The Snowball of All-Time-High: BTC price, FinCEN rules, Coinbase IPO

    The crazy year of 2020, coming to an end, brought an unexpected surprise for the whole crypto community: major breakthrough for Bitcoin, breaching US$20,000 for the first time (and went even higher). Hence, other events followed like a snowball down the mountain.

    As CZ, Binance CEO, tweeted the other day: «Bitcoin goes up 5%, traffic goes up 30x.» Major crypto exchanges saw a massive surge in their traffic, leading to congestions and technical issues for users. The most affected platforms turned out to be Binance (rightfully so), and Coinbase, which also made an announcement and proceeded to fixing the issue.

    Coinbase made bigger news this week with their claim to go public: the exchange’s IPO can become the first major Bitcoin company trading on U.S. stock exchanges. Preliminary documents were filed with the SEC, and for Coinbase the BTC all-time-high is very timely too. Brian Armstrong’s platform last valuation happened back in 2018 and resulted in $8 billion, but with skyrocketing crypto prices this figure is most probably going to be significantly higher. 

    Interestingly, two weeks ago Brian Armstrong was the one who voiced rumours about new regulations from the US authorities. A snowball finally made its way down: FinCEN, The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) has just released a notice of proposed rulemaking that would require money services companies, specifically related to digital currencies, to submit reports, keep records and verify the identity of their customers. This applies to digital funds “held in unhosted wallets … or held in wallets hosted in a jurisdiction identified by FinCEN.” Basically, this is a requirement for exchanges operating Bitcoin and other currencies to collect and share users’ personal data when these users perform transactions from the exchanges to their wallets.