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Proposed Restrictions on Mexican Remittances Could Hinder Fintechs, Probably Not Banks

May 11, 2017, Forbes

Michael Nonaka is quoted in a Forbes article regarding the prospect of President Trump's taxing remittances for a Mexico border wall, and the possibility of an increase in the use of digital currencies as a result. In discussing banks and payment companies' experience in this field, Nonaka indicates that these institutions have taken the proposed rules in stride. Nonaka says, “I think they have a pretty nuanced view of the compliance for those types of transfers, and they have robust risk management programs in place. I get the fewest questions from these types of organizations — they have people in-house who do this and are well-equipped to deal with changes.” He adds, “They are asking more questions because many of them are new and in the early stages of putting compliance processes in place. They also don’t have years of experience in the market to forecast the way the market may react to different things the administration might do.”

Nonaka also notes that a third group is made up of virtual currency providers, and the regulatory state for them is less established. “The federal banking agencies have been exploring bitcoin but they haven’t really done anything to regulate it directly, with the exception of FinCEN’s virtual currency guidance. You probably won’t see additional restraints placed on bitcoin at this stage, but that could easily change if it became more accessible on a widespread basis and was used in a way that is contrary to the administration’s policies,” Nonaka says.

 

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