The New Year has started, and we’ve already seen some action in the crypto
world. Bitcoin dropped to $6,800 briefly, only to bounce back almost immediately
and return to $7,200-7,300 levels.
The other big currencies followed a similar pattern, and it will be
interesting to see where the prices go in the next several days.
As always, I won’t try to predict that movement in my weekly recap of the
most important crypto news. Instead, I will cover events and announcements that
could affect the long-term future of the industry or are simply interesting.
The First Regulated Crypto Bank in the UK Coming in 2020?
The former Barclays head of technology
Mark Hipperson has announced that he will launch the first regulated UK
crypto bank in the first quarter of 2020. The project is called Ziglu and could
be a game-changer for crypto users from the country.
British customers will be able to open free accounts and use them for various
purposes. There will be the option to buy major cryptocurrencies for both
trading and long-term investments, as well as transfers to other Ziglu users.
All of your balance will be available through MasterCard debit cards
connected to your account. You will be able to pay anywhere in the world and use
This is excellent news as it helps the mainstream status of cryptocurrencies
because the company has applied to the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority for
permission to become an issuer of electronic money.
Initially, Ziglu will be open exclusively to UK customers. The company’s
plans are to accept users from other countries in the future. Let’s hope this
works out well, as it will open the door to more similar projects.
It also provides an easy, secure, and easily accessible way to operate with
South Korea Is Working on New Crypto Taxing Draft
The end of 2019 brought a lot of confusion in South Korea when it comes to
the taxation of cryptocurrencies. The National Tax Service intended to collect
taxes from the exchange Bithumb Korea, but the government stated that it can’t
happen under the current law.
Simply put, individual profits from crypto transactions are not part of the
current income tax legislation. It’s a messy situation that has forced the
government to start
working on a new draft that will cover crypto in the future.
The South Korean authorities have a lot of work to do and need to define what
cryptocurrency is first. Representatives of the government stated that the main
goal would be to explore what other countries have done in the past and try to
adopt best practices from their experience.
I have mixed feelings about the news, as potential taxes could kill the
industry. On the other hand, if crypto is legal, that could open the door to
more and more local users.
China Introduces a New Password Law in Preparation for Crypto Future
In one of my previous weekly crypto recaps, I mentioned that China intends to
utilize the blockchain technology and launch the first state cryptocurrency in
the world. The country is not wasting any time in the process of preparation, as
introduced a new password law at the start of 2020.
That’s another step towards China’s main goal, as it defines a couple of
different types of passwords. There will be core, common, and commercial
passwords. The first two categories will be regulated by the government, and it
also will play a role in the control over commercial passwords.
The idea is to create a secure platform for the future government-released
China is already doing some tests with selected banks, and the coin will
likely go live in 2020. I’m not sure what to think about it, as it may limit the
crypto industry in the Asian country to only the state’s currency and kill the
likes of Bitcoin and other independent digital assets.
Ethereum’s Muir Glacier Hard Fork Completed Successfully
That should give the development team behind Ethereum more time in the search
for a more permanent solution that should prevent the predicted Ice Age.
Let me remind you that the difficulty increase would’ve likely harmed the
speed and functionality of ETH to a point in which the currency would’ve been
For now, the danger is gone, and I certainly hope to see a long-term
resolution of the issues. Ethereum remains the second most popular
cryptocurrency, and its health is vital for the whole field.
As you can see by the news in this weekly crypto recap, 2020 will be crucial
in the development of the whole industry. More and more countries are working on
local laws that could open or shut the door for crypto companies.
hope that the legislators will stay reasonable and try to pave the way for a
safe crypto environment for their citizens.