In the midst of an evolving regulatory landscape for cryptocurrencies, Ethereum co-founder Joseph Lubin stands firm in his belief that Ether (ETH) is a commodity. This declaration comes as the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and its chairman, Gary Gensler, intensify their efforts to exert authority over various crypto tokens, excluding Bitcoin.
Lubin expressed his unwavering conviction in a recent interview with CNBC, stating, “I stand by my conviction that ether is a commodity.”
The SEC has notably increased its enforcement actions against crypto platforms for their alleged involvement in trading unregistered crypto securities, with even Nasdaq-listed crypto exchange Coinbase facing such allegations. Gensler has been vocal about his stance, categorizing almost all crypto tokens, apart from Bitcoin, as securities.
During a congressional hearing in April, Gensler was pressed on whether he considers Ether a security. However, he refrained from providing a direct response, citing the need to assess each situation individually. In contrast, the chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) has consistently maintained that Ether should be classified as a commodity.
Lubin countered Gensler’s statement by asserting that crypto tokens should be empirically proven as securities, emphasizing that the SEC chairman cannot unilaterally make such a determination. Drawing an analogy, Lubin previously compared Ether trading to oil trading, highlighting that both involve investors seeking profit.
He further elaborated on the matter, expressing his anticipation that, just as clear regulations emerged for technologies like the internet, the web, and cryptography, a balanced approach would prevail in the crypto sector.
Lubin also expressed his optimism that the United States, which often sets the tone for global regulatory frameworks, would ultimately recognize that decentralized protocols, blockchain, and cryptocurrency align with its values and philosophies. He emphasized that the U.S. influences the world through financial and other intermediaries and that decentralized protocol technology promotes efficiency and eliminates intermediaries, aligning with principles of free markets and capitalism.
In a world where cryptocurrency regulation is still taking shape, Lubin’s defense of Ether as a commodity showcases the ongoing debate and the complex dynamics surrounding crypto assets and their regulatory classification. The outcome of these discussions will likely have a profound impact on the cryptocurrency industry and its role in the broader financial landscape.