The Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs will meet in open session to conduct a hearing on “Exploring the Cryptocurrency and Blockchain Ecosystem.” According to the details published on the website, the hearing is scheduled to take place on October 11 and the two witnesses designated to be present at the hearing are Dr. Nouriel Roubini, Professor of Economics and International Business, New York University Stern School of Business; and Mr. Peter Van Valkenburgh, Director of Research, Coin Center.
New York University’s Stern School of Business professor, Nouriel Roubini is renowned for his gloomy economic outlook and has been often unfairly panned for it. He contributes to Roubini Economitor, a portal dedicated to fintech and economics. His displeasure towards blockchain and cryptocurrencies is well known.
He acquired the epithet “Dr. Doom” when in 2006 he made an address to the IMF in which he predicted that, among other things, the US economy was at risk of a housing bust and deep recession that would have dire consequences for the rest of the world and was roundly ridiculed for it.
In June this year, he created another uproar when he tweeted:
“Smart Contracts are neither smart nor contracts: they are extremely buggy -100 bugs per 1000 lines of code – & they are not contracts as no court can enforce them. The only courts in the crypto land are the crypto developers’ kangaroo courts who randomly decide when to fork or not.”
"Smart Contracts" are neither smart nor contracts: they are extremely buggy -100 bugs per 1000 lines of code – & they are not contracts as no court can enforce them. The only courts in crypto land are the crypto developers' kangaroo courts who randomly decide when to fork or not https://t.co/ZS48y5ZQMu
— Nouriel Roubini (@Nouriel) June 1, 2018
Roubini was indirectly responding to a suggestion made by CNBC’s Ran Neu-Ner that Ethereum’s support for smart contracts will drive the platform to mass adoption, which he defined as 100 million users.
Earlier this year in February, SEC chairman Jay Clayton along with U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission Chairman J. Christopher Giancarlo had testified before the committee. Speaking before the committee Clayton had emphasized the need for additional crypto related regulations down the road.
“The cryptocurrency and ICO markets, while new, have grown rapidly, gained greater prominence in the public conscience and attracted significant capital from retail investors. We have seen historical instances where such a rush into certain investments has benefitted our economy and those investors who backed the right ventures. But when our laws are not followed, the risks to all investors are high and numerous – including risks caused by or related to poor, incorrect or non-existent disclosure, volatility, manipulation, fraud, and theft,” he said.
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