Showing posts with label South Korea. Show all posts
Showing posts with label South Korea. Show all posts

November 29, 2017

1 Million Yen, 100 Million INR – Bitcoin sets new price milestones on International Markets

By Samuel Haig - November 28, 2017 (news.bitcoin.com)


With all eyes on bitcoin’s meteoric break of $10,000, less attention has been paid to the price milestones recently established on leading international markets. In recent weeks, the CAD, AUD, NZD, and SGD pairings also surpassed $10,000, whilst a single bitcoin exceeds 500,000 RUB in Russia, 1 million JPY in Japan, 10 million KRW in South Korea, and 100 million IDR in Indonesia.

The Price of Bitcoin Exceeds 1 Million Yen in Japan


As Japan is currently host to more than 60% of global trading volume, reaching the seven-figure milestone on the JPY markets is a big deal for bitcoin. According to cryptocompare, bitcoin broke above one million JPY at approximately 7 pm on the 25th of November EDT. The current JPY/BTC price as of this writing approximately (1:30 am November 29th EDT) is roughly ¥1,300,000

Seven hours after bitcoin broke above one million JPY, the South Korean bitcoin markets reached 10,000,000 KRW for the first time ever. Currently, the Korean markets account for 10% of 24-hour trading volume, comprising the third-largest bitcoin market behind the United States. The current KRW/BTC price is approximately ₩12,600,000.

Bitcoin Tests $15,000 in Australian, Canadian, and Singaporean National Markets


With the exception of an anomalous spike in the AUD/BTC price at the end of October, cryptocompare’s price index indicates that AUD trade convincingly exceeded $10,000 for the first time on November 16th at 4 pm EDT. AUD trade comprises the fifth largest national market with roughly 0.45% of 24-hour bitcoin trade. The current AUD/BTC price is approximately $14,400.

Singapore hosts the seventh largest national bitcoin market equating for roughly 0.34% of total trade. The SGD/BTC price broke above $10,000 for the first time at 11 pm on November 15th EDT and is now currently trading for $14,300 approximately.

Canadian trade presently accounts for 0.2% of 24-hour trading volume, comprising the ninth largest national market. The CAD price of bitcoin broke above $10,000 for the first time at 2 am on November 17 EDT, with CAD/BTC currently trading for $13,300.

Other Major Price Milestones on International Markets


At approximately 11 pm on the 25th of November EDT, the price of bitcoin exceeding 150,000 ZAR in South Africa for the first time. ZAR trade comprises the eighth largest national bitcoin market – comprising 0.25% of 24-hour trade.The current ZAR/BTC price is approximately ZAR167,000.

Indonesia’s bitcoin markets comprise approximately 0.1% of 24-hour trading volume, currently making such the fourteenth largest national market. The IDR/BTC price broke above 100,000,000 rupees at 9 am on November 1st EST, and at approximately midnight on November 29th EDT established a new milestone of over 150,000,000 rupees.

Russian bitcoin prices broke above RUB 500,000 for the first time at 11 pm on November 25 EDT. RUB/BTC trading presently comprises the fifteenth largest national market, representing approximately 0.1% of 24-hour trading volume. Bitcoin is currently trading for approximately RUB 600,000 in Russia.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock



Samuel Haig

Samuel Haig is a cryptocurrency and economics journalist who has been passionately involved in the bitcoin space since 2012. Samuel has written about the disruptive potential of cryptocurrency with regards to the dialectical relations within contemporary neoliberal capitalism.

November 24, 2017

Regulatory Round-up - South Korea says Laissez Faire, Zimbabwe dislikes and Singapore to regulate

By Samuel Haig - November 25, 2017 (news.bitcoin.com)


South Korea’s Financial Supervisory Service has stated that it won’t regulate the digital token markets due to cryptocurrencies not comprising a legally recognized financial instrument. In central bank news, Zimbabwe’s central bank has stated that bitcoin is not legal, and Singapore’s central bank has launched the second public consultation for its newly proposed payments legislation. Here’s a regulator round-up.

South Korea’s Financial Regulator Does Not Plan on Regulating Cryptocurrencies


The Governor of South Korea’s Financial Supervisory Service (FSS), Mr. Choe Hueng-sik, has indicated that the FSS does not consider bitcoin and other digital tokens to comprise legitimate currency, and as such, will not regulate the cryptocurrency markets.

The governor likened the FSS’s stance to its regulatory position regarding casinos, stating “It is the same with the fact that we don’t regulate or supervise casinos. Though there could be concerns on excessive gambling, that does not provide grounds for the FSS to control casino practices.”

The governor indicated that the FSS’s position would change only if cryptocurrencies were to become a legitimately recognized currency, stating “Though we are monitoring the practice of cryptocurrency trading, we don’t have plans right now to directly supervise exchanges. Supervision will come only after the legal recognition of digital tokens as a legitimate currency.”

Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe States Bitcoin “Is Not Actually Legal”


Norman Mataruka, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe’s (RBZ) director and registrar of banking institutions, has told reporters that bitcoin is not legal. Mr. Mataruka stated:

“In terms of the bitcoin, as far as we are concerned, it is not actually legal. In Southern Africa, what we have done as regulators, we have said that we will not allow this in our markets… Research is currently being undertaken to ascertain the challenges and risks associated with these particular products and until we have actually established and come up with a legal and regulatory framework for them, it will not be allowed.”

The announcement comes shortly after the resignation of Robert Mugabe, following a coup that ousted Zimbabwe’s former leader of 37 years. In recent months, increasing coverage has been given to the inflated price of bitcoin in the African nation, with high demand for the cryptocurrency being driven by Zimbabwe’s prevailing currency crisis.

Although Mr. Mataruka failed to clarify if he meant that the possession and use of bitcoin was illegal, or simply that bitcoin does not comprise a legally recognized currency in the state of Zimbabwe, it is unlikely that the RBZ can spare the resources required to attempt to uphold prohibitive cryptocurrency regulations given Zimbabwe’s current political turmoil.

Singapore’s Central Bank Seeks To “Streamline” Payment Regulations to Include Cryptocurrencies



The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), has launched its second public consultation regarding a newly proposed regulatory framework, the “Payment Services Bill”. The bill seeks to “streamline the regulation of payment services under a single legislation,” and “expand the scope of regulated payment activities to include virtual currency services and other innovations, and calibrate regulation according to the risks posed by these activities.” The MAS stated:

“When the new Bill is enacted, payment firms will only need to hold one license under a single regulatory framework to conduct any or all of the specified payment activities. Only payment activities that face customers or merchants, process funds or acquire transactions, and pose relevant regulatory concerns will need to be licensed. The new framework will expand the scope of regulation to include domestic money transfers… merchant acquisition… and the purchase and sale of virtual currencies… To help ensure that the expanded scope of regulation is not onerous, the Bill will differentiate regulatory requirements according to the risks that specific payment activities pose rather than apply a uniform set of regulations on all payment service providers… The Bill will empower MAS to regulate payment services for money-laundering and terrorism financing risks.”

Mr. Ravi Menon, the managing director of the MAS, stated: “We want to put in place a forward-looking regulatory regime to encourage wider adoption of secure e-payment solutions.” The public consultation will run from 21 November 2017 to 8 January 2018.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Wikipedia



Samuel Haig

Samuel Haig is a cryptocurrency and economics journalist who has been passionately involved in the bitcoin space since 2012. Samuel has written about the disruptive potential of cryptocurrency with regards to the dialectical relations within contemporary neoliberal capitalism.

November 17, 2017

One of the world’s largest ATM manufacturers announces Bitcoin support

By Kai Sedgwick - November 17, 2017 (news.bitcoin.com)


Buying bitcoin just keeps getting easier, with vendors of all kinds adding support for the cryptocurrency. Just days ago, Square revealed they were adding the ability to buy BTC within their app. Now Hyosung have gotten in on the act by launching bitcoin ATM support. Soon, customers of the firm’s ATM machines will be able to buy bitcoin at the push of a button.

Bitcoin On Demand


Hyosung have announced they will add bitcoin transaction support with the aid of Just Cash. Once activated, the bitcoin ATM service will operate very similarly to a conventional One of the World’s Largest ATM Manufacturers Announces Bitcoin Supporttransaction. Instead of withdrawing fiat currency, digital currency will be despatched to the recipient’s wallet using a QR scan. While bitcoin is the first cryptocurrency to be added, there is talk of other coins being added in due course.

Hyosung are one of South Korea’s largest industrial companies, boasting over 25,000 employees and revenue of U.S. $17 billion in 2015. ATM manufacture is just a small part of their operations; the company also dabble in construction and chemicals among other things. Within South Korea however they are best known for their ATMs which can be found up and down the country.

First Korea, Tomorrow the World


South Korea’s love of all things bitcoin is well-documented, but Hyosung’s operations aren’t limited to their home turf; the corporation have a global presence, including a huge number of ATMs in the U.S. Hyosung don’t partner with banks to supply ATMs in America: instead, their machines can be found in convenience stores and gas stations, whose owners derive income from the fees generated.

In announcing news of bitcoin ATM integration, Hyosung touted a number of benefits that vendors can expect to enjoy. These include easy implementation, no hardware required, a new revenue stream, and the ability to attract new and repeat customers. Because the feature will be added to ATMs as a software upgrade, bitcoin compatibility should be rolled out quickly. Interestingly, it looks like there will also be the ability to exchange cryptocurrency for cash, although there is no word on how this reverse feature will work.

