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PSD2 Revised Rules Finalized, ICOs Get More Scrutiny

Amid financial regulatory headlines, the Financial Conduct Authority last week published its roadmap for implementing the revised Payment Services Directive, commonly known as PSD2.   As has been widely reported, the new payments requirements, EU-wide, will take effect in January of this year.  The new regulations cover account aggregation and consumer data.  Regulated firms are allowed access to customer’s individual accounts, with the owners of those accounts offering up consent.

The Authority said in a release that existing payment institutions and e-money institutions have to be reauthorized or reregistered. “Firms should consider whether they now need to seek authorization or registration because of changes to the scope of regulation made by PSD2.” Applications for such re-authorization will be available beginning October 13th of this year.

Separately, but also related to the Continent — and Brexit, of course — the U.K. government has said that it will look to eventually have a regulatory framework that exists apart from those in the EU.  As related here in PYMNTS, the new regulations have the goal of boosting business in the United Kingdom for banks and other financial services firms.  Brexit secretary David Davis has proposed a “standstill” for a few years after Brexit beginning in March 2019.

At this point, it might seem remiss that a regulatory tracker might not mention ICOs.  So we will mention ICOs.

Several governments, including China, have been looking a bit closer at cryptocurrencies.  The website Bitcoin.com reported this past week that the central banks of both Indonesia and the Ukraine have said that bitcoin should not be viewed, or used, as a currency.   In the case of Ukraine, the deputy chairman of the National Bank of Ukraine, Oleh Churiy, stated that bitcoin will not be a form of payment as it is not a central currency, because there is no central issuer.  In Thailand, the securities and exchange commission of that country has said that tokens resembling “financial returns, rights and obligations in similar ways to securities under the Securities and Exchange Act” will fall under the jurisdiction of that regulator.

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