First there were CryptoKitties. Then came Digital art, CryptoPunks and NBA tokens. But when Beeple’s digital art piece sold at Christie’s for $69 million, the mania truly began. And as with any wave of media mania, also came the groundswell of negative media and hand-wringing about NFTs. Of course, NFTs are not all evil nor are they a panacea for artists and musicians. If properly issued and positioned, they can provide a win-win for both artists and collectors.Read More
On 7 January, the UK Treasury published a consultation on its proposed approach to regulating stablecoins. https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/uk-regulatory-approach-to-cryptoassets-and-stablecoins-consultation-and-call-for-evidence Although the title of the consultation includes “cryptoassets” – this is the just first stage in the consultative process for cryptoassets, which focuses on stablecoins referred to as “stable tokens”. The consultation closes on 21 March. For US readers, a “consultation” is the start of regulatory process, not unlike an “Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking” or “ANPR” in the US. The UK government sets out the supervisory perimeters, seeking input from the public, and leaving the detailed requirements to be designed by the regulators. Accordingly, the consultation discusses only general principles and the overall framework.Read More
On 22 July, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) issued an interpretive letter confirming that national banks and federal savings associations (collectively, banks) can offer custodial services for cryptoassets because “providing cryptocurrency custody services…is a modern form of traditional bank activities related to custody services.”Read More
Stablecoins have attracted much regulatory attention lately. The G7 working group on stablecoins, the International Organization of Securities Commissions, the Financial Stability Board (FSB) and the European Commission are among the international institutions pressing for global stablecoins regulation. The overarching regulatory problems they all identify are:Read More
It’s no secret that accessing the New York market is difficult, if not impossible, for some digital asset companies, especially those in their early stages. New York’s Department of Financial Services (“DFS”) is hoping to change that—at least incrementally—with several initiatives it recently announced. Our digital asset team will soon provide a detailed analysis of the initiatives, but in the meantime here is a brief summary:Read More
The office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) issued an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) on June 3, 2020, focusing on digital banking activities. Typically such ANPRs are a precursor to new federal regulation; following collection of data from the industry and other interested parties, the OCC may propose new regulations by issuing a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking within 6-12 months. Responses to the ANPR are due on August 3, 2020.Read More
With Australia joining the boom in new and innovative Fintechs around the world, our challenger banks, payments businesses and Fintechs have gained global recognition.
While entering into the lucrative U.S market is enticing, it can also be a daunting concept for those without insider knowledge.
K&L Gates’ New York Fintech partner Judie Rinearson, was able to provide us with the information necessary for making the transition, successfully.Read More
On November 18, 2019, Geoffrey Vos, Chancellor of the UK High Court, announced the launch of a “Legal Statement on Crypto Assets and Smart Contracts,” which he described as a “watershed moment” for English Law. The statement, which can be found here, brings new clarity to the likely status of both smart contracts and cryptocurrencies under English law.
A committee of experts has prepared the statement and, although technically it carries no binding legal authority, it is likely to be regarded as the most authoritative position available until the matters it covers are dealt with specifically by the English courts or by revised legislation.Read More
On December 11, 2019, the New York Department of Financial Services (“NYDFS”) published “Proposed Guidance Regarding Adoption or Listing of Virtual Currencies” (“Proposal”). The Proposal would establish a framework to allow “regulated virtual currency licensees” and entities exempt from licensure, such as trust companies, to offer or incorporate into their services cryptocurrencies that are:
- pre-approved by NYDFS; or
- certified by the licensee as being compliant with the licensee’s NYDFS-approved listing criteria.
The Proposal is intended to “enhance efficiency” and enable licensees to “offer and use new coins in a timely fashion”.Read More
Japan will fundamentally change its crypto asset regulations effective in spring of 2020.
In May, 2019, the National Diet, the Japanese national legislature, passed an amendment bill to the Payment Services Act (the “PSA”) and the Financial Instruments and Exchange Act (the “FIEA”), which was promulgated on June 7, 2019 (the “2019 Amendment”). The 2019 Amendment will become effective within one year from promulgation, following further rulemaking by the Japan Financial Services Agency (the “JFSA”) to implement the 2019 Amendment, which is anticipated sometime soon and includes public comment process.Read More