Bitcoin as a Service


There is no word yet on what the commission and exchange rate will be when purchasing bitcoin from one of Hyosung’s upgraded ATMs. Generally speaking, bitcoin ATMs are more expensive than other methods of purchasing the cryptocurrency such as via an exchange. Customers who struggle to obtain the documentation to complete lengthy KYC procedures, or who simply lack the technical knowledge, however, may find bitcoin via ATM an ideal solution. For those who bank on the cryptocurrency continuing to rise, a few dollars in transaction fees is a small price to pay.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock, and Hyosung.

November 14, 2017

Police posted at Bithumb as users file lawsuit after server outage costs millions

By Kai Sedgwick - November 14, 2017 (news.bitcoin.com)


Users of Bithumb, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, have filed a class action lawsuit following a costly server outage on November 12. Despite only lasting 90 minutes, the outage cost traders millions of dollars, occurring at the height of frenzied bitcoin cash trading. One customer complained of losing 250 million won ($223,000) in the chaos.

A Tale of Lost Won


Disgruntled traders gather outside Bithumb
As bitcoin cash was setting new records on Sunday, hitting all-time highs before plunging sharply, traders at Bithumb, which was leading the BCH rally, could only watch in frustration after the trading platform was knocked offline. Such was the ire of the affected traders that police were posted outside Bithumb’s Seoul headquarters on Monday morning as a precaution. The Korea Times quotes a Bithumb official as saying:

"We are discussing measures to compensate the investors. We will meet our legal and social responsibilities concerning this issue".

That’s not enough for some traders though, who are are still angered after missing out on the lucrative profits that could have been made on the BCH swings. The exchange, which accounts for around 75% of all South Korean trading volume, has now been hit by a lawsuit from around 3,000 customers who were affected by the server outage.

Crash and Cash


The basis for the affected traders’ legal action stems from the fact that Bithumb was previously compromised in June, when trading of Ripple was similarly impacted. They allege that there are critical issues with the exchange’s servers which still haven’t been fixed, leading to the bitcoin cash debacle. The impending legal action raises questions over the obligations of exchanges, and whether they can be held liable for downtime caused by unusually high trading volume or external factors.

Police attended the scene after Bithumb customers protested on Monday morning

Sour Grapes and Just Desserts


In June, a class action lawsuit was filed in Florida after Kraken exchange was floored by DDoS attacks, allegedly costing traders up to $1 million. Often, such suits settle out of court, with plaintiffs filing a formal complaint to compel the defendant to pay swift compensation. The likelihood of Bithumb customers being eligible for court-awarded compensation is dubious, with one financial expert opining that the exchange is not liable for such events.


Most of the trading during the weekend’s fierce bitcoin cash rally originated in South Korea, with the won leading the action. In the past 24 hours, bitcoin cash volume on Bithumb was $1.16 billion, with bitcoin a distant second at $445 million. Cryptocurrency trading is a risky business at the best of times, and the affected investors have earned little sympathy in other quarters of the bitcoin community.

Despite Bithumb’s server issues, the global cryptocurrency market set a new record on Sunday, hitting $25 billion in volume. Given the vast amounts of money at stake, it’s safe to assume the Bithumb lawsuit won’t be the last of its kind.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Naver, and Coincodex.


Kai Sedgwick

Kai's been assembling words for a living since 2009 and involved with bitcoin since 2013. He's previously written white papers for blockchain companies and is especially interested in P2P exchanges and DNMs.

November 13, 2017

Rollercoaster Weekend - Bitcoin price Falls From $7,300 to $5,600 and Rebounds to $6,200

By Joseph Young - November 13, 2017 (www.cryptocoinsnews.com)

Within a single weekend, from November 11 to 12, the bitcoin price plunged from $7,300 to $5,600, and recovered to $6,200, in less than 48 hours.


Beginning late Saturday evening, the bitcoin price began to fall from $7,300 to $6,900, as Bitcoin Cash started to record major gains. By Sunday morning, the price of Bitcoin Cash has surpassed $2,900, a new all-time high, while the price of bitcoin plummeted to $5,600.

As such, the rapid surge in the market valuation of Bitcoin Cash and abrupt plunge in the price of bitcoin led to serious market turbulence and uncertainty, as a relatively large portion of investors initiated a sell-off of bitcoin.

Daily Trading Volume Hits $22 Billion


The daily trading volume of the cryptocurrency market achieved $22 billion on Sunday, as the trading volumes of both bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash surpassed $10 billion. Since then, trading volumes have decreased.

According to reports, several major bitcoin investors including bitcoin angel investor Roger Ver sold billions of dollars in bitcoin and allocated the majority of those funds to Bitcoin Cash. As a previous CCN report explained, the sole beneficiary of the cancellation of the SegWit2x hard fork has been Bitcoin Cash, as supporters of SegWit2x migrated to Bitcoin Cash and unified their vision of scaling bitcoin’s on-chain capacity for short-term scaling.

