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Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Gary Gensler certainly spends a lot of time thinking about cryptocurrencies, and is planning to spend even more regulating them. This, he acknowledges, may appear rather quixotic to future historians of what he expects to be a very short-lived period.

Mr. Gensler likened the thousands of cryptocurrencies in existence to the so-called wildcat banking era that took hold in the U.S. from 1837 until 1863 in the absence of federal bank regulation…. “I don’t think there’s long-term viability for five or six thousand private forms of money,” Mr. Gensler said in a virtual event hosted by the Washington Post. “So in the meantime I think it’s worthwhile to have an investor-protection regime placed around this.”

Well, no one told the soon-to-be-augmented Invesco that these things are going nowhere, because they’re getting in line with the increasingly crypto-confident Anthony Scaramucci to launch a series of cryptocurrency exchange-traded funds. Of course, no one apparently told Invesco that Gensler & co. have absolutely no intention of ever allowing such a thing—or many other crypto-based and -related things—to exist, either.

“It’s not just about getting the first bitcoin ETF to the market,” said John Hoffman, head of Americas, ETFs and indexed strategies at Invesco, of the partnership. “This is about expanding the horizon. We ultimately think we can define this new market.”

That market certainly could use a redefinition, if the authorities allow it to stick around long enough to get one.

The targeting of SUEX OTC marks the first time the Treasury Department has sanctioned a digital currency platform…. Senior U.S. officials said the exchange was singled out because of intelligence analysis showing 40% of its transactions were with groups known to engage in illicit activity. Additionally SUEX had helped process payments linked to at least eight ransomware variants, officials said.

SEC’s Gensler Doesn’t See Cryptocurrencies Lasting Long [WSJ]
Invesco Teams Up in Push to Create Crypto ETFs [WSJ]
U.S. Sanctions Crypto Exchange Accused of Catering to Ransomware Criminals [WSJ]

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