Kraken Challenges SEC’s Idea of Securities in a New Legal Tussle 

Kraken Challenges SEC’s Idea of Securities in a New Legal Tussle 

The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and cryptocurrency exchange Kraken are engaged in a legal battle that could have significant ramifications for the cryptocurrency market. Kraken is contesting the SEC’s definition of securities. Kraken’s legal team, led by Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP Matthew C. Solomon, is challenging the SEC’s methodology.

They claim it is unclear and incorrectly applies securities rules to digital assets. The conflict between Kraken and the SEC has been around from the day SEC launched a campaign against cryptocurrency companies looking into several possible unregistered securities trading in early 2023.

The SEC has been examining the cryptocurrency market more closely to regulate digital assets using current securities regulations. Under Solomon’s direction, Kraken’s legal team argues that the SEC has yet to produce any particular investment contracts that would categorize the digital assets traded, brokered, or settled on Kraken’s platform as securities, in opposition to the SEC’s accusations.

Kraken Lawyer Says SEC’s Definition of Securities Ambiguous

Solomon argues that the Howey Test is being interpreted too broadly by the SEC. Kraken’s lawyers contended in a recent court document that the SEC’s definition of securities is overly ambiguous and at odds with established legal norms.

They draw attention to the fact that the SEC needs to clarify which digital assets are under its purview, leaving investors and exchanges in the dark. Solomon said in a press statement that “the SEC’s approach lacks the precision required to regulate a dynamic and evolving industry like cryptocurrency.”

Legal professionals and other prominent figures in the cryptocurrency space have endorsed Kraken’s position, arguing that the SEC’s strategy may be counterproductive to innovation. Jake Simmons wrote on the Bitcoinist platform that Kraken might face onerous rules if the SEC successfully classifies various digital assets as securities.

Simmons added  that “can have an industry-wide knock-on effect that affects both new and established businesses.” However, the SEC insists that its objectives are investor protection and ensuring cryptocurrency exchanges abide by securities regulations. According to the commission, many digital assets fit the Howey Test’s requirements and show traits of investment contracts.

Kraken Issues an Official Statement, Justifies Some It’s Activities 

In the SEC’s opinion, exchanges that provide these assets without the required registration break securities laws and endangering investors.  Analysis on X, by random industry speculators, believes that if Kraken wins, other exchanges might be inspired to contest government acts, creating a more welcoming atmosphere for cryptocurrency innovation.

However, if the SEC’s strategy is upheld, the industry might have to deal with more stringent regulations and compliance requirements. Kraken and the SEC are anticipated to make their case in court as the legal processes advance.

In an official statement by Kraken, the company revealed that the transaction happened on the Kraken platform and was labelled a “blind bid,” categorized as a secondary sale. This was void of any type of contractual terms or any other responsibility that may have existed in the previous offering.

Krekan Lawyers and SEC Debate Howey Test Compliance 

The company also argued that it could extend the SEC’s regulatory parameter to any commodity or digital asset by simply evaluating a close “investment concept.” Kraken, in a bid to further challenge the SEC’s position, through its lawyers, introduced significant questions and doctrines that argue that the costly interpretation of the SEC over cryptocurrency assets should be approved by Congress and not be determined via a court judgment.

The company insisted that the Howey Test’s criteria, which is a standard used for defining what’s contained in an investment contract, are not used. The company claimed this is so because there have been some monetary investments in businesses with huge profits from other people’s efforts. The SEC had sued Kraken in November 2023 after settling the previous charges against Kraken Exchange’s staking services.

Explaining its actions through a filing it made last month, the SEC stated that its choice to enforce supersedes the legislative power of Congress. The commission dismissed the claim, saying that its enforcement methods is inline with the Howey test, and aligns with congressional mandate.

DISCLAIMER: It's crucial we tell you that the content on this page is not meant to serve as, nor should it be construed as, advice in legal, tax, investment, financial, or any other professional context. You should only invest an amount that you are prepared to lose, and it's advisable to consult with an independent financial expert if you're uncertain. To obtain more information, we recommend examining the terms of service and exploring the assistance and support resources provided by the issuing or advertising entity. Our platform is dedicated to delivering accurate and unbiased reporting, but it's important to note that market circumstances can change rapidly. Also, be informed that some, though not all, articles on our site may be sponsored or paid content.

Chad Butler
About Author

Chad Butler

Chad Butler, a renowned name in crypto journalism, excels in translating complex blockchain topics into lucid prose. His astute analyses and timely updates make him a trusted voice in the cryptocurrency landscape. Through his articles, Chad consistently offers readers an informed and insightful perspective on the evolving digital market

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Skip to content