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Blockchain technology is about to transform every trust-based interaction of our lives, from financial services to identity, from health care to our Internet of Things devices. In this podcast, host Laura Shin talks with industry pioneers across tech, financial services, health care, government and other sectors about how the blockchain and cryptocurrency will open up new opportunities for incumbents, startups and everyday people to interact more efficiently, directly and globally.

Nov 12, 2019

Former CFTC chairman Christopher Giancarlo talks about how his experience of the financial crisis piqued his interest in blockchain technology, why the CFTC thought the introduction of Bitcoin futures would help pop the 2017 Bitcoin bubble, and how "there's no simple answer" to explain when a token goes from being a security to a commodity. He discusses why he believes there needs to be a "refresh" of regulations written decades ago that are difficult to apply in a digital world, why he thinks Libra represents a fundamental generational change and why he thinks the project should be allowed to go forward. We also cover the Chinese digital yuan, why the USD should not assume that its global dominance today will translate into global dominance tomorrow, and his own proposal for a digital dollar, which he dubs "Zelle + JPMorgan Coin." Plus, he gives the behind-the-scenes look at why he decided to speak "as a dad" in the Congressional hearing that made him an overnight crypto celebrity.

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Episode links: 

Christopher Giancarlo:


Chamber of Digital Commerce:

Let the technology evolve before regulating/CFTC is behind on regulating:

Popping the Bitcoin bubble: 

Talks with Facebook pre-Libra launch:

The introduction of Bitcoin futures helping to pop the crypto bubble:

Wall Street Journal op-ed proposing a digital dollar:

Initial confusion over LedgerX not receiving approval or disapproval within 180 days to launch Bitcoin futures:

CoinDesk article with emails from LedgerX on CFTC dispute:

Commodity Exchange Act:

Emails sent from LedgerX to the CFTC:

Paul Chou’s blog post summarizing what happened:

More context from Noelle Acheson on the dispute: