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Category Archives: Fintech and Cryptocurrency

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Singapore: Payment Token Derivatives – to Offer or Not to Offer?

MAS confirms regulatory approach for derivative contracts on payment tokens. By Farhana Sharmeen and Marc Jia Renn Tan On 15 May 2020, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (the MAS) issued its response to feedback about its proposed regulatory approach for derivative contracts that reference payment tokens as underlying assets (Payment Token Derivatives), confirming that it … Continue Reading

Financial Institutions and the Cloud: How to Navigate an Evolving Regulatory Landscape

Insights from Latham’s flagship event: Managing the risk and promise of digitisation in financial services. By Fiona Maclean, Stuart Davis, and Alistair Wye In a bid to keep pace with rapid advances in cloud adoption across financial services, regulators have published a raft of new guidance in the past year. Most recently, the European Insurance … Continue Reading

Will Regulatory Reform Make Cryptoassets the Next Buyout Boom for Private Equity?

Regulatory guidance on cryptoassets and digital currency companies may lead to a legitimisation of crypto-businesses as an investable asset class. By Stuart Davis, Sam Maxson, David Walker, Tom Evans, and Catherine Campbell Recent and upcoming regulatory guidance on cryptoassets and the regulation of companies engaged in digital currency, such as issuers, crypto-exchanges, crypto-custodians, crypto-brokers, and … Continue Reading

FCA Publishes Policy Statement Extending Rules to Payment Services and E-Money Sectors

From August 2019, certain existing FCA rules and guidance will extend to payment service providers and e-money issuers in a signal that the FCA wants a consistent approach to consumer protection. By Rob Moulton, Brett Carr, and Frida Montenius The FCA has published a Policy Statement extending certain rules and guidance to the payment services … Continue Reading

Private Equity and Blockchain: New Infrastructure or New Asset Class?

By Andrew Moyle and Stuart Davis Growth in applications for blockchain and tokenisation, combined with an increasing number of initial coin offerings (ICOs), mean that buyout firms should note developments in this sector. Why Should PE Be Interested in Blockchain? A shared blockchain ledger could drive a single interface between a PE fund and its investors, … Continue Reading

FCA to Create Global Financial Innovation Network

FCA teams up with other regulators to advance its idea of creating a global regulatory sandbox. By Stuart Davis, Gabriel Lakeman, Sam Maxson, Brett Carr and Charlotte Collins The FCA, along with several other financial services regulators, has launched a consultation on the operating framework for a Global Financial Innovation Network (GFIN). This is an evolution … Continue Reading

UK Financial Services Regulators Warn Firms About Risks of Exposure to Crypto-assets

Both the FCA and the PRA have written to firms to warn about certain risks associated with exposures to crypto-assets, and to advise firms of the measures they should consider implementing to mitigate such risks. By Stuart Davis and Charlotte Collins The FCA and the PRA have each written a “Dear CEO” letter to firms, … Continue Reading

FCA Sets Expectations for Robo-Advisers

Many auto advisers and automated discretionary investment managers risk poor outcomes for customers by falling short of FCA expectations. By Nicola Higgs and Brett Carr The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has issued a statement outlining its expectations of firms providing automated online discretionary investment management (ODIM) services and retail investment auto advisers (auto advisors). The … Continue Reading

Cryptocurrencies and Prepaid Cards Face Closer AML Regulation in the EU

New EU anti-money laundering measures have been approved by European legislators. By Stuart Davis and Charlotte Collins The European Parliament and Council have finally signed off on the text of the fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive (known as MLD5). Overview The new directive is of particular interest to the FinTech sector as, amongst other things, MLD5 … Continue Reading

FCA Statement on Cryptocurrency Derivatives

FCA warns providers of cryptocurrency derivatives of their regulatory obligations. By Andrew Moyle, Stuart Davis and Charlotte Collins The UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has issued a statement reminding businesses offering cryptocurrency derivatives of the requirement to be authorised. The FCA explains that, although cryptocurrencies are not themselves regulated in the UK, derivatives that reference … Continue Reading

UK Government’s First FinTech Sector Strategy Launched at the International Fintech Conference

The Strategy emphasises the UK government’s continued push to create a world-leading FinTech sector. By Stuart Davis, Charlotte Collins and Sam Wong At the second International Fintech Conference held on 22 March 2018, Philip Hammond, Chancellor of the Exchequer, announced the launch of the UK’s first Fintech Sector Strategy. The Strategy includes the following key … Continue Reading

Swiss Regulator Publishes ICO Guidelines

Swiss regulator offers assistance in navigating the regulatory framework. By Andrew Moyle, Stuart Davis and Charlotte Collins The Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) has published a set of guidelines, setting out how it intends to apply its financial markets legislation in the context of initial coin offerings (ICOs). Despite the growing trend for ICOs … Continue Reading

FCA to Take a Closer Look at ICOs

By Stuart Davis and Charlotte Collins Following on from the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA’s) consumer warning on Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) in September, the FCA has announced a deeper examination of this area in its Feedback Statement on Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) and related press release. The FCA stated that it will consider whether regulatory … Continue Reading

UK Budgets for Fintech Growth

By Andrew Moyle and Stuart Davis The UK government’s 2017 Autumn Budget included some measures of particular interest for fintech firms, demonstrating the government’s continued commitment to making the UK a world-leading fintech hub. The government has provided only scant detail on these measures at present, but no doubt firms will be watching closely to … Continue Reading

ESMA Provides Further Clarity on Initial Coin Offerings in Europe

By James Inness and Stuart Davis Following our 7 November 2017 blog “Europe as a Hub for Initial Coin Offerings”, the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has published two statements on Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs). The statements underline ESMA’s interest in ICOs as a means to raise capital for enterprises, particularly given their rapid … Continue Reading

ECB Announces Support for Fintech Bank Applicants

By Andrew Moyle, Stuart Davis, and Charlotte Collins On 15 November 2017, the European Central Bank (ECB) published a newsletter containing an article on how the ECB is dealing with the increasing number of fintech bank applications. The ECB is the banking supervisor, alongside national regulators, for all “significant” banks authorised in Eurozone countries. As … Continue Reading

Europe as a Hub for Initial Coin Offerings?

By James Inness and Stuart Davis Initial coin offerings (ICOs) involve issuers offering virtual coins or tokens that are created and disseminated using blockchain or distributed ledger technology. Virtual coins resemble cash in a number of ways but may also afford holders additional rights, such as the ability to access the platform or software, or participate … Continue Reading

Distributed Ledger Technology in the Financial Market Infrastructure

By Andrew Moyle and Stuart Davis The Project Stella report, a European Central Bank (ECB) and Bank of Japan (BOJ) joint venture, details the applicability of distributed ledger technology for financial market infrastructure. During a one-month research project, the central banks tested whether distributed ledger technology (DLT) could sustain the liquidity saving mechanisms — a … Continue Reading

Coining it in: ICOs as the New Fundraising Paradigm?

By Andrew Moyle, Wenchi Hu, Simon Hawkins and Stuart Davis Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) involve issuers offering virtual coins or tokens that are created and disseminated using distributed ledger or blockchain technology. The capital raised from the offer will fund the development of a digital platform, software, or any other project. Holders of virtual coins or … Continue Reading

Up into the Clouds?

By Fiona Maclean, Stuart Davis and Charlotte Collins Cloud services come with the promise of many benefits for the financial services sector. Cloud computing offers large-scale and cost-effective solutions for data storage and efficient processing and is also the underlying technology for many FinTech platforms. As with a lot of new technology, however, financial institutions … Continue Reading

FCA Regulatory Sandbox Update: Successes in Round One, Application Window for Round Three Open

By Stuart Davis, Andrew Moyle, Fiona Maclean, Christian McDermott and Charlotte Collins The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has provided an update on its regulatory sandbox initiative. The sandbox is part of Project Innovate, and allows businesses (whether already authorised or not) to test new offerings in the market under close supervision and without many of the … Continue Reading
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