Crypto NEws

All But One of Top 20 Cryptos See Green, Bitcoin Safely Above $6,700

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Crypto markets are seeing another wave of growth, with Bitcoin trading above $6,700 and 19 out of the top 20 coins firmly in the green.

Sunday, September 23: crypto markets are seeing another wave of green. All but one of the top 20 cryptocurrencies by market cap have made gains over the past 24 hours, according to CoinMarketCap.

Market visualization from Coin360

Market visualization from Coin360

After suffering a slight decline yesterday, Bitcoin (BTC) rebounded today, trading above $6,700 throughout the day. The cryptocurrency is at $6,734 as of press time, up 0.9 percent on the day.

Bitcoin is also up 3.3 percent over the past 7 days, and up 5 percent up on the month. Despite that, Bitcoin’s dominance has dropped slightly, down from 55.6 percent a week ago to 51.2 percent at press time, according to CoinMarketCap.

Bitcoin price chart

Bitcoin price chart. Source: Cointelegraph Bitcoin Price Index

Ethereum (ETH), after having briefly given up its position during a massive Ripple (XRP) rally, is now back to the second spot by market capitalization.

The coin is up 2.6 percent in 24 hours to press time, currently trading at $245. Ethereum is up a significant 10.4 percent on the week, but it has not yet managed to recuperate its monthly losses, still down around 9 percent over the past 30 days.

Ethereum price chart

Ethereum price chart. Source: Cointelegraph Ethereum Price Index

The third largest cryptocurrency by market cap Ripple (XRP) is the only one to see some losses among the top 20 coins, according to CoinMarketCap. Following a period of immense growth earlier this week, Ripple is down 0.23 percent over the past 24 hours, to trade at $0.568.

Ripple price chart

Ripple price chart. Source: Cointelegraph Ripple Price Index

Crypto markets are holding their gains firmly, with total market cap slightly up over the past 24 hours, currently at $227 billion. Following a significant sell-off that started on September 5, the market has only recently climbed back above the $220 billion point.

Total market capitalization chart

Total market capitalization chart. Source: CoinMarketCap

The sixth largest coin by market cap Stellar (XLM) is seeing the most gains among the top 20. Stellar’s price has surged more than 20 percent in 24 hours to press time, currently at $0.289. The altcoin experienced considerable growth this week, up around 40 percent over the past 7 days, according to CoinMarketCap.

Cardano (ADA) is up 10.6 percent today, currently trading at $0.09. The altcoin’s weekly gains constitute more than 31 percent, according to CoinMarketCap.

CNBC’s Ran Neuner has noted in a tweet that cryptocurrencies are gaining significant momentum, pointing out that the daily trade volume of the entire market is approaching $14 billion, which is “the most volume we have seen in a while.

Tahanan Crypto News New Rules: US Regulators Extend Their Purview Within Crypto Industry
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New Rules: US Regulators Extend Their Purview Within Crypto Industry
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New Rules: US Regulators Extend Their Purview Within Crypto Industry

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This week, two U.S. regulators took action against non-compliant players

This week, on the same day, two United States regulating bodiesthe Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and its ruling organization the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) — reported filing objections against non-compliant crypto players who made some false statements regarding their businesses.

While the SEC barely needs any introduction for those who follow the crypto industry, FINRA might seem unfamiliar. FINRA is a private, non-federal agency, although it is overseen by the SEC. It regulates one specific part of the securities industry in the U.S.: brokerage firms doing business with the public.

What makes the news particularly interesting is that both agencies seemingly extended their purviews, as FINRA targeted a questionable crypto security and the SEC turned its attention to funds managing virtual currencies. And as the icing on the cake, a New York federal judge ruled that U.S. securities laws were applicable for dealing with crypto fraud allegationsall on the same day, Sept. 11.

FINRA enters the industry

FINRA has filed a complaint against a Massachusetts resident Timothy Tilton Ayre. The watchdog charged him with securities fraud and the illegal distribution of an unregistered cryptocurrency called HempCoin (HMP) (not to be confused with the company of the same name that trades THC tokens).

Here’s brief background: In April 2016, Ayre started advertising HMP as “the first minable coin backed by marketable securitiesand a security backed by common stock, arguing that every 10 coins represented one share of his public company Rocky Mountain Ayre Inc. (RMTN).

Ayre’s HempCoins premiered on exchanges C-Cex and Yobit. More than than 81 million HMP coins were mined in late 2017 and traded on the aforementioned platforms. Currently, HMP is not listed at any exchange and its market cap totals a modest $104,463, according to CoinMarketCap. Ayre’s cryptocurrency has also seemingly erased all of its social media presence, while its former website reroutes to some unrelated content.

Thus, in the recent complaint, FINRA states that Ayre’s claims were “fraudulent, positive statements about RMTN’s business and finances.As Ayre never attempted to register the coin, FINRA chose to charge the RMTN president with the unlawful distribution of an unregistered security.

In the press release, FINRA reminded that anyone named in its complaint can file a response and request a hearing. If the agency confirms there were violations, Ayre might face a fine, censure, suspension or be barred from the securities industry altogether.

SEC starts to battle unruly crypto hedge funds

FINRA’s action came on the same day as its overseer, the SEC, issued two separate cease-and-desist orders along with fines.

First, the SEC filed a cease-and-desist against Crypto Asset Management (CAM) fund and its founder Timothy Enneking, who reportedly presented CAM as thefirst regulated crypto asset fund in the United States.CAM raised $3.6 million from 44 investors in late 2017, bringing its net asset value to $37 million.

According to the filing, the fund has, in fact, “never been registered with the Commission in any capacity.” Тhe watchdog stresses that CAM “wilfullybroke the law by claiming to have the necessary credentials associated with holding and trading securities.

After the SEC reached out to CAM, the fund agreed to stop its public offering and offered a buyback to investors. CAM has also agreed to pay the $200,000 fine, although he didn’t admit or deny guilt to the allegations.

The SEC’s second notice addressed TokenLot, a crypto broker-dealer lead by Lenny Kugel and Eli L. Lewitt. TokenLot marketed itself an “ICO superstore.According to the regulator, Kugel and Lewitt also breached the law by failing to register their business in the country. Similarly to CAM, TokenLot has already agreed to pay a $471,000 fine but did not admit or deny the findings.

NY court rules securities laws can apply to crypto

The regulatory scrutiny for virtual currencies in the U.S. is likely to become even more thorough, as Sept. 11 featured yet another precedent: A New York judge ruled that securities laws can be applicable for prosecuting crypto fraud allegations, in what appeared to be the first U.S. court case to address the matter.

The case was filed against Brooklyn resident Maksim Zaslavskiy. Prosecutors have claimed that in 2017, he gained a minimum $300,000 from investors for a cryptocurrency called REcoin, which claimed to be backed by real estate, and Diamond, supposedly underpinned by diamonds. Investigators state that no real estate or diamonds in fact supported the digital assets.

As a result, U.S. District Judge Raymond Dearie ruled that federal securities laws should be interpreted “flexibly,” dismissing a motion from Zaslavskiy’s lawyers to drop the charges on the grounds that the cryptocurrencies didn’t fall under the Securities Exchange Act.

As per Reuters, Dearie’s statement and other filings in Zaslavskiy’s case did not mention any similar court decisions on applying federal securities law to crypto-related fraud cases.

Still no regulatory framework

Thus, U.S. regulators have been increasingly focused on the crypto market as of late. Importantly, this week’s news might mark an extension of the watchdogsaction on the field of cryptocurrencies, as both the FINRA’s and SEC’s action this week were apparent firsts, while the N.Y. court decision also seems to have set a new precedent.

Indeed, FINRA has reportedly never issued any disciplinary action within the crypto industry until now. The agency’s arrival could be expected, though, as FINRA published a guide on how to avoid crypto scams just several days before the HempCoin case was announced.

The SEC, in turn, has publicly addressed crypto hedge funds in an apparent first as well. There were more than 226 funds managing digital assets who controlled at least a combined $3.5 billion, as of February 2018, according to Autonomous NEXT research. The first signs that they had triggered the SEC’s attention arose in March 2018, when Bloomberg, citing anonymous sources, reported that the agency sent a number of requests to crypto-focused funds regarding their compliance, and even allegedly issued subpoenas for some of them.

In separate news for the U.S. industry, a group of resident crypto-related companiesincluding Coinbase, Protocol Labs and Digital Currency Groupteamed up to form the Blockchain Association, the “firstlobbying group representing the blockchain industry in Washington, D.C. It will represent mainstream companies that look to operate within the political system, address policy issues and the treatment of crypto by U.S. tax law, as well as collaborate with lawmakers on Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Know Your Customer (KYC) policy development within the industry.

The events mentioned above follow U.S. Rep. Bill Huizenga’s July speech, when the lawmaker argued that Congress should empower financial regulators such as the SEC to regulate the cryptocurrency market in compliance with the same rules governing other currencies and stocks.

Nevertheless, for now, U.S. regulatory bodies still haven’t come up with one definitive scheme to regulate the crypto industry, as watchdogs continue to approach them differently, depending on their competence. In May, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) chairman, Chris Giancarlo, stated he doesn’t see comprehensive crypto legislation coming from the federal level in the near future, pointing out that the statutes by which the CFTC is operating were written in 1935.

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