. Brooks said that until congress and regulators provide some clarity on this front, investors will be nervous to invest in crypto.

Bitcoin VS The Fed

Commenting on Bitcoin’s price situation, Brooks thinks its current lows are due to macroeconomic policy and its “inflation hedge” narrative. 

The more the market expects tough policy from the Fed, the less Bitcoin is necessary as an inflation hedge, he explained. 

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell spoke at the annual Jackson Hole symposium on Friday. He signalled that more market pain would be necessary to reel in inflation. Bitcoin dropped below $20,000 shortly following the news, while Ethereum fell under $1500. 

Bitcoin has been tightly correlated with risk assets for years, unable to act as “digital gold” as many have called it. Despite record-high inflation, its price now trades at lows unseen since late 2020.

However, the CEO maintained the market is treating Bitcoin as an inflation hedge – even if it doesn’t look that way. 

Bitcoin live price
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“It’s not about what inflation is – it’s about what the market predicts inflation will be in the future,” he said. He cited Bitcoin’s all-time high at $69,000 – which it touched just four days before the Federal Reserve signaled that it would begin tightening monetary policy. 

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