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Bitcoin

2017: The year the bitcoin craze reached Wall Street

NEW YORK: Bitcoin burst out of the shadows in 2017, seducing Wall Street and individual investors alike even though many still struggle to understand precisely what it is. The cryptocurrency's rise is also pushing regulators to consider taking action after years of simply urging caution. Bitcoin started the year at $1,000 per unit in January but by mid-December had shot to within striking distance of $20,000, a dizzying climb that stoked fears of a bubble even in financial circles used to speculation and volatility.…

Bitcoin trading starts on exchange giant CME

NEW YORK: Bitcoin futures received a lukewarm reception at its launch on the CME Group Inc on Sunday, although market experts believe a recent rally in the cryptocurrency has further to go. The CME bitcoin front-month futures contract did open higher at $20,650, but dropped 6 percent within the first half hour. The contract was last at $18,805, below the $19,500 reference price set by the exchange for the January contract. The reference price, from which price limits are set, is $19,600 for the February contract,…

US woman charged with using Bitcoin to finance Daesh

NEW YORK: US prosecutors have charged a New York woman with using Bitcoin and other crypto-currencies to send funds to the Islamic State group, also known as Daesh. Zoobia Shahnaz, 27, was arrested at her Long Island home on Thursday for sending over $150,000 through shell accounts in China, Pakistan and Turkey to benefit IS extremists, according to AFP. Other reports quote the Justice Department as saying that much of the money came from bank loans and credit cards. With that, she bought $62,000 worth of Bitcoin and…

Bitcoin hits new record high as warnings grow louder

LONDON: Bitcoin blasted to another all-time high of almost $18,000 on the Bitstamp exchange on Friday, up 9 percent on the day, as warnings grew over the risks of investing in the highly volatile and speculative instrument. The cryptocurrency’s staggering recent price rises -- more than 1,700 percent since the start of the year -- have driven worries that the market is a bubble that could burst in spectacular fashion. Bitcoin has climbed almost 80 percent so far in December alone, putting it on track for its best month…

Japan firm says it will pay part of salaries to employees in Bitcoin

TOKYO: A Japanese company will start paying part of its employees' salaries in Bitcoin, as it aims to get better understanding of the virtual currency, a spokeswoman said on Friday. GMO Internet, which operates a range of web-related businesses including finance, online advertising and internet infrastructure, will start paying up to 100,000 yen ($890) monthly by Bitcoin to its employees in Japan from February next year. "Employees can receive salaries by Bitcoin if they want to," company spokeswoman Harumi Ishii told…

Bitcoin fever exposes crypto-market frailties

NEW YORK: As bitcoin raced to another record high on Tuesday, one of the biggest providers of digital currency wallets, Coinbase, went down under the weight of traffic, leaving many of its more than 10 m At the same time, Bitfinex, the world’s biggest bitcoin exchange by trading volume, said it was under a heavy denial-of-service (DDoS) attack, meaning its servers had been intentionally flooded with junk online requests, taking down its website and crippling its services. The latest outages show how the market…

The SEC just issued a warning to ‘Bitcoin’ investors

NEW YORK: America’s chief financial regulator is warning investors against cryptocurrency scams, saying trading and public offerings in the emerging asset class may also be in violation of federal securities law. The statement by the chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Jay Clayton came just hours after the U.S. securities watchdog stepped in to stop an “initial coin offering” (ICO) from a restaurant review app, after the company failed to register it as a security. Clayton’s comments come as…

Bitcoin makes muted stock exchange debut at $15,000

NEW YORK: Cryptocurrency Bitcoin made its debut on a major bourse Sunday, opening at $15,000 per unit at the Chicago board options exchange.  Around 23:20 GMT, the price of the currency had risen to $15,940 dollars on a futures contract scheduled for settlement on January 17 according to data provided by the Chicago board options exchange (Cboe). A futures contract is a financial product that allows investors to bet on whether the currency's price will rise or fall. It is the first opportunity for professional…

Bitcoin futures surge past $18,000; Asian shares firm

SYDNEY: The craze for cryptocurrencies entered a new chapter on Monday as bitcoin futures rocketed by one-fifth of their value at a closely-watched launch, while Asian shares climbed amid optimism about global growth. The most-traded contract on the Chicago-based CBOE Global Markets exchange XBTc1 opened at $15,460 in New York on Sunday evening, before leaping to a high of $18,700 - a gain of 21 percent. They were last quoted at $17,550 a premium of more than $1,600 to the price on Gemini Exchange. The futures are…

Bitcoin futures launch sparks excitement, warnings

NEW YORK: Bitcoin will make its debut on a major exchange Sunday, a landmark for the cryptocurrency that has generated enthusiasm among some investors and more than a little anxiety from others. The Cboe Futures Exchange in Chicago will open trading in bitcoin futures at 2300 GMT on Sunday, a move that is expected to be followed a week later by a rival listing on Chicago Mercantile Exchange. "Bitcoin bonanza takes hold of world markets," proclaimed the front page of the Times of London on Friday, reporting on the…