Cryptocurrency Markets Down 10% On Misleading News of South Korea Trading Ban

Cryptocurrency Markets Down 10% On Misleading News of South Korea Trading Ban

The Southeast Asian nation carries as much as 20% of the global trade so anything that happens there will have a ripple effect across the markets.

The news sent a shock wave to cryptocurrency market with prices of major cryptocurrencies including bitcoin, ripple and ethereum took a hit following the news that South Korea could be preparing to ban trading in digital currencies.

According to Justice Minister Park Sang-ki in a report today, the justice ministry is preparing a bill that would outlaw crypto trading through exchanges.

Even if a country-wide cryptocurrency ban were finalized, it might take "months or even years" for it to actually be passed into legislation, Reuters claims.

The government has plans to implement a new law that bans cryptocurrencies being traded through exchanges, which is one of the easiest ways for people to buy and sell the virtual currencies.

The announcement has triggered a selloff in Bitcoin, the world's most popular virtual currency, on both local and foreign exchanges.

Karen Bradley appointed Northern Ireland Secretary
In a letter to the Prime Minister, Mr Brokenshire said it had been "a huge privilege" to serve the people of Northern Ireland. If a solution to the impasse can not be found, the region faces a new election or direct rule from Westminster.

Until now, authorities have largely stopped short of direct intervention, but increasing fears about scams, money laundering and hacks linked to cryptocurrencies, could attract further attention and mean more crackdowns in future. The local exchange Bithumb had Bitcoin priced at $17,169.65 per token while CoinDesk was 31% lower. "The new price is more accurate and meaningful, in my opinion". Separately, one of Korea's biggest cryptocurrency exchanges, Bithumb, said it met briefly with tax officials on Wednesday.

Though South Korea's a powerful trading hub, the public's involvement with cryptocurrency is quite speculative, in some cases akin to gambling.

Bitcoin sank on Monday after website CoinMarketCap removed prices from South Korean exchanges, because coins were trading at a premium of about 30 percent in Asia's fourth-largest economy.

This year, business leaders are voicing their opinion on the crypto phenomenon, leading to price fluctuations. Korea's government unveiled multiple options for cryptocurrency exchange regulation on December 28, including allowing trading to continue under tighter supervision. Cryptocurrencies are not legal tender and have no regulatory permission or protection in the country, the finance ministry said in a statement.

"The National Tax Service raided our office this week", an official at Coinone told Reuters.

An unidentified spokesman told the Financial Times: "They asked for some data such as cryptocurrency trading volume, our exchange's sales and whether we are paying corporate tax well".

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