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Thai Cryptocurrency Exchange Determined to Stay Open After SEC Orders Shutdown

January 17, 2019 |

Thai Cryptocurrency Exchange Determined to Stay Open After SEC Orders Shutdown

The Thai Ministry of Finance has rejected the last cryptocurrency exchange application it had been reviewing. The exchange, which has been ordered to close down business and return customer funds, is determined to stay operational. “Shutting down is not an option for us,” its chief strategy officer reportedly said.

Also read: Indian Supreme Court Moves Crypto Hearing, Community Calls for Positive Regulations

Coin Asset Exchange Rejected

Thai Cryptocurrency Exchange Determined to Stay Open After SEC Orders ShutdownThe Thai Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced on Monday the outcome of the latest cryptocurrency exchange application it had been reviewing. The country’s Ministry of Finance, under the recommendation of the SEC board, decided to reject the application of Coin Asset Co. Ltd. to operate a crypto exchange.

The company has been allowed to operate in Thailand while its application was being reviewed. However, the SEC has notified the company of its rejection and ordered it to cease operations by Jan. 21.

The regulator told the exchange’s CEO, Sivanus Yamdee, that the minimum processing time is four months should the exchange reapply for a license, the Bangkok Post reported on Wednesday. Yamdee said his company will meet with the SEC on Friday to discuss continuing crypto operations. The news outlet further quoted him as saying:

We are seeking a way to keep our digital asset exchange operating as the business cycle is moving towards a peak … We are unable to endure such as long processing time. The business cycle is on the rise and there are costs for conducting daily business. It is not easy to maintain customer loyalty.

With about 10,000 customers, the exchange’s 24-hour trading volume is approximately 91 million baht (~$ 2.87 million) at the time of this writing. In August last year, the exchange unveiled its own line of cryptocurrency automated teller machines (ATMs). It also lists Jfin coin, the country’s first initial coin offering launched by a subsidiary of a company listed on the Stock Exchange of Thailand, Jay Mart Plc.

Thai Cryptocurrency Exchange Determined to Stay Open After SEC Orders Shutdown

Coin Asset’s new chief strategy officer, Arnon Saksri, was quoted by the Bangkok Post as saying:

Ultimately, we want to be regulated … It will improve investor confidence and the legitimacy of our cryptocurrency businesses, but the SEC has to find the right way to do it … Shutting down is not an option for us.

The Thai Ministry of Finance issued licenses to four cryptocurrency businesses on Jan. 8, three of which are exchanges and one is a broker-dealer.

Reason for Denial

According to the statement by the Thai SEC, the finance ministry cited “a major change to the company’s management … [which] affected the readiness of the company’s important work systems” as the reason for rejecting Coin Asset’s application. The commission detailed that “three out of four directors responsible for the [exchange’s] important work systems resigned.” The ministry elaborated:

The company failed to meet the standards on work systems. For example, the systems for custody of client assets and know your customer (KYC) were inconsistent with the standards accepted by the [Thai] Anti-Money Laundering Office.

The exchange maintains that its security system is safe, noting that it complies with ISO/IEC 27001:2013 international standard, Prachachat Turakij publication reported on Tuesday. Coin Asset added that its KYC process is linked to Thai banks, with comprehensive anti-money laundering measures.

Thai Cryptocurrency Exchange Determined to Stay Open After SEC Orders Shutdown

The finance ministry has allowed the company to keep operating until Jan. 21 “to ensure proper proceeding of related matters including notification to the clients regarding asset refunds or asset transfers to other digital asset operators according to the clients’ order,” the SEC emphasized. “Regarding clients’ assets under custody, the company is requested to transfer or return the assets according to the clients’ order and report the results of the matter to the SEC.”

Following the commission’s announcement, Coin Asset informed its customers that they can continue to trade until Jan. 21 and have until Feb. 14 to withdraw funds.

Do you think the Thai SEC will let Coin Asset remain open? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock and the Thai SEC.


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The post Thai Cryptocurrency Exchange Determined to Stay Open After SEC Orders Shutdown appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Sears’ Edward Lampert sweetens his bid to keep stores open, source says

January 10, 2019 |

Edward Lampert’s ESL Investments hedge fund has raised its bid to keep Sears Holdings Corp. in business with an offer of about $ 5 billion that would cover severance for workers and bills from its suppliers.

Advisors for the hedge fund crafted a bid that would commit ESL to cover more than $ 40 million…


L.A. Times – Business

Jason Cox Extends Open Invitation for Assistance With Development and Review of Bitcoin Cash Code

January 9, 2019 |

BCH developer conversations have been taking place ahead of the upcoming May 2019 upgrade. In their latest video meeting, devs agreed that they need to know how much BCH is locked up in p2sh segwit addresses. It was also agreed that Andrea Suisani will take charge of the byte transaction size limit and Mark Lundeberg will review Amaury Sechet’s code on Schnorr signatures. Lastly, Jason Cox extended an open invitation for the qualified to assist with the development and review of BCH code.

