- The U.S. Federal Reserve believes stablecoins need strong federal oversight and regulation, while Republicans favor state-level regulation. This is a sticking point in Congressional stablecoin legislation.
- Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Michael Barr stated at an event that stablecoin issuers need oversight and enforcement from the Fed since they are creating private money.
- The Fed remains undecided on a central bank digital currency for the U.S. and promises not to move forward without Congressional authorization, though it is still in the research phase.
The U.S. Federal Reserve believes it needs oversight and regulation of stablecoins. Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Michael Barr stated the Fed needs to regulate and enforce laws against stablecoin issuers at the DC Fintech Week event. This federal oversight approach has been a sticking point as the U.S. House debates legislation on stablecoins.
Republicans Favor State Oversight, Democrats Favor Federal
Republican lawmakers prefer state-level oversight for stablecoin issuers. Democrats favor a dominant federal role for the Fed. Barr firmly believes a strong federal framework is necessary, stating “They’re creating a form of private money, and private money needs to be well-regulated.” A stablecoin bill has passed the House Financial Services Committee with some Democratic support, but still needs House and Senate approval.
Central Bank Digital Currencies Still in Research Phase
Regarding a central bank digital currency (CBDC) for the U.S., Barr said the Fed remains in the research phase. He stated, “We haven’t made a decision on whether it would be a good idea.” Barr reiterated the Fed won’t move forward with a digital dollar without clear Congressional authorization.
The Fed sees a need for federal oversight of stablecoins but is still undecided on a CBDC. Legislation on stablecoins faces challenges moving through Congress. The Fed promises not to act on a digital dollar without Congressional approval.