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SEC appoints new chairman – implications for Bitcoin, Ripple and crypto

  • The US Securities and Exchange Commission has appointed a new chairman, Elad Roisman, who is expected to take a pro-crypto stance.
  • Still, the implications for the crypto market, a Bitcoin ETF, and the securities lawsuit against Ripple are uncertain.

Elad Roisman, who has been one of four commissioners of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission since September 2018, was named the new interim chairman yesterday. As his colleague Hester Peirce wrote via Twitter, Roisman will assume the chairmanship of the United States Securities and Exchange Commission effective immediately. Hester Peirce tweeted:

The previous chairman, Jay Clayton would have originally stepped down in June 2021, but due to the results of the US presidential election, Clayton completed his term 6 months early. Clayton’s tenure was considered regressive and damaging by many experts in the crypto community. In particular, the rejection of numerous Bitcoin Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs), and last but not least, the last minute lawsuit against Ripple clearly show this.

What the appointment means for Ripple and the crypto industry

Roisman’s appointment denies the chairmanship to Hester Peirce, the longest-tenured commissioner at the SEC and also known as the”Crypto Mom” for her strongly crypto-friendly views. Still, the appointment could be both positive for the crypto market and for Ripple in light of its recently filed securities lawsuit.

Roisman is believed to take a pro-crypto stance. While still a member of the U.S. Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee in 2018, Roisman said:

[…], the SEC must examine and re-examine its rules, regulations, and guidelines to ensure that they are still working as intended to accomplish the SEC’s mission. This is most recently manifested in areas such as data protection and cybersecurity, as well as the emergence of new investments and technologies such as initial coin offerings and blockchain.

It is essential that the SEC approach these new challenges in a fair and transparent manner, provide clarity and certainty to the markets and investors, and enforce the laws and regulations that hold market participants accountable.

Thus, for Ripple, there may be hope for a fairer hearing. As some experts speculate, Roisman could provide clear guidelines on when a cryptocurrency should be classified as a security. Whether this will be beneficial for Ripple remains to be seen.

Moreover, Roisman will likely not be able to fulfill hopes for a Bitcoin ETF. According to Bloomberg, President-elect Joe Biden will select a permanent successor to Clayton, meaning Roisman’s position could be temporary. Whether Roisman will approve the long-awaited Bitcoin ETF in the near future seems therefore rather doubtful.

Impact on altcoins and the XRP price

After Roisman’s appointment became public, the altcoin market experienced a proper pump. While the XRP price had previously recorded massive losses, the news turned the market sentiment around. At the time of writing, XRP was trading at $0.34, registering a whopping 27.5% gain over the past 24 hours. Over the last 7 days, however, it is still down -42%.

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