On November 1, 2021, the President’s Working Group released a long-awaited report on stablecoins. The Report outlines a number of significant legislative recommendations for Congress to consider as well as a number of interim measures that agencies should adopt under their existing authorities to protect against prudential risks in the near-term.
Continue Reading President’s Working Group Releases Report on Stablecoins

In 15 recent enforcement actions, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission announced charges against various digital asset exchanges for failure to register appropriately as futures commission merchants. This series of actions is the latest in an ongoing regulatory crackdown across federal agencies involving cryptocurrency and other digital asset trading platforms.
Continue Reading CFTC Charges Crypto Platforms for Registration and Trading Violations

In the past month, the Federal Reserve, FDIC and OCC have each detailed their upcoming focus on digital asset activities in the banking industry. So far, state banking regulators have often outpaced their federal counterparts in terms of issuing formal regulations and guidance around digital assets. Many banks are waiting to explore potential digital asset products and services until the functional federal bank regulators provide concrete guidance to complete the picture.
Continue Reading Federal Bank Regulators Move to Provide Further Guidance on Digital Asset Activities

Texas is seeing considerable momentum with respect to a proposed digital asset law that is being considered in the 2021 legislative session in the form of House Bill 4474. In short, the Texas Virtual Currency Bill provides a basic legal framework for companies dealing with virtual currencies.
Continue Reading Texas Legislature Proposes Significant Virtual Currency Bill

In some of her first remarks on the subject of digital assets since Senate confirmation, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen sounded an alarm on Bitcoin. In an interview with CNBC’s Andrew Ross Sorkin, Secretary Yellen described Bitcoin as frequently used “for illicit finance” and “an extremely inefficient way of conducting transactions.”
Continue Reading Treasury Secretary Skeptical of Bitcoin

The Wyoming Division of Banking issued a No-Action Letter in October 2020 in response to a request from a Wyoming-chartered public trust company seeking the Division of Banking’s position on the ability of the company to custody digital assets as well as hold itself out as a “qualified custodian.” The NAL prompted the Staff of the Securities and Exchange Commission to issue a public statement seeking public comment on matters concerning the definition of “qualified custodian” under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940 and Rule 206(4)-2 thereunder.
Continue Reading SEC and Wyoming Division of Banking Address Custody of Digital Assets

On July 22, 2020, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency published an interpretive letter clarifying the authority of national banks to provide cryptocurrency custody services for customers. This latest guidance is just one of many recent developments coming out of the OCC focused on modernizing the regulatory framework at the national level. 
Continue Reading OCC Releases Guidance on the Authority of National Banks to Provide Cryptocurrency Custody Services