Japan’s cryptocurrency self-regulatory body, the Japan Virtual Currency Exchange Association (JVCEA), has agreed to a set of new regulations for the industry, according to a report from Nikkei Asian Review. The association plans to hold a vote on its proposed rules on June 27. The rules are designed to ban insider trading and prevent trades involving cryptocurrencies that are designed to be difficult to track.
SEC Director of the Division of Corporation Finance William Hinman used a speech on Thursday to offer a fairly detailed assessment of the agency’s standards for determining when a cryptocurrency or ICO can be defined as a security. In his remarks to attendees at the Yahoo All Markets Summit: Crypto Conference, Hinman said that the agency’s assessment depends on the way a coin or token is being sold and what investors expect to get from their purchase.
A new study from two researchers at the University of Texas at Austin concludes that Tether may have been used to manipulate cryptocurrency prices in 2017, according to a Wednesday report from the New York Times. Researchers John. M. Griffin and Amin Shams evaluated transaction data and found that at least half of the crypto market’s record-setting rise in value may have been the result of price manipulation.
Banking giant Wells Fargo has confirmed that its customers will not be allowed to use their credit cards to purchase cryptocurrency, according to a report from CBS News. A bank spokesperson suggested that the bank made the decision after reviewing the “risks associated with this volatile investment.”
During remarks at the United Nations BFI Summit in New York this week, CFTC Commissioner Rostin Benham suggested that cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin are here to stay. During a speech focused on the regulatory challenges confronting the CFTC as it tries to address issues related to the emerging cryptocurrency industry, the commissioner asserted that the technology is something that will impact all nations:
Regulators at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) have reportedly ordered several cryptocurrency exchanges to turn over trading data the agency wants to see as part of its investigation into potential price manipulation in the Bitcoin markets, according to a Wall Street Journal report on Friday.
The provincial government of Quebec has announced that it is temporarily halting all energy approvals for cryptocurrency mining operations, according to a report from Reuters. The decision was made in response to a request from state-run energy company Hydro Quebec that asked regulators to reassess energy fees and place limits on the amount of power miners can access.
A recent study from Cybersecurity firm Carbon Black claims that criminals have stolen about $1.1 billion of cryptocurrency since January 1, 2018, according to a report from CNBC. Countries like the United States, China, and the UK were reportedly prime targets for crypto criminals.
U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Jay Clayton tried to clarify the agency’s view on cryptocurrencies and securities on Wednesday and said that regulators won’t change their definition just to accommodate digital currencies. In remarks to CNBC, Clayton noted that the current approach to defining securities means that cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin fall outside that definition.
San Francisco-based Coinbase has announced that it is opening an office in Japan as part of its ongoing expansion effort, according to a company blog post published on Monday. The exchange giant also announced that former Morgan Stanley investment banker Nao Kitazawa has been selected to serve as the new branch’s CEO.
During an appearance on CNBC on Monday, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak added his stamp of approval to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s prediction that Bitcoin will eventually achieve the goal of becoming a world currency. While Wozniak was unwilling to make a similar claim, he did suggest that he hoped Dorsey’s prediction comes true:
US-based cryptocurrency exchange Bittrex will allow its customers to use US dollars to purchase altcoins on its exchange, according to reporting from CNBC. On Friday’s Fast Money, Bittrex CEO Bill Shihara suggested that the move is part of Bittrex’s broader goal of expanding its market reach in a way that allows all its customers to “have access to U.S. dollar trading.”
Polish cryptocurrency exchange BitBay is preparing to close down operations in Poland and take their business to Malta, according to a company announcement published earlier this week. The company has confirmed that the move was due to a lack of cooperation from Poland’s banking institutions.
South Korean legislators have formally proposed an end to the country’s ban on initial coin offerings (ICOs), according to a report from BusinessKorea. The National Assembly has reportedly suggested that ICOs be allowed as long as the country takes steps to provide stronger protection for investors.
South African financial services group Sygnia has revealed plans to introduce its own domestic digital currency exchange later this year, according to a report from Bloomberg. The plans were included within the company’s recent interim financial report, which suggested that the exchange is one of Sygnia’s top priorities for 2018 and 2019.
The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has confirmed that it has launched 24 investigations of “unauthorized” cryptocurrency companies, to assess whether they are engaged in activities that are subject to FCA regulatory authority, according to a May 25 report from news outlet CityWire. The regulators also reportedly confirmed that they have opened seven whistleblower cases since the beginning of the year.
The United States Department of Justice has launched a criminal probe to determine whether digital currency prices have been manipulated by crypto traders, according to reports from Bloomberg and other media outlets. The probe reportedly involves an investigation into possible spoofing and wash trading, both of which are considered illicit trading activities that could influence trading prices.
There has been an ongoing debate in the Muslim community about whether digital currencies can ever be compliant with Islamic law. Recently, Islamic experts from the Masjid Ramadan mosque in east London declared that cryptocurrency is permissible if its users utilize it “in a lawful manner.” The mosque, commonly known as the Shacklewell Lane Mosque, will now be accepting crypto from Muslim users who want to use digital currencies for their zakat donations during Ramadan.
More than one thousand Australians were victimized by various cryptocurrency scams in 2017, according to a recently released report from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC). Victims lost a total of AU $2.1 million to scams involving fake ICOs, assorted pyramid schemes, and even non-crypto schemes where the scammers simply required victims to use crypto as payment.
A week before the Consensus cryptocurrency conference got underway in Manhattan, Fundstrat Global Advisors research head Tom Lee predicted that the gathering in Manhattan would spark a rally in Bitcoin’s price. Instead, cryptocurrency prices declined throughout the event, falling roughly ten percent.