Archives: Fintech

Subscribe to Fintech RSS Feed

OCC Interpretation Paves Way for Banks to Custody Cryptocurrency

Today, the OCC released an interpretive letter concluding that national banks and federal savings associations (together, “banks”) may permissibly provide cryptocurrency custody services for customers.  The letter, written by Chief Counsel Jonathan Gould, describes custody of cryptocurrency as a modern form of the traditional banking activity of providing safekeeping and custody services, which the agency … Continue Reading

OCC Issues Final Rule Clarifying Permissible Interest on Loans Sold to Third Parties by National Banks and Federal Savings Associations

On May 29, 2020, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (the “OCC”) issued a final rule to clarify that the interest on a loan originated by a national bank (or a Federal savings association), if permissible when the loan was originated, continues to be permissible after the loan is sold, assigned, or otherwise … Continue Reading

European Commission Launches Key Consultations Regarding Digital Finance

On April 3, 2020, the European Commission launched two public consultations on a new digital finance strategy for Europe and on a retail payment strategy for Europe, which will both run until July 15, 2020.  The consultations follow two other consultations on an EU framework for markets in crypto-assets and on a potential initiative on … Continue Reading

SEC Orders Equity Exchanges and FINRA to Submit New Single National Market System Plan for Equity Market Data

On May 6, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) issued an order (“Order”) directing the registered equity exchanges and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) (together, the “Self-Regulatory Organizations” or “SROs”) to submit to the SEC a new National Market System (“NMS”) plan to govern the public dissemination of real-time, consolidated market data for NMS … Continue Reading

CFPB Hosts Symposium on Consumer Access to Financial Records

On February 26, 2020, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau hosted a symposium titled “Consumer Access to Financial Records.”  Video of the Symposium is available here.  The agenda included discussion among panelists from large financial institutions, fintechs, consumer groups, policy centers, and the CFPB.  Director Kathleen L. Kraninger also delivered brief opening remarks describing the history … Continue Reading

House Financial Services Committee to Consider Two Fintech Issues In January

The House Financial Services Committee (“HFSC”) announced that it will convene hearings this month to consider both the trend of financial technology firms partnering with chartered banks to provide financial services and the rise of mobile payments. More information about the hearing schedule is available on the HFSC’s website.… Continue Reading

OCC Appeals Fintech Charter Ruling to Second Circuit

On December 19, 2019, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) appealed a decision from the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York holding that the OCC cannot offer special purpose national bank charters to fintech companies. Lacewell v. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, Case 1:18-cv-08377 (S.D.N.Y. Sept. … Continue Reading

FTC and CFPB Host Workshop on Accuracy in Consumer Reporting

On December 10, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) held a joint workshop on accuracy in consumer reporting. The workshop included remarks from FTC Commissioner Noah Joshua Phillips, CFPB Assistant Director for Supervision Policy Peggy Twohig, CFPB Deputy Director Brian Johnson, and FTC Deputy Director for the Bureau of Economics … Continue Reading

Federal Agencies Issue Joint Statement on Alternative Data in Credit Underwriting

On December 3, 2019, the Federal Reserve Board, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, and National Credit Union Administration (collectively, “the agencies”), released a joint statement on the use of alternative data in underwriting by banks, credit unions, and non-bank financial firms. The agencies defined alternative data … Continue Reading

Basel Committee on Banking Supervision Releases Report on Open Banking

On November 19, the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (the “BCBS”) released a report on open banking and application programming interfaces (“APIs”), focusing specifically on aspects of open banking related to customer-permissioned data sharing, including sharing between a customer’s bank and various third party firms. The report builds on the BCBS’ February 2018 paper (“Sound … Continue Reading

IRS Ramps Up Efforts to Target Taxpayers Who Deal in Cryptocurrency

Last July, the IRS announced its Virtual Currency Compliance Campaign, designed to intensify the IRS’s efforts to counter the underreporting of income related to cryptocurrency use. Through the campaign, the IRS will address noncompliance through taxpayer education, increased audits and initiations of criminal investigations. This past week the IRS began sending “educational” letters to more … Continue Reading

New York DFS Announces New Division Overseeing Fintech

On July 23, the New York State Department of Financial Services (“DFS”) announced a new Research and Innovation Division.  The Division will assume responsibility for licensing and supervising virtual currencies.  It will also “assess efforts to use technology to address financial exclusion; identify and protect consumer data rights; and encourage innovations in the financial services … Continue Reading

