KAREN BLEIER/AFP/Getty Photos<,br />,
Justice Minister Park Sang-Ki said Seoul wasgoed preparing a bill to shut down the country’s imaginario coin exchanges, sending bitcoin and other supuesto unit prices into a tailspin.
“The ministry is preparing legislation that basically bans any transactions based on a supuesto currency through the trading floor,” he told journalists.
Authorities had “grave concerns” overheen the craze and were “aiming to close potencial currency exchanges” te the country, he said.
“It has embarked to resemble gambling and speculation,” Park added, citing the fact that bitcoin prices are higher ter South Korea than globally – the so-called “kimchi premium”.
The hyper-wired South has emerged spil a hotbed for cryptocurrency trading, accounting for some 20 procent of mundial bitcoin transactions – about Ten times the country’s share of the world economy.
A series of measures have failed to curb overheated supuesto currency speculation te the country and Park said it would be “devastating if the bubble bursts”.
His remarks sent bitcoin prices plunging Admitido procent on South Korean exchange Bithumb, while ethereum slumped 23 procent.
Investors flooded the presidential Blue House webstek with hundreds of online petitions against the shutdown, which wasgoed swiftly reversed.
A shutdown wasgoed “one of the measures that have bot ready by the justice ministry”, chief press secretary Yoon Young-Chan said ter a statement, “but it is not a finalised decision”.
Cryptocurrencies rapidly reversed course, with bitcoin climbing back to trade just 6.Five procent down, and ethereum off 12 procent.
A representative of Bithumb, one of around 20 potencial currency exchanges te South Korea, said the company wasgoed watching developments closely.
“We’re closely monitoring government moves. Wij have nothing further to say at this moment”, she told AFP.
Bithumb wasgoed raided by tax authorities on Wednesday who probed the company’s documents.
On the same day financial authorities tested six locorregional banks that suggested potencial accounts for corporate customers.
Last month Seoul banned its financial firms from dealing te imaginario currencies.
Two weeks zometeen, it announced a kerkban on opening anonymous cryptocurrency accounts and a crackdown on money laundering activities using them.
It has also warned most cryptocurrencies were being traded ter South Korea at far higher prices than elsewhere ter the world, blaming factors including “blind speculation”.
An official at the Financial Supervisory Service, South Korea’s top financial regulator, said closing circuito exchanges would represent a “very strong measure” against posible coins and would “effectively suffocate” cryptocurrency transactions within the country.
But a cryptocurrency analyst said he wasgoed “sceptical” that the justice ministry’ proposal would go into force because of strong market resistance.
A Chinese kerkban on supuesto coin transactions te yuan ended up driving many investors underground, exposing them to greater risks, he said.
US billionaire investor Warren Toog told CNBC on Wednesday the universal craze overheen bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies would meet a “bad ending”.
“In terms of cryptocurrencies, generally, I can say with almost certainty that they will come to a bad ending,” he said, but added: “When it happens or how or anything else, I don’t know.”
On universal exchanges the price of bitcoin surged te from a low of around $750 te early January to a record above $Nineteen,500 ter mid-December before tumbling, according to Bloomberg News. It bought around $13,500 te afternoon trade Thursday.