The National Securities Market Commission (CNMV) of Spain published this Monday, January 17, the regulations that will govern advertising related to investments in cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. According to the circular published by the regulatory body in the Official State Gazette (BOE), the legal text will come into force within a month.
From the activation of the new rules, all advertising related to Bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency should warn investors about the risks of these products. In this sense, the CNMV will monitor that the advertising pieces include the message: “Investment in crypto assets is not regulated, may not be suitable for retail investors and the entire amount invested may be lost,” says the circular.
The standard covers massive advertising campaigns in both traditional media and social networks, which, in their context, are directed at 100,000 people or more. This includes mentions and promotions paid to influencers with 100,000 followers onwards, as well as advertising on search engines such as Google.
The CNMV excluded from the regulation the advertising of non-fungible tokens (NFT) that “represent collectible assets, works with intellectual property or assets whose sole purpose is their use in games or competitions, so that they are not offered massively as a mere object of investment,” the circular states.
Instead, the crypto asset service providers such as trading platforms, cryptocurrency trading, portfolio management or investment advisors in crypto assets, they will have to submit to the new standard to promote themselves in Spain.
The subjects bound by this regulation must notify the CNMV at least 10 days in advance and consign the documentation on the content of your campaign. The required information includes copies of the advertising pieces in the different formats contemplated in the advertising campaign.
Among the general criteria of the regulations, it stands out that advertisers may not make references to past returns in periods of less than one year. Furthermore, if they use ROI in their advertising, they are required to warn that “past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance.”
On the other hand, the legal text includes an annex where cryptocurrencies are described as a “high risk investment product”. This section refers to the technological risks that the CNMV believes are feasible in blockchain networks, as well as legal risks associated with the early adoption of cryptocurrencies.
CNMV took almost a year to publish the regulations
As CriptoNoticias has collected in various reports, the regulatory body had been working on the legal text since the first quarter of 2021, so it took about a year to refine the details for publication. Last March, the Spanish Executive reformed the Securities Market Law (LMV), through a Royal Decree Law that conferred authority on the CNMV to monitor advertising on crypto assets.
The published regulations are based on said mandate. However, at the beginning of this year it became clear that the CNMV’s competence will be limited to advertising, since the activity of Bitcoin exchanges was left out of its scope.
It should be remembered that Spain’s financial regulator sent a warning to Spanish soccer star Andrés Iniesta at the end of last year, for advertising the cryptocurrency exchange Binance. On that occasion, the CNMV told the athlete that cryptocurrencies have features of “extreme volatility, complexity and lack of transparency that make them a high-risk bet.”
Last weekend, finally, the Council of State approved the final text of the regulations proposed by the CNMV, so its disclosure was already expected for this Monday.