This could be a more significant development than most other competitors to Bitcoin because, while Muslim buyers have displayed great interest in cryptocurrency, there are looming fears they will be outlawed in Muslim nations as a violation of sharia's strict prohibitions against usury. "Sharia principles, in addition to banning interest payments, emphasize real economic activity based on physical assets and frown on pure monetary speculation," Reuters explains. "That has triggered debate among Islamic scholars over whether cryptocurrencies are religiously permissible. Cryptocurrency companies are seeking to sway the debate by launching instruments based on physical assets and certified as valid by Islamic advisors." OneGram does this, as its name implies, by using at least one gram of physical gold to back the value of each crypto unit.
The increasingly accelerated rate at which different cryptocurrencies are entering the market has left many small time investors wondering if there is a real value in investing in the new technology. While many remain concerned about volatility in the market as well as the difficulties in investing, experts say with the proper security standards in place, investors have a number of options they can comfortably pick from. And with the arrival of new and secure blockchain trading platforms in the market, it will soon be easier for investors to buy, sell and trade in cryptocurrencies. Palmex, one such trading platform by ArabianChain, which came online on October 30, 2017, is one of the first digital asset exchanges to be born out of the Middle East and North Africa. The exchange offers investors and amateurs an intuitive user experience with advanced trading tools, multiple cryptocurrency pairs, rigorous security measures and minimal trading fees.
Bitcoin has received an unexpected boost from Christine Lagarde, after the head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) detailed the global benefits of cryptocurrency. Ms Lagarde wrote in a blogpost that cryptocurrencies like bitcoin could enable fast and inexpensive transactions, while the underlying blockchain technology could make financial markets safer. The price of the world's most valuable cryptocurrency returned above $8,000 following the publication of Ms Lagarde's comments, though it is unclear if the gains are directly attributable to the news. "Just as a few technologies that emerged from the dot-com era have transformed our lives, the crypto assets that survive could have a significant impact on how we save, invest and pay our bills," Ms Lagarde wrote in the blogpost. Ms Lagarde reiterated comments she made to the Bank of England last year that called for an even-handed approach to regulation, with the hope exploiting the benefits while simultaneously minimising the risks.
The price of bitcoin has shot up by almost $500 over the last 24 hours, causing a market-wide cryptocurrency resurgence that has seen ethereum, ripple and bitcoin cash surge in value by between 10 and 20 per cent. Bitcoin's latest gains come one week after bitcoin bucked months of steadily decreasing prices by rising more than $1,000 in the space of one hour. The world's most valuable cryptocurrency has since consolidated its gains and is now heading towards $9,000 for the first time since March. At the time of writing, bitcoin's price was $8,516, according to CoinMarketCap. Bitcoin's turn-around in fortunes appear modest when compared to other top-performing cryptocurrencies, with ethereum rising by 10 per cent since this time yesterday and ripple shooting up by 19 per cent.
The Central Bank of Iran has released an early draft of its regulations on cryptocurrencies, reversing a previous ban, but still imposing restrictions on the use of the digital currency inside the Islamic Republic. The bank published on its official website late on Monday a "Version 0.0" of its regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies, which it said is aimed at organising and defining boundaries of ongoing crypto operations in the country, and allowing traders to plan for their future. The announcement was made on the eve of the annual two-day Electronic Banking and Payment Systems conference, which kicked off in Tehran on Tuesday with the theme, "blockchain revolution". As speculated, the central bank recognised and authorised global cryptocurrencies, including bitcoin, central bank cryptocurrencies like Iran's upcoming sovereign cryptocurrency, and regional cryptocurrencies. Cryptocurrency is a digital currency, the transaction of which has no central authority and offers anonymity to those using the system, wherever they are in the world.