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World's first formal bitcoin exchange likely to open in New York, says report

The world's first bitcoin bank is expected to open in New York within a month, according to The Register30 Apr 2015

New York State's Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) will publish a regulatory framework in the "next few weeks" that will allow any firm that has applied to become a virtual currency exchange to launch as a bank, a spokesman for the  NYDFS told The Register.

So far only one company has applied to become a virtual currency exchange. itBit Trust recently moved from Singapore to New York and put in an application to the NYDFS.

ItBit's website says that "The itBit team is hard at work building a bitcoin trading solution for US investors. Please complete [a form on the site] to receive an email notification once itBit is available to customers based in the United States."

Last month, itBit was one of three participants to place winning bids in an auction for bitcoins seized from Ross Ulbricht in October 2013, following his arrest in connection with the online black market Silk Road, according to Coindesk.com.

ItