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    FCA Publishes Guidance on Cryptoasset Activities Under Its Purview

    July 31, 2019

    FCA published a policy statement (PS19/22) that aims to give market participants and interested stakeholders clarity on the types of cryptoassets that fall within the regulatory remit of FCA and the resulting obligations for firms and regulatory protections for consumers. PS19/22 also provides information on cryptoassets that are outside the regulatory perimeter of FCA and what this means for firms and consumers. PS19/22 was issued in response to the related consultation on cryptoassets (CP19/3).

    FCA received 92 responses to CP19/3 from across the financial services sector and beyond, including large banks, fintech firms, and token issuers. Most respondents supported the proposals. FCA, therefore, proceeded with some drafting amendments in a few areas to improve clarity and ensure that the policy intention is achieved. FCA has also provided further clarity on tokens commonly referred to as "stablecoins." Minor drafting changes were made throughout the guidance, particularly to provide more clarity where tokens might be e-money. The policy statement summarizes the guidance, the feedback to CP19/3, the FCA response to feedback to CP19/3, and feedback to the market observations section of the guidance, along with the associated response of FCA. The final guidance can be found in Appendix 1 while the associated Q&A can be found in Appendix 2.  The guidance also covers security tokens and utility tokens and it sets out where tokens are likely to be:

    • Specified investments under the Regulated Activities Order
    • E-money under the E-Money Regulations
    • Captured under the Payment Services Regulations
    • Outside of regulation

    The policy statement will alert market participants to pertinent issues and should help them better understand whether they need to be authorized and what rules or regulations apply to their business. This guidance applies to firms issuing or creating cryptoassets, firms marketing cryptoasset products and services, firms buying or selling cryptoassets, firms holding or storing cryptoassets, financial advisers, professional advisers, investment managers, recognized investment exchanges, and consumers and consumer organizations. 

     

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    Keywords: Europe, UK, Banking, Securities, PMI, Crypto Assets, Regtech, Fintech, PS19/22, CP19/3, Stablecoin, FCA

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