The SEC delayed its decision on Bitwise’s proposed bitcoin ETF again; Paytm is working with Citi to launch its first physical card in India; Investec shut down its robo-advisory business; the ECB produced a white paper exploring the risk to the EU posed by crypto assets; British MPs called for shared bank hubs; Coinbase expanded global access to the USD Coin stablecoin; and crypto trading platform eToro is expanding to the U.S.
The SEC issued new guidance on digital assets, and also issued a no-action letter regarding digital token use; BNY Mellon and BlackRock partnered on a data sharing agreement; the FSB published a directory of global crypto-asset regulators; Affirm raised $300M in Series F funding; and JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon highlighted developments in AI, fintech, and China in his annual letter to shareholders.
The U.S. SEC delayed making a decision on two bitcoin ETFs; FICO and Equifax announced they plan to sell customer data to banks; a new report indicates that the majority of crypto exchanges lack appropriate KYC and AML controls; Apple announced it will introduce a new credit card in partnership with Goldman Sachs and Mastercard; and Hong Kong’s securities regulator announced new guidance on crypto token offerings.
The SEC announced it will hold a public forum on DLT and digital assets; IBM is working with CULedger on a digital identity blockchain system and signed a deal with the French commercial court; PayPal now offers instantaneous money transfers to U.S. banks; the Basel Committee has warned banks about their exposure to crypto; the U.K. FCA is considering eliminating investment platform exit fees; and micro-investing startup Stash raised $65 million in new funding and rolled out new banking services in partnership with Green Dot Bank.
Wells Fargo experienced widespread online and mobile banking outages; Facebook acqui-hired key members of a British blockchain firm to advance its blockchain efforts; fintech firm Pagaya announced its AI platform will actively manage $100M in asset-backed securities; controversial crypto evangelist Brock Pierce wants to reboot infamous Japanese crypto exchange Mt. Gox; and SEC Commissioner Robert Jackson said he believes a bitcoin ETF will eventually be approved.
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.