South Korea backed off Thursday’s news reports that the country is looking to ban cryptocurrency trading, helping Bitcoin prices to bounce back around $14,000 early Friday.
[ibd-display-video id=3079086 width=50 float=left autostart=true] The finance minister in South Korea, the world’s largest market for virtual currencies, said officials from “all government ministries” need to coordinate for a solution to cryptocurrency overheating, CNBC said.
Kim Dong-yeon’s remarks to reporters came a day after his justice counterpart spoke of a proposed bill to ban cryptocurrency exchanges , and a few days after South Korean regulators said they will probe six banks to crack down on speculation and money laundering. Bitcoin price dived as much as 21% in South Korea Thursday in the aftermath of the justice minister’s comments, and lost 10% in U.S. trade, while Bitcoin futures lost more than 7%.
In early Friday trade, Bitcoin rose 2.7% to $13,647.04, according to CoinDesk . Ethereum and Ripple, its largest altcurrency rivals, were up 1.5% and down 5.4%, respectively, vs. 24 hours ago, according to CoinMarketCap.com . Bitcoin futures from CME Group ( CME ) and Cboe Global Markets ( CBOE ) were both up about 2% to around $13,650.
Bitcoin’s bounce signals investors may have realized that South Korea is unlikely to announce a ban anytime soon, and the cryptocurrency seems to be headed for a consolidation, a writer on Coindesk.com said.
But he added a quick return to record highs is unlikely, “as fears of a Korean clampdown could remain in the air for some time yet.”
Bitcoin is down sharply for the week.
Bitcoin- and blockchain-related stocks were mixed in morning trade on the stock market today .
Marathon Patent Group ( MARA ) vaulted 13.3% to 4.35, on a report that Global Bit Ventures has purchased 1,300 of Bitmain’s Antminer S9 miners. Marathon is acquiring Global Bit Ventures. Bitcoin Investment Trust ( GBTC ) rallied 12% following four straight days of losses and a test of the 50-day moving average .
Riot Blockchain ( RIOT ) edged up 3%, Overstock.com (OSTK), 0.8%. MoneyGram (MGI) popped 4% and Seagate (STX) 3%, with the latter eyeing a 51.06 buy point . Long Blockchain (LBCC) lost 3.5 early Friday and Square (SQ) dipped more than 2%.
IBD’S TAKE : Worried about a Bitcoin bubble? Look instead at blockchain technology. A growing number of blockchain startups have nothing to do with Bitcoin or its peers and analysts believe the technology adds real value to the market.
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