SEC Warns Professionals About Bitcoins

As the futures price of Bitcoin surged past the spot price on the first official day of futures trading on the Cboe, the Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission ramped up his warning.

In a public memo, Chairman Clayton notes ” there is substantially less investor protection than in our traditional securities markets, with correspondingly greater opportunities for fraud and manipulation.”

There has been no registered initial coin offering and the SEC has not approved for listing and trading any exchange traded crypto currency product.

He further directs securities professionals (lawyers, accountants and brokers) to recognized that ICOs are securities and any transaction must be registered in accordance with the Securities Act of 1933.

The burden is on the offeror to prove that the product is not a security.

This portends enforcement actions against professionals who provide bad advice to their clients.

About JeffKoeppel

I am a corporate/securities attorney in the Washington, DC area. Prior to joining the firm, I was a Senior Attorney Advisor in the Division of Corporation Finance at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. I am a member of the Bars of the States of Maryland, New York and the District of Columbia. You can also follow this blog on LinkedIn at:
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