SEC Issues Guidance on Changes to Stock Exchange Fees for Market Data and Connections

On May 21, 2019, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) issued guidance to national securities exchanges and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) (referred to as “SROs”) clarifying the SEC’s expectations with respect to their market data fees. These guidelines clarify enhanced standards for SROs to increase their fees for products and services, … Continue Reading

OCC Solicits Public Comments on Innovation Pilot Program

On April 30, 2019, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (“OCC”) opened a 45-day public comment period on its Innovation Pilot Program (the “Program”).  In accordance with the agency’s objective of providing constructive and proactive supervision, the OCC’s proposed Program is intended to encourage the testing of innovative activities – including products, services, … Continue Reading

FinCEN Penalizes Peer-to-Peer Virtual Currency Exchanger for Violating BSA

On April 18, 2019, the Department of the Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) announced an enforcement action against Eric Powers, a California-based peer-to-peer (P2P) virtual currency exchanger, for violating the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA).  This marks the first time FinCEN has taken action against a P2P virtual currency exchanger and the first time it … Continue Reading

CFTC Issues Report on Automated Futures Orders

On Wednesday, March 27, 2019, the CFTC’s Market Intelligence Branch of the Division of Market Oversight issued a report on the impact of automated orders in futures markets to determine how technological change affects futures trading. Automated trading refers to orders that are generated or routed without human intervention. The CFTC presented the report before … Continue Reading

Consumer Groups and Some States Oppose CFPB Policies Aimed at Promoting Fintech Innovation

The Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (the “CFPB” or “Bureau”) announced a trio of policies in September and December of 2018 intended to provide regulatory relief to banks and fintech companies developing new financial products and innovative disclosure methods, as part of its ongoing effort to promote innovation in financial technology. In public comments on … Continue Reading

Overview of Fintech Regulation in the United States

Innovation in financial services continues to move at a rapid pace. The significant increase in the number of fintech companies in recent years has highlighted a burgeoning market with significant economic potential, and a commercial need to create efficiencies and modernize the provision of financial products and services. Federal and state financial services regulators remain … Continue Reading

ESA Report Outlines Strategies on Facilitating Cross-Border EU Fintech Innovation

In a joint report (the “Report”) published on 7 January 2019, the EU’s three financial industry watchdogs considered the need for potential strategies to help coordinate and promote innovation in the EU fintech space. The Report by the European Securities and Markets Authority (“ESMA”), European Banking Agency (“EBA”) and European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority … Continue Reading

The ACM’s guidance to address competition law concerns for FinTech in the creation of technical standards

Introduction On December 3, 2018, the Dutch Authority for Consumers & Markets (“ACM”) published a speech from its board member, Cateautje Hijmans van den Bergh, regarding potential competition law concerns in the financial technology (“FinTech”) sector. In particular, further to the European Parliament’s study on FinTech and competition law (the “Study”) – as discussed in a previous blog post – Hijmans … Continue Reading

FDIC Renews Focus on De Novo Charters

On December 6, 2018, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (“FDIC”) released a series of documents relating to the process for chartering a de novo FDIC-insured depository institution. A request for information (“RFI”) on all aspects of the FDIC’s deposit insurance application process. The RFI seeks comments on the transparency and efficiency of the application process, … Continue Reading

Intellectual Property Issues in Blockchain and FinTech

FinTech and blockchain technologies are rapidly developing. With the emergence of so many new ideas and technologies comes the need for action, to protect both current and future innovations. Given the pace at which technology continues to disrupt the industry, securing IP assets—especially patents—should be a primary consideration for companies in this space. As the … Continue Reading

CFTC Issues Primer on Smart Contracts

The CFTC’s LabCFTC recently released “A Primer on Smart Contracts” as part of LabCFTC’s initiative to engage with stakeholders on FinTech topics. The primer explains smart contracts, and explores their potential benefits — with a particular focus on the financial sector — and challenges. The CFTC has an interest in smart contracts because, as the … Continue Reading

State Regulators Renew OCC Suit Over Fintech Charter

On October 25, 2018, the Conference of State Bank Supervisors (“CSBS”) filed a complaint in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia to stop the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (“OCC”) from issuing special purpose national bank charters to fintech companies.  The lawsuit follows a similar suit against the OCC by … Continue Reading
LexBlog