City watchdog is considering regulating Bitcoin currency

THE FINANCIAL Conduct Authority is actively considering regulating the virtual currency Bitcoin, it was claimed yesterday.

Tom Robinson, co-founder of Bitcoin currency exchange Bitprice, told City A.M. that the regulator – which has until now watched the fast-growing currency from the sidelines – has taken a more active interest in recent weeks.

“We know they’re looking at Bitcoin and seeing how it fits into existing regulations,” he said. “In terms of regulation the UK has been slow to act while the US and Germany have issued guidance.”

Many traditional banks refuse to deal with firms involved with the pseudo-anonymous currency due to money laundering fears.

Robinson yesterday discussed Bitcoin regulation with Downing Street officials, who he described as supportive. The FCA said it was watching developments.