Bitcoin soars on legalisation in Japan
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April 12, 2017
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The value of Bitcoin has climbed $100 in the past week after Japan legalised the cryptocurrency while Russia looks at following the move.

At the time of publication Bitcoin was trading at $1219, up from highs of $1124.88 on April 5.

The digital currency's market capitalisation has grown from $18.34 billion on April 5, to $19.5 billion today, CNBC reports citing

Bitcoin plunges more than 20 percent on fears currency could split

The currency dipped after US regulators decided against allowing a Bitcoin ETF last month but the Japanese move to make Bitcoin legal tender on April 1 has given the currency a shot in the arm.

The decision by the Japanese Financial System Council has been welcomed by retailers, with two of the nation's biggest, Bic Camera and Recruit Lifestyle, accepting Bitcoin.

Bitcoin trading in Japanese yen is the second-most liquid market globally, according to cryptocurrency trading platform Gatecoin.

"The Japan virtual currency act has likely had a major impact, as there has been a lot of buzz in Japanese media over the ruling over the last few months," Aurélien Menant, founder and CEO of Gatecoin, told CNBC.

At the same time Russia is considering recognising Bitcoin as a legal currency.

Russian Deputy Finance Minister Alexey Moiseev told Bloomberg that Bitcoin could be legal tender sometime in 2018.

Mr Moiseev said he hopes the decision could help Russia deal with money laundering.

"The state needs to know who at every moment of time stands on both sides of the financial chain," Mr Moiseev told Bloomberg.

"If there's a transaction, the people who facilitate it should understand from whom they bought and to whom they were selling, just like with bank operations."


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