Consequently, the demand for Bitcoin Cash increased in one major region that is South Korea, mostly through Bithumb, the world’s second largest cryptocurrency exchange by trading volume behind Bitfinex. Several cryptocurrency communities in South Korea heavily invested in Bitcoin Cash primarily due to the movement of miners from bitcoin to Bitcoin Cash.

However, traders were made aware that the migration of miners from bitcoin to Bitcoin Cash cannot be permanent, as miners moved when the Bitcoin Cash blockchain was more profitable to mine. Miners are extremely sensitive to profitability, primarily because mining requires a significant amount of resources, capital, and infrastructure.

Hence, in the near future, after a difficulty adjustment on both blockchains, it is likely that miners will move back to bitcoin if it becomes the more profitable blockchain to mine. Because of the tendency of miners to switch between more profitable blockchains, hash power is often not an accurate indicator to utilize to determinate the mid-term growth of a cryptocurrency.

In fact, as Ivie Business School professor JP Vergne wrote, developer activity is usually the most accurate indicator of a cryptocurrency’s price trend.

“We found that the best predictor of a cryptocurrency’s exchange rate is the amount of developer activity around it,” explained Vergne.

What Lies Ahead?


Given that the bitcoin price has stabilized in the $6,200 region and the tendency of bitcoin to rebound to its previous all-time highs, it is likely that the price of bitcoin will soon recover back to the $7,000 region, especially if institutional and retail investors attracted by CME Group and CBOE’s bitcoin futures exchange launch begin to engage in bitcoin trading.

Featured image from Shutterstock.

October 28, 2017

South Korea advances Crypto Bill targeting multi-level and door-to-door sales

By Kevin Helms - October 28, 2017 (news.bitcoin.com)


South Korea is moving forward with a bill to regulate cryptocurrencies. According to the country’s Ministry of Justice, the bill will primarily focus on cracking down criminal activities including crimes perpetuated through multi-level and door-to-door sales.

Bill To Focus on Criminal Activities


The South Korean government has announced that the legislation to regulate digital currencies “is expected to focus on cracking down on criminal activities,” such as “multi-level crimes,” Yonhap News reported.

The existing regulation for criminal activities does not explicitly include digital currency. A digital currency task force has been set up by relevant government departments including the Ministry of Justice, the Financial Services Commission (FSC), the Ministry of Strategy and Finance, and the Fair Trade Commission. According to the publication, its task is “to clarify the grounds for punishment” for digital currency-related crimes and recommend relevant amendments to the laws and regulations.

The Ministry of Justice said last week that the punishment rule will be significantly increased from “5 years imprisonment or fines of less than 50 million won” to “10 years imprisonment or penalty of less than 500 million won,” the publication detailed, adding that:

"It also plans to establish confiscation rules for criminal profits to increase the effectiveness of punishment".

Currently, there is no clear law regarding digital currencies seized as criminal proceeds. Last month, news.Bitcoin.com reported on Suwon District Court in South Korea ruling that the confiscation of bitcoins by the police in a criminal case was inappropriate.

Amending Existing Regulations


The discipline system for virtual currency trading activities is also included in the amendment bill of the Act on Regulation of Similar Receiving Act, according to the news outlet. “The purpose of this A
ct is to protect good traders and to establish a sound financial order by regulating ‘similar receiving behaviors’,” Article 1 of the law explains.

“Similar receiving behavior” is defined in Article 2 of the law as “an act that does not receive authorization or permission under other laws and does not register or notify and procures funds from an unspecified number of persons.”

Since the government does not view digital currencies as currencies or financial products, it is trying to regulate them through the above Act, Yonhap News detailed, adding that:

"The government will set up regulations for securing consumer protection and transparency of transactions for virtual currency traders who conduct sales activities such as the sale, intermediation, and arbitration of virtual currencies in the amendment".

These regulations include the obligation to prohibit transactions on the Door-to-Door Sales Act, including multi-level and door-to-door sales, the news outlet described.

In addition, the government will also amend some Financial Information Acts to impose an anti-money laundering (AML) obligation on digital currency trading including requiring exchanges to report suspicious activities to the Financial Intelligence Unit. An FSC official was quoted saying:

"The amendment plan is being revised with the aim of passing the revision bill of the Act on Regulating Receiving Behavior in the National Assembly this year…We will clarify the grounds for punishment for similar receiving behaviors that imply virtual currency investment by adding the phrase ‘virtual currency or virtual currency trading."

Images courtesy of Shutterstock.


Kevin Helms

A student of Austrian Economics, Kevin found Bitcoin in 2011 and has been an evangelist ever since. His interests lie in bitcoin security, open-source systems, network effects and the intersection between economics and cryptography.