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After stabilising around the $455 area in yesterday’s trading session, BTC/USD rallied $45 to reach a high of $500 today. The pair was unable to break past the important psychological level however and is currently trading somewhat lower at $486.15 on BTC-E. One bitcoin is quoted at $480 on BitStamp.
Steven Woodrow, the lawyer heading the US class action case against the defunct exchange MtGox, told Coindesk that Mark Karpeles is attempting to block his motion to have him testify on US soil. The next hearing in the on-going Chapter 15 US bankruptcy protection will take place today in a Dallas, Texas. According to the lawyer, Mark had offered to fly to Taiwan instead. If Karpeles is not willing to visit the country, Woodrow suggested that Karpeles or his companies shouldn’t be granted the protection of the US courts.
‘’Really what this comes down to is a lack of transparency, there are things happening, bitcoins being moved, supposed proceedings that are occurring, other investigations that are ongoing and US creditors are at a real disadvantage. They receive this information piecemeal in confusing ways and they don’t know what to believe. Given that lack of transparency, we need to have Mr Karpeles come to the US to answer questions in a fluid way, not force everyone to fly around the globe to depose him through an interpreter.’’
People’s Bank of China officials offered differing views on the fledgling cryptocurrency. Zhang Niannian compared bitcoin exchanges to casinos and called into question the legitimacy of btc businesses, speculating that they could take off with the funds at any time and leave customers with little legal recourse.
Xu Nuojin, deputy head of the PBOC’s Statistics and Analysis Department, said that bitcoin is ‘’ kind of folk currency, so it is a currency, but it is not a legal tender. This is a breakthrough concept of sovereignty currency’’. He went on to say that bitcoin is still not recognized by central banks as a currency and that it lacked the recognition of an institution like the US Federal Reserve that would ensure its use.
Officially, the People’s Bank of China is still keeping silent on the rumored deposit ban that sent bitcoin prices plunging below the $500 mark few days ago.
Drilling down to the four hour chart; the presence of a Dragonfly Doji near 1.3750 helped foreshadow the bounce towards 1.3805 in recent trading. A break above the notable resistance level coupled with the absence of a bearish reversal signal may open an advance towards 1.3840/50
Asian Stocks Climb on China Data, Yellen Remarks (based on forexminute article)
Asia stocks surged in their fifth straight day buoyed by growth registered in information technology companies as investors evaluated missed signals from Chinese manufacturing data.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index stood at 138.41 as of 6.29 PM in Tokyo, having advanced 0.3% and recovering from losses by up to 0.4%. The Equity benchmark plunged 2.4% in first three months of 2014 that ended yesterday.
Statistics from HSBC Holdings and Markit Economics, which measure performance of the private sector for the most part, showed that the Chinese purchasing managers’ Index declined 0.5 points from 48.5 to 48 in March. The official gauge from the government, which covers a broader sample, indicated that the Chinese purchasing managers’ Index increased from 50.2 to 50.3 this month.
Mainland stocks recovered, backed by solid gains in liquor firms, after falling to a more than one week low at closing on Monday. Kweichow Moutai advanced 5.0% and Jiangsu Yanghe Brewery jumped 5.2%.
“State-owned enterprises are seeing a slowdown in growth, but it’s not as severe as small, mid-size enterprises,” Baring Asset Management’s Khiem Do was quoted by Bloomberg as saying.
Retailers grew following news that the Beijing’s monthly minimum wage is bound to increase 11.4 to 12.3% from Tuesday.
South Korea’s blue-chip Kospi rebounded from early losses to reach a closing high that was last recorded three months ago, for a third straight session. *The recovery followed announcement by Lee Ju-Yeol, governor of Bank of Korea, that the monetary regulator would keep a consistent and predictable policy.
Gains in Asia stocks were partly attributed to remarks by chair of the US Federal Reserve, according to CNBC. The Dow posted triple-digits after Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said there is still sufficient room for the fed to boost the economy.
Speaking at Chicago, Yellen said the Fed is committed to significant levels of bond-buying for some time.
Hong Kong and New Zealand launch forex probes (based on ft.com article)
Hong Kong and New Zealand have joined other leading regulators by launching full investigations into local banks’ possible manipulation of the foreign exchange markets, adding to the escalation of global probes.
In both countries regulators said on Tuesday they were investigating banks in their markets, a day after Switzerland’s competition watchdog became the first regulator to confirm publicly it had uncovered signs of illegal activity as it announced an investigation into possible forex manipulation by eight banks. Also on Monday, the UK’s financial regulator said it was examining the controls investment banks have in place to prevent traders from rigging benchmarks.
The Hong Kong Monetary Authority has previously only confirmed that it was liaising with overseas regulators, collecting information and making inquiries with banks in the city.
However, on Tuesday it confirmed that it had asked a number of banks in Hong Kong to hire independent lawyers or consultants to review their businesses.
“The HKMA is investigating a number of banks in Hong Kong by requiring them to conduct independent reviews of their FX operations and submit the results to the HKMA,” it said. “The reviews are in progress. The HKMA is also liaising with relevant overseas bank supervisors on the matter.”