• Bitcoin makes a comeback to reclaim USD 9,000
  • South Korea formally legalizes cryptocurrency with a new law passed to regulate crypto exchanges
  • Max Keiser believes that global health scare pressures will converge with economic pressure to push Bitcoin to USD 100,000 and beyond

 

Bitcoin continues its steady ascent back into USD 9,000 territory today, with European markets giving way to America after Asia took price upwards from USD 8,700 earlier on Tuesday. As of time of writing, Bitcoin is on the point of USD 9,000 (CoinDesk).

A big item of news from South Korea today as the country’s National Assembly passed a revised bill on the reporting and use of special financial transaction information. Specifically, this introduced a permit system for crypto exchanges, as virtual asset operators. After getting “real name-confirmed accounts” and ISMS authentication from commercial banks, they now have to report operations to the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) under the Financial Services Commission, or face a penalty of up to five years in prison or KRW 50 million (USD 42,000) in fines.

A special session of the legislature had convened, and together passed a unanimous vote to proceed with the amendment to the country’s financial services laws. This essentially authorizes the national financial regulator to oversee blockchain and crypto, developing rules around anti-money laundering (AML) and other compliance processes.

The bill is set for implementation in March 2021, giving time for currently operating crypto exchanges to meet these new requirements, though they will still have six months after that to report their operations. It is thought that with this revised bill in place, sub-law regulations will be hastened, and this should also clarify the scope of virtual asset companies subject to the new requirements and conditions, as well as the exact procedures for doing so.

Before implementing the bill, however, earlier moves by the Financial Supervisory Service and the FIU have also committed to strengthen virtual asset AML functions.

South Korea is one of only a few countries that has been pushing for wide-scale adoption of blockchain as part of an intensive innovation drive. The legislature vote is relatively quick in turnaround time, demonstrating how eager regulators are to increase acceptance of blockchain and cryptocurrencies in the context of local and global financial services. To date, only four exchanges have used real-name accounts: Bithumb, Coinwon, Korbit and Upbit.

Meanwhile, Bitcoin bug and maximalist Max Keiser has come out and put out a bold six-digit price prediction for Bitcoin, saying that health crisis fears from the coronavirus outbreak are sure to push Bitcoin to a price valuation of USD 100,000. Giving these comments on the latest edition of his The Keiser Report, he said that global panic will have a significant impact on Bitcoin in 2020, as “part two of the global financial crisis” that led to the creation of the world’s most-used digital asset in 2009. He explained to presenter Stacey Herbert:

“…Now Bitcoin will experience part two of the global financial crisis — it’s already close to USD 10,000 a coin. This is the global financial crisis that will catapult the price to USD 100,000 and beyond.”

Keiser also took a swipe at JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon, who has publicly criticized Bitcoin and who allegedly dreamed that Davos World Economic Forum attendees would contract coronavirus. Keiser said:

“He’s confusing the coronavirus with the Bitcoin virus; the same thing with Peter Schiff. Their minds are being hacked by the Bitcoin virus. Soon Jamie will be a blathering idiot on the ground begging the Fed for money to buy Bitcoin. He’s going to turn into a kind of street urchin. Same with Peter Schiff.”

 

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