Embedded Supervision: How to Build Regulation into Blockchain Finance

30 Pages Posted: 27 Nov 2019 Last revised: 29 Apr 2020

See all articles by Raphael Auer

Raphael Auer

Bank for International Settlements (BIS)

Multiple version iconThere are 3 versions of this paper

Date Written: 2019-10-01


The spread of distributed ledger technology (DLT) in finance could help to improve the efficiency and quality of supervision. This paper makes the case for embedded supervision, i.e., a regulatory framework that provides for compliance in tokenized markets to be automatically monitored by reading the market’s ledger, thus reducing the need for firms to actively collect, verify and deliver data. After sketching out a design for such schemes, the paper explores the conditions under which distributed ledger data might be used to monitor compliance. To this end, a decentralized market is modelled that replaces today’s intermediary-based verification of legal data with blockchain-enabled data credibility based on economic consensus. The key results set out the conditions under which the market’s economic consensus would be strong enough to guarantee that transactions are economically final, so that supervisors can trust the distributed ledger’s data. The paper concludes with a discussion of the legislative and operational requirements that would promote low-cost supervision and a level playing field for small and large firms.

Keywords: tokenisation, stablecoins, asset-based tokens, cryptoassets, cryptocurrencies, regtech, suptech, regulation, supervision, Basel III, proportionality, blockchain, distributed ledger technology, central bank digital currencies, proof-of-work, proof-of-stake, permissioned DLT, economic consensus, economic finality, fintech, compliance, auditing, accounting, privacy, digitalisation, finance, banking

JEL Classification: D20, D40, E42, E51, F31, G12, G18, G28, G32, G38,

Suggested Citation

Auer, Raphael, Embedded Supervision: How to Build Regulation into Blockchain Finance (2019-10-01). Globalization and Monetary Policy Institute Working Paper No. 371, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3494192 or http://dx.doi.org/10.24149/gwp371

Raphael Auer (Contact Author)

Bank for International Settlements (BIS) ( email )

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