Category Archives: Cryptocurrency

Governance in the Absence of Regulation: A Study of Initial Coin Offerings

By | November 5, 2019

Courtesy of William C. Johnson and Sangho Yi Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) are a novel financing method in which crypto tokens are auctioned to the public in return for fiat or cryptocurrencies using blockchain-based platforms such as Ethereum. The technology building ICOs creates a new landscape within financial economics where many important economic concepts need… Read More »

What Congress Should Ask About Facebook’s New Cryptocurrency

By | July 2, 2019

On June 18th, Facebook released a white paper and additional documentation that describe a new cryptocurrency, called Libra, which will be governed by the twenty-eight member Libra Association (the “Association”). Shortly thereafter, the Senate Banking Committee and the House Financial Services Committee announced they would hold hearings to look into Libra and Facebook’s involvement; these… Read More »

The SEC Should Continue to Say No to Bitcoin Exchange-Traded Products

By | June 18, 2019

The following is an edited comment letter that was submitted to the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “Commission”) on June 14th in response to the Commission’s May 20, 2019 order (Release No.34-85896) to institute proceedings under Section 19(b)(2)(B) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1933 (“Act”) to determine whether to approve or disapprove of Cboe… Read More »

The Expanding Regulatory Perimeter – Crypto-Asset Trading

By | May 30, 2019

Courtesy of Barbara C. Matthews (JD/LLM ’91) “Hi!  I’m from the government.  I’m here to help.” The regulatory perimeter regarding crypto-assets continues to expand.  The latest move comes from the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) which released for comment on 28 May, 2019 suggested regulatory oversight standards[1] to govern crypto-asset trading platforms (the “IOSCO… Read More »

When Tech Meets Money: the Central-Bank Digital Currency

By | May 22, 2019

Courtesy of Marcelo M. Prates Not long ago, money was simple, central banks were all but invisible, and banks seemed like an inevitable nuisance. Money consisted of the coins and notes carried in wallets, or the checkbook in the desk drawer. Central banks were poorly understood institutions, entrusted with the mystical power to print money.… Read More »

Entrepreneurial Finance and Moral Hazard: Evidence from Token Offerings

By | April 30, 2019

Courtesy of Paul P. Momtaz Token Offerings or Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) are a rapidly growing market, with more than 4,500 transactions in 2018 alone. However, there is also substantial fraudulent activity spurred by the absence of regulation. My new paper, Entrepreneurial Finance and Moral Hazard: Evidence from Token Offerings, explores a very subtle, hard-to-track… Read More »

High-Frequency Trading Comes to Cryptocurrency

By | April 24, 2019

Courtesy of Marissa Cantu and Lee Reiners Amidst last December’s stock market volatility, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin argued “high-frequency traders combined with the Volcker Rule” were to blame.  Secretary Mnuchin then announced he intended to ask the Financial Stability Oversight Council to review how market structure, in conjunction with high-frequency trading, contributes to stock market… Read More »

Central Bank Digital Currency – Growing Interest, Concrete Data

By | March 28, 2019

Courtesy of Barbara C. Matthews Regulators may be setting their sights on how to regulate Big Tech – as discussed in last month’s FinReg Blog post – but, as central banks and finance ministers prepare to convene in Washington in April for the IMF/World Bank Spring Meetings, the issue poised to generate the most interest… Read More »

ICO Regulation not Slowed by Brexit or US Shutdown Chaos

By | January 28, 2019

Courtesy of Barbara C. Matthews It seems somehow ironic and fitting that the economic sector most hostile to centralized governments – cryptocurrency and initial coin offerings (ICOs)  – faces renewed regulatory activity despite the UK Brexit and US shutdown chaos.  On January 23, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in the United Kingdom issued a new… Read More »

Can Virtual Currencies Challenge the Dominant Position of Sovereign Currencies?

By | November 30, 2018

Courtesy of Marek Dabrowski[1] and Lukasz Janikowski[2] The short answer is most likely no, at least not in the near future. Despite the relative “success” of Bitcoin and other virtual currencies (VCs) like Ethereum and Ripple, their role in the economy is minimal. On November 27, 2018, the total market capitalization of all VCs was… Read More »