Morning News: US Regulator Funding Cut, Gamer to Launch Exchange
US Gov’t Cuts the Funding of its Crypto Regulator S Korean Gaming Company to Launch Exchange Platform S Korean Authorities Say 2017 Was a Bumper Year for Crypto Fraud Bank of Canada Exec Calls for Crypto Regulations
Catch up on the most essential cryptocurrency and blockchain news stories breaking in Asia and the Americas while the rest of the world was asleep.
US Gov’t Cuts the Funding of its Crypto Regulator
The United States Congress has decided to cut the annual budget of its financial regulator, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) by USD 1 million. The move comes as a major blow to the CFTC, which, per Bloomberg, had been seeking a 13% increase in its current USD 248 million budget as it looks to position itself as the country’s top crypto regulator. Bloomberg quotes a spokesperson for the commission as saying, “We are absolutely astounded by the decrease in the CFTC’s budget. Our chairman J. Christopher Giancarlo takes this budget decrease incredibly personally.”
S Korean Gaming Company to Launch Exchange Platform with “Biggest Coin Giveaway Ever”
South Korean game developer Axiasoft is set to launch a new cryptocurrency exchange platform in the country. The company says it will begin operations in early April. The platform, named CoinBit, will support transactions in major cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum and Litecoin, as well as other currencies such as ChainCoin and DNA coin. Axiasoft has made a name for itself through its high-profile G-Star gaming conference, held yearly in Busan’s BEXCO conference center. The company’s CEO says CoinBit’s launch will see it team up with international blockchain partners and cryptocurrency developers such as Waves, Ardor, Hshare and Maker. It will operate a promotional lottery-type event that will see CoinBit embark on the “biggest coin giveaway in cryptocurrency exchange history.”
S Korean Authorities Say 2017 Was a Bumper Year for Crypto Fraud
South Korea’s Financial Supervisory Service says it saw a 39% rise in reports of cryptocurrency-related fraud last year, with a sharp rise in bogus crowdfunding also reported. Police added that some 1,300 people were investigated for suspected fraud cases involving fintech and cryptocurrency irregularities, as well as foreign currency margin trading last year, marking an increase of some 20% on 2016 figures. Police say that criminals are now attempting a range of elaborate scams, launching fake Initial Coin Offerings, operating fraudulent cryptocurrency investment services and even posing as the Korean representatives of legitimate overseas blockchain endeavors.
Bank of Canada Exec Calls for Crypto Regulations
The Bank of Canada’s senior deputy governor, Carolyn Wilkins, has called on governments around the world to establish a set of globally binding policies to help police cryptocurrencies. Wilkins, speaking at a conference at the University of Toronto, said regulations were needed to protect investors from market volatility and promote market integrity. Wilkins also spoke out against the use of cryptocurrencies as a source of funding for illegal activities. The comments have come as a surprise to many in Canada, which boasts a high number of crypto and blockchain startups. The country also has a booming crypto mining industry, which has been bolstered in recent times by an exodus of Chinese miners. The Bank of Canada is also believed to be piloting a range of blockchain solutions.