U.S. Senate Banking Committee Ranking Member Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) introduced legislation yesterday that would establish the first federal regulatory framework for payment stablecoins and guide Congress towards a path for sensible regulation of cryptocurrencies.
“Stablecoins are an exciting technological development that could transform money and payments. By digitizing the U.S. dollar and making it available on a global, instant, and nearly cost-free basis, stablecoins could be widely used across the physical economy in a variety of ways,” said Ranking Member Toomey.
“I hope this framework lays the groundwork for my colleagues to pass legislation next year safeguarding customer funds without inhibiting innovation. I’ve put forward a regulatory model that won’t undermine competition by favoring entrenched incumbents—for example, by limiting payment stablecoin issuance to insured depository institutions. This bill will also ensure the Federal Reserve, which has displayed significant skepticism about stablecoins, won’t be in a position to stop this activity.”
Throughout his tenure, Senator Toomey has been a strong advocate of free markets and innovation, including with respect to digital assets. In April 2022, Senator Toomey proposed the “Stablecoin Transparency of Reserves and Uniform Safe Transactions (TRUST) Act,” the first Senate bill to establish a comprehensive regulatory framework for payment stablecoins.
Following release of this draft legislation, several proposals to regulate stablecoins have been discussed. Few of these approaches would provide the regulatory flexibility for both state- and federally-chartered entities to engage in this activity. The Stablecoin TRUST Act recognizes the wide range of payments innovation occurring at the state level and avoids the regulatory conflict of interest that could emerge if the Federal Reserve, which may be authorized to issue a central bank digital currency, were to have unchecked power over stablecoins.