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The CFTC’s action against Gemini is bad news for Bitcoin ETFs By Cointelegraph

The CFTC’s action against Gemini is bad news for Bitcoin ETFs

On June 2, 2022, the United States Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) initiated an action against Gemini, the crypto exchange founded by billionaire twins Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss. Among other things, the complaint alleges that Gemini made a number of false and misleading statements to the CFTC in connection with the potential self-certification of a futures contract, the prices for which were to be settled daily by an auction (the “Gemini Bitcoin Auction”). In the complaint, the CFTC specifically articulated the position that these statements were designed to mislead the commission as to whether the proposed Bitcoin futures contract would be susceptible to manipulation.

While the Winklevoss brothers were not named in the suit, the complaint alleges that “Gemini officers, employees and agents […] knew or reasonably should have known that the statements and information conveyed or omitted […] were false or misleading.” These are serious accusations, considering that CFTC’s third and twelfth core principles require markets involved in derivative trading, including those seeking to offer Bitcoin futures contracts, to have policies and practices ensuring that “contracts [are] not readily subject to manipulation” and that they offer reasonable “protection of market participants.”

Carol Goforth is a Clayton N. Little professor of law at the University of Arkansas (Fayetteville) School of Law.