16.07 – UPDATE – Bitcoin in a free fall
Bitcoin is currently priced at $9,091 with 79 of the 100 cryptocurrencies listed on CoinMarketCap falling. Ethereum lies at $689 and Ripple at $0.78.
Bitcoin is currently priced at $9,190.
Christine Lagarde Managing director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has called for more control of bitcoin by using the technology behind it to “fight fire with fire”.
Writing in an IMF blog post Mrs Lagarde explained how the innovations behind cryptocurrencies such as blockchain can be used to help regulate it.
She said: “We can harness the potential of crypto-assets while ensuring that they never become a haven for illegal activity or a source of financial vulnerability.”
She also warned that if the world does not bring cryptocurrencies under control then they may become a catalyst for illegal activity.
Back in February she said it is only a matter of time before cryptocurrencies are regulated by the government.
Ms Lagarde said government regulation of cryptocurrencies is “inevitable” as world leaders scrutinise digital currencies.
7.30am MORNING HEADLINES
Good morning, and welcome to our rolling coverage of all things cryptocurrency, including price, regulation, innovation and financial crime.
Bitcoin is currently priced at $9,149 after falling from $9,823 overnight.
Ripple CEO, Brad Garlinghouse has come out fighting over comparisons made between his burgeoning cryptocurrency XRP and BTC, the current market bellwether.
Mr Garlinghouse, speaking to Bloomberg Asia in Singapore, said that comparing Ripple to bitcoin was “a compliment” but that his company is moving the utility forward.
He said: “Some may look back at Bitcoin and say that it is the Napster of digital assets.
“What I mean by that is that Napster was the first to digitise music and demonstrate that you can do a lot of cool things with that.
“But ultimately they were circumventing trademark laws, they were circumventing royalty payments and then the government stepped in and Napster wasn’t successful.
“But Spotify, iTunes and Pandora were successful.”
Updates below throughout the day….
12.03pm – UPDATE – Bitcoin mining in Canada
California-based Marathon Patent Group Inc has announced its expansion towards the Bitcoin mining business.
The company has opened operational facilities in the mining-friendly region of Quebec.
BTC is sliding towards $8k.
11.29am – UPDATE – BTC slides
Bitcoin is currently priced at $9,042 and is heading further south.
10.23am – UPDATE – EU says mining is ‘not illegal’
An EU commissioner has said that Cryptocurrency mining is perfectly legal in Europe and only subject to standard electricity rules.
Mariya Gabriel, European Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, addressed concerns about the power-intensive nature of cryptocurrency mining, while clarifying the regulatory status of the industry.
Ms Gabriel said: “If the energy consumed for this activity is produced according to law, there is no legal basis to forbid or even limit it. … As mining of cryptocurrency is not an illegal activity, the Commission did not put in place any means to track it, so far.”
Ms Gabriel went on to say the European Commission would continue to review the growing impact cryptocurrencies have on energy consumption and demand.
9.10am – UPDATE – ‘Tokyo Whale’ stops selling
The infamous ‘Tokyo Whale’ has boosted BTC bulls after taking a break from selling digital currencies.
Nobuaki Kobayashi, a trustee of defunct Tokyo bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox sold more than 35,000 bitcoin, worth about $400 million at the time, to pay off creditors, according to details of the sale published by a company trustee last week.
8.49am – UPDATE – Goldman Sachs claim bitcoin ‘has potential’ to fall below
CoinTelegraph report on a recent statement by Sheba Jafari from the Goldman Sachs’ technical analysis team who has said that BTC risks sinking below the February low.
On Sunday, the team sent a note to clients warning that the next BTC sell-off threatens dipping below the February low of $5,922.
It said: “The break is significant as implies [sic] potential for a more impulsive decline.
“The next meaningful level is down at $7,667 to $7,198.”