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Inside Bitcoin (Dec 4th, 2017)

$BTC (12:09 PM EST): $11,389.70 (-3.32%)

90-day high: $11,664.80 // 90-day low: $3,260.70 // More… $BCH (12:10 PM EST): $1,542.83 (-4.68%)

90-day high: $2,050.08// 90-day low: $275.90 // More

$ETH (12:10 PM EST): $463.32 (-3.51%)

90-day high: $516.85// 90-day low: $198.72 // More

$LTC (12:10 PM EST): $98.32 (-5.29%)

90-day high: $103.48// 90-day low: $37.87 // More

The United Kingdom and the European Union are planning a crackdown on bitcoin. The effort comes amid concerns that the digital currency is being used for money laundering and tax evasion. Under the EU-wide plan, online platforms that trade bitcoin would be required to carry out due diligence on customers and report suspicious transactions. As Fortune points out, the ban has been discussed for months. The Treasury, the United Kingdom’s finance and economic policy department, is negotiating the EU’s amendment with a final statement expected in the next couple of weeks. –THE GUARDIAN

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People have spent more than $1 million buying and selling virtual cats on the ethereum blockchain. A few days ago, AxiomZen, a design studio based in Vancouver and San Francisco, launched CryptoKitties, an ethereum-based trading game that has quickly taken off. Users purchase cats with ether then “breed” them with other cats to create new creations. The cats cannot be modified by the user in any way, except for their names. Users can then sell their created cats or breed them again in hopes of making a new creation that people want to buy. The game has put a strain on the ethereum blockchain, quickly taking up 15 percent of the system’s capacity, quickly taking up 15 percent of the system’s capacity. –TECHCRUNCH

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The Winklevoss twins are now bitcoin billionaires. Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss invested $11 million in 2013 from their $65 million settlement with Facebook. The two amassed one of the largest bitcoin portfolios in the world – about 1 percent of the entire currency’s dollar value equivalent. The twins have never sold a single bitcoin and hold one of only a few wallets in the world that hold more than $1 billion of the cryptocurrency. –THE VERGE

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Aruba has partnered with Swiss startup Winding Tree to use the ethereum blockchain to improve the amount of money the country receives from tourism. Like many island nations, Aruba relies heavily on tourism for its local economy. However, a significant portion of tourism dollars go to third-party travel agencies and airlines that control pricing. Aruba wants to use Winding Tree’s platform to connect tourists directly with travel suppliers to eliminate the middlemen. Winding Tree will start beta-testing the platform with early adopters early next year, with the hopes of launching commercially by the end of 2018, first with hotels and later with airlines. -COINDESK

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Pan Gongsheng, a deputy governor of the People’s Bank of China, believes the Chinese government made the right decision in distancing itself from bitcoin. Gongsheng predicts that bitcoin will die of a grand theft, namely a hack into the blockchain, or a collective ban by global governments. “As [economist John Maynard] Keynes has taught us, ‘the market can remain irrational longer than you can remain solvent’,” Gongsheng said. “There is only one thing left to do: Sit by the river bank and see bitcoin’s body pass by one day.” China once accounted for 90 percent of bitcoin transactions until the government banned ICOs and stopped bitcoin exchanges from serving local customers. –QUARTZ

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