On July 3, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) published an updated version (dated June 2019) of its anti-money laundering (AML) and counter-terrorist financing (CTF) standards.

This version includes a recently adopted interpretative note to recommendation 15 (new technologies), in which the FATF explains how its standards apply to virtual asset activities and virtual asset service providers (VASPs).
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On May 28, the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) published a consultation paper on regulating crypto-asset trading platforms (CTPs).

The consultation paper describes issues and risks identified by IOSCO in relation to CTPs. The consultation paper describes key considerations and provides related toolkits that are intended to assist regulatory authorities who may be evaluating

On April 5, the UK Financial Stability Board (FSB) published a directory of regulators and other authorities in FSB jurisdictions who cover cryptoasset issues.

The FSB delivered the directory to the April 2019 G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meeting. It notes that the directory’s purpose is to provide information only—it does not define

On October 29, the UK “Cryptoasset Taskforce,” consisting of HM Treasury, the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and the Bank of England, published its final report setting out the United Kingdom’s policy and regulatory approach to cryptoassets and distributed ledger technology (DLT) in financial services. The Cryptoassets Taskforce was established in March 2018 as part of the United Kingdom’s strategy on the financial technology (FinTech) sector (for further details see the March 23edition of the Corporate & Financial Weekly Digest).
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On July 20, the National Futures Association (NFA) submitted to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission for approval a proposed interpretive notice regarding Disclosure Requirements for NFA Members Engaging in Virtual Currency Activities. The new disclosure obligations will apply to all NFA members engaging in transactions in virtual currency derivatives and virtual currency, as well as other activities in underlying or spot virtual currencies.
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The Commodity Futures Trading Commission has issued an advisory warning customers of the dangers of purchasing digital coins or tokens. Among other things, the advisory warns customers that buying digital coins or tokens for speculative purposes carries significant risk and identifies various factors that could affect the current or longer-term value of a digital coin or token, including:
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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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On April 6, the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) published a statement on the requirement that firms trading in cryptocurrency derivatives may need to be authorized. The statement confirms that performing activities or providing services that amount to regulated activities in relation to derivatives are likely to require FCA authorization when performed in relation to tokens that are issued through an initial coin offering, or cryptocurrencies.

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On March 2, the governor of the Bank of England (BoE), Mark Carney, delivered a speech entitled “The Future of Money.”

Mr. Carney highlighted shortcomings of cryptocurrencies and the need for authorities to isolate, regulate or integrate them, with his preference being regulation. Mr. Carney stated that “isolation risks foregoing potentially major opportunities from the development of the underlying payment technologies.” He also suggested that cryptocurrencies do not pose material risks to financial stability due to their relative insignificance.
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On January 8, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) released its annual Regulatory and Examination Priority Letter detailing various issues that will be the subject of particular regulatory focus and scrutiny this year. Many of the areas noted are carry-overs from previous years, including the protection of senior investors and other retail customers, new product suitability reviews, and enhanced scrutiny of high-risk brokers. However, the letter also reflects various new issues that have caught FINRA’s attention and will require increased attention by FINRA member firms.
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