Author: Gan Jia Ci
Speaking at the Future of Fintech conference in New York on Wednesday, Nasdaq CEO Adena Friedman claimed that Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) bring about “serious risks”.
According to the post by CNBC yesterday, while ICOs have amassed billions of dollars in this year alone, Friedman stated that they expose retail investors to severe risks. “To make it no rules at all, when companies can just willy-nilly take people’s money and offer no information at all, with no governance, that sounds to me like you’re taking advantage of people,” she explained.
Friedman went on to elaborate that this is largely due to lack of public information, transparency, regulation and accountability.
According to her, majority of the victims are first-time investors with no access to information. Even though the Securities and Exchange Commision (SEC) mandates firms to provide retail investors with the same information as banks in Initial Public Offerings (IPOs), ICO processes have “no oversight”.
“In ICO space none of that is available, and it’s all being bought by retail. I have real concern on lack of transparency, oversight, and accountability that these companies have as they’re going out to raise capital through an ICO.”
Friedman also sympathises with the SEC’s claims that ICOs are securities offerings. “I support the SEC on that,” she proclaimed.
Founded in 1971, Nasdaq Stock Market is the second-largest stock exchange in the world by market capitalisation. Friedman was appointed CEO in November 2016.