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How language in the infrastructure bill could roil the crypto markets

  • 9 mths ago

The cryptocurrency industry is lobbying hard this week against language in the Senate’s bipartisan infrastructure bill proposal that could choke a vast amount of the crypto ecosystem.

Language in the bill would require crypto brokers to report customer information to the Internal Revenue Service. More importantly, over the weekend it broadened the definition of what’s considered a “broker” to anyone “responsible for regularly providing any service effectuating transfers of digital assets on behalf of another person” which doesn’t exclude miners, software developers, stakers and other individuals in the crypto economy who don’t have customers.

“The language gives a lot of power to define what should be included in the reporting requirement,” Oppenheimer analyst Owen Lau. “It says any person who is responsible for regularly providing any service effectuating transfers of digital assets on behalf of another person – which can mean anything. If I transfer bitcoin for you, then it can mean I become a broker.”

As of Monday, the language hasn’t been finalized, and there’s still time to fix it before it is, or even through a later bill, according to Kristin Smith, executive director of the Blockchain Association, a crypto trade association that works to change public policy at the federal level.

Bitcoin fell more than 5% Monday, and ether lost 1.8%, according to Coin Metrics, with some of the uncertainty around the bill weighing on sentiment.

The biggest worry is that the language would “detract people from wanting to invest or participate in crypto networks in the United States,” Smith told CNBC.

Continue reading: https://www.cnbc.com/2021/08/02/how-language-in-the-infrastructure-bill-could-roil-the-crypto-markets.html

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