Canadian Securities Administrators Target Misleading Advertising Of Crypto Exchanges

The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) and the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) recently issued a staff advisory regarding the inappropriate marketing practices of crypto trading platforms (CTPs) in the country and have clarified the rules to keep in mind.

Clean up CTP advertising

The regulators’ notice was posted earlier this week on the OSC website. He begins to voice his concerns about “certain advertising activities and marketing strategies of platforms that trade crypto assets,” noting that these practices could violate securities law requirements and raise public interest concerns. Specific platforms of concern have not been named.

He then details some of the concerns of regulators regarding promotions and ‘playstyle’ programs to which these CTPs have allegedly committed:

“We recently noticed that some CTPs are using advertising or marketing strategies that include contests, promotions, bonuses and time limits to encourage investors to engage in trading and act quickly for fear of missing out on an opportunity. investment or reward. “

The CSA and IIROC claim that such promotions could cause investors to make riskier investment decisions than they normally would in a non-urgent environment. This activity could therefore “contravene a registrant’s obligation to treat clients fairly, honestly and in good faith.

The notice ends with a list of examples of CTP’s claims that violate Canadian securities laws, and for what reason. These include claims such as “We are your cheapest and best source for Bitcoin”, if the platform is unable to substantiate such a claim with hard evidence.

Many others are also featured, such as those involving the promotion of a particular individual, or the use of the words “exchange” or “market” to describe their platform.

Regulatory clarity in Canada

While this may seem like a burden, the document shows remarkable clarity from Canadian regulators on what changes they would like to see in crypto trading platforms in the country. It even has a list of CSA and IIROC staff members that the PTCs can contact for further questions.

This contrasts with the United States, where regulatory clarity has been difficult to achieve for trade. Brian Armstrong – CEO of Coinbase – claimed that US watchdogs have no interest in clarity, but instead engage in “behind closed doors bullying tactics.”

Likewise, the SEC has been slow relative to Canada in implementing a Bitcoin ETF, although President Gensler has expressed openness to a futures ETF.

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