US House Committee to Discuss Stablecoins Regulation

The US House Committee on Financial Services will conduct a hearing on April 19 to evaluate the role of stablecoins as a means of payment and determine whether the payment ecosystem needs supporting legislation. The hearing, titled “Understanding Stablecoins’ Role in Payments and the Need for Legislation,” will focus on various stablecoins and their use in the payments landscape. The committee will explore the need for stablecoin legislation based on their underlying collateral structures.

The hearing will include information collected by various federal government agencies over the last year. Participants testifying at the hearing include Circle’s chief strategy officer and head of global policy, Dante Disparte. Circle’s in-house stablecoin offering, USD Coin (USDC), will likely be discussed, as it recently depegged from the US dollar after it revealed it had $3.3 billion of funds stuck at the collapsed Silicon Valley Bank (SVB). However, following a bailout of SVB depositors by the US government, USDC repegged its value to the US dollar.

During the period when USDC depegged, hackers managed to gain access to Disparte’s Twitter account and started promoting fake loyalty rewards to long-time users of USDC. This situation highlights the potential risks of stablecoins and underscores the importance of legislation to ensure digital dollars on the internet are safely issued, backed, and operated.

Just days before the upcoming hearing, a draft bill providing a framework for stablecoins in the United States was published in the House of Representatives document repository. Speaking about the draft bill, Circle’s CEO Jeremy Allaire said, “There is clearly the need for deep, bi-partisan support for laws that ensure that digital dollars on the internet are safely issued, backed and operated.“

The draft bill proposes that stablecoin issuers must obtain a banking charter and comply with all applicable banking regulations. The bill also seeks to define what constitutes a stablecoin and outlines the requirements for maintaining a stablecoin’s peg to an underlying asset. If passed, this bill could provide regulatory clarity and stability for the stablecoin industry.

In conclusion, the upcoming hearing on stablecoins is an essential step toward ensuring the safety and stability of the payment ecosystem. The hearing will provide lawmakers with the necessary information to make informed decisions about the need for stablecoin legislation. The recent draft bill provides a framework for stablecoins in the United States and could provide regulatory clarity for the stablecoin industry if passed. As the use of stablecoins continues to grow, it is crucial to have clear regulations to ensure the protection of consumers and the stability of the financial system.


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Federal Regulators Testify on Bank Failures

Representatives from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and the Federal Reserve will provide testimony about the failure of two major banks, Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank, at an upcoming hearing that has just been announced by the United States House Financial Services Commission. Legislators are attempting to comprehend the factors that contributed to the failure of these institutions. The hearing is set to take place on March 29, and it will contain evidence from the head of the FDIC as well as the vice chair of supervision for the Fed.

The Silicon Valley Bank was forced to close its doors on March 10 as a result of a run on the bank by its large depositors. The majority of uninsured depositors who had more over $250,000 were covered by the government once they stepped in. On the other hand, it was claimed that Signature Bank did not have any problems with its solvency at the time of its closure on March 12. The FDIC was nonetheless given responsibility of the firm’s insurance procedure by New York’s regulatory authorities.

A report on the supervision and regulation of Silicon Valley Bank by the Federal Reserve is going to be published soon by Michael Barr of the Federal Reserve. According to recent reports, the Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission have both opened investigations into allegations that some officials at the bank sold shares in the weeks running up to the institution’s shutdown.

Some MPs have indicated that exposure to crypto businesses may have played a part in the failure of the banks, while supporters in the industry have maintained that government officials were attempting to “de-bank” crypto and blockchain enterprises. The House Committee on Financial Services has indicated that it plans to conduct additional hearings about this matter.

It is important to note that Silicon Valley Bank is not connected in any way to Silicon Valley Bank Group, also known as SVB Financial Group. SVB Financial Group is a publicly listed firm that specializes in providing financial services to enterprises in the technology and life science industries. On the other hand, Signature Bank is a commercial bank that provides an extensive range of services and is principally active in the state of New York.


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