Japan Might be Over-Regulating its Thriving Crypto Market | Mapping out the Coinbase Mafia

Bitcoin $3,213                    Ethereum $83.72 
Crypto Mkt Cap $101B              BTC Dominance 55.30%  

“The EU has an opportunity to become a leading actor in the field of blockchain and international trade, and that it should be an influential actor in shaping its development globally, together with international partners.” — European Parliament

The Big Block

Japan was once the darling of entrepreneurs in the cryptocurrency sector, adored by crypto startups, exchange operators, and investors alike. In recent months, however, the country has begun to demonstrate signs of over-regulation, possibly swayed by a series of high profile scandals and security breaches since the 2014 Mt. Gox bankruptcy.

Since the appointment of Nobuchika Mori, the longest-serving finance minister of Japan and the former commissioner of the Financial Services Agency (FSA), Japan has seen its cryptocurrency and blockchain sector grow rapidly. But, following his leave, the government has started to reassess the growth rate of the local cryptocurrency sector to push certain regulatory frameworks that could create a difficult environment for both companies and investors.

In October, as reported by Reuters, the FSA granted local cryptocurrency players a self-regulatory status, acknowledging the necessity of a quick response to potential unforeseen issues and situations.

A senior FSA official said in a press conference that experts in the industry need to be able to set appropriate regulatory frameworks to ensure that digital assets are not used in money laundering or are at risk of being vulnerable to hacking attacks.

Read More on The Block (8 Minutes)

Around The Block

Mapping out the Coinbase Mafia

Coinbase, the $8 billion cryptocurrency exchange, is the 1,000-pound gorilla of the crypto world. Founded in 2012, Coinbase’s mission was to bring cryptocurrency to the masses. It came close to completing that mission during the Bitcoin bull market of 2017 when its mobile app climbed to the number one spot on the Apple app store. Through lobbying groups and its investment arm, Coinbase has systematically broken down the barriers to crypto and, in turn, built a legion of 20 million users. It is the only exchange that plays an active and important role in shaping the industry we now know as crypto. — More

SIPC head expresses concerns about Robinhood’s newest product, saying it has ‘gigantic ramifications’ for banking

Robinhood, the U.S.-based brokerage known for its no-fee stock trading app, made headlines Thursday for a new checking and savings account offering, but one regulatory agency says it raises “red flags,” according to a report by Bloomberg News’ Julie Verhage.

The Securities Investor Protection Corp, an agency aimed at protecting the rights of brokerage clients, said deposited funds for the new Robinhood product might not be eligible for protection. — More

The 2011-12 BTCST ponzi scheme: a landmark legal ruling that Bitcoin could be used as money — More

Po.et makes cuts to its engineering team, CEO says — More

University researchers: There is evidence of pump-and-dump schemes prior to 51% crypto attacks — More

E.U. Parliament adopts resolution on blockchain use in trade policy — More

Blockchain Developer is the fastest growing job in 2018 — More

The Block wants to understand who our readers are. Please take a few minutes to respond to our short survey. Your participation will give us a better understanding of our readers and what interests them! Please note that the survey results will be anonymized and aggregated. Please take the survey here.