As reported in a Hunton Client Alert last week, on June 6, 2023, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (“FDIC”), the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (“FRB”) and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (“OCC”) (collectively, the “Agencies”) issued final guidance on managing risks associated with third-party relationships, including relationships with fintechs (the “Final Guidance”).1 Effective as of the June 6, 2023 issuance date, the Final Guidance replaces each of the Agencies’ existing guidance on third-party risk management and provides consistency in the Agencies’ supervisory approaches.2 The Final Guidance is directed to all banking organizations supervised by the Agencies and advises such organizations to consider and account for the level of risk, complexity and size of the institution, as well as the nature of the third-party relationship, when conducting sound risk management.Continue Reading Interagency Guidance for Bank Risk Management of Third-Party Relationships
On June 8, 2023, Judge William H. Orrick of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California granted a default judgment in favor of the CFTC against Ooki DAO, a cryptocurrency decentralized autonomous exchange. The court also permanently enjoined Ooki DAO from operating its website and awarded the CTFC $643,542 in monetary damages. The court found that Ooki DAO’s lack of participation in the litigation and refusal to appear in court contributed to the default judgment. This decision brings to a close the closely-watched case that establishes new precedents for the legal liability of decentralized autonomous exchanges.Continue Reading CFTC Wins Default Judgment Against Ooki DAO
On May 30, 2023, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission Division of Clearing and Risk (DCR) issued a staff advisory (CFTC Letter No. 23-07) on the risks associated with the Derivatives Clearing Organization (DCO) clearing of digital assets. DCR will emphasize compliance with the DCO core principles related to system safeguards, conflicts of interest, and physical delivery.Continue Reading CFTC Staff Issues Alert on Risks of Clearing Digital Assets
On May 22, 2023, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced its first monetary settlement with celebrity endorsers for a combined $1.7 million.
The complaint filed by the FTC and the Utah Division of Consumer Protection (DCP) against Response Marketing Group, LLC and its principals, also named two real estate celebrities as defendants—Scott Yancey, star of the home-flipping show Flipping Vegas on A&E, and Dean R. Graziosi, author of Millionaire Success Habits. The complaint alleged that defendants used false promises to sell consumers expensive real estate investment training programs, which Yancey and Graziosi promoted. Yancey and Graziosi were also allegedly involved in efforts to bury online customer complaints that said Response Marketing was a scam and cost consumers more than $400 million.Continue Reading FTC Secures First Monetary Settlement Against Celebrity Endorsers
On May 5, 2023, New York Attorney General Letitia James released proposed legislation that seeks to regulate all facets of the cryptocurrency industry. Entitled the “Crypto Regulation, Protection, Transparency, and Oversight (CRPTO) Act,” if enacted the draft bill would substantially expand New York’s oversight of crypto enterprises conducting business in the Empire State.Continue Reading New York Attorney General Proposes Sweeping Crypto Legislation
On April 14, 2023, by a 3-2 party-line vote the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) reopened the public comment period and provided supplemental information on amendments proposed in January 2022 to the definition of “exchange” under Rule 3b-16. The SEC previously reopened the comment period in May 2022. The April 2023 action provides supplemental information and economic analysis regarding trading systems that trade crypto asset securities that would be newly included in the definition of “exchange” under the proposed rules.Continue Reading SEC Steps up Oversight of Crypto Exchanges
As reported on the Hunton Insurance Recovery Blog, blockchain technology has been touted as inherently reliable for years. More recently, collectors of Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) have explored expanded uses for that novel technology. Some courts have bought in and, in doing so, recently authorized a use that perhaps no one had imagined when NFTs first entered the mainstream: service of process.Continue Reading NFT Service Brings Litigation Into the Metaverse!
As we reported in yesterday’s client alert, the US Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) has announced that it is conducting a survey of all US businesses whose voting interests are 10% or more owned, directly or indirectly, by a foreign person. Responses to this survey are mandatory for every such US business enterprise, as described more fully below. These responses are due May 31, 2023 (or June 30, 2023 if submitted via the BEA’s electronic filing portal).Continue Reading US Bureau of Economic Analysis Conducts Survey of US Businesses Having Foreign Ownership of Voting Interests of 10% or More
The US Department of Justice (“DOJ”) made several recent announcements expanding on its expectations for corporate compliance programs and unveiling new guidance on executive compensation structures, consequence management and business communications and ephemeral messaging.
DOJ also announced a new enforcement push focused on the intersection of corporate crime and national security.Continue Reading DOJ Announcements on Corporate Compliance Programs, Compensation Clawbacks and National Security
Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP continues to assist clients and monitor developments in the financial markets arising from the liquidity challenges and market volatility currently facing the banking industry. Late Tuesday brought the first inevitable wave of lawsuits and government investigations. There will be many more in the days ahead.Continue Reading Bank Turmoil Brings Increased Risk of Litigation and Investigations