The U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Financial Services will be conducting an oversight hearing with the Securities and Exchange Commission on September 24, 2019. The “Oversight of the Securities and Exchange Commission: Wall Street’s Cop on the Beat” hearing will include a focus on cryptocurrency-related issues, according to a September 19 memorandum published by the committee.
The memorandum indicates that all five SEC commissioners will be in attendance for the one-panel hearing: Chairman Jay Clayton and commissioners Allision Herren Lee, Robert J. Jackson Jr., Elad L. Roisman, and Hester Peirce. Commissioner Peirce has been a frequent critic of the SEC’s tough stance on bitcoin ETFs.
The committee memorandum suggests that the hearing is likely to include discussion about a wide range of topics that fall under the SEC’s purview, including enforcement for violations of securities laws, issues related to exchange-traded funds, and Facebook’s proposed cryptocurrency project, Libra. The language of the memorandum also suggests that committee members may have questions about whether Libra should be considered a security:
The Libra Investment Token could amount to a security since it is intended to be sold to investors to fund startup costs and would provide them with dividends. The Libra token itself may also be a security, but Facebook does not intend to pay dividends and it is unclear if investors would have a “reasonable expectation of profits.” However, the offer of Libra could be integrated into the offering of the Libra Investment Token, thereby deeming both securities. Like ETFs, Libra would be redeemable by certain authorized resellers and bought and sold in the open market.