The Bank Secrecy Act and Cryptocurrency

The Bank Secrecy Act and Cryptocurrency

The Bank Secrecy Act ("BSA") sets forth that financial institutions are to collect and retain information about their customers and share such information with the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network ("FinCEN"), a bureau that is within the Treasury. In 2013, FinCEN published a guidance on the "Application of FinCEN's Regulations to Persons Administering, Exchanging, or Using [...]

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Venezuela’s Oil-Backed Cryptocurrency: ‘Petro’

Venezuela’s Oil-Backed Cryptocurrency: ‘Petro’

In his weekly national television program, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro unveiled a plan to evade international sanctions through an oil and natural reserve (gold, gas and diamond), backed crytocurrency called petromoneda ("Petro"). About a year ago, NPR's Planet Money conducted a podcast describing Venezuela as an "economic horror story" arguing that "Venezuela didn't save its [...]

Global Financial Forum, Navigating the New Order

Global Financial Forum, Navigating the New Order

    *All DIFC photos are my own On November 14, 2017 Dubai International Financial Center ("DIFC") along with The Economist hosted its first Global Financial Forum where: "Expert panelists came together to discuss the geo-economic, technological and financial trends impacting the industry now and in the future." (via DIFC Link) Among the notable announcements at [...]

Disrupting the Financial Services Industry: FinTech

Disrupting the Financial Services Industry: FinTech

According to the World Economic Forum, FinTechs have: Materially changed the basis of competition in financial services, but have not yet materially changed the competitive landscape. They play a critical role in defining the pace and direction of innovation across the sector but have struggled to overcome the scale advantages of large financial institutions. Key [...]

Cryptocurrency: The Future of Payment for Luxury Dubai Properties

Cryptocurrency: The Future of Payment for Luxury Dubai Properties

Dubai, United Arab Emirates ("UAE") is rapidly establishing itself as a smart city across various business sectors, including real estate. From investing in flying taxis, establishing an innovative FinTech Incubator Hive, expanding its international financial center ("DIFC") to creating whole islands inspired by prominent world sites, the UAE is truly exemplifying that no idea is to remote [...]

Remittance FinTechs and the UAE

Remittance FinTechs and the UAE

The growth of FinTechs, or technology enabled financial services, has skyrocketed in an attempt to eliminate the confines of traditional banking. According to The World Economic Forum, "Two and a half billion people around the world are un- or underbanked." This is where FinTechs have come in, making financial services more accessible than ever before, especially [...]

What Does China’s Ban on ICOs Mean?

What Does China’s Ban on ICOs Mean?

On September 4, 2017, the People's Bank of China ("PBoC") issued a statement banning Initial Coin Offerings ("ICOs") and crypto token sales in order to avoid suspected illegal financial activities and the serious disruption of financial order in the People's Republic of China ("PRC"). In its statement, the PBC claims that token sales are an illegal [...]