The Competition Bureau announced on May 19, 2016 that it will
launch a market study focused on how innovation in the fintech
sector is impacting consumers and businesses, with the results
intended to be published in the spring of 2017, seeking to
determine whether there is a need for "regulatory reform to
promote greater competition while maintaining consumer confidence
in the sector."
The announcement cites a report indicating that Canada appears
to be lagging other countries in adoption of fintech as one of the
reasons for deciding to study the financial services industry.
The study "will examine peer to peer banking, e wallets,
mobile wallets, mobile payments, crowdfunding and online based
financial advisory services [or robo-advisors]" and, according
to the Bureau, will help it advise regulators and other authorities
on how to ensure innovation and competition in the sector is not
impeded. Blockchain technology is not part of the study as it is
not considered by the Bureau to be within the study's focus on
consumer facing activities. However, the Bureau indicates it is
open to changing the scope of the study should stakeholder
consultation reveal a need for such change.
The study will not cover insurance (property and casualty,
travel, and health), currencies and crypto currencies (e.g.,
Bitcoin), payday loans, loyalty programs, deposit taking,
accounting, auditing, and tax preparation and services, large
corporate, commercial or institutional investing and banking (e.g.,
pension fund management, corporate mergers and acquisitions) or
business to business financial services other those services noted
above as being within the scope of the study.
Interested stakeholders are invited to make submissions on the
study or on issues specific to the study before June 30, 2016.
The Commissioner of Competition addressed innovation, enforcement and policy initiatives at the Competition Bureau in his keynote speech, "Strengthening Competition: Innovation, Collaboration and Transparency."
Used car listing website operator CarGurus Inc.'s attempt to force rival Trader Corporation to supply it with vehicle listing data has encountered a dead end as the Competition Tribunal denied it leave to commence a private application under several provisions of the Competition Act.
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