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23/02/2018: Biggest Stories in the Cryptosphere

1. National Cryptocurrency Under Consideration In Turkey

It has been reported that the coalition between Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) is considering the issue of a national cryptocurrency. It would be called ‘Turkcoin’ and would be more of an asset-backed security, as it would be backed by large public assets such as the Turkish Airlines and the Istanbul Stock exchange. The government had previously adopted a hostile approach towards cryptocurrencies. However, the MHP is now calling for regulation rather than a ban. Furthermore, the Finance Ministry and Capital Markets Board is currently working towards a regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies, with the intent of taxing them.

2. Mexico To Begin Regulating Crypto Exchanges In Weeks

Mexican crypto exchange ISBIT has revealed that the country has a bill in development which should be ready in weeks. The legislation covers regulations for Financial Technology Institutions (ITFs), which includes crypto exchanges. The bill has already passed through the Senate. It is now required for the Chamber of Deputies to vote before it can be official. The bill makes a distinction between two types of FinTech institutions: collective financing institutions and electronic payment fund institutions. ITFs will be formally grouped with banks.

3. Gold To Inspire Austrian Regulations For Cryptocurrency

Hartwig Löger, Austria’s Minister of Finance, is using gold and derivatives’ trading rules as benchmarks to create regulations for cryptocurrencies. In some cases, gold is used by criminals for money laundering. Therefore, the minister thought that its regulations could be used as reference point, since the same issue is present with cryptocurrencies. Furthermore, he wants to apply the same regulatory framework which covers other financial instruments. Löger emphasised how this type of regulations is not only required in the country, but in the European Union as well. A need for a digital prospectus for ICOs was also discussed. The words were welcomed by the Financial Market Authority Austria (FMA), the local supervisory authority.

4. Survey Reveals Insights Into Dutch Crypto Investors

A survey carried out by nu.nl revealed that the 865000 Austrian cryptocurrency owners have been holding rather than selling, despite falling prices after December. According to the results, one of the main reasons is the fact they tend to invest small amounts and for long terms. Over 70% of respondents agreed with the statement. On average, €200 was invested. Despite 75% of respondents declaring that their investment was still profitable at the time of the survey, they became more pessimistic when compared to January. The Netherlands even coined their own cryptocurrency in 2015, the Guldencoin. In 2014, the Dutch city of Arnhem started accepting Bitcoin in its supermarkets.

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