Wyoming Introduces Bill Permitting Tokenization of Stocks

The US state of Wyoming has filed a new crypto-friendly bill, pushing ahead with efforts to support the industry.

Wyoming has made another push to become the most crypto-friendly state in the US, with local legislators introducing last week proposals that would allow the issuance of tokenized stock certificates using blockchain technology.

House Bill 185 is sponsored by Representatives Olsen, Brown, Hunt, Lindholm, Western and Zwonitzer and Senators Driskill and Rothfuss, as per the official state legislature portal. If passed, the “Corporate stock-certificate tokens” bill will become effective on July 1, 2019.

The draft, published on Thursday,  lays the groundwork for storing certificate tokens that represent ownership of stocks on a blockchain “or other secure, auditable database” and allows their digital transfer. The information would be “transmitted electronically to the issuing corporation, the person to whom the certificate token was issued and any transferee.” The tokenized certificates would also be authorized via the network signatures – unique identifying hashes – of two officers or directors of a corporation.

The news came on the heels of two other industry-friendly bills being passed by the Wyoming lawmaker earlier this week. The so-called House Bill 57 and House Bill 62 aim to create a supportive regulatory environment for blockchain and cryptocurrency businesses in the state.

The first one emphasizes that the state of Wyoming currently offers one of the best business environments in the US for blockchain and financial technology innovators. It also underscores the need for a regulatory sandbox for these innovators so that they can develop next-gen financial technology products and services. The second bill stipulates that all blockchain tokens are “intangible personal property,” thus not eligible for exemption from federal securities laws. The two new pieces of legislation follow several other blockchain- and cryptocurrency-related bills approved in 2018.

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