Coinbase CEO Says Exchange Would No Longer Exit US amid Regulatory Scrutiny
The SEC served Coinbase with a Wells Notice in March to signal an upcoming enforcement action against the exchange.
The CEO of top American cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase Brian Armstrong has hinted that the exchange will not bow to pressure from the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Armstrong, who has been openly critical of SEC and its chair Gary Gensler, made more accusations on Monday.
In a bare-it-all interview with CNBC on Monday, Armstrong suggested that Gensler leads some form of personal campaign against crypto. He says:
“There’s kind of a lone crusade, if you will, with Gary Gensler, the chair there, and he has taken a more anti-crypto view for some reason.”
According to the CEO, the SEC, under the leadership of Gensler, might be more interested in curtailing the crypto industry rather than regulating it. To this end, the SEC served Coinbase with a Wells Notice in March to signal an upcoming enforcement action against the exchange.
It might be worth mentioning that Coinbase had been having a back-and-forth with the regulator even before the March notice. The SEC alleges that Coinbase is selling unregistered securities to investors. The exchange, on the other hand, disputes the claims.
Armstrong, however, now believes that there might be some good to gain from the whole situation after all. He says the constant scrutiny may have now put the exchange in a good position to get the much-needed clarity from the courts. And according to him, this will not only benefit the firm but the crypto industry at large.
Coinbase Exchange Not Leaving US, Says CEO
Meanwhile, Armstrong also went back on the statement he made last month during a fintech conference in London. At the time, the CEO suggested that the exchange was contemplating moving its headquarters to an environment more conducive to its business. But it appears he has already had a change of heart. Speaking to CNBC earlier, Armstrong stated that Coinbase would not relocate overseas anymore. However, he admits that the US is behind in terms of its regulatory approach, unlike the UK Armstrong said partly:
“We’re always going to have a US presence … But the US is a little bit behind right now.”
Interestingly, Coinbase continues its quest for global expansion and is currently looking to invest in the United Arab Emirates. This was confirmed by Armstrong in the Monday interview.
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