CFTC Chair: Bitcoin Crypto Asset Could Have Thwarted the 2008 Financial Meltdown


United States Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) Chairman J. Christopher Giancarlo believes that blockchain and cryptocurrencies would have enhanced the regulator’s response to the 2008 financial meltdown.

Giancarlo says that the nascent technology would have made the regulator to come up with a fast, well-informed and well thought standardized regulatory intervention to deal with the 2008 financial mayhem.

The CFTC chair was delivering a speech at the Commissione Nazionale per le Societa e la Borsa (CONSOB) in Rome, Italy, which was held on June 3. During the conference, Giancarlo delivered a speech titled “The New Futurism: 21st Century Financial Markets, Technology and Regulation” in which he emphasized on his bullish believe that cryptocurrency is the way of the future and regulators need to get ready for it.

The first segment of Giancarlo’s statement focused on reflections about blockchain in relations the 2008 financial meltdown. DLT could essentially have allowed regulators to get an accurate, tamper-proof and 100% up to date overview of the market situation in the months leading up to the global financial crisis. This information could have been used to shape policy and avoid the crisis before it happened.

Giancarlo recalled his time as a senior executive at GFI Group which operated a trading platform which listed credit default swaps.

He explained that although the data was available it was stored in various forms and in different places across various institutions. This made it harder for the regulator to assemble the requisite information within time for a timely decision. He explained:

“What a difference it would have made a decade ago if blockchain technology on a private distributed ledger accessible to regulators had been the informational foundation of Wall Street’s derivatives exposures. At a minimum, it would certainly have allowed for far faster, better-informed, and more calibrated regulatory intervention instead of the disorganized response that unfortunately ensued.”

The chairman explained that governing bodies found it difficult to gather the requisite data and the process was slow making it harder to gather up-to-date data that would have guided informed policy making. These left the regulators scrambling to contain the crisis.

Giancarlo urged industries in the legal, financial and logistics sectors where paper trails are important but take time to retrieve to embrace blockchain as it can save billions in times of crises.

Blockchain is the Future

Giancarlo said that blockchain technology has a huge potential in shaping how things are done in various sectors of the global economy. He specifically pointed that the technology will have a broad and lasting impact in various areas such as global payments, securities settlements, cybersecurity, title recording as well as trade analysis and reporting.

Cointelegraph reports that Giancarlo had previously underscored that under his tenure, the CFTC had “resisted calls to use our legal powers to suppress the development of crypto-assets.” The chairman said that while regulation is important to protect the public from unscrupulous blockchain based platform, it should not be used to curtail the development and use of the technology in the world.

Do you believe that blockchain would have prevented the 2008 financial crisis? Let us know in the comments section.

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