CFTC Chairman Behnam Declares Bitcoin and Ethereum as Commodities Amid Ongoing SEC Debate

  • The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) Chair, Benham, has stated that 70-80% of the cryptocurrency market should be classified as commodities.
  • This comment reignites the ongoing debate about the regulatory classification of cryptocurrencies, particularly Bitcoin and Ethereum.
  • Highlighting a recent court decision, Benham emphasized that Bitcoin and Ethereum have been proven to be commodities.

Understanding the CFTC’s stance on cryptocurrency regulation and its implications for the crypto market.

CFTC Chair Declares Majority of Cryptocurrencies as Commodities

In a significant development, CFTC Chair Benham has articulated that a substantial portion of the cryptocurrency market, specifically around 70-80%, should be treated as commodities. This assertion by the CFTC head was shared by Fox Business journalist, Eleanor Terrett, who provided insights into Benham’s statements regarding Bitcoin and Ethereum. Referring to a recent ruling by an Illinois court, Benham reaffirmed that these leading cryptocurrencies are indeed commodities.

Impact of the Illinois Court’s Decision

The Illinois court’s decision has profound implications for the cryptocurrency space. Earlier this July, the court ruled in favor of the CFTC in a case involving a Ponzi scheme operated by an individual and a company from Oregon. The court mandated a hefty fine exceeding $120 million and classified cryptocurrencies as commodities in this context. This ruling not only supports the CFTC’s stance but also sets a regulatory precedent for future cases involving digital assets.

SEC vs. CFTC: A Prolonged Dispute

For years, the debate between the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the CFTC over whether cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum qualify as securities or commodities has persisted. Benham’s recent comments add fuel to this debate, indicating a clear division between the classifications held by the two regulatory bodies. While the SEC has often leaned towards identifying certain cryptocurrencies as securities, Benham’s statement suggests a strong belief within the CFTC that the majority of the crypto market does not fall under this category.

Senators Weigh In

Benham’s remarks have not gone unnoticed by the U.S. Senate. Senator Sherrod Brown responded by questioning what the CFTC has learned from previous crypto frauds. Meanwhile, Senator Cory Booker criticized the current state of the market, citing persistent abuses and questioning the effectiveness of leaving regulatory enforcement to the SEC and the CFTC. Such political scrutiny underscores the complexity and urgency of establishing a cohesive regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies.


The assertion by CFTC Chair Benham that the majority of cryptocurrencies should be classified as commodities is a pivotal moment in the ongoing discourse about digital asset regulation. The implications of recent court decisions bolster the CFTC’s stance, yet the broader debate with the SEC and political stakeholders continues to unfold. As these debates progress, the cryptocurrency market awaits clearer regulatory guidelines that could shape the future of digital assets in the United States.

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Jocelyn Blake
Jocelyn Blake
Jocelyn Blake is a 29-year-old writer with a particular interest in NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens). With a love for exploring the latest trends in the cryptocurrency space, Jocelyn provides valuable insights on the world of NFTs.

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