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Gambling Website’s Bitcoin-Denominated Stock Draws SEC Inquiry

“The Securities and Exchange Commission is conducting a formal inquiry into an online gambling website’s Bitcoin-denominated stock sale after the agency signaled that such dealings may break U.S. laws.”

“The SEC sent a letter asking MPEx, an online exchange for Bitcoin-based trading, to provide contracts and other documents relating to SatoshiDice.com, according to a copy of the request posted on the website trilema.com.”

“Mircea Popescu, the MPEx operator to whom the letter was addressed, confirmed its receipt in an e-mail to Bloomberg News and said MPEx hasn’t broken any laws. The letter lists SatoshiDice as the topic of the inquiry without specifying what rules are at issue.”

"Andrew Ceresney, the SEC’s enforcement director, said in January the agency is “very focused” on whether Bitcoin-denominated stock exchanges are illegal. U.S. laws require securities-trading platforms to be licensed. The regulator’s decision to open an inquiry doesn’t mean its staff has concluded any rules were broken, according to the letter."

“You can invest in those companies with your Bitcoin online,” Ceresney said at a January conference. “And so the question is, are those unregistered exchanges or broker dealers operating in violation of the securities laws?”

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Read full Bloomberg article here.

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