Bitcoin Falls on Fears of Regulatory Trouble for Big Crypto Exchange

A regulatory rebuke for one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges is giving Bitcoin investors the jitters.

Japan’s Financial Services Agency issued a warning to Binance for operating cryptocurrency exchange services with Japanese residents through the internet without a license in the country, according to a statement on the agency’s website. Bitcoin fell as much as 4.5 percent after the Nikkei first reported the warning on Thursday, and was down 0.2 percent at 9:31 a.m. in Hong Kong on Friday.

Binance, founded by Zhao Changpeng, was warned because it had several staff in Japan and had been expanding without official permission, according to a person familiar with the FSA’s plans, who asked not to be named because the information is private.

The news adds to signs that governments around the world are stepping up scrutiny of cryptocurrencies amid worries that they’re facilitating everything from money laundering to tax evasion and fraud. Japan, one of the most active markets for digital assets globally, introduced a licensing system for virtual currency exchanges last year in an effort to improve oversight…

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