The Federal Reserve Board, the governing body of the Federal Reserve System, the US central bank in charge of making monetary policy, has issued a policy statement to promote a level-playing field for all banks with a federal supervisor, regardless of deposit insurance status. The statement makes clear that uninsured and insured banks supervised by the board will be subject to the same limitations on activities, including novel banking activities, such as crypto-asset-related activities. Equal treatment will promote a level playing field and limit regulatory arbitrage.
In addition, the statement reiterates that banks must both ensure that the activities they engage in are allowed under the law, and conduct their business in a safe and sound manner. For instance, a bank should have in place risk management processes, internal controls, and information systems that are appropriate and adequate for the nature, scope, and risks of its activities.
This action will not prohibit a state member bank, or prospective applicant, from providing safekeeping services, in a custodial capacity, for crypto-assets if conducted in a safe and sound manner and in compliance with the consumer, anti-money laundering, and anti-terrorist financing laws, as per the statement.