How the War on Crypto Triggered a Banking Crisis

According to an article in American Banker titled “SEC’s Gensler Directly Links Crypto and Bank Failures,” SEC Chair Gary Gensler has asked for more financial resources to police the crypto market. Gensler testified at an April 18 House Financial Services Committee hearing: 

[Crypto companies] have chosen to be noncompliant and not provide investors with confidence and protections, and it undermines the $100 trillion capital markets …

Silvergate and Signature [banks] were engaged in the crypto business — I mean some would say that they were crypto-​backed … 

Silicon Valley Bank, actually when it failed, saw the country’s — the world’s — second-leading stable coin had $3 billion involved there, depegged, so it’s interesting just how this was all part of this crypto narrative as well.

Cryptocurrency experts Caitlin Long and Nic Carter take the opposite view. They acknowledge the link between crypto and the recent wave of bank failures and the runs and threatened runs they triggered, but Carter and Long make a compelling case that it was the FDIC, the SEC and the Federal Reserve that brought the banks down, by a coordinated, extrajudicial “war on crypto” that blocked that otherwise-legal industry from acquiring the banking services it needs. 

The public banking movement has run up against similar roadblocks. Both cryptocurrencies and publicly-owned banks compete with the Wall Street-dominated private banking cartel, but more on that after a look at the suspicious events behind the recent bank runs.

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