On 6 March 2020, the FCA published a speech given by Therese Chambers (Director of Retail and Regulatory Investigations, FCA) entitled Unstable coins: cryptoassets, financial regulation and preventing financial crime in the emerging market for digital assets.

In summary, highlights in the speech include:

  • cryptoassets such as Bitcoin, present different financial crime risks from traditional FinTech apps, as they enable digital value transfer without a financial intermediary;
  • money laundering using cryptoassets is a real danger, but the application of robust anti-money laundering (AML) controls combined with international cooperation can help reduce the risk;
  • robust regulation to prevent financial crime supports financial innovation in new markets such as cryptoassets; and
  • the FCA’s AML regime for cryptoassets presents the FCA with unique supervisory and enforcement powers that are tailored to meet international standards.