Cryptocurrency markets continued to slide as a mix of negative assessments and news about bans and regulatory crackdowns continued to bear down on them. At 16:06 UTC, the price of a single bitcoin was $8,711.30, down 4.8% in the last 24 hours.
The biggest news to emerge in the last 24 hours is that of Google banning advertising related to cryptocurrency. The online advertising juggernaut’s decision is expected to have a major impact on cryptocurrency markets. (See below)
Allianz Global Investors, Europe’s biggest insurance firm, became the latest firm to bash the original cryptocurrency. Stefan Hofrichter, Head of Global Strategy at the firm, published a blogpost in which he called the original cryptocurrency “worthless”. “Bitcoin has no intrinsic value: it is a claim on nobody – unlike sovereign bonds, paper money – and doesn’t generate any income,” he wrote. Meanwhile, the SEC has set hedge funds exclusively targeted at cryptocurrencies within its sights. In addition to examining business practices of crypto hedge funds, the SEC’s Enforcement Division has also subpoenaed hedge funds for “potential misconduct”. Cryptocurrency hedge funds had a stellar 2017 and gained as much as 1,100 percent as crypto prices skyrocketed.
The overall mood in cryptocurrency markets was somber. The top 10 crypto coins followed bitcoin’s lead and fell. Monero, a privacy-focused coin that made solid gains in the last week on the back of news about a potential hard fork, dropped out of the top 10 after the fork was reported to be postponed by six weeks. At 16:21 UTC, the overall market cap for cryptocurrencies was $356 billion. Earlier this morning, it had reached a high of $377 billion.
Google Bans Advertising Of Cryptocurrency Products
Another factor weighing down on cryptocurrency markets was search giant Google’s decision to ban advertising related to cryptocurrency products. According to a CNBC news report, this includes advertising related to initial coin offerings, investment advice, and wallets. The Mountain View company is updating its policies to reflect this decision. “We don’t have a crystal ball to know where the future is going to go with cryptocurrencies, but we’ve seen enough consumer harm or potential for consumer harm that it’s an area that we want to approach with extreme caution,” Scott Spencer, director of sustainable ads for Google, told CNBC. Google’s decision, which will take effect June onwards, follows that of Facebook’s earlier this year, when the social network banned ICO advertising.
Winklevoss Twins Propose Regulation For Cryptocurrencies
Even as corporate and investment firms are rethinking cryptocurrency products, the Winklevoss twins have come up with a proposal for a self-regulatory organization to overlook virtual currencies. The proposal is outlined in the form of a blogpost on their site. The Virtual Commodity Association, as the SRO is called, would be funded through membership fees and be open to businesses that cater to US investors. Details on the rules that they would have to comply with are not outlined in the post but the proposal has already received a vote of confidence from Brian Quintenz, a CFTC commission. Several self-regulatory organizations, such as the National Futures Association, are already in charge of managing asset classes. Such organizations typically work in tandem with government bodies, such as CFTC, and are answerable to them.