The Scoop
The Scoop
Mar 31, 2021
A Washington DC insider lays out her vision for the bitcoin market's first self-regulatory organization
Play • 42 min

Michelle Bond has been focused on financial regulation for decades, and a turn to crypto policy a few years ago led her to take the helm at the Association for Digital Assets Markets by the end of 2020.

ADAM is a trade association for crypto markets, featuring a code of conduct that requires its members to commit to operating with certain requirements of transparency and speed.

"ADAM is 100% a standards-setting body," Bond said during the most recent episode of The Scoop. 

ADAM's membership includes such industry players as Anchorage, Paxos and Genesis and the group functions as a collective voice for its members. The group's ultimate goal is to provide for the crypto market what FINRA is to securities brokerages: an industry-spearheading body for self-regulation.

"We would like to, one day, become a self-regulatory organization. We believe that that is not something that is decreed, that is earned. At the current moment, we're setting the standards," said Bond.

Among major issues of the day, Bond noted that industry participants are awaiting a response from the Treasury's FinCEN office on the recently closed comments on its proposal to monitor rules. 

Less publicized but still critical is custody. Financial regulators in Washington, Bond said, "are 1,000% asking questions and grappling with custody."

As always, writing up such policies for crypto finance entails a combination of technological and legal savvy. This is where self-regulation comes in. Though Bond, like much of the industry, lamented the lack of coherent frameworks from financial watchdogs like her former workplace, the SEC, she identified the situation as fairly standard:

"Regulators will never come right out and endorse anything. That will never happen. And that makes sense; that's not their job."

But by presenting a code for how to operate in today's fast-moving crypto market, ADAM aims to accomplish what regulators have not. 

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