News & Analysis as of

Securities Securities & Exchange Commission

Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) May Be Subject to SEC Registration Requirements

by Bryan Cave on

Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) and other digital currency financing events have enjoyed explosive growth in 2017, with hundreds of millions of dollars invested with little to no regulation or government oversight. That era...more

Spotlight On Initial Coin Offerings

by Murtha Cullina on

During the past year, the United States has seen an increasing number of a novel form of capital raising conducted by businesses or developers – known as an "initial coin offering," or "ICO." As often seen with other new...more

ICOs at the End of 2017: What We Think We Know and What We Don't Know

Initial coin offerings (ICOs), token pre-sales, and similar sales of blockchain-based coins and tokens are quickly becoming an important fundraising option, and an important method of attempting to seed a token-based platform...more

WSGR Fintech Update - October 2017

Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati is pleased to present the October 2017 issue of the WSGR Fintech Update. This latest edition features an article discussing the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's new "Cyber Unit"...more

When the Inevitable Happens: When to Self-Report Securities Law Violations and What to Expect When You Do

by WilmerHale on

An anonymous compliance hotline within your investment adviser suddenly receives complaints about a market-beating portfolio manager. Your in-house compliance and legal team investigate and learn this portfolio manager may...more

Equifax Data Breach: Preliminary Lessons for the Adoption and Implementation of Insider Trading Policies

by Dorsey & Whitney LLP on

Insider trading allegations have surfaced at Equifax, a credit rating agency that last week announced a data breach that could potentially affect 143 million consumers in the United States, nearly half of the country’s...more

SEC to ICO Players: Our Game, Our Rules

On July 25, 2017, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) published an investigative report (the “Report”) cautioning market participants that the offer and sale of digital assets such as “coins” or “tokens,”...more

SEC Focuses on Initial Coin Offerings: Tokens May Be Securities Under Federal Securities Laws

by Dechert LLP on

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has recently taken several actions to make clear that it is focused on and actively monitoring the rapidly growing market for so-called “token sales” or “initial coin...more

SEC’s Phone Call to Protostarr Shuts Down its ICO

by Goodwin on

Protostarr, a block-chain based startup, has shut down its decentralized application and refunded its initial coin offering (ICO) participants following a request for information from the U.S. Securities and Exchange...more

SEC Securities Trading Suspension for Three Blockchain-Related Companies

by Reed Smith on

The spot market for digital tokens, which was once a “wild west” seemingly outside the scope of most federal regulations, is being integrated into the emerging Federal and State regulatory regime. In a period of just over two...more

SEC Taking Action Against Cryptocurrency ICO Promoters

by Slim Ventures LLC on

The SEC has begun clamping down on Initial Coin Offerings of cryptocurrency investments, with promoters needlessly running afoul of the SEC. With over a billion dollars raised year-to-date (a five fold increase over all of...more

Delaware Becomes the First State to Allow Corporations to Maintain Corporate Records Using Blockchain Technology

by Jones Day on

On August 1, 2017, Delaware became the first state to allow corporations to use blockchain technology to maintain corporate records. This development comes almost a year after Vice Chancellor J. Travis Laster of the Delaware...more

SEC Issues Guidance on Initial Coin Offerings and Digital Assets

by Holland & Knight LLP on

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on July 25, 2017, issued a "Report of Investigation Pursuant to Section 21(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934: The DAO," weighing in on what are known as Initial Coin...more

Initial coin offerings – something new under the regulatory sun?

by DLA Piper on

FinTech Regulation - In our financial services updates at the beginning of the year (see here), we outlined a few regulatory pointers for FinTech coming out of a speech by the Chair of the Financial Stability Board (FSB)....more

SEC's Investigative Report Raises Difficult Questions for ICO Issuers

by Jones Day on

Against the backdrop of recent growth of initial coin or token offerings ("ICOs"), the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC"), on July 25, 2017, published its first public statements on this fundraising practice. The...more

SEC Issues Guidance on Regulation of Initial Coin Offerings

Over the last 12 months, a growing number of start-ups, primarily those offering blockchain-based services, have raised capital utilizing so-called initial coin offerings or token sales (collectively referred to herein as...more

SEC Report Determines DAO Tokens, A Digital Asset, Were Securities

by King & Spalding on

On July 25, 2017, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) released a Report of Investigation (“Report”) warning market participants that offers and sales of digital assets (“Tokens”) by “virtual” organizations...more

SEC Speaks on Initial Coin Offerings: Tokens May Be Securities

No blockchain phenomenon has garnered more attention lately than Initial Coin Offerings ("ICOs"), which have exploded in value and raised more than $1.2 billion thus far this year....more

Between Bridges: SEC Declines to Prosecute Issuer of Digital Tokens That It Deems Securities Not Issued in Accordance with US...

Yesterday, the Securities and Exchange Commission published a Report of Investigation that concluded that digital tokens issued by an entity for the purpose of raising funds for projects – even if using distributed ledger or...more

Red Notice Newsletter - Chinese

ANTICORRUPTION DEVELOPMENTS - Steven Peikin Reported to Become Co-Director of SEC’s Enforcement Division - On May 26, 2017, The Wall Street Journal reported that recently confirmed Commissioner Jay Clayton will hire...more

Red Notice Newsletter - Russian

ANTICORRUPTION DEVELOPMENTS - Steven Peikin Reported to Become Co-Director of SEC’s Enforcement Division - On May 26, 2017, The Wall Street Journal reported that recently confirmed Commissioner Jay Clayton will hire...more

Blockchain and the financial markets: Will 2017 be the year of the regulators? New rules covering blockchain and distributed...

by White & Case LLP on

In 2016, policy makers and regulators started to take an active interest in blockchain and distributed ledger technology (DLT). However, many adopted a "wait and see" approach rather than producing binding regulations. 2017...more

Blockchain and the Law - Overview of token sales and bitcoin property rights

by Perkins Coie on

On March 29, 2017, Perkins Coie partner Dax Hansen and associate Josh Boehm were invited to the Cyber Initiative at Stanford Law School to deliver a presentation on several cutting-edge legal issues relating to blockchain...more

It’s OK, Capital Markets Associates, You (Probably) Haven’t Lost a Day to Get to Closing

As we noted in a previous blog, the SEC recently adopted an amendment to Rule 15c6-1(a) to shorten the standard settlement cycle for most broker-dealer transactions from three business days after the trade date (T+3) to two...more

Non-Use Agreement Need Not Precede Disclosure of Confidential Information

A Pennsylvania federal court held yesterday that an agreement not to use confidential inside information for trading purposes need not precede the receipt of that information in order to create liability under the...more

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Cybersecurity

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