Category: Financial Services

Hong Kong crypto consultation:  A step towards retail inclusion

Following a number of crises in the nascent cryptoasset industry in 2022, most notably the implosion of FTX, politicians and regulators across the world have called for tougher regulation of cryptoasset firms and activities.  However, this global shift in approach to the regulatory landscape for cryptoassets does not uniformly translate to key jurisdictions in the […]
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21 Mar, 2023

Silicon Valley Bank: a cautionary tale of rising interest rates and financial stability 

On 13 March, the Bank of England and HM Treasury announced that the UK subsidiary of Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) had been sold to HSBC, to protect depositors’ money and stem potential repercussions for the UK tech sector. This incident shares a root cause with other recent crises, such as the LDI crisis in the […]
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14 Mar, 2023

The political fallout of FTX spreads to France

What happened? 2023 started on a strong note for the crypto industry in France.   Senator Hervé Maurey, a centrist, caught the industry - and the government - by surprise in adding an amendment to an otherwise unrelated legislation. The change would have drastically strengthened the authorisation framework for digital asset services providers (DASPs, or so-called […]
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01 Mar, 2023

Regulating NBFI: are authorities going too far? 

In the last two years, international workstreams to address systemic risks in Non-Bank Financial Intermediation (‘NBFI’) have moved forward with renewed vigour. As the Financial Stability Board (FSB) drives forward policy and regulatory convergence, there will be substantive policy changes in most major jurisdictions over the next decade. However, given the perceived role of NBFI […]
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17 Jan, 2023

After the winter comes spring: the maturing digital asset market

2022 was a torrid year for crypto. The bad news just kept coming: from interest rate rises that saw the price of Bitcoin plummet to multiple corporate failures because of bad business practices, notably Three Arrows, Celsius, and the most high-profile casualty FTX. The critics of crypto and wider distributed ledger technology (DLT) have stepped […]
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16 Jan, 2023

History repeats itself – first as banking, then as crypto  

The collapse of FTX came about because of poor practice that has been outlawed in other parts of the financial system, including the mismanagement of client assets, which resulted in significant investor harm. Its failure is redolent of aspects of the 2008 financial crisis and has given crypto-sceptics their highest-profile example of why crypto should […]
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15 Nov, 2022

The biggest threat to NFTs isn't the market crash 

Key Points  Non-Fungible Token (NFT) adoption and investment has increased significantly and across a range of markets, most notably in sport e.g. through football partnerships.  Popular and political discourse increasingly represents NFTs as a homogenous cryptoasset class. This increases the risk that NFTs are included within plans to regulate ‘financial’ cryptoassets.  Recent turbulence in the […]
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30 May, 2022

Ukraine: The end of financial globalisation?

Russia’s war against Ukraine and the West’s response will have structural long-term economic consequences. A month after the beginning of the war, we take stock of some of the big questions around the macroeconomic impact and the global financial system. Russia and Europe will pay a heavy price A global recession is unlikely. The IMF […]
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29 Mar, 2022

Central bank digital currencies – who needs them? 

Arguably every major economy does. Central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) mark a sizable shift in the global financial architecture and countries that opt-out risk not only the technical benefits of digital cash – but also their place in the future financial order.   State of play  The debate surrounding the digitisation of national currencies or the […]
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07 Mar, 2022

Green finance in 2022 – what next?

Key takeaways  The expansion of the green finance agenda has continued to accelerate globally, with more and more jurisdictions developing taxonomies, sustainability reporting requirements and green product labels. The scope is also expanding beyond carbon emissions and into nature and biodiversity.   The UK has ambitions to be a global leader following the relative success at […]
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12 Jan, 2022

Summer reading for financial services

It is a truth universally acknowledged – by the Chancellor, Governor, and Chief Executive of the FCA – that financial services is the engine of the UK economy, one that facilitates critical transactions in the real economy and is essential to seizing the opportunities ahead. After prolonged uncertainty throughout the Brexit negotiations, last month’s Mansion […]
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06 Aug, 2021

Green Recovery: A brief view on whether it is achievable and affordable.

A short article with my take on the chances of seeing a green recovery in the UK following the COVID-19 pandemic.  For those who can’t read on, the conclusion: Government will focus on economic growth and job creation first and foremost, meaning the green agenda will have to compete for attention alongside other political priorities. […]
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29 May, 2020
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