Senate Banking Chairman Asks OCC About Its Planned Crypto Rulemaking

U.S. Sen. Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), who heads the powerful Senate Banking Committee, has asked the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) to fill his committee in on its Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for cryptocurrency services.

  • The OCC, a federal banking regulator, asked the general public to weigh in on how cryptocurrencies were used or treated in the financial sector this past June.
  • Around 90 banks, crypto startups, academics and industry organizations provided responses, with some major banks in particular suggesting they would be open to providing cryptocurrency services with some clearer regulation.
  • Crapo's letter, dated Sept. 1, asks the OCC to "provide the committee with an update on its findings and the next steps the OCC intends to take with this technology."
  • The U.S. needs to create clear rules around cryptocurrency services "without stifling innovation," the letter said.
  • With the crypto space offering products and services as "diverse" as elsewhere in finance, Crapo wrote, "These and similar innovations are inevitable, beneficial and the U.S. should lead in their development."
  • The Senate Banking Committee has held a number of hearings around the crypto space, as Crapo's letter points out, including on the Facebook-led Libra project.

Also read: US Regulator to Shake Up Banking With Federal Charters for Payment Firms

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