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India’s Central Bank Banned Cryptocurrency with Zero Research or Consultation

The Reserve Bank of India has responded to a query seeking explanations for its reasons to ban banks from dealing with the cryptocurrency industry, admitting it conducted no research prior to its prohibitive action.

In a Right to Information (RTI) request filed by a domestic lawyer Varun Sethi, the Reserve Bank of India was – over a number of questions – plainly asked for the reasons behind its April ban that explicitly forbade all regulated financial institutions from providing services to cryptocurrency businesses.

RBI confirmed it gave little to no thought before reaching the decision in its response, nor did it conduct any research – internally or independently – before enforcing the ban.

In what is increasingly appearing to be an arbitrary action, the central bank did not clarify its position and plainly refused to answer other probing questions put forth in the information request.

For instance, central bank officials were asked if the authority established an internal committee to determine if there were risks in trading cryptocurrencies. “No” was the answer.

Had the RBI conducted its own research, or even communicated with other counterparts – think Japan – to understand and explore a regulatory framework prior? Again, “no”.

The RBI also refused to clarify how it had determined public risks in engaging cryptocurrencies, from as early as 2013. Similarly, it refused to disclose its take on acknowledging self-regulated cryptocurrency exchanges that follow KYC norms, if it had sought an external expert opinion before enacting the ban or if it will prohibit Indian citizens from buying cryptocurrencies from exchanges outside the country.

The central bank ducked all these questions by pointing to a loophole in the RTI act, exempting them from giving an answer.

The RBI’s ban in April came after years of repeated public warnings by the financial regulator, cautioning citizens against trading or investing in cryptocurrencies like bitcoin.

Last month, the central bank pushed back against a Supreme Court-approved petition that sought regulation to effectively legalize and recognize the cryptocurrency industry in the country. In fact, the RBI deflected responsibility in outlining a policy or framework for the nascent sector, stating “the RBI cannot unilaterally decide for the government on the legality of bitcoins” in India.

A number fo cryptocurrency businesses have since filed petitions at state courts arguing the RBI decision was “arbitrary, unfair and unconstitutional“. Witnessing an increasing backlog of those petitions, India’s Supreme Court barred all high courts from filing further petitions against the Reserve Bank and claimed all pending petitions in May.

Cryptocurrency

Cryptocurrencies price prediction: Bitcoin, Ripple & IOTA – European Wrap – 17 February

Bitcoin Price Prediction: BTC/USD banks on $9,700 support for reversal – Confluence Detector

Bitcoin continues to face increased selling activity on the first day of the trading this week. The drab action is a continuation of the weekend losses that jeopardized support levels at $10,200 and $10,000. There was a struggle to keep the price above $9,800 during the Asian house, however, the downward force saw the bulls scatter leaving a gap for another drop towards $9,700.

Bitcoin confluence levels

According to the confluence detector, BTC/USD is trading between stacks of support and resistance. The first hurdle is seen at $9,954; the region where the Bollinger Band 15-minutes upper, the 100 SMA 15-mins, the 38.2% Fibo one-day and the pivot point one week support one converge.

fxsoriginal

Ripple Price Analysis: XRP/USD erased the gains of the previous rally

Ripple’s XRP has been collapsing for three days in a row. The massive sell-off caused by a global correction on the cryptocurrency market wiped out all the gains of the previous week and pushed XRP/USD below $0.2700 on Sunday. At the time of writing, the coin is trying to settle above $0.2800, however, an upside bias remains weak. XRP is down 10.5% on a day-to-day basis, and 4.6% since the beginning of Monday. Ripple’s current market value is registered at $12.2 billion, while an average daily trading volume amounts to nearly $4 billion in line with the figures of the previous days. 


IOTA team released wallet update, transactions are not resumed; IOT/USD stays under pressure

IOTA hit an intraday low at $0.2602 during early Asian hours and recovered to $0.2690 by the time of writing. The 24th largest digital asset has lost nearly 9% of its value in the recent 24 hours amid massive sell-off on the cryptocurrency markets. The coin has been losing ground since February 12, when major vulnerability of IOTA’s flagship wallet was discovered.

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Brazilian Cryptocurrency Exchanges Hit Hard by Tax Regulations

Legislators in Brazil have gotten support to regulate the crypto market following allegations of fraud at Atlas Quantum, Zero10, and Trader Group last year, and February saw some of the results of those actions. Bitcoin.com has reported that two major cryptocurrency exchanges based in the South American nation have been shut down following threats of heavy fines and the immediate effects of the regulations. 

Acesso Bitcoin was one of the exchanges to voluntarily close their doors. Cofounder Pedro Nunes was quoted by crypto news outlet Portal do Bitcoin as saying:

“After the Federal Revenue Service introduced these rules we noticed a significant decrease in the traded volume. We also feel that the market has cooled off for smaller exchanges.”

Latoex, another Brazil-based crypto exchange, faces similar problems. The company is looking at a 100,000-Brazilian real (BRD) fine if it does not comply with a suspension order issued by Brazil’s Securities and Exchange Commission.

Current Crypto Regulations in Brazil

Because Brazil does not have a dedicated law to deal with crypto at this time, all exchanges fall under the purview of Normative Instruction No. 1888 issued by the Department of Federal Revenue. All companies carrying out crypto transactions in Brazil must report them or face fines, ranging from 500 BRD to 1500 BRD, or from 120 to 360 USD. 

Both houses of the National Congress of Brazil are looking at proposals to regulate the country’s crypto industry. A special commission is analyzing and making revisions to such a motion, Bill 2303/2015. Meanwhile, the Senate is reviewing two other bills, PL 3825/2019 and PL 3949/2019. As of Feb. 2020, no specific legislation has been enacted to establish regulations for the cryptocurrency market in Brazil.

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BitMax.io and Bithumb Korea Announce Strategic Partnership to Enhance Product Platform and Accelerate Global Expansion

BitMax.io, a Singapore-registered digital asset trading platform with a global footprint, and Bithumb Korea, a South Korean-based cryptocurrency exchange, are pleased to announce a strategic global partnership leveraging their respective market presence and expertise.

Founded by a group of Wall Street quant trading veterans in 2018, BitMax.io offers a broad range of financial products for retail and institutional clients. Bithumb Korea was founded in 2014 and is a leading cryptocurrency exchange in the world in terms of total transaction volume. Bithumb has expanded its investment in blockchain technology by developing and providing custody, kiosk, VC and research services, thereby contributing to the growth of the cryptocurrency ecosystem.

The key terms of the new partnership encompass the development of blockchain and infrastructure technology. The collaborative effort will foster new opportunities as well as accelerate the development of product solutions in today’s competitive environment.

Dr. George Cao, CEO of BitMax.io stated,

“Rigorous product innovation has always been a key point of differentiation for our institutional-grade trading platform. We are thrilled about this exciting opportunity to combine that approach with Bithumb Korea’s deep crypto business expertise. Both institutions will work closely on the delivery of synergistic services and products to our global users across the digital asset ecosystem.”

About BitMax.io

BitMax.io [BTMX.com] is a leading digital asset trading platform with a broad range of financial products and services for both retail and institutional clients, with robust product design ranging from innovative volatility products to margin trading and other investment solutions.

About Bithumb Korea

Bithumb Korea has grown beyond Korea to become one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world. The comprehensive financial platform company is leading the digital financial innovation based on cryptocurrencies and blockchains.

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