Also read: Major Mining Pools Have a ‘High Die-Off Rate’ Study Reveals

Meeting of the Minds

A BCH developer meeting was held recently to get the ball rolling for the upcoming May 2019 upgrade. The meeting was moderated by David R Allen and consisted of lead developer of Bitcoin ABC Amaury Sechet, Bitcoin Unlimited developer Andrea Suisani, Bitcoin ABC developer Antony Zegers, Bitcoin ABC developer Jason B. Cox, Openbazaar developer Chris Pacia, CTO of Bitcoin.com Emil Oldenburg, and Bitcoin Cash developer Mark Lundeberg.

Agenda One: BIP 62, Attempts to Fix Third Party Malleability

After introductions, the meeting opened with discussions on BIP 62. Zegers pointed out that some BCH users are unable to recover their funds because they are sending BCH to BTC segwit P2SH addresses. Then, Cox asked if it was possible to identify the extent of this problem. In response, Oldenburg proposed indexing all segwit addresses and then checking the UTXOs, an extremely time-consuming process.

Alternatively, Lunderberg proposed a way to fix third party malleability by applying the clean stack rule to Pay-to-Public-Key-Hash and Pay-to-Script-Hash multisig. That way every other script would have to manually check itself using OP_DEPTH. However, he noted that his solution would require another hard fork on top of the May 2019 hard fork.

In conclusion, the developers concluded that they need to measure the amount of coins that are locked in p2sh segwit addresses before proceeding on BIP 62.

Agenda Two: Changing the 100 Byte Transaction Size

Jason Cox Extends Open Invitation for Assistance With Development and Review of Bitcoin Cash Code

Lunderberg pointed out that since the August 2017 hard fork, there have been in the ballpark of ten transactions that were less than 100 bytes. Since a 100-byte limit could affect some transactions, he proposed relaxing it to 64 bytes.

Interestingly, Cox pointed out that it’s easier to to lower the byte transaction size limit than it is to raise it. Suisani added to Cox’s point, and explained that raising the byte transaction size limit would have to be implemented by hard fork.

At the end of the discussion, Suisani offered to lead the second agenda by maintaining a stream of communication between the developers, and writing notes to rationalize tweaking the constraint.

Agenda Three: Schnorr Signatures

Jason Cox Extends Open Invitation for Assistance With Development and Review of Bitcoin Cash Code

On the topic of Schnorr signatures, Sechet pointed out that Schnorr has cost advantages because of batch validation. For example, computing and verifying eight signatures as a batch is more cost-effective than checking eight signatures individually. He then pointed out that Schnorr will aid with user privacy and is better for the Bitcoin network itself.

Even though Sechet had made an implementation of Schnorr just over a year ago, his code has not yet been thoroughly reviewed. The lead developer of Bitcoin ABC warned that the code would have to be reviewed more than usual and implemented carefully, otherwise the network would become susceptible to side-channel attacks through the branch predictor of the CPU and through the cache hierarchy of the CPU.

After Sechet’s explanation, Lunderberg agreed to review the former’s code within a month and a half. Sensing that everyone in the group was stretched thin, Cox issued an open invite to cryptographers and developers to assist with development and review of Bitcoin Cash code.

Agenda Four: Old Opcodes

Jason Cox Extends Open Invitation for Assistance With Development and Review of Bitcoin Cash Code

As this point, most of the developers in the meeting had their plates full. In response, Suisani explained that he would reach out to the other Bitcoin Unlimited developers to see if they were interested in working on the old opcodes. Suisani explained that Bitcoin Unlimited developers were the logical choice as they had previously included Nchain implementation in the SV client they produced.

Closing Thoughts

Towards the end of the meeting, Oldenburg mentioned that there is currently a 25 unconfirmed transaction chain limit that is affecting various protocols right now, which needs fixing. He also mentioned that Bitcoin.com was currently working on its own on-chain dice game similar to Satoshidice. In response, news.Bitcoin.com reached out to Oldenburg for some closing thoughts on the developers meeting. The Bitcoin.com CTO was positive about the meeting overall, especially since the “limitation of unconfirmed chained transactions will be removed long term.”

Do you think you have what it takes to be a BCH developer? Let us know in the comments below.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock and Youtube.


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The post Jason Cox Extends Open Invitation for Assistance With Development and Review of Bitcoin Cash Code appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Despite Supreme Court Ruling, Chile’s Antitrust Court Orders Banks to Keep Crypto Exchange Accounts Open

January 5, 2019 |

Despite Supreme Court Ruling, Chile’s Antitrust Court Orders Banks to Reopen Crypto Exchange Accounts

Following the ruling by Chile’s supreme court that a bank can legally close accounts of a crypto exchange, the country’s Court of Defense of Free Competition reaffirmed that banks must reopen crypto exchanges’ accounts. The Chilean antitrust court continues to hear the case alleging that banks exploit their dominant position to keep crypto exchanges off the market.

