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Category Archives: Blockchain

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The SEC Greenlights a Blockchain Settlement Service for Public Shares

The US agency has used a no-action letter to enable a sandbox-like approach to blockchain-based trade settlements. By Stephen P. Wink, Cameron R. Kates, Shaun Musuka, and Deric Behar In what may be the first regulator-approved application of blockchain technology for the settlement of US equities trades, the Division of Trading and Markets of the … Continue Reading

The SEC Continues Its Enforcement Streak Against Unregistered Token Offerings

As the agency pursues and prevents offerings of tokens it deems unregistered securities, further issues emerge. By John J. Sikora Jr., Stephen P. Wink, Douglas K. Yatter, Cameron R. Kates, Shaun Musuka, and Deric Behar The recent wave of US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) enforcement actions relating to initial coin offerings (ICOs) continues with … Continue Reading

Podcast: Macro and Regulatory Developments Impacting Stablecoins

Latham FinTech partners discuss the evolving stablecoin landscape on the New Territories Podcast. By Christian F. McDermott, Yvette D. Valdez, and Stephen P. Wink New York partners Yvette Valdez and Stephen Wink and London partner Christian McDermott recently discussed the evolving stablecoin landscape on new episodes of The Brooklyn Project’s New Territories Podcast. The partners, … Continue Reading

The Yellow Brick Road for Consumer Tokens: The Path to SEC and CFTC Compliance (an Update)

Latham & Watkins provides an in-depth look at the intersection of CFTC and SEC regulatory jurisdiction in the crypto context. By David L. Concannon, Yvette D. Valdez, and Stephen P. Wink, with Paul M. Dudek and Miles P. Jennings With the rapid growth in the development of blockchain technology, virtual currencies, and token sales (sometimes … Continue Reading

The G7 Draws a Line in the Sand for Global Stablecoins

Global monetary authorities and financial regulators have responded forcefully to the advent of privately developed global stablecoins. By Todd Beauchamp, David L. Concannon, Stephen P. Wink, Simon Hawkins, Stuart Davis, and Deric Behar A new report highlights the risks of global stablecoins and enumerates the legal, regulatory, and oversight hurdles a global stablecoin must clear … Continue Reading

Harbor Finds Calmer FINRA Waters Outside the Custody Storm

In line with its previous guidance, FINRA has granted broker-dealer (but not custodian) status to a digital asset platform. By Stephen P. Wink, Cameron R. Kates, Shaun Musuka, and Deric Behar In a follow-up to the July 2019 SEC and FINRA joint staff statement (Joint Statement) clarifying the regulators’ position on the custody of digital … Continue Reading

What the SEC’s Lawsuit Against Kik Teaches Us About Token Presale Agreements

Latham & Watkins lawyers provide an in-depth look at recent issues impacting the use of token presale agreements. By Stephen P. Wink, Miles P. Jennings, and Shaun Musuka Token presale agreements are a popular type of financing instrument among startups in the blockchain space. In this article, originally published by Bloomberg Law, Latham & Watkins … Continue Reading

Abu Dhabi Global Market Issues Updated Comprehensive Guidance on Cryptoasset Framework

By Brian Meenagh, and Khaled Alhuneidi. In June 2018, the Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) Financial Services Regulatory Authority (FSRA) unveiled a dedicated cryptoasset regulatory framework by way of various amendments to the FSRA’s core regulations – the Financial Services and Markets Regulation (FSMR) as well as supplementary guidance thereto. In May 2019, the FSRA … Continue Reading

Investors Welcome ADGM’s Guidance on Dedicated Cryptoasset Framework

The Abu Dhabi Global Market’s Guidance clarifies and expands FSRA expectations for OCAB Framework license holders. By Brian A. Meenagh In June 2018, the Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) Financial Services Regulatory Authority (FSRA) unveiled a dedicated cryptoasset regulatory framework by way of various amendments to the FSRA’s core regulations — the Financial Services and … Continue Reading

Stakeholders Welcome New FinCEN Regulatory Guidance for Convertible Virtual Currency

FinCEN’s guidance clarifies the applicability of the BSA to a variety of virtual currency businesses. By Todd Beauchamp, Charles Weinstein, Loyal T. Horsley, Cameron R. Kates, and Shaun Musuka On May 9, the US Department of the Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) issued interpretive guidance expanding on previously issued guidance and rulings regarding the … Continue Reading

Overcoming Regulatory Hurdles: Introducing an Automated Convertible Note Generator for Token-Based Startups

The online document generator helps startups raise capital with customizable market standard terms and optional digital token provisions. By David L. Concannon, Yvette D. Valdez, Stephen P. Wink, Miles P. Jennings, and Shaun Musuka In collaboration with ConsenSys and OpenLaw, Latham & Watkins recently launched the Automated Convertible Note Generator, a complimentary tool designed to … Continue Reading

The Book of Jargon® – Cryptocurrency & Blockchain Technology Now Available

Mobile and desktop reference tool defines nearly 300 industry terms. We are pleased to announce the launch of The Book of Jargon® – Cryptocurrency & Blockchain Technology, a comprehensive digital glossary of nearly 300 terms developed for the business, academic, and legal community. The easy-to-use reference tool demystifies the often complex legal and regulatory terminology, … Continue Reading

Firm Joins the Global Blockchain Business Council

Leading association focuses on advancing the adoption of blockchain technology across industries. Latham & Watkins has joined the Global Blockchain Business Council (GBBC), a leading industry association for the blockchain technology ecosystem, which brings together organizations and innovators from over 40 countries to advance understanding of blockchain technology. The organization focuses on “furthering [the] adoption of … 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 … 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

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

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 … Continue Reading
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