US and South Korea take steps towards formalising crypto; Bitcoin surges
US President Joe Biden signed an executive order in place to regulate crypto today, and the new South Korean president has promised widespread deregulation.
Earlier today, US President Joe Biden signed an executive order requiring multiple government agencies to report on the benefits and risks of cryptocurrency regulation as well as the creation of a central bank digital currency.
This order will potentially expand the adoption of digital currencies into the financial regulation system.
Crypto exchanges saw increased trading as a result of the action. Bitcoin rose over 9 percent to $42,280 after the announcement, while the coin with the second largest valuation in circulation, Ether, also added 6 percent to its value to hit $2,740. Both would be daily highs for the month of March 2022.
Investment bank Jefferies also saw a huge benefit from this executive order. Even though the order only asks for an assessment of benefits and risks, the investment bank believes that the decision to take cryptocurrencies seriously signals a positive shift for the industry.
In particular, they pointed out crypto miners like Argo Blockchain (ARBK) and Marathon Digital (MARA) as winners of this presidential announcement.
Jonathan Peterson, an analyst at Jefferies, told CoinDesk, "We believe the fact that the US government is now more formally recognising, engaging with and seemingly supporting the digital asset industry will be a positive for public crypto mining companies."
The US government has been forced to take a more immediate look at the digital currency world as there have been reports of Russian individuals using cryptocurrencies to get around global sanctions for their invasion of Ukraine.
New South Korean President bullish on cryptocurrency
Conservative candidate Yoon Suk-Yeol has narrowly won a South Korean election where both candidates were unusually pro-cryptocurrency. Increasing household debt and stagnant salary growth have seen South Koreans turn towards stock markets and crypto exchanges in recent years.
Yoon has previously talked about extreme deregulation, saying that cumbersome rules must be overhauled to help the virtual currency market flourish. He has also said he hopes to attract more crypto unicorns to his country, and has promised to go after fraudulent crypto hackers who have stolen money from innocent Korean retail traders.
South Korea has multiple bills under consideration to regulate crypto, which has left the industry in confusion. Harold Kim, former director of the Korea Blockchain Association, told CoinDesk last month, "something has to happen after the presidential election".
Edited by Teja Lele