Russia’s Central Bank Proposes New Token Framework, But Labels Crypto Transactions ‘Suspicious’

The Central Bank of Russia (CBR) has formally proposed a legal framework for tokenization, but also plans to label cryptocurrency transactions as suspicious activity, it said in a press release Monday. The CBR announced it had successfully piloted a platform that allows users to tokenize assets, including equities and currencies, and issue them to investors. Ivan Zimin, director of the CBR’s financial technology department, said in the release that the bank had now proposed using the platform as a framework in the country’s upcoming cryptocurrency law, which will act as…

Speculation Undermines Crypto Prices and Utility, Says Bank of England Senior Economist

Speculation creates congestion on the blockchain that harms a cryptocurrency’s utility and overall value, a senior economist at the Bank of England (BoE) has said. Peter Zimmerman, who has been a senior economist at the U.K. central bank since 2007, argued in a working paper published Friday that speculation undermines the effectiveness of cryptocurrencies to function as a means of payment. Because blockchains have a limited processing capacity, periods of high usage make transactions slower and more expensive, the paper observes. Assuming a cryptocurrency’s value derives from its utility as…

Russian Central Bank Links Crypto Transactions With Money Laundering

The Central Bank of Russia (CBR) published a new set of rules for suspicious transactions, Russian finance publication RBC reported on Feb. 17. The update broadly categorizes any cryptocurrency-linked transaction as a potential money laundering risk. The bank issued an update to directive 375-P, which lists all signs of suspicious activity that may be linked to money laundering. This is the first such update since 2012, when the initial regulations were introduced. The manual was developed in collaboration with the Federal Service for Financial Monitoring (Rosfinmonitoring). A central bank representative…

Bangladesh Bank with $4 Billion in Assets Now Employs RippleNet

Bangladesh-based Bank Asia has joined Ripple’s RippleNet blockchain-based financial services network. The partnership was only recently discovered after a Twitter user pointed out the Bank Asia logo in an official Ripple document on Feb. 10. Still, the partnership must be well over a month old, given that the document in question was published in December 2019. Bank Asia’s logo is present on a page showing examples of RippleNet users, alongside Santander, American Express, MoneyGram, Send Friend, Standard Chartered, SABB and SBI Group. The LinkedIn profile of the bank’s head of…

Egyptian National Bank Turns to Blockchain to Boost Remittance Business

Another major financial institution has partnered with blockchain-based payments firm Ripple. The National Bank of Egypt has signed a cooperation agreement with Ripple to establish new channels for inward remittances, according to a Feb. 11 report from local daily news site Youm7.  The agreement reportedly makes the National Bank the country’s first to venture into the blockchain sector.  Remittances: an almost $600 billion global market The global remittance market — referring to the money or goods that migrants send back to family and friends in their home countries — is…

German Bank to Offer Tokenized Securities Based on Stellar

One of the oldest banks in Europe is developing a special-purpose euro stablecoin that can facilitate private placements in tokenized securities. Munich-based Bank von der Heydt, established in 1754, announced Monday it had partnered with blockchain financial services provider Bitbond to help integrate tokenization into its established securitization platform. The partnership will allow the bank to tokenize digital securities onto the stellar blockchain, which it can offer to institutional clients via private placements. Tokenization can simplify equity sales and eliminate much of the associated frictional costs, according to the bank.…

New Central Bank Group to Discuss Digital Currency Benefits at April Meeting: Report

In mid-April, the chiefs of six central banks, as well as the Bank for International Settlements (BiS), will hold a meeting in Washington to discuss the potential creation of their own digital currencies, according to a report from Nikkei. The planned meeting is the first by new group formed last month amid growing concerns among financial authorities about the rise of regulated digital fiat currencies, most notably Facebook’s Libra and China’s digital yuan. In January, central banks from the U.K., Sweden, Switzerland, Canada, Japan and the EU formed the working…

Crypto Capital Co-Founder Rejects Plea Deal in Shadow Bank Case

Crypto Capital co-founder Reginald Fowler has rejected a plea deal with the US government in an ongoing case in which he is accused of operating a “shadow bank” for several crypto exchanges. Fowler was indicted in April 2019, along with Israeli national Ravid Yosef, for allegedly running a shadow bank for several cryptocurrency firms, including Bitfinex and Tether, which are currently embroiled in a separate case in which they are accused of creating “the largest bubble in human history.” According to a letter submitted by the prosecution on January 31, the…

Tech Like Blockchain Will Transform Chinese Economy, Bank Chair Says

Digital transformation is a national priority for China, and it’s being integrated into both enterprise and banks and other services industries. According to a Feb. 4 report from Economic Information Daily, chairman of Minsheng Bank Hong Qi said: “The full adoption of digital technologies such as blockchain is expected to accelerate the digital transformation and upgrade its agriculture, manufacturing, finance and other services in the next 10 years.”   China Minsheng Bank is the first national commercial bank owned principally by non-government enterprises. It is famous for making loans to…

Reginald Fowler Rejects Plea Deal in Crypto ‘Shadow Bank’ Case

Reginald Fowler, a former investor of the U.S. football team Minnesota Vikings, has rejected a plea deal with the U.S. government in an ongoing case that accuses him of operating “shadow bank” services tied to crypto exchanges. According to a letter submitted by the prosecutor of the case on Jan. 31, Fowler “rejected the current plea offer” on Jan. 30 and the U.S. government “has formally withdrawn that offer.” As such, the parties will move to trial as scheduled on April 28. Fowler was indicted in April 2019, along with…