Ripple, Coinbase, Tether receive ‘Instruction’ letters from Lawmakers

Lawmakers have asked crypto firms in the US to provide data with respect to their diversity and inclusion practices. Per a recent report, House Financial Services Committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters, along with other representatives, has sent letters to 20 of the largest crypto, Web3, and digital assets companies: Aave, Andreessen Horowitz, Binance.US, Circle, Coinbase, Crypto.com, Digital Currency Group, FTX, Gemini, Haun Ventures, Kraken, OpenSea, PancakeSwap, Paradigm, Paxos, Ripple, Sequoia Capital, Stellar Development Foundation, Tether, and UniSwap.

By gathering information, lawmakers will, notably, get a “snapshot” of “how and whether the industry is working toward a more equitable environment for everyone.” The letter, on its part, included a questionnaire on what diversity and inclusion practices the companies had deployed as of last year.

The Block revealed that the questionnaire was, however, not made publicly available. Per the letter,

“There is a concerning lack of publicly available data to effectively evaluate the diversity among America’s largest digital assets companies, and the investment companies with significant investments in these companies.”

The letter gives firms exactly four weeks to respond to the survey, with the deadline being the first Friday of next month [2 September].


IRS updates tax return question

Well, it’s a known fact that crypto-centric data collection remains to be scanty, despite the space progressing leaps and bounds. However, the aforementioned move highlights how lawmakers intend to change that. Leaving aside the companies’ perspective, regulators are also keen to know what investors are up to.

US’s Internal Revenue Service quite recently updated its individual ITR form. Until recently the crypto-related question remained to be quite blunt, for it merely asked individuals if they sold, received, exchanged, or disposed of any virtual currency. Notably, the latest variant of the form has clarified “receive” to include “rewards, awards or compensation”.

The 2022 version has additionally included the term “gift”. Per CoinTracker’s Head of Tax,

“Even though sending and receiving gifts aren’t taxable, it looks like you will have to check “Yes” to the question.”

All Exchanges including Coinbase, Binance under SEC’s scrutiny

In another recent development, one of Senator Lummis’ Staffer revealed that every US crypto exchange, including Binance, is being investigated by the SEC. Now, it’s a known fact that the regulatory body is investigating Coinbase.

Read More: Coinbase under SEC’s radar for crypto listings

Per Lummis’ staffer, the same is, however, just the tip of the iceberg. According to a recent report from Forbes,

“The staffer says every U.S. crypto exchange—and the largest crypto exchange in the world, Binance—are in various stages of being investigated.” 

Alongside, over the past few days, there have been SEC-CTFC crypto jurisdiction talks going on. Per a new senate bill, the SEC should only oversee securities. The legislation overtly names Bitcoin and Ethereum and notes that commodities should fall under CFTC regulation. The latest actions of the SEC, including that of investigating exchanges, brings to light that the regulatory body intends to assert its domain over the crypto industry. Elaborating on what to expect next,

“… the staffer says the SEC urgently wants to resolve its dispute with the CFTC over crypto jurisdiction. If the matter isn’t resolved internally, he says legislators would have to get involved, and that Congress is likely to side with the CFTC.”