The sharp pullback in the price of Bitcoin late on Thursday was attributed to the news that Japan’s regulator had issued a warning to Binance, one of the world’s biggest cryptocurrency exchanges, that it was operating in the country illegally and criminal charges would be filed if it did not cease.
There was considerable confusion over the report and Bitcoin dropped over 4 per cent – and altcoins dropped across the board – around the time the Nikkei report was published.
However the news was refuted by Binance CEO Zhao Changpeng who took to Twitter to rebuke the Nikkei’s “irresponsible journalism” and deny that they had received any mandate from the Japanese Financial Services Authority (JFSA).
In the past few hours Changpeng said they did receive “a simple letter from JFSA”. Without going into the particulars of its content he simply stated: “Our lawyers called JFSA immediately, and will find a solution. Protecting user interests is our top priority.”
Less news is good news from G20
Separately, the tone from G20 in Buenos Aires earlier this week has been largely favorable towards cryptocurrencies and their classification as an asset.
After a G20 meeting of finance ministers the Argentine Central Bank chairman Frederico Sturzenegger confirmed that the members had agreed to a July deadline by which to outline a policy for digital currencies, although Brazil will not be involved as the country’s Central Bank president Ilan Goldfajn stated on Monday that cryptocurrencies would not be regulated.
In the meantime, the G20 pledged to apply the standards of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) – an intergovernmental body formed to fight money laundering and terrorist financing – to cryptocurrency.
In a statement they said: “We commit to implement the FATF standards as they apply to crypto-assets, look forward to the FATF review of those standards, and call on the FATF to advance global implementation. We call on international standard-setting bodies (SSBs) to continue their monitoring of crypto-assets and their risks, according to their mandates, and assess multilateral responses as needed.”
Michael is an editor at CurrencyTimes, with a background in energy and economics. He keeps an eye on Blockchain's applications in building smarter and more equitable energy access globally.