News & Analysis as of

Virtual Currency Securities

Virtual Currency (aka Digital Currency or Digital Money) is a type of currency or medium of exchange that is not issued by any government nor guaranteed by a government currency. Despite lacking legal tender... more +
Virtual Currency (aka Digital Currency or Digital Money) is a type of currency or medium of exchange that is not issued by any government nor guaranteed by a government currency. Despite lacking legal tender status, Virtual Currency is still traded and exchanged in some environments, typically online environments or communities. Bitcoin is the most well-known form of Virtual Currency.    less -

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 are more than a token gesture: an assessment of some of the key considerations for issuers of and investors in ICOs

by DLA Piper on

With total amounts raised in initial coin offerings (ICOs) this year exceeding US$2 billion and a number of sales coming forward each month, there is an understandable interest in the operation of this new phenomenon....more

Every Day is Bitcoin Pizza Day: What Clients and Estate Planners Need to Know about Virtual Currency

by Murtha Cullina on

The combined value of all of the 867 crypto currencies tracked by CoinMarketCap.com is presently over $161 billion. Only seven years ago, on what is commemorated as “Bitcoin Pizza Day,” Bitcoin, then a new crypto currency,...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'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

Resources on Crypto-Tokens and Securities Law

by Perkins Coie on

The following resources take a deep dive into the issues surrounding crypto-tokens and securities law and recognize that, when properly designed, some tokens may not meet the Howey test...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

The Blockchain revolution: An analysis of regulation and technology related to Distributed Ledger Technologies

by DLA Piper on

Blockchain is on the verge of revolutionizing how we interact in the digital world. It has far reaching applications from the Financial industry to many other sectors of the economy. The question is what is Blockchain, what...more

Blockchain and Public Securities: Shedding Light on 'Going Dark'

by Pepper Hamilton LLP on

The application of blockchain technology to the securities market could prove to be a game changer by adding transparency, reducing costs and speeding up settlements. Initially known as the technology underlying the...more

CFTC Considers Blockchain Technology

The disruptive effects of blockchain technology on the financial system may take several years to materialize. Nevertheless, in preparation, regulators are increasingly focused on understanding potential uses of blockchain...more

Your Next IPO Could Be on the Blockchain

by Pepper Hamilton LLP on

Delaware’s corporate law blockchain initiative includes a new class of “distributed ledger shares” and promises to lower transactional costs, speed up and automate manual processes, and reduce fraud. The public and...more

Blockchain Basics: A Primer - Blockchain, the technology underlying the cryptocurrency Bitcoin, is poised to revolutionize how all...

You have probably heard of Bitcoin, a peer-to-peer, non-governmental currency. Bitcoin is the first money that is its own payment system. That is, no bank, money transmitter or intermediary of any kind is required to clear...more

SEC Says Fantasy Stock Trading Violates Securities Laws; Charges Others for Selling Illegal Security-Based Swaps

The SEC issued an Investor Alert which says fantasy stock trading for small amounts of money can violate provisions of securities laws implemented by the Dodd-Frank Act. I bet the Congressional drafters of these provisions...more

ESMA

by Perkins Coie on

The European Union has recently demonstrated additional interest in the potential uses of blockchain technology for financial services outside of virtual currencies. On April 22, 2015, the European Securities and Markets...more

Corporate & Financial Weekly Digest - Volume X, Issue 16

In this issue: - SEC Committee to Focus on the Order Protection Rule at Upcoming Meeting - CFTC Issues No-Action Relief to SEFs and DCMs in Connection with Swaps with Operational or Clerical Errors - CFTC...more

Bit Bites: Latest Legal Developments in Digital Currencies

When Is Bitcoin “Money” Versus a “Security”? In motions involving a high-profile criminal prosecution with ties to Silk Road and a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) enforcement action, two federal courts have clarified...more

SEC, Bitcoin and Unregistered Offerings

by Dorsey & Whitney LLP on

Bitcoin has been a much discussed item recently. The virtual currency is a digital representation of value that is traded and can serve as a medium of exchange. There are websites that use it. At one time there was a stock...more

Federal Court Finds That Issuer Shares Purchased with Bitcoin Are Securities

A federal district court has ruled that investors who pay for shares using Bitcoin have effectively invested money, at least for purposes of federal securities laws. The decision has implications for funds that seek to...more

Court Maintains Bitcoin-Related Investment Scheme Is A Security Under The Federal Securities Laws

by Perkins Coie on

In response to the SEC’s first civil complaint arising from online virtual currency trading, alleged Bitcoin Ponzi schemer Trendon Shavers recently challenged the district court’s authority to hear the case. ...more

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