Facebook's Zuckerberg to testify to House on Libra

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WASHINGTON — Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg will testify before the House Financial Services Committee later this month where members are sure to raise concerns about the company’s plans to launch its own cryptocurrency.

Zuckerberg will appear before the panel on Oct. 23 at a hearing to examine Facebook's impact on the financial services and housing sectors, Chairwoman Maxine Waters, D-Calif., announced Wednesday.

Waters is likely to bring up a proposed bill aimed at keeping big technology companies out of financial services. The legislation would prohibit companies like Facebook from being registered, chartered or licensed as a financial institution.

Yet there may be limits to lawmakers' ability to block Facebook completely from launching its cryptocurrency, known as Libra. Some Democrats in the House and Senate have said they expect Libra to eventually move forward and that the legislation would be inappropriate.

The hearing follows a recent announcement by PayPal that it is parting ways with the Libra Association, the cryptocurrency's governing body.

David Marcus, head of Facebook's Calibra digital wallet, testified to both the House and Senate on the proposed Libra cryptocurrency in June. Marcus faced a number of questions from lawmakers about potential privacy implications, as well as whether the Libra would be compliant with existing regulations and anti-money-laundering laws.

Marcus told lawmakers that Facebook won’t launch Libra until it satisfies regulators' concerns.

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