According to an official press release by the United States Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), the regulatory agency is seeking public comments on the Ethereum (ETH) blockchain.
A Request for Information (RFI) through Federal Register will be placed to acquire public feedbacks on a number of questions related to “the underlying technology, opportunities, risks, mechanics, use cases, and markets” related to Ethereum.
This aims to inform the Commission’s understanding of “the technology, mechanics, and markets” for Ether and the Ethereum Network. The RFI included 25 questions in several categories including “Purpose and Functionality”, “Technology”, “Market, Oversight and Regulation”, “Cyber Security and Custody.” The questions cover a range of issues including Ethereum Network’s support in smart contract, Proof of stake consensus mechanism, scalability challenges, and potential Ether derivative contracts, and more.
Per the statement, “all comments must be received within 60 days of publication.” With the public’s guidance, CFTC is looking to find and understand similarities and distinctions between Ether and Bitcoin, “as well as Ether-specific opportunities, challenges, and risks.”
Although CFTC has limited regulatory supervision over cryptocurrency market, it has full authority on anti-fraud and anti-manipulation enforcement on the commodities market. By preventing abusive practices, fraud and manipulation regarding financial derivatives and products, the CFTC’s mission is to foster open, transparent, competitive and financially sound derivative trading markets.
The Commission expects the RFI finding to later benefit LabCFTC, the CFTC’s FinTech initiative. LabCFTC was launched in May 2017, set to facilitate “market-enhancing financial technology innovation, information policy, and ensuring the agency has the regulatory and technological tools and understanding to keep pace with changing markets.” The entity serves as a platform to enhance CFTC access to FinTech innovators.