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Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren, known by many as an outspoken crypto skeptic in the US government, has criticized the interruption of exchanges and high transaction fees during periods of price volatility.

In a Tuesday hearing of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs with Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Gary Gensler, Warren claimed that the cryptocurrency industry has fallen short in providing solutions to financial inclusion in the United States. It reported price drops among cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH) last week, saying “$400 billion has disappeared from market capitalization” while many users reported problems accessing major exchanges like Coinbase.

Warren hinted that investing in decentralized finance, or DeFi, projects were “extremely risky” due to the fact that many were not registered with the SEC and were not necessarily under its regulatory umbrella. In addition, it highlighted some high transaction fees during periods of volatility – in this case, on September 7, when the price of BTC dropped from $52,920 to an intraday low of $42,843.

“The swap fee between two cryptocurrencies on the Ethereum network was more than $500,” Warren said, referring to trading a virtual $100 token. “Faced with these unpredictably high fees, small investors can easily be confused and eliminated altogether.”

She added:

Advocates say the cryptocurrency markets are all about financial inclusion, but the most economically vulnerable are the ones most likely to withdraw their money faster when the market goes down. […] Unpredictable high fees can make cryptocurrency trading really dangerous for people who are not wealthy.”

Gensler addressed several questions from US lawmakers during the two-hour hearing regarding the policy framework on cryptocurrency, which requires companies to disclose climate risks to investors, and other issues potentially affecting the Securities and Exchange Commission. In a statement prepared for his testimony released yesterday, he encouraged crypto projects to meet with SEC officials regarding the securities the platforms might offer in the form of digital assets.

Related: Senator Elizabeth Warren calls cryptocurrency “the new shadow bank”

Senator Warren has often criticized cryptocurrencies as being linked to many illegal activities, including “untrustworthy” scams, and the industry’s impact on climate change. Last month, it proposed banning US banks from holding reserves to support private stablecoins.