Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies have become increasingly popular and are gaining acceptance worldwide. However, governments and regulators are still struggling to keep pace with the rapidly evolving cryptocurrency industry. In recent years, we have seen a number of legal actions taken against cryptocurrency-related companies and individuals, and one of the latest cases involves 1pool Ltd., an international Bitcoin-funded securities dealer.
Background on 1pool Ltd. and its Alleged Violations
1pool Ltd., also known as 1Broker, is a Marshall Islands-registered company that offered trading services in CFDs (contracts for difference), Forex, and cryptocurrencies, using Bitcoin as the primary funding source. The company also offered security-based swaps to US customers, which is why the SEC, CFTC, and FBI intervened.
The agencies claim that 1pool Ltd. violated US federal securities laws by offering security-based swaps to US customers without registering as a security-based swap dealer. Furthermore, they allege that 1pool Ltd. failed to follow anti-money laundering and know-your-customer regulations.
Legal Actions Taken Against 1pool Ltd.
In September 2018, the SEC, CFTC, and FBI took legal action against 1pool Ltd. and its CEO, Patrick Brunner. The FBI seized the company’s domain, 1Broker.com, and halted all trading activities. 1pool Ltd. announced via Twitter that all open positions were closed at the current market prices and all funds were secure, but withdrawals were paused until the company gets permission from the SEC to process customer withdrawal requests on an alternative domain.
The legal actions against 1pool Ltd. demonstrate that regulators are becoming increasingly vigilant and are willing to take strong actions against companies that violate securities laws. Companies operating in the cryptocurrency industry need to be aware of the regulations and comply with them to avoid legal troubles.
Zebpay, One of India’s Biggest Cryptocurrency Exchanges, Shuts Down Exchange Services
India has been a battleground for cryptocurrencies in recent years, with the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) directing all financial institutions to stop providing services to businesses associated with cryptocurrencies. This has led to a significant decline in the Indian cryptocurrency industry.
In September 2018, one of India’s biggest cryptocurrency exchanges, Zebpay, announced that it would shut down all exchange services, following the RBI’s banking ban on the local crypto industry. All unexecuted orders were canceled, and INR withdrawals were paused until banks allow them again.
Thomas Lee Predicts a Strong Rally for Ethereum
Thomas Lee, an accomplished Wall Street strategist and the Head of Research at Fundstrat Global Advisors is known for his bullish stance on cryptocurrencies. In a recent statement to his clients, Lee predicted a strong rally for Ethereum, saying that it is about to stage a trend reversal.
Lee noted that when Ethereum underperformed peers by two standard deviations, the price trend saw a major reverse, and he expects Ether to reach $1,900 by the end of the year. This is good news for Ethereum holders and supporters, as it suggests that the cryptocurrency has a strong potential for growth.
The Austrian Government Issues Government Bonds on the Ethereum Blockchain
Governments and central banks have traditionally been skeptical of cryptocurrencies, but some are starting to explore their potential. In a recent development, the Austrian government announced that it would issue €1.15 billion of government bonds on the Ethereum blockchain in an auction on October 2.
During the auction, one of Austria’s biggest banks, Oesterreichische Kontrollbank (OeKB), will issue the bonds on behalf of the Austrian Treasury (OeBFA).