On 3 September 2020, Andrew Bailey, the Governor of the Bank of England, delivered a speech to the Brookings Institution regarding innovation in payments, setting out his view that innovations need to be underpinned by an appropriate regulatory framework to be suitable for use on a wider scale. In his view, stablecoins have the potential to be suitable for widespread use, but must meet the standards of other regulated payments to maintain consumer protection and promote consumer confidence.
On 20 July 2020, HM Treasury published a consultation paper proposing to bring the promotion of certain types of cryptoasset within scope of the financial promotions restriction. The proposed changes, together with those proposed in the Treasury’s parallel consultation on the financial promotions approval regime would result in a significant expansion of the scope of the financial promotions regime.
On 20 July 2020, HM Treasury launched a consultation proposing to reform the regulatory framework for approval of financial promotions. HMT’s proposals are potentially far-reaching and may have important implications for the way that certain firms conduct business.
On 9 July 2020, the European Commission published a Communication to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions entitled “Getting ready for changes: Communication on readiness at the end of the transition period between the European Union and the United Kingdom”. The Communication aims to highlight the main areas of inevitable change and to facilitate readiness and preparations by stakeholders, especially in light of the Commission’s views that “[n]egotiations so far have shown little progress” and that “broad and far-reaching changes … will arise under any scenario”. The Communication raises some key points for UK financial services firms, which we highlight in our post.
On 3 July 2020, the FCA published a Decision Notice against Conor Foley, former WorldSpreads CEO, proposing to fine him £658,900 for market abuse and ban him from performing any roles linked to regulated activity. This decision highlights the FCA’s continued focus on market abuse cases involving market manipulation, and serves as a reminder that the FCA is determined to continue pursuing complex and difficult cases involving false and misleading statements.
The European Commission published an updated list of high risk third countries in respect of AML/CTF due diligence.