The Japanese provider of real-time financial information for corporate and individual investors, FISCO (TYO:3807), announced it is planning to set up a new company – FISCO COIN. It will work as an operator of a cryptocurrency exchange – bitcoin and other alternative currencies.
The new company is also planning to develop and manage financial derivative instruments and provide B2B and B2C services, such as bond issue and crowdfunding, utilizing cryptocurrencies.
In its press release the company points out the reason for the move is the government plans to accept the cryptocurrencies as legal currencies. This would mean they could be more tightly controlled and taxed and their exchanges regulated. The amendments, proposed by Finance Minister Taro Aso would classify Bitcoin as a currency, would also allow banks and securities firms to invest and trade in the virtual currency.
Currently Japan is only taxing purchases paid with bitcoin and is one of the few countries doing so.
According to media publications, the matter has already been discussed in Japan’s legislative body – the Diet – and is pending a vote.
Meanwhile, the media reported that the Japanese online entertainment and shopping platform DMM.com, which has around 19 million active users, has started accepting bitcoin as payment since the beginning of March. According to its partner in the matter, the cryptocurrency exchange Coincheck, DMM is seeking expansion to other markets. The exchange also revealed that the bitcoin transaction volume is increasing rapidly in Japan.
Recently another Japanese cryptocurrency exchange, Zaif, revealed it has reached record volume of trading in bitcoin. On March 8 through its platform were traded 18 000 bitcoins at the value of JPY 850 mln. ($7.6 mln.)