(Bloomberg) — Gary Gensler, the former chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, said that the cryptocurrencies Ether and could probably be classified as securities, subjecting them to greater regulatory scrutiny.
, and probably wouldn’t be classified as securities, which are regulated in the U.S. by the Securities and Exchange Commission, Gensler, who is now a senior lecturer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, said during a blockchain conference at MIT on Monday. The CFTC has called Bitcoin a commodity.
Ether and Ripple are like securities in that a common enterprise is behind the assets, Gensler said. For Ripple it’s Ripple Labs, for Ether it’s the Foundation.
If the SEC decides that any of the cryptocurrencies are securities, then they’ll probably end up in court, Gensler said. The SEC could decide in nine months to a year, or 2 to 5 years at the longest, he said.
Most initial coin offerings are both tokens and securities, Gensler said.
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