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In the crisis, financial innovations can “take us to the next level”.

April 24, 2020

The United States regulator, The Commodities and Futures Trading Commission announced the first scientific CFTC competition, Project Streetlamp, earlier this week.. Cointelegraph had the opportunity to speak to Melissa Netram, Director of Innovation and Director of the Commission’s Fintech Office, LabCFTC.

Netram took over the role of Daniel Gorfine in September. Cointelegraph welcomes your views on the progress of LabCFTC since then, the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and its plans for future development.

Financial regulation according to COVID-19

The current pandemic is at the heart of US lawmakers and regulators. In the United States and some asked to stop all work that is not directly related to the new corona virus. The CFTC is no exception. “With the crisis, the Commission generally had to adjust priorities”Said Netram.

In the crisis, financial innovations can “take us to the next level”.In the crisis, financial innovations can “take us to the next level”.

However, the details of the corona virus have somehow fueled financial technologies. Netram said:

“My official position is that, in times of crisis, you can see more than ever how technology and innovation can help us move on to the next level.”

Despite some obvious limits to what the Commission can currently do, “there are many things behind the scenes that can continue to happen. As we all know, regulation can be time consuming,” said Netram. “Behind the scenes, LabCFTC will focus on some of its initiatives to promote responsible innovation.”

Missions completed since you joined

Netram stated that the goal of LabCFTC is “Promoting dialogue between innovators and regulators at the CFTC”. He described the office as “an intercommission gate for investors to speak to the commission”.

Moving LabCFTC to a separate office was a priority when Netram entered, and it said it gave the office more freedom to work with all CFTC departments. I was happy with how LabCFTC was able to keep the entire cryptocurrency commission up to date in this way:

“When a company investigates how we do X, what it may have to do with a digital asset, or how it brings a digital asset to the market, some of our colleagues will contact us and say, ‘Can you give us background information on assets? Digital ? ‘”

Netram works in a technology company in the private sector. The main concern of Netram for LabCFTC was to make the office more accessible to people in the industry. “At this technology company, I was sitting at the table talking to government officials.” A simple solution, but somehow new? Office hours:

“One of the first things we did since I was on board was, let’s say, there had to be more clarity about how to communicate with each other. So we set office hours.”

the next steps

Consistent with their concern that the right members of the CFTC are speaking to industry stakeholders, Netram is planning a new admission form for future meetings. She says: “The admission form will give more clarity about why they are entering.”

“Another thing behind the scenes that we want to highlight in 2020 is education,” said Netram. This includes the Fintech Forward conference, which may need to be “reinvented” to cope with the current quarantine measures.

What about basic manuals? The set of educational summaries on the LabCFTC website is useful, but limited and outdated. There are only three: in virtual currencies, smart contracts, and artificial intelligence in finance. Cointelegraph asked if updates and new manuals were expected, to which Netram “definitely” replied.

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