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wilslaw

The new “ICO Office” of the SEC

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The SEC, responding to concerns over ICOs lacking regulatory clarity, has launched a new division that will answer all questions related to cryptocurrency.

The SEC, on Thursday unveiled the Strategic Hub for Innovation and Financial Technology or FinHub, with the agency revealing that, with a web portal, FinHub will be directly involved with the public, whereby developers, investors and other interested parties can use to make their inquiries.

 

This announcement is coming a week after Decrypt in collaboration with Yahoo Finance, reported on the cracking down of the SEC on companies that conducted ICOs, giving them subpoenas and fines. Some of these companies have been pressurized by the agency to settle their cases, and many of them have started paying fines and quietly refunding their investors.

Through its FinHub Office, the SEC is now set to provide updates concerning its evolving stance on the distributed ledger technology and cryptocurrency. In addition, questions relating to digital marketplace funding and AI and Machine Learning will also be treated by the group.

 

According to the SEC’s press release, FinHub will serve as “liaison to other domestic and international regulators.” The new FinHub group will be led by Valerie Szczepanik (SEC’s “crypto czar”). Earlier this summer, Szczepanik was promoted by the agency to the role of associate director in the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance and Senior Advisor for Digital Assets and Innovation.

Szczepanik, in a press release, revealed that:

Quote

SEC staff across the agency have been engaged for some time in efforts to understand emerging technologies, communicate the agency’s stance on new issues, and facilitate beneficial innovations in the securities industry. By launching FinHub, we hope to provide a clear path for entrepreneurs, developers, and their advisers to engage with SEC staff, seek input, and test ideas.

 

The SEC has finally realized how its unclear stance towards cryptocurrencies has done more to restrict progress. It remains unclear however, whether a new hub and a polished website solves the problem.

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