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EU securities watchdog to arm itself with crypto data

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EU securities watchdog to arm itself with crypto data

Representations of the virtual currencies Ripple, Bitcoin, Etherum and Litecoin are seen on a PC motherboard in this illustrative image, February 14, 2018. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/

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LONDON, Aug 3 (Reuters) – The European Union’s securities watchdog has begun preparations for increased scrutiny of crypto transactions after the bloc agreed groundbreaking rules to regulate what it called a sector of the “Wild West”, according to a public tender document.

While crypto-asset firms will be licensed by national regulators in the 27-nation bloc, the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) will oversee the bigger players. Read more

ESMA on Tuesday issued a public procurement request to providers of trade data on crypto transactions, including spot transactions and derivatives.

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This excludes transactions from the blockchain or distributed ledger technology that underpins cryptocurrencies like bitcoin.

“Coverage should encompass all major crypto exchanges and assets to provide a fair representation of the crypto market landscape,” ESMA said in its notice.

Regulators use trade data to spot market abuse, find out who is on either side of a trade, and look for risky buildups of positions that could undermine orderly markets.

“Data should be available with daily frequency and include access to order books where to see spreads and liquidity on exchanges and trading pairs (in fiat and crypto),” he said.

The contract is worth a maximum of 100,000 euros.

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Reporting by Huw Jones; Editing by Kim Coghill

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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