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CFTC proposes new office for retail crypto trader protection   



The commissioner for commodity futures trading commission (CFTC), Caroline Pham has proposed a new office for the retail advocate at an event organized by blockchain project Corda in London on 27th Sept. In her speech, she stated the main purpose of the event was to talk about building the future of markets and engaging in the commerce of ideas and innovations.

Pham stated that “having an office of the retail advocate is a tried-and-true way to advance customer protection”. 

Pham emphasized the potential of digital assets and blockchains to transform existing markets, describing “ten fundamentals for Responsible Digital Asset Markets”

To spark this idea that the retail public has a voice in Washington, D.C. Pham cited the examples of how the SEC has an office of the investor advocate, which was established by statute as it functions:

  • To provide a voice for investors in policymaking.
  •  To assist retail investors in resolving problems they have with the SEC or an SRO.
  •  To study investor behaviour and conduct research and economic analysis.
  •  To support the SEC’s Investor Advisory Committee.  

Caroline added, The Office of Advocacy of the U.S. SBA (Small Business Advocate) is the independent voice for small businesses within the federal government, the watchdog of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, and a source of small business statistics and research. Its impact is far-reaching and it represents the millions of Americans that are small business owners.

“My approach is to get all the information, learn as much as possible, and then find pragmatic solutions.  I’ve been doing learning tours with market participants to get as much information as possible about the technology, use cases, opportunities, and risks”.  

“I’ve been travelling internationally to learn from other jurisdictions that have implemented regulatory sandboxes and regulatory registration and oversight regimes.  I’ve had the benefit of their years of observations and learnings. Now, I hope to apply all of this to make good policy that is informed and pragmatic”

The proposal is the CFTC’s most recent effort in a larger campaign to enhance its control over the cryptocurrency markets and comes in response to requests for clarification on cryptocurrency regulation from the public and US lawmakers.

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