Also read: Indian Supreme Court Moves Crypto Hearing, Community Calls for Positive Regulations

Supreme Court Ruling Inconsequential

Despite Supreme Court Ruling, Chile’s Antitrust Court Orders Banks to Reopen Crypto Exchange AccountsChile’s Court of Defense of Free Competition (TDLC) rejected banks’ request on Wednesday to vacate its injunction that forced them to keep accounts of crypto exchanges open. Their request was “based on the ruling of the supreme court, issued in early December, which determined that the closure of an account of [crypto exchange] Orionx by Bancoestado was legal,” La Tercera publication wrote. Dario Financiero news outlet elaborated:

The TDLC noted in its resolution that the ruling of the country’s highest court ‘does not constitute a new precedent that will change the resolution.’

Despite Supreme Court Ruling, Chile’s Antitrust Court Orders Banks to Reopen Crypto Exchange AccountsMartín Jofré, the CEO of crypto exchange Criptomkt, commented after the ruling: “For us, it is a success since we need bank accounts to operate in the market. In any case, we always rely on Chilean institutions, especially on the TDLC for its role as defender of free competition.”

Despite Supreme Court Ruling, Chile’s Antitrust Court Orders Banks to Reopen Crypto Exchange AccountsCryptocurrency exchanges filed a lawsuit with the TDLC against 10 major banks in Chile last year, accusing them of abusing their dominant position after they unilaterally decided to close their accounts. The TDLC then ordered banks to reopen accounts of the exchanges for the duration of the trial.

Bancoestado and Itau took the case to the country’s supreme court which subsequently ruled that the banks can legally close accounts of a crypto exchange. With the supreme court’s validation, the two banks asked the TDLC to cancel its order for them to reopen accounts of the exchanges.

Sound Judgement

Despite Supreme Court Ruling, Chile’s Antitrust Court Orders Banks to Reopen Crypto Exchange Accounts“The resolution of the court [TDLC] seems completely legally sound to us,” lawyer Samuel Cañas, representing local crypto exchange Buda.com, was quoted by Dario Financiero as saying after the TDLC ruled on Wednesday.

Despite Supreme Court Ruling, Chile’s Antitrust Court Orders Banks to Reopen Crypto Exchange Accounts“On the other hand, the issuance of judgments such as that of the supreme court” against crypto exchanges “should not have legal relevance on the decisions that the Tribunal [Tribunal de Defensa de la Libre Competencia, TDLC]” makes on the subject of free competition, therefore it should be “inadmissible,” he added.

Mario Bravo, legal advisor to Cryptomkt, said that “the witnesses that we have cited, that is, the finance minister, the economy minister, the president of the central bank, the superintendents of banks, [and] the director of the UAF [Unidad De Analisis Financiero]” will give their testimonies to the TDLC in February. He concluded:

We believe that we will be able to prove that the banks illegitimately expel Buda and Cryptomkt from the market because they are companies that compete with them.

What do you think of the TDLC’s decision? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, TDLC, Cryptomkt, and Buda.com.


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The post Despite Supreme Court Ruling, Chile’s Antitrust Court Orders Banks to Keep Crypto Exchange Accounts Open appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Stocks open sharply lower on Wall Street as big tech companies take losses

January 2, 2019 |

The stock market had a sour start to the new year as large technology companies suffered losses in early trading.

Apple and Amazon each fell about 2% in early trading Wednesday, as did Microsoft. Netflix tumbled 3.5%. Markets were closed Tuesday for New Year’s Day.

Stocks are coming off their worst…


L.A. Times – Business

Stocks open higher on U.S.-China trade hopes

December 31, 2018 |

Stocks snapped higher in the first minutes of trading on Wall Street on Monday, the last day of a volatile year, as hopes grew for progress in resolving the trade war between the United States and China.

Big-name technology companies and retailers, which have been badly bruised in the barrage of…


L.A. Times – Business

Stocks open higher after Christmas Eve’s sharp drop

December 26, 2018 |

Stocks opened strongly higher on Wall Street on Wednesday, with real estate, raw materials and energy stocks leading a broad rebound from Monday’s steep losses.

Twitter jumped 4.6% and Mastercard gained 3.9% in the first minutes of trading, the biggest gainers as traders returned from the Christmas…


L.A. Times – Business

China Works to Look Open to Foreign Business as G-20 Summit Nears

December 26, 2018 |

In its latest move in recent weeks to show it’s a friend of foreign businesses, China paved the way for German insurer Allianz SE to establish the country’s first wholly foreign-owned insurance holding company.
WSJ.com: US Business

China cuts tariffs on more than 700 goods as it works to open its economy

December 25, 2018 |

China has announced another round of tariff cuts, lowering import taxes on more than 700 goods starting Jan. 1 as part of its efforts to open up its economy and lower costs that the people who live there must pay.

There will also be cuts to some export tariffs, and temporary import tariff rates…


L.A. Times – Business

She Lost Race for Senate. Now, New Door May Open

December 14, 2018 |

Rising GOP star Martha McSally lost a close race for the Senate in November, but the Arizona congresswoman may end up joining the new crop of senators anyway. McSally is considered a top contender to be appointed to a suddenly vacant Senate seat in her home state, reports the Hill…
Newser