Former U.S. bank regulator says Biden officials 'overtly hostile to crypto'

Quick Take

  • Former Comptroller of the Currency Brian Brooks says that leadership in Washington is “overtly hostile to crypto.”
  • The current Bitfury and former and Coinbase executive made the remarks at a conference in Washington.

Former senior U.S. bank regulator Brian Brooks, now a crypto company CEO, decried the current leadership at federal regulatory agencies as “overtly hostile to crypto.”

“This is in fact a political issue,” Brooks said. “The leadership in power at the moment is devoted to reining this in if not destroying it, and a number of the things I’ve heard, even in the last 24 hours in D.C., have convinced me of that.”

Brooks, now the CEO of digital asset service company Bitfury, was Comptroller of the Currency in the waning days of the Trump administration. He made the remarks during an onstage interview at D.C. Fintech Week, a conference in Washington hosted by Georgetown University’s Law Center.

He went on to compare the current state of the digital asset industry to the financial sector following the 2008-09 global financial crisis and Silicon Valley following the dotcom bubble burst. Brooks compared the collapse of Celsius, Terra, and Three Arrows Capital to the financial meltdown caused by overleveraging in parts of the financial sector during the crisis, which he argued represented a relatively small portion of the overall financial sector.


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“It actually does not take much to blow up a financial market,” said Brooks. “The truth is that the entire financial crisis was caused by a very slight uptick in defaults inside the Fannie Mae book.”

“Those things represented maybe two percent of crypto market and bitcoin fell 80%,” added Brooks, speaking of the bankrupt crypto projects.

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About Author

Colin oversees and contributes policy, regulatory, political, and legal coverage for The Block. Before joining The Block he covered congressional economic policy, including fintech legislation, for Bloomberg Industry Group and Politico, with additional stints at the Washington Examiner and American Banker. Colin is an alumnus of Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism and Sewanee: The University of the South.