Cryptocurrencies rebounded strongly this week after Bitcoin made new lows for the year thus far, last week, and volumes also improved.
The top cryptocurrency moved back above $6,500, but lost ground as it chased $7,000.
Overall cryptocurrency market capitalization was $266.71 billion as of 11 am ET on Friday on CoinMarketCap.
In main news, South Korea revised its cryptocurrency guidelines, while India's top court refused to stay a central bank ban on banks' dealings in cryptocurrency.
And the European Parliament asked regulators not to ban cryptocurrencies.
Elsewhere, leading cryptocurrency exchange, Coinbase, launched its custody service for digital assets, targeting institutional clients.
Here is a wrap of the main news from the cryptocurrency and blockchain space this week.
S. Korea Revises Cryptocurrency Guidelines, India Ban On Banks Upheld
South Korea's Financial Services Commission, or FSC, revised virtual currency anti-money laundering or AML guidelines for cryptocurrency exchanges, which will address some insufficiencies related to the implementation of the guidelines. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court of India refused to grant temporary stay against the Reserve Bank of India's impending ban on the country's commercial banks for providing banking services to businesses and individuals dealing with cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin.
European Parliament Advises Regulators Not To Ban Cryptocurrencies
The European Parliament has advised policymakers and regulators not to ignore cryptocurrencies or attempt to ban them. It should be treated by regulators as any other financial instrument, proportionally to their market importance, complexity, and associated risks, a recent report published by the legislative arm of the European Union said.
Five Nations Form Joint Task Force To Tackle Crypto-funded Crimes
Tax enforcement authorities of five nations have established a joint operational alliance to fight international tax crime and money laundering, including cybercrimes facilitated through cryptocurrencies. The Joint Chiefs of Global Tax Enforcement, known as "the J5," is comprised of tax enforcement agencies from the U.K., Australia, Canada, the Netherlands, and the United States.
Coinbase Launches Custody Service; Ethereum Co-founder Unveils Crypto Wallet
Coinbase, one of the most popular crypto exchanges, launched its Coinbase Custody service for institutional clients on Monday. The exchange plans to add clients such as leading crypto hedge funds, exchanges and ICO teams, over the coming weeks. Meanwhile, Ethereum co-founder Anthony Di Iorio announced the launch of Jaxx Liberty, a new cryptocurrency wallet with more than 70 cryptocurrencies, to the mass market. In Switzerland, the stock exchange owner SIX is set to launch its own fully regulated cryptocurrency exchange called SIX Digital Exchange (SDX) that will roll out its services in mid-2019.
China's BTCC Relaunches Exchange, Thai Securities Firms Mulls Starting Crypto Exchange
BTCC, a Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency firm, re-launched its new cryptocurrency exchange platform that will support cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, and Litecoin, as well as trading pairs like LTC/USD and LTC/BTC and so on. Elsewhere, Thailand's securities firms are planning to establish a joint cryptocurrency exchange due to growing interest in digital currencies in the country, the Bangkok Post reported.
Crypto-jacking Replaces Ransomware As Top Cyber Bad Dog In 2018
A new report by McAfee Labs noted a whopping increase in crypto-jacking and other cryptocurrency mining schemes this year, that has replaced ransomware as top cyber bad dog in 2018. Cyber criminals hijack victims' browsers or infect their systems to secretly use them to mine for legitimate cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin.
UK Trials Blockchain In Meat Processing; IBM Signs Blockchain Deal With Australia
The Food Standards Agency, the UK government's food safety regulator, announced the first use of blockchain technology in the food sector to ensure improved transparency across the food supply chain. Elsewhere, International Business Machines Corp. or IBM has signed A$1 billion or about $740 million technology supply deal, including blockchain, with the Australian government, to improve data security.
Malta Becomes First Ever Country To Regulate DLT; Uzbek President Signs Decree
Malta officially became the world's first ever country to regulate distributed ledger technology or DLT as the Parliament has passed three blockchain bills into law. The President of Uzbekistan, a former Soviet republic, has signed a decree regarding the development and integration of blockchain technology, crypto assets, and crypto mining. In the US, government authorities in Florida said an official post of State Cryptocurrency Chief will be created to oversee the state's growing cryptocurrency market.
Blockchain Could Solve Some Most Critical Problems Of Refugees: WEF
Blockchain has the potential to help millions of refugees by solving some of their most critical problems, according to an article published by the World Economic Forum. Ahmas Sufian Bayram, who wrote the article for the WEF, noted that blockchain, the decentralized, distributed and public digital ledger technology, could tackle refugee issues regarding documents, hunger and work.
As of 11.02 am ET on Friday, Bitcoin was up 4.99 percent for the week at $6,553.37 and Ethereum was higher by 5.29 percent at $468.11 on Coinbase.
by Jyotsna V