• Bitfinex repays tether
    Alt coins,  Bitcoin,  Cryptocurrencies,  United States

    Uncomfortable questions for Bitfinex and Tether as feds search for bitcoin manipulation

    It remains to be seen if Bitfinex and Tether are the subjects of a criminal investigation

    Two Bloomberg stories about bitcoin published within an hour of each other on Thursday seemed barely related. But to those who follow the space closely, they are really the same story—and it’s perhaps the biggest story in crypto, one that may yet turn out to be the Enron of the cryptocurrency world, if not worse. The first piece, which went live at 4 a.m. Eastern Time, said the Department of Justice is conducting a criminal probe into bitcoin price manipulation. The feds are said to be looking at the practices of spoofing and executing wash trades to move the price of the cryptocurrency. [“Spoofing” is when someone puts in a…

  • BBVA Compass
    Cryptocurrencies,  Innovators

    Bank invests heavily in Coinbase, cancels customer accounts for using Coinbase

    ICO advisor and John McAfee’s partner in NoBSCrypto says Coinbase investor BBVA closed his accounts just for using Coinbase

    On April 6, when ICO advisor Chris Koerner logged on to see if his tenant had deposited a rent check, he was in for a rude awakening. Each of his five accounts had been emptied. The bank gave no warning or information, other than a call previously that month to ask him why he wanted to buy bitcoin. Koerner is a partner in NoBSCrypto, a successful coin rating group, with famed wildman crypto enthusiast and software tycoon John McAfee. The Dallas resident said that his bank, a local branch of the Spanish-based BBVA, gave no warning until an email told him that his account had been removed. It took four…

  • Bitcoin pieces on a stack of Russian rubles
    Bitcoin,  Cryptocurrencies,  Europe

    Russia’s biggest bank opens a cryptocurrency exchange in a country notorious for secrecy

    What could go wrong?

    Russia’s love affair with cryptocurrency is being consummated in Switzerland. Sberbank, the largest bank in Russia, is planning to use Swiss arm Sberbank Switzerland AG to open a formal exchange for trading cryptocurrency. Despite having no cryptocurrency legislation at present, Russia’s regulatory environment is so far extremely favorable. There is a proposed framework in place for how the country might regulate cryptocurrency trading. But it’s got nothing on Switzerland, notorious for its history of banking secrecy. Where Russia merely hasn’t outlawed crypto, Switzerland has formally legalized it. By operating its exchange in Switzerland, Sberbank gets more money privileges to flex for its soon-to-be crypto-customers. “We wish to serve our customers’…