This statement applies whether the holdings are described as coins or tokens. The letter affirms that politicians have been seeking guidance from the OGE about what to do about their cryptocurrency, and the office is thus aware that “virtual currencies are experiencing a surge in use and access”. It is also mentioned that the legal framework governing the assets is not yet solidified, and alerts that further guidance will likely need to be published.
The IRS, the country’s tax authority, estimates virtual currency as property, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission consider them as commodities, while the Securities and Exchange Commission is still making their desicion. It recently affirmed that while Ethereum is not a security (that caused the price of that token to jump by nine percent), many are being advanced as investment assets and thus would follow under its jurisdiction. Ripple, a major cryptocurrency firm, is presently facing a lawsuit over exactly this matter.
The OGE approves that it itself does not regard cryptocurrency to be legal tender, but according to the Ethics in Government Act of 1978 government employees must inform about any source of income. Thus, they are now demanded to report crypto holdings if those holdings exceed a value of $1000 and/or bring them $200 in profit during a specified reporting period.