In a recent appearance on CNBC’s Power Lunch, Brian Armstrong, the CEO of Coinbase, shed light on the company’s global aspirations and stance on the evolving regulatory landscape in the United States. Armstrong emphasized that 83% of G-20 countries are adopting or formulating laws related to cryptocurrencies. He pointed to Coinbase’s recent expansion into Canada and the initiation of an international derivatives exchange as markers of the company’s global focus.
Despite facing regulatory obstacles in the U.S., Armstrong conveyed a sense of optimism. “The U.S. will eventually get it right,” he stated, adding that legislative bodies are currently scrutinizing key cryptocurrency bills with support from both sides.
Armstrong did not hold back in expressing his dissatisfaction with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). He criticized the agency for its vague regulatory stance on cryptocurrencies, which he believes is a disservice to the 56 million Americans already invested in digital assets. Drawing a parallel with the electric car industry, Armstrong revealed that cryptocurrency ownership in the U.S. outnumbers electric vehicle ownership by a factor of five, signaling the mainstream acceptance of crypto.
He also took issue with the SEC’s preference for enforcement actions over legislative clarity, cautioning that such an approach undermines America’s financial and technological leader position. However, Armstrong lauded a recent court ruling that found the SEC’s actions against Grayscale “unlawful” and “arbitrary,” stating that such judgments reinforce trust in the cryptocurrency sector.
On the topic of Bitcoin ETFs, Armstrong disclosed that Coinbase is named as the custodian in multiple applications, which he believes will attract more investors to the crypto industry and Coinbase.
Addressing market competition, Armstrong said he sees no evidence of diminishing profit margins. He views the burgeoning crypto space not as a challenge but as an opportunity for growth, predicting its integration into various financial services, fintech firms, and emerging Web3 platforms.
Armstrong’s CNBC interview examined Coinbase’s global and domestic strategies, depicting cautious optimism amid regulatory uncertainties.