Swiss regulator acknowledges heightened money-laundering risks in cryptocurrency area

Maria Nikolova

FINMA seeks to lower client identification threshold values in its Anti-Money Laundering Ordinance from CHF 5,000 to CHF 1,000 for transactions in cryptocurrencies.

The Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) aims to pass new rules affecting transactions in cryptocurrencies.

The new Financial Services Act FinSA and Financial Institutions Act FinIA came into force on January 1, 2020, along with the implementing ordinances – Financial Services Ordinance (FinSO), Financial Institutions Ordinance (FinIO) and Supervisory Organisations Ordinance (SOO) – passed by the Federal Council. These laws oblige FINMA to pass a number of implementing provisions pertaining to selected, mainly technical issues. As a result, FINMA has created a new Financial Institutions Ordinance (FinIO-FINMA) as well as amendments to current FINMA ordinances and circulars.

FINMA will hold a public consultation on the new regulations up to April 9, 2020.

In particular, the regulator seeks to lower of the threshold value for exchange transactions in cryptocurrencies. FINMA proposes amending the client identification threshold values in its Anti-Money Laundering Ordinance (AMLO-FINMA) from CHF 5,000 to CHF 1,000 for exchange transactions in cryptocurrencies.

Through these measures, FINMA is implementing the international standards approved in mid-2019 and acknowledging the heightened money-laundering risks in the cryptocurrency area.

This skeptical stance regarding cryptocurrencies seems to be in tune with recent statements made by Switzerland’s Federal Council. In Decembe 2019, Switzerland’s Federal Council approved a report examining the opportunities and risks of introducing a cryptofranc (e-franc). The Council concluded that universally accessible central bank digital currency would bring no additional benefits for Switzerland at present. Instead, it would give rise to new risks, especially with regard to financial stability. The analysis conducted for the report shows that the introduction of a central bank digital currency will result in repercussions that can be far-reaching depending on the design, and that there are better solutions for most of the areas considered. The Federal Council therefore believes that universally accessible central bank digital currency would not bring any additional benefits at the moment.

Read this next

Digital Assets

BlackRock bets on crypto bank Silvergate despite drastic fall

BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager, has increased its stake in Silvergate Bank, a crypto-friendly lender that counts major crypto exchanges like Coinbase and Kraken as clients.

Opinion

A viewpoint from Anatoly Crachilov, CEO and Founding Partner at Nickel Digital, on SEC regulation of the digital asset sector

The SEC’s latest episode comes across as more of a PR performance rather than an act of investor protection.

Digital Assets

Tether denies receiving any loans from Celsius, the opposite is true

World’s largest stablecoin issuer, Tether dismissed reports suggesting that it received a $2 billion loan from the bankrupt cryptocurrency lender Celsius.

Institutional FX

Cboe FX volume makes strong rebound in January

Cboe’s institutional spot FX platform today announced its trading volume for the month ending January 2023, which marks a mild rebound after a steep fall in December.

Uncategorized

XS.com appoints Exness alumni Mohamad Ibrahim as CEO

XS.com, the multi-regulated financial services provider, has appointed Mohamad Ibrahim as the group’s newest chief executive officer (CEO).

Technology

B2Broker Integrates Match-Trader Solution to Expands Its White Label Liquidity Offering

A global provider of technology and liquidity for the FX and cryptocurrency markets, B2Broker recently announced the extension of its white label liquidity offering by merging with Match-Trader.

Digital Assets

UK launches open consultation to regulate crypto exchanges, custody, and lending

The government’s proposed measures have been informed by recent market events – including the failure of FTX – which reinforce the case for effective regulation and sector engagement.

Institutional FX

ViewTrade celebrates record growth with launch of carrying broker services offering

“We have been at the center of the empowerment of the retail investor for decades, supplying the technology to facilitate cross-border access to U.S. markets. Our demonstrated ability to provide a full-service, end-to-end solution to a diverse global customer base continues to prove its value every day.”

Executive Moves

Siege FX names Mathijs Peeters as Head of Distribution Europe, promotes Marek Robertson to CPO

Siege will soon be connected with 10 of the largest 20 Banks and 15 of the top 20 Asset Managers.

<