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Canadian regulators issue guidance on improving cryptocurrency disclosures

Canadian regulators issue guidance on improving cryptocurrency disclosures

The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA), comprised of securities regulators from the nation’s 10 provinces and three territories, has issued new guidance to improve the quality of disclosures related to crypto assets.

CSA chair and Autorité des marchés financiers CEO Louis Morisset said the new guidance details the information that companies in the crypto space need to give to help investors make informed decisions. 

“The crypto asset industry is relatively nascent and notably presents unique accounting issues and auditing challenges,” Morisset said. “This guidance is meant to support crypto asset reporting issuers in providing the information necessary for investors to make informed investment decisions.”

CSA issues guidance amid rising interest in crypto

The guidance, which was published on March 11, also outlines disclosure expectations in safeguarding crypto assets, use of crypto trading platforms, risk factors, material changes, and promotional activities. It also guides issuers of crypto assets in dealing with complex accounting and disclosure issues. 

“It is important to avoid inaccurate or misleading disclosure and to provide the information necessary for investors to make informed investment decisions,” the guidance reads. “Crypto issuers considering filing a prospectus or entering into a restructuring transaction to enter the Canadian public markets should carefully consider what disclosure to provide about their business model in order to meet their regulatory requirements.”

The CSA issued guidance amid the increasing global popularity of Bitcoin (BTC) and other cryptocurrencies. Mastercard (NYSE: MA) and PayPal (NASDAQ: PYPL) are opening up their platforms to support cryptocurrency. Electric vehicle maker Tesla also purchased $1.5 billion in Bitcoin, causing the flagship crypto to surge to new all-time highs.

Crypto market in Canada

Canada has a booming crypto market. The first publicly-traded Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) in North America launched in Canada earlier this month.

Purpose Investment’s Bitcoin ETF collected $421.8 million in assets under management (AUM) within two days of trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX).  

The US has yet to approve a similar product as the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) continues to withhold its approval for a Bitcoin ETF. 

The popular fintech companies in Canada that offer crypto trading options include Wealthsimple and Coinsquare.

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