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Italian regulator shuts down foreign and crypto trading sites

By Yana Berman

Eight exchanges were accused of providing illegal trading products and services

Italy’s securities regulator CONSOB has shut down six foreign exchange websites and two crypto trading websites because they provide illegal products.

As Finance Magnates reported, the companies were accused of violating the EU legislative framework on financial markets called Mifid2 and local Consolidated Law on Finance (TUF) that addresses trading products.

Italy's internet service providers have already shut down the websites. Six of them offered forex and CFDs trading, while other businesses traded cryptocurrencies and their derivatives.

In the recent months, CONSOB took similar actions against nearly 150 domains. The vast majority of them was accused of failing to have licenses to provide services in Italy.

The country first established a legal basis for trading cryptocurrencies back in 2016. Back then, a ministerial resolution prescribed that converting crypto to fiat is not taxable. However, any profits and losses on such transactions are subject to taxes.

Moreover, in 2017, the Italian government issued a decree that equated virtual currency providers to the regulations established for traditional money exchange operators.

Last week, the newly opened Italian crypto exchange Altsbit revealed it was going to close following a $72.5m (£56m, €66.4m) hack that wiped out almost all of the funds stored. The exchange is set to close in May 2020, while users are able to apply for a partial refund.

FURTHER READING: France approves its first initial coin offering

FURTHER READING: Year in review: biggest cryptocurrency scams of 2019

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