New York City Mayor Eric Adams arrives for a press conference on gun violence at the Office of Chief Medical Examiner on June 26, 2023 in New York City.
Michael M. Santiago | Getty Images
New York City mayor Eric Adams has pledged to correct his annual financial disclosure form filed with the Conflicts of Interest Board, after failing to report his cryptocurrency holdings.
When asked whether he held any security, including stocks, bonds, ETFs, mutual funds, or cryptocurrencies with a market value of $1,000 or more, the mayor responded “no” in his filing. A spokesman for the mayor told CNBC that Adams had omitted his digital asset holdings, because he had misunderstood the question and believed it only referred to securities.
“After further review of the description, and even though the very term ‘cryptocurrency’ clearly states that it is a currency and not a security, the mayor will amend the form to reflect his holdings at the end of the 2022,” the spokesperson wrote CNBC in an email on Friday.
It is unclear how much Adams’ crypto holdings are worth. CNBC also asked whether the mayor still accepts all or part of his salary in bitcoin, and we did not hear back on that query.
Two top aides to the mayor both disclosed the exact amount of their bitcoin and ether holdings.
The mayor was quick to embrace cryptocurrency back in 2021 when he was fresh off an election victory and bitcoin was racing toward an all-time high of nearly $70,000 a coin. Since then, the world’s largest cryptocurrency has slipped to trade around $31,500 amid the wider downturn in the digital asset market.
In November 2021, Adams said he planned to accept his first three mayoral paychecks in bitcoin. Even as the sector plunged to the depths of crypto winter in 2022, Adams remained bullish on crypto, telling the press that he had kept his investment in crypto.
Adams’ pro-crypto platform was part of the politician’s efforts to give Miami a run for its money as one of the country’s top destinations for industry enthusiasts.
Miami mayor Francis Suarez’s progressive crypto policies drew start-ups, venture firms, and crypto exchanges to Florida during the pandemic. Meanwhile, lawmakers in New York have enacted some of the country’s most stringent and restrictive rules on the crypto industry.
In a similar disclosure by Suarez, the Miami mayor reported crypto holdings of $71,321 at the end of 2022, according to documents obtained by The Miami Herald via the county elections department. Suarez, who uses Jack Mallers’ Strike wallet to accept his salary in bitcoin, also saw his net worth double to $3.4 million last year.
It is unclear whether Suarez converted some of his crypto holdings into fiat cash, since his annual salary is $130,000, or whether his mayoral income dwindled due to bear market pricing. CNBC reached out to Suarez’s team but did not hear back.