FCA Bans Crypto ETN's and Crypto Assets

Oct 16, 2020

The sale of Crypto derivatives and exchange-traded notes (ETNs) are going to be banned very soon. The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has published rules banning certain crypto assets to retail consumers.

The financial regulator had said that it finds the products to be ill-suited for the said retail consumers because of the harm they pose. They can't be reliably valued by consumers for multiple reasons including:

  • They have no reliable basis for valuation. This is due to the inherent nature of the underlying assets.
  • It prevents market abuse and financial crime within the secondary market.
  • The fact that retail consumers do not fully understand crypto assets.
  • There is volatility when it comes to asset price movements in crypto
  • The lack of legitimate investment needed for retail consumers to invest in the products.
fca cryptocurrency

More specifically, the sale, marketing and distribution will be banned. As well as any derivatives contract or ETNs that linked to “unregulated transferable crypto assets” issued by entities in or outside the U.K.

The transferable crypto assets have been classified as "tokens that are not ‘specified investments’ or e-money, and can be traded." by the FCA. The term includes major crytocurrencies like bitcoin, ether and XRP.

When will this ban come into place? January 6th 2021. So, relatively soon. The interim executive director of Strategy & Competition at the FCA, Sheldon Mills, had said that "This ban reflects how seriously we view the potential harm to retail consumers in these products. Consumer protection is paramount here,"


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