Michael Hsu, the United States Acting Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), believes regulators are spending too much time on crypto and leaving behind more pressing issues like banking and technology. He expressed concerns about crypto occupying a lot of brain space for an awful lot of people in the regulatory community.
Hsu, who serves as the administrator for the federal banking system and chief economic officer of the OCC, called for greater supervision of crypto firms and standards around stablecoins. He emphasized the need for a cautious approach to crypto regulation because o red flags with the sector’s rapid growth. Hsu said too much time is spent on crypto. He acknowledged that it’s interesting and has thorny issues but relative to other technology and banking issues, crypto is kind of overweight.
The acting comptroller explained that there are other areas that need to be focused on, such as fintech. Hsu believes the fintech sector requires immediate oversight to avoid a severe problem or crisis because of the sector’s rampant expansion. He said it’s worrying that regulators are not spending that time and attention on some other things. Hsu feels fintech is the future and as such, needs proper time and considerations to help it thrive sustainably.
In comparison, he sees crypto as an immature industry that is based on immature technology. Hsu highlighted the crypto sector’s apparent fear of missing out (FOMO) syndrome. He says it fosters wild speculation as opposed to innovation. The comptroller said promises of innovation and inclusion often mask crypto’s promotion of a gold rush vibe that exploits people’s fear of missing out on the next Google or Amazon. His doubt about crypto comes from the frustration that the most promising innovations have been crowded out of hype and a fixation on trading.