China Regulators Eyeing Rules Concerning ICOs

Regulators in China are gearing up to issue new rules on digital coin offerings and could move to ban them until the new rules are put in place.

According to a news report in Business Insider, citing the Beijing-based financial magazine Caixin, Chinese regulators including the People’s Bank of China and the China Securities Regulatory Commission are currently looking at how best to approach initial coin offerings (ICOs). ICOs are hugely popular, resulting in startups raising tons of money in capital.

Regulators in China are mulling if they should ban ICOs altogether or just until the country has more stringent regulations in place. The report noted in China, there have been 65 ICOs and $394.6 million raised from roughly 105,000 individuals.

It’s just not regulators in China eyeing the ICO market. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in the U.S. has already signaled it wants to regulate ICOs and took action on one company late last week. In that case, the SEC reported it had temporarily suspended trading in the securities of Canada-based company First Bitcoin Capital Corp. (BITCF). In a press release, the SEC noted the suspension will stay in place until Sept. 7 of this year.

“The Commission temporarily suspended trading in the securities of BITCF because of concerns regarding the accuracy and adequacy of publicly available information about the company including, among other things, the value of BITCF’s assets and its capital structure,” the SEC wrote in the news release.

The SEC went on to caution broker-dealers, shareholders and prospective purchasers, saying they should carefully consider the foregoing information, along with all other currently available information and any subsequently issued by the company. The suspension comes at a time when Bitcoin is surging and regular investors are taking notice, particularly as the cryptocurrency’s value is hitting new highs, up more than 400 percent so far this year.