Federal authorities arrested the leaders of OneCoin on charges including money laundering and securities fraud; Congress held hearings on whether and how to create a federal privacy law; the Bank of England plans to take supervisory action against Visa for a 2018 European data center outage; Philadelphia became the first major U.S. city to ban cashless stores; Ant Financial unveiled a new banking platform; and MasterCard dropped its bid to acquire Earthport.
Twenty-two state AGs challenged the CFPB’s proposed fintech sandbox; the Senate Banking Committee is set to examine financial data collection; JPMorgan Chase introduced its own dollar-backed cryptocurrency; President Trump signed an EO setting aside federal funds for AI projects; IBM won a $700M five-year technology deal with Banco Santander; Ant confirmed its acquisition of WorldFirst; and U.K. challenger bank Starling raised £75M in Series C funding.
The SEC is seeking support from private firms on understanding blockchain; a group of global regulators has launched a global regulator sandbox for cross-border fintech products and services; money transfer service WorldFirst is spinning off its U.S. operations ahead of its acquisition by Ant Financial; IBM completed a pilot test of its blockchain-based trade shipment platform; Stripe raised an additional $100M, reaching a $22.5B valuation; and Lithuania made strides in 2018 as a destination for fintech firms seeking a variety of EU operating licenses.
Kik is expected to challenge the SEC over an ICO enforcement action; Coinbase rolled out crypto institutional services in Asia; Alipay was granted an EU e-money license; Bitcoin ATM startups reported growth; the EU and Japan finalized a data flow agreement; and IBM landed a $260m IT infrastructure deal with the Bank of the Philippine Islands.
Square re-filed its ILC charter application; New York established a digital currency task force; Ant is considering acquiring WorldFirst; Google gained an EU e-money license; Robinhood is apparently preparing to expand to the U.K.; and the WSJ profiles the SEC’s Hester Peirce.
The U.S. Supreme Court backed American Express in an antitrust case; California passed a stringent new privacy law; Andreessen Horowitz launched a cryptocurrency fund; JP Morgan took its mobile-only bank, Finn, nationwide; Facebook reversed its decision to ban all cryptocurrency ads; and Ant Financial launched a cross-border remittance service.