Last December, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) issued a public call for feedback to “better inform the Commission’s understanding” of the Ethereum network and the cryptocurrency ether. The CFTC said input would better inform the agency in the event that market participants submit proposals to list new cryptocurrency-based futures or derivatives products. The CFTC has already recognized the trading of Bitcoin-based derivatives.
Speaking at the Yahoo! Finance All Markets Summit on Thursday October 10, and as reported by Yahoo finance, CFTC Chairman Heath Tarbert said he believes ether is not a security. He went on to say, “We’ve been very clear on Bitcoin: Bitcoin is a commodity under the Commodity Exchange Act. . . . We haven’t said anything about Ether — until now. It is my view as chairman of the CFTC that Ether is a commodity, and therefore it will be regulated under the CEA.”
On the issue of futures, Tarbert said, “And my guess is that you will see in the near future, Ether-related futures contracts and other derivatives potentially traded,” he added. “It’s my conclusion as chairman of the CFTC that Ether is a commodity and therefore would fall under our jurisdiction.”