US SEC Cryptocurrencies

Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of the United States has considered cryptocurrencies one of the top examination priorities in 2019.

What did US SEC say about Cryptocurrencies?

As per the US SEC’s OCIE (Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations), the examination of cryptocurrencies will be done to protect retail investors. One of the main market activities that SEC will monitor is the “offer and sale, trading, and management of digital assets”. Reports say the compliance wing of SEC will try to ensure regulatory compliance for digital assets where they are considered as security. From now on, OCIE will scrutinize the digital asset space closely.

Some of the most important things to be considered by the Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations include:

  • Portfolio management of digital assets
  • Internal controls
  • Compliance
  • Pricing of client portfolios
  • Maintenance of client funds and assets
  • Trading, and many more

US SEC Cryptocurrencies

The OCIE has made it clear that examination priorities have been chosen on the basis of policy, risk assessment, and the wide array of sectoral issues.

Cryptocurrency was Examination Priority of OCIE in 2018 Too

Cryptocurrencies were in the agenda of OCIE back in 2018 too. However, at that time the focus was:

  • To ensure digital assets’ security, and
  • To educate investors on the risks associated with making investments in cryptos

A vast majority of the crypto market believes that the actions of SEC’s compliance wing had a severe negative impact on the entire cryptocurrency sector. A report published last month said that the Republican lawmakers criticized Jay Clayton (SEC’s chairman) of taking a harsh approach in enforcing regulations. Some critics also went on to argue that the significant crackdown on ICOs adversely affected innovation.


Jay Clayton was appointed by a pro-business administration. However, it is he who rejected multiple Bitcoin ETF applications in 2018. Many people believe that the cryptocurrency industry needs regulations but not regulatory overreach, which in turn is crippling the cryptocurrency sector. Instead of a simplistic structure, the entire regulatory compliance issue regarding cryptos has turned out to be time-consuming as well as expensive for the industry players. Now, it needs to be seen what’s waiting for cryptocurrencies in 2019.

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