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Cryptocurrency Midday Report

Jun 26, 2018

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  • The fifth-largest cryptocurrency exchange by volume, Binance, has suspended trading and withdrawals due to a risk warning from a pre-trade check done by their risk management system.  Binance had a scheduled four-hour upgrade on June 26 but had to add time to the upgrade. After Binance announced that the upgrade had been completed, another update followed the risk warning. The exchange was not hacked, and no illegal activity is suspected. This was simply a suspension of activity while security upgrades can be completed.
  • The Financial Services Agency (FSA), Japan’s main financial regulator, issued six business improvement orders on June 22 to cryptocurrency exchanges Bitflyer, Bitpoint Japan, Btcbox, Bitbank, Quoine, and Tech Bureau.  These cryptocurrency exchanges have now all responded to these orders, and the executives of Bitflyer and Bitbank have subsequently resigned from their Vice President roles of the newly formed Japan Virtual Currency Exchange Association (JVCEA).  All exchanges, including Bitflyer and Bitbank intend on fixing the issues brought to attention by the FSA.
  • The Australian and New Zealand central banks said that they will not be issuing their own central bank digital currency. They did mention that they thought bitcoin was fascinating but that it is not efficient. The Australian central bank noted that its own digital currency is not a high priority now. However, it is something that the bank is looking into. The central bank of New Zealand stated that it is not sure about the conclusive benefits of a central bank digital token.
  • Cryptocurrency influencers have been known to pump up certain tokens – most notably John McAfee who was charging USD$105,000 per tweet. The promoters are known as “bounty hunters” and may be susceptible to trouble with authorities if they are acting as unregistered broker-dealers. McAfee ended up receiving threats from the Securities and Exchange commissions for his actions. It is noted that USD$11.6bn has been raised for blockchain startups this year according to CoinSchedule. This number is 3x the amount raised last year.