Snippet British lender Lloyds Banking Group is the latest bank to put a bitcoin ban in place, following in the footsteps of US banking giants JP Morgan Chase, Bank of America, and Citigroup last week. Lloyds Banking Group — which runs the brands Lloyds Bank, Bank of Scotland, Halifax and MBNA — is thought to be the first bank in the UK to ban credit card customers from borrowing to buy the digital currency. Timeline for Crypto The bitcoin buying ban applies only to credit card customers, those using debit cards will still be able to buy the cryptocurrency. The bank is concerned that people could run up huge losses borrowing to buy bitcoin which last year surged to almost $20,000 per bitcoin before falling back to under $10,000. Bitcoin is trading around $8,000 per coin this morning . Source: bitcoinity.org Other cryptocurrencies have also fallen in the last few weeks after increasing many times in price last year, some far more than bitcoin. What the bank said: A Lloyds spokeswoman said: Across Lloyds Bank, Bank of Scotland, Halifax and MBNA, we do not accept credit card transactions involving the purchase of cryptocurrencies. We continually review our products and procedures and this is part of that. Why it matters: It’s expected that Lloyds is the first of many banks to move to ban bitcoin buying, with the Telegraph newspaper quoting banking experts who have predicted other financial institutions will quickly follow suit. Governments and regulators are under increasing pressure to rein in bitcoin, both due to its soaring value and its attraction to criminals who use it to buy illegal goods online. Bitcoin’s relative anonymity has led to it becoming a common way for people to buy things on the socalled dark web. 3 Things That Will Change the World Today Get the Verdict morning email British prime minister Theresa May recently said that action against digital currencies may be required “precisely because of the way they are used, particularly by criminals”. She told Bloomberg: In areas like cryptocurrencies, like Bitcoin, we should be looking at these very seriously. While most cyptocurrencies already abide by so-called Know Your Customer financial responsibility regulations the UK’s Treasury said late last year it wanted update regulation to bring virtual currency platforms into anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing regulation. Background: Other financial services companies and tech giants have cracked down on bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in recent weeks. On Friday last week JP Morgan Chase, Bank of America, and Citigroup said they are no longer allowing customers to buy cryptocurrencies using credit cards. A JP Morgan Chase spokesperson said in a statement : At this time, we are not processing cryptocurrency purchases using credit cards, due to the volatility and risk involved,” “We will review the issue as the market evolves. The banks join credit companies Capital One Financial and Discover Financial Services in banning bitcoin purchases, with Discover first enacting the ban in 2015. Earlier this month, US billionaire Warren Buffett said he wasn’t interested in cryptocurrencies, warning that the bitcoin boom will “come to a bad ending”. Meanwhile, social media titan Facebook recently announced it would block any advertising that promotes cryptocurrency products and services.
Publication Date Headline Outlet URL Snippet 05-Feb-2018 Maven expands team following MEIF appointment Insider Media Click to open Private equity firm Maven Capital Partners has made a series of appointments and opened a new regional office to manage its Midlands Engine Investment Fund (MEIF). The company has appointed Andy Povey and Raj Minhas to its Birmingham branch as investment managers to help manage the Maven MEIF Debt Fund team in the West Midlands. Maven has also opened its eleventh regional office in Nottingham and appointed David Tindsley and Sajid Sabir to manage the fund in the region. Povey joined Maven in 2017 following a long career in investment and banking for smalland medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). He was previously a director with SME investor Seneca Partners in Birmingham, sourcing and managing debt and equity transactions. Minhas joins the company following a 30-year career with NatWest, primarily in the SME commercial and corporate banking sectors. Tindsley joins Maven following a 35-year career with two high street banks, primarily in the SME commercial and corporate banking sectors and Minhas joined he company at the start of January, having previously worked within the corporate finance team at Grant Thornton and, prior to that, Orbis Partners. Investment director Steve Lewis said: "We are delighted to welcome Andy and Raj to the team and strengthen our presence across the region. We have built a highly skilled team with considerable in-depth knowledge of the local SME market, and a range of sector specialist knowledge, allied to the national resource of Maven’s UK business. "The Midlands has a well-deserved reputation as being a key driver in UK economic growth and producing innovative smaller businesses and our MEIF Debt Fund team is very much looking forward to working in partnership alongside Midlands SMEs." The hires follow the announcement of Maven’s appointment to manage £90m MEIF Debt funds, focused on providing debt funding to high-potential growth businesses located across the Midlands. Composed of two separate funds - £50m for SMEs located in the West Midlands and £40m for growth businesses in the east - the pots will provide finance of between £100,000 and £1.5m.