Bitcoin and Other Coins Are Surging, Visa Makes a Strong Move, and More Crypto Highlights

| January 17, 2020 11:13 am PDT

The start of 2020 has been excellent for crypto users that have invested in Bitcoin and other major coins. The most popular currency surged to over $9,000 this week and registered a growth of over 20% since the beginning of the year.

All of the other mainstream coins followed, and plenty of the smaller ones had even bigger jumps. Let’s hope the trend continues in the near future.

I won’t focus on the price in this post, though, so don’t expect advice on whether to buy or sell crypto. Instead, I will go through the most important industry highlights and news from the past week.

Crypto Scams Emerging

I decided to start with a warning because the rise of Bitcoin’s price and other coins usually attracts a lot of attention. People who don’t know the industry well decide to invest, and that opens the door to countless scammers.

Unfortunately, the latest wave is not an exception from this rule. There are reports about emerging scams on the likes of YouTube and Instagram. I’m pretty sure all social media will be hit by such problems, and I recommend that you be extra careful.

Do your homework before you decide to invest in something, use proper anti-virus software, and follow common sense. If something looks fishy, you should probably stay away from it.

There are enough legit ways to buy crypto or invest in credible projects, so there’s no need to take big risks.

Visa Buys Plaid for $5.3 Billion

The next highlight is not exclusively crypto-related, but it certainly involves the sector. The payments giant Visa acquired the fin-tech company Plaid for a whopping $5.3 billion.

The main reason stated was Visa’s desire to invest in innovation. Plaid has developed a network that allows the users to connect their financial accounts to the apps they use daily on all kinds of devices for easier control and transactions.

The likes of Coinbase and Abra work with Plaid, as well as many other companies related to the crypto industry.

One of the key takeaways from this is that they should all benefit from the investments of Visa and the bright future of the project as a whole.

Fidelity Enters the UK Market

You’ve probably heard about Fidelity Investments, one of the biggest players in the financial world. The company is interested in digital assets and has entered the UK market by closing a deal with Nickel Digital Asset Management.

Fidelity will manage all the Bitcoin funds of the London-based firm.

The company is obviously interested in growing its assets in Europe and is investing heavily. Fidelity already has a digital office in Europe, and one of the goals is to attract more institutional players.

I believe that’s great news for the crypto industry in general. The arrival of such huge establishments improves the credibility of the sector and attracts more users. Not to mention that Fidelity and companies of a similar caliber could push for favorable legislation.

Since the regulation of the cryptocurrencies will be one of the main topics of the future, that could help.

Bithumb Goes to Court to Fight Large Tax Bill

I already reported on the story that South Korea doesn’t really recognize crypto as money, so the country doesn’t have the right to tax crypto companies.

It was expected that the local exchange Bithumb would seek a refund of the $69 million in taxes paid to Korea’s National Tax Service, and that’s exactly the case. The company is taking the institution to court on the grounds that it has categorized crypto gains as assets, while the country’s official legislation doesn’t apply to Bitcoin and other digital currencies.

I’m pretty sure that this case will force South Korea to create new laws, and I hope the country is sensible on the matter.

US Congress to Look at Crypto’s Role in Funding Terrorism and Other Illegal Activities

One of the reasons so many countries are pushing for crypto regulation is because digital assets are allegedly used to fund terrorism and other illegal activities. That forced the US Congress to start exploring the matter.

What happens in 2020 could be critical, and I hope that the government will apply sensible legislation. The USA already has had the bitter experience of banning alcohol and gambling in the past, so there are bad examples of previous restrictive laws.

I believe that the state should hear the business and the users this time around and find a way to make it work for everyone involved.

Final Words

This is it from the crypto world for the week, and let’s hope the good trends continue. As always, feel free to add your own input by sharing interesting news and highlights in the comments section below, and check out our cryptocurrency guide if you want to learn more.

Jerry Summer

Jerry Summer has a wide-ranging interest in gambling and the gambling industry. He's made a living out of both playing poker and betting on sports.

The English Premier League and the NBA are among Jerry's primary areas of expertise. He's knowledgeable about many other sports, too, along with poker and several casino games.

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