On August 20, the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) published a letter written jointly with the European Banking Authority (EBA) and addressed to the European Commission (EC) relating to cryptoassets. The letter responds to a letter from the Commission dated July 19.

The letter begins by welcoming the EC’s work responding to issues identified in the January 2019 reports by ESMA and the EBA on cryptoassets and initial coin offerings (for more information, see the January 11, 2019 edition of Corporate & Financial Weekly Digest). ESMA and the EBA agree that it is vital that further work progresses urgently to inform any actions taken by the new EC.
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On July 23, the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS) and the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) published a revised framework for mandatory initial margin applicable to swaps that are not cleared with a central clearing party. The key revision was the insertion of an additional year into the implementation schedule for the margin rules.
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On April 29, Commodity Futures Trading Commission Chairman Chris Giancarlo sent a letter to Randy Quarles, the Vice Chair for Supervision of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, in which he proposed that the US regulators responsible for the administering the margin rules for uncleared swaps should collaborate in providing some relief to non-dealer swap market participants who may become subject to initial margin requirements in 2020. The specific relief would be the issuance of the same guidance issued by the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS) and the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) in March (for more information, see the March 8, 2019 edition of Corporate & Financial Weekly Digest), which stated that in-scope parties do not have to put in place compliant documentation and custodial relationships if there is no expectation that the exposure associated with their swaps will actually exceed the regulatory threshold for posting initial margin ($50 million for the United States).
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On March 5, the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS) and the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) issued guidance on two issues that have been identified in connection with the implementation of the framework for margin requirements for non-centrally cleared derivatives previously adopted by the two groups that initially went into effect in 2016. This framework is embodied in the margin rules for uncleared swaps that were adopted in the United States by the banking regulators for swap dealers subject to prudential regulation and by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission for other swap dealers.
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On July 16, the Financial Stability Board (FSB) published a report on the work of the FSB and standard setting bodies on cryptoassets. The report was delivered to the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors ahead of their meeting on July 21 – 22.

The standard setting bodies, whose work is summarized in the FSB’s report, are: (1) the FSB itself; (2) the Committee on Payments and Market Infrastructures (CPMI); (3) the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO); and (4) the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS).
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