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BitCoin Exchange BitFloor Shuts Down

BitCoin Exchange BitFloor Shuts Down

Tyler Durden on 04/18/2013 08:55 -0400
In an amusing development, one of the key alternative BitCoin exchanges, BitFloor, has just announced it is forced to shut down immediately. It is amusing, because one of the primary reasons attributed by the BTC pundits for the recent crash from $260 to $50 was errors and faults in the primary bitcoin exchange MtGox. Well, with alternative exchanges forced to shut down, this may mean the only “faulty” marketplace will sees it monopoly power increase further. It is also ironic because as BitFloor disclosed it “can no longer provide the same level of USD deposits and withdrawals as we have in the past.” Whatever happened to decentralized, and unencumbered by legacy fiat currencies?

bitfloorThe Verge has some more:

Bitcoin exchange BitFloor is closing its doors, halting trading and announcing that it will return everyone’s funds. In an announcement on its main site, the company’s founder, Roman Shtylman, says that “due to circumstances outside [BitFloor’s] control” it “must cease all trading operations indefinitely.” More specifically, BitFloor says that because its US bank account is closing it won’t be able to provide the same level of dollar deposits and withdrawals that it has been up to this point. The news comes after weeks of DDoS attacks and technical problems at leading exchange Mt. Gox and a roller coaster ride of price fluctuations that saw Bitcoin tank from a high of over $200 back down to a low below $70. The news was reported by The Next Web.

Back in September, BitFloor was hit with a $250,000 theft after an attacker got access to an unencrypted backup set of keys for the exchange’s wallet — the software through which people (and organizations) access and transfer their coins. The exchange managed to get back online within a few weeks, with Shtylman announcing his intention to repay the stolen funds.

Overall, BitFloor is tiny compared to Mt. Gox — it does less than four percent of that exchange’s trading volume — but it represented an important alternative in the highly concentrated market. At this point it’s still unclear what exactly happened with BitFloor’s US bank account that required such a speedy exit, but a Reddit user points out that the exchange is registered with FinCEN — the US Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network — indicating that everything was seemingly above board with the US government. We’ve reached out to Bitfloor for comment on what precipitated the closure, and will update if and when we hear back.

In other news, and from the main, and apparently only remaining BitCoin exchange we get:

  • Dear Mt. Gox customers. We are currently experiencing a downtime and will update ASAP. Apologies for the delay.

With the electronic market in limbo, at least demand for physical BitCoins appears to be solid to quite solid… Oh wait.

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About bambooinnovator
Kee Koon Boon (“KB”) is the co-founder and director of HERO Investment Management which provides specialized fund management and investment advisory services to the ARCHEA Asia HERO Innovators Fund (www.heroinnovator.com), the only Asian SMID-cap tech-focused fund in the industry. KB is an internationally featured investor rooted in the principles of value investing for over a decade as a fund manager and analyst in the Asian capital markets who started his career at a boutique hedge fund in Singapore where he was with the firm since 2002 and was also part of the core investment committee in significantly outperforming the index in the 10-year-plus-old flagship Asian fund. He was also the portfolio manager for Asia-Pacific equities at Korea’s largest mutual fund company. Prior to setting up the H.E.R.O. Innovators Fund, KB was the Chief Investment Officer & CEO of a Singapore Registered Fund Management Company (RFMC) where he is responsible for listed Asian equity investments. KB had taught accounting at the Singapore Management University (SMU) as a faculty member and also pioneered the 15-week course on Accounting Fraud in Asia as an official module at SMU. KB remains grateful and honored to be invited by Singapore’s financial regulator Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to present to their top management team about implementing a world’s first fact-based forward-looking fraud detection framework to bring about benefits for the capital markets in Singapore and for the public and investment community. KB also served the community in sharing his insights in writing articles about value investing and corporate governance in the media that include Business Times, Straits Times, Jakarta Post, Manual of Ideas, Investopedia, TedXWallStreet. He had also presented in top investment, banking and finance conferences in America, Italy, Sydney, Cape Town, HK, China. He has trained CEOs, entrepreneurs, CFOs, management executives in business strategy & business model innovation in Singapore, HK and China.

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