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September 29, 2017

South Korea issues cryptocurrency ban

Could these bans mark the beginning of a trend that will spell the end for cryptocurrencies?

By Tom Ball

South Korea has become the next nation to ban the ability to raise money through cryptocurrencies, with China having recently emplaced similar rigid restrictions.

This move will include the banning of initial coin offerings (ICO), as well as all trading of digital currencies.

In a statement reported by Reuters, the South Korean Financial Services Commission said: “Raising funds through ICOs seem to be on the rise globally, and our assessment is that ICOs are increasing in South Korea as well.”

Following a decline in Chinese cryptocurrency trading, South Korea has become a prominent hub, alongside the likes of the United States and Japan. It appears a trend of governments clamping down on digital currency may be beginning.

The Vice Chairman of the Financial Services Commission, Kim Yong-beom said: “There is a situation where money has been flooded into an unproductive and speculative direction,” according to the national news agency, Yonhap.

Recently the CEO of JPMorgan, Jamie Dimon, outlined his prediction of the fate of cryptocurrencies, saying that he expected governments would eventually shut them down.

“Right now these crypto things are kind of a novelty. People think they’re kind of neat. But the bigger they get, the more governments are going to close them down,” Jamie Dimon told CNBC. The JPMorgan CEO expects this trend to become more prevalent.

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Bitcoin has soared in 2017, gaining global attention by breaking its own value record numerous times, most recently crossing the $5,000 mark for a single unit of the currency. This massive growth has sparked a great deal of excitement around the decentralised option, with many foreseeing the currencies becoming a future norm.

Particular attention was drawn to the progress of Bitcoin when it surpassed the value of gold on the basis of an ounce to a unit, at which point it had merely started its booming journey, with a value of just $1,294 per unit.

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