Cryptocurrencies have seen a remarkable resurgence as investors flock to relative safe havens amid a flurry of quantitative easing measures by global central banks.
Central banks including the European Central Bank, Federal Reserve, and the Bank of England have announced asset-purchase schemes in recent days. Bitcoin, a finite cryptocurrency with only 21 million units in existence, has seen a 23% one-day surge. Bitcoin is currently up 21% as of 10.10 a.m. in London (6.10 a.m. ET), per Coindesk.
The cryptocurrency had been down 30% year-to-date amid a sell-off fueled by market uncertainty about the outbreak of coronavirus. However, investors may be looking to digital currencies in the wake of easing measures elsewhere. Other cryptocurrencies like ethereum, XRP, and bitcoin cash all saw major reversals by more than 15% over the same period.
“When it comes to bitcoin, the crypto king is on fire, and we have seen a decent rally,” said Naeem Aslam, chief market analyst at AvaTrade, in a morning note.
“Given the fact that the price has crossed the $6,000 mark — an important level of resistance — the upward momentum is likely to pick up the pace, and if the price crosses the 200-day moving average on a daily time frame, it would be a huge buy signal.”
Volumes at cryptocurrency exchanges have jumped, with Coinbase, Bitstamp, and Bitfinex combined seeing a 19% bump in 24-hour exchange volume, according to data aggregator CryptoCompare.
U.S. Takes Crypto Crime Seriously with Anti-Money Laundering Reforms
The United States passed into law its Anti-Money Laundering Act of 2020, which takes effect on January 1, 2021. This brings digital currency exchange companies and other digital-asset-related businesses under the scope of regulations of the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA), which requires financial institutions “to actively detect, monitor and report potential money laundering activity.”
“I’m pleased that our anti-money laundering legislation was included as a part of this year’s [National Defense Authorization Act]. This bipartisan legislation protects Americans by depriving criminals and terrorists of the tools they use to finance illicit activity. It is the first serious overhaul of our anti-money laundering system in decades, and it makes sense to include it in the biggest, most important national defense legislation Congress passes each year,” South Dakota Sen. Mike Rounds said in a press release.
The massive anti-money laundering reforms are targeting businesses dealing with digital currencies and assets by clearly specifying the definition of a “financial institution” to “‘a business engaged in the exchange of currency, funds, or value that substitutes for currency or funds” and “a licensed sender of money or any other person who engages as a business in the transmission of funds or value that substitutes for currency.”
The reforms further define a “money transmitting business” to include those who deal with “currency, funds, or value that substitutes for currency.” Now, there are no longer loopholes that digital asset companies can use when dealing with the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), the agency that enforces the BSA.
Stricter Penalties Enforced
Aside from updating definitions to ensure that digital currency exchange firms and others dealing in digital assets are clearly within the scope of the AML Act of 2020 and the BSA, stricter penalties are now being enforced for crypto criminals.
Now, those who have been found guilty of violating the AML Act of 2020 and/or BSA are faced with fines amounting to profits earned while committing the violation and possible jail time. Those guilty of an “egregious” breach are also going to be banned from taking a board member position of any financial institution in the country for 10 years. Furthermore, employees of financial institutions who commit these crimes will be obligated to return to their employer all bonuses received during the time the act was committed.
FinCEN is being given additional resources, like increasing its manpower, to ensure the enforcement of these reforms. This will further safeguard investors against crypto crimes and nail down digital currency exchange firms and other digital-asset-related businesses that do not comply with BSA regulations.
Bitcoin (BTC) Crosses 55k And Is Heading Towards 60k Fast!
Less than two months into 2021, the price of bitcoin has risen 95.4%.
Based in the United States and want to trade via Binance.US? Click here to sign up now!
Cardano founder, Charles Hoskinson speaks on the future of Bitcoin and taking profits
Charles Hoskinson has always been a huge advocate for decentralized finance and building a network that could provide solutions to the problems with our current financial and banking systems. In this recent AMA Charles speaks out on his view about the issues that Bitcoin faces as well as reminding everyone that cryptocurrency isn’t all about taking profits.