The outgoing SEC Chairman Jay Clayton, who oversaw the rejection of nine Bitcoin ETFs during his tenure, in an interview with CNBC, said that “inefficiencies” in the current payments systems are continuing to drive the popularity of Bitcoin. Appearing on CNBC’s Squawk Box, Clayton, who is due to step down by the end of the year, confirmed the SEC’s general assessment that Bitcoin was not a security but a payment mechanism and store of value.
"We determined that bitcoin was not a security, it was much more a payment mechanism and stored value," says SEC Chairman Jay Clayton on #btc. "Our current payment mechanisms–have inefficiencies those inefficiencies are the things that are driving the rise of bitcoin." pic.twitter.com/3r1mxzfgpi
— Squawk Box (@SquawkCNBC) November 19, 2020
“Bitcoin exchanges make it too easy for the price of BTC to be manipulated.”
The Bitcoin community has widely criticized the SEC chairman for keeping a tight rein on Bitcoin and cryptocurrency. However, during his years as SEC chair, Jay Clayton was never a firm opponent of Bitcoin in principle but regularly expressed his fears that average investors could be subjected to unnecessary risk when investing in a Bitcoin ETF. This risk is due to the SEC’s perception that some Bitcoin exchanges’ largely unregulated nature makes it too easy for BTC’s price to be manipulated. With Clayton out as SEC chair, some Bitcoin supporters believe the chance of a Bitcoin ETF being approved is now greater than ever.
Clayton believes Bitcoin will continue to grow while regulations evolve.
Jay Clayton was the first member of the US SEC to issue a warning about the potential pitfalls of ICO investing amid the 2017 ICO craze, reminding the public that such products were usually regarded as securities offerings and subject to the regulations accompanying them. “What we are seeing is that our current payment mechanisms, domestically and internationally, have inefficiencies. Those inefficiencies are the things that are driving the rise of Bitcoin,” he added.