Bitcoin, Cryptocurrencies Lower in Subdued Trade

30 Jan 2018

Bitcoin, Cryptocurrencies Lower in Subdued Trade - The price of digital currency bitcoin and other major cryptocurrencies slid lower on Tuesday as the fallout from the hack of Tokyo-based cryptocurrency exchange Coincheck last week and ongoing regulatory uncertainty weighed.

Bitcoin was trading at $10,947 by 04:24 AM ET (09:24 AM GMT) on the Bitfinex exchange.
Ethereum, the world’s second largest cryptocurrency by market cap, was last at $1,165 on the Bitfinex exchange.
Meanwhile, Ripple's XRP token was trading at $1.21 on the Poloniex exchange.

Japan’s Finance Minister Taro Aso said on Tuesday that management systems at cryptocurrency exchanges needed to be strengthened after hackers stole $530 million of digital money from Coincheck last week.

The remarks came a day after Japan’s financial regulator said that it will inspect all cryptocurrency exchanges and ordered Coincheck to improve its standards.
Coincheck suspended trading on Friday after hackers stole $530 million worth of virtual coins in one of the biggest-ever thefts of digital money.

The theft has underlined security and regulatory concerns around digital currencies amid an exponential increase in demand and price during recent months.

Many counties are clamping down on cryptocurrency trading, but Japan has taken a different approach, becoming last year the first country to introduce government regulation of cryptocurrency exchanges in a bid to leverage the fintech industry to stimulate economic growth.

In South Korea, new measures banning the use of anonymous bank accounts in cryptocurrency trading came into effect on Tuesday.

The measures are aimed at preventing digital currencies from being used for money laundering and other illegal activities.
The real-name trading system is also part of the government's latest measures to curb speculation amid growing fears that a cryptocurrency bubble may be set to burst.

The implementation of the new rules came after mixed messages about regulation from South Korean officials at various ministries spooked cryptocurrency markets earlier this month.