Dutch public prosecutors are targeting Bitcoin mixing services, and the NASDAQ has completed its blockchain-based e-voting test. Here are the cryptocurrency highlights of week 4:
- China’s central bank plans to continue scrutinizing domestic Bitcoin exchanges. The People’s Bank of China (PBoC) released its latest statement detailing how it would oversee the industry today, a move that comes weeks after it first began publicizing meetings with representatives from BTCC, Huobi and OKCoin. According to the PBoC, that scrutiny will continue via additional on-site inspections. Volumes on Chinese exchanges have already fallen by more than 80% as a result of the increased scrutiny.
- Dutch public prosecutors and the tax inspection agency are ramping up their fight against Bitcoin money laundering this year. The FIOD — the investigative arm of the Dutch tax authority — wants to lower the bar for prosecution of unlicensed Bitcoin traders. The FIOD will also try to have mixing services recognized as money-laundering operations. This approach marks a new and rigorous step in fighting money laundering via Bitcoin, and could spell trouble for (users of) services like bitmixer and TumbleBit.
- Nasdaq Inc has successfully completed a test using blockchain technology to run proxy voting on its Estonian exchange and is now assessing whether to implement the new system. The technology allowed investors who own shares in companies listed on the Tallinn Stock Exchange, the country’s only regulated secondary securities market, to vote online during investor meetings or transfer their voting rights to a proxy.
- A new industrial blockchain initiative has been launched to define the standards and protocols for distributed ledger and the ‘internet of things’ (IoT), including Fortune 500 firms BNY Mellon, Bosch, Cisco, Gemalto, and Foxconn, as well as a host of blockchain startups. The initiative was born at a meeting back in December, New Horizons: Blockchain x IoT Summit. Participants in the discussions included blockchain companies Ambisafe, BitSE, Chronicled, ConsenSys, Distributed, Filament, Hashed Health, Ledger, Skuchain, and Slock.it.
- Compared to the previous week the price of Bitcoin has decreased slightly, with the exchange rate currently at $921 per BTC. The price of Ethereum decreased by almost four percent, taking Ether down to a rate of $10.51 per ETH. Ethereum Classic lost more than nine percent, with the price decreasing to $1.29 per ETC. Zcash’ price decreased by around fourteen percent. One ZEC is now trading at roughly $38 per coin.