South Korea is tightening the rules for trading Bitcoin and other cyber currencies. From the end of January anonymously managed bank accounts may no longer be used for trading purposes, as the financial regulator announced on Tuesday in Seoul.
With this step, South Korea wants to stop the use of Bitcoin for money laundering and other criminal activities. The Asian country is one of the strongholds of cyber-currency speculation.
According to earlier information on the Coinhills.com website, about 15 percent of global trade is via trading venues in South Korea. According to a survey conducted by the South Korean job portal Saramin, more than 30 percent of surveyed office workers trade in cyber currencies.
After the announcement became known, the Bitcoin price continued its decline and temporarily lost more than three percent to 12,699 dollars, according to data from the largest South Korean Bithumb Stock Exchange for cyber foreign exchange. Already last week, the price on the Luxembourg Stock Exchange Bitstamp had fallen by almost 20 percent.
South Korea’s government wants to control speculation with cyber currencies more. The head of the Financial Services Commission, Choi Jong Kusogar, even called the closure of all local virtual currency trading platforms as an option. The Bureau had then stated that this was only one of the steps that would be considered. Concrete measures were not yet determined.