Biden Nominates Former Ripple Advisor Barr for the Position of Chief US Federal Reserve Regulator

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Biden Nominates Former Ripple Advisor Barr for the Position of Chief US Federal Reserve Regulator

Biden Nominates Former Ripple Advisor Barr for the Position of Chief US Federal Reserve Regulator
Michael Barr, assistant secretary for financial institutions with U.S. Treasury, arrives to the Advisory Council on Financial Capability meeting at the Treasury Department in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2010. The Council unveiled a new coordinated National Strategy for Financial Literacy. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Source: CoinDesk
1650089500 16 Apr / 06:11

Michael Barr, a Treasury veteran from the Obama administration, must still obtain Senate approval.

U.S. President Joe Biden appointed former crypto sector consultant Michael Barr to a Federal Reserve position, perhaps the most important financial regulation position in the United States.

Michael Barr, currently the dean of the public policy department at the University of Michigan Law School, was a top official in former President Barack Obama's Treasury Department and played a crucial role in the government's rescue of the banking sector during the 2008 financial crisis. But the most significant component of his history for the digital-assets market may be his stay on Ripple's board of advisors, which gives him deep knowledge of cryptocurrencies.

Friday, the White House announced Barr’s nomination as the next vice chairman for supervision at the Federal Reserve, thanking him for having “spent his career defending consumers.” However, he will confront a Senate confirmation minefield that has already ousted Sarah Bloom Raskin, Biden’s prior nominee.

Barr’s expertise in the financial business, including a spell at financial-technology company Lending Club, was not mentioned in the formal announcement. Barr was appointed to the board of Ripple Labs in 2015, citing his belief that “innovation in payments may help make the financial system safer, lower costs, and enhance access and efficiency for consumers and companies.”
This industrial expertise had already soured progressive organizations on Barr, who had been an early choice for the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency under the Biden administration. This contender’s campaign was disrupted by opposition from the left, and the office remains unfilled after some senators violently rejected another nominee.

Republicans have strongly opposed several of Biden’s regulatory appointments in the equally split Senate, casting doubt on Barr’s eventual confirmation. Even while he has previously had bipartisan backing in that chamber, he may face more opposition this time.

If confirmed, he will assume a leading position in the ongoing multi-agency initiatives to regulate stablecoins and examine further safeguards for the remainder of the cryptocurrency business.
Barr is widely regarded as a consumer-friendly champion for rigorous financial monitoring and has extensive expertise with financial inclusion initiatives. He published “No Slack: The Financial Lives of Low-Income Americans” and co-wrote “Insufficient Funds: The Financial Lives of Low-Income Families in Detroit.” The Treasury veteran also contributed to drafting the Dodd-Frank Act, which established the vice-chairman position sought by Barr.

Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, said in a statement, “I will support this important nomination, and I urge my Republican colleagues to reject their old playbook of personal attacks and demagoguery and put Americans and their wallets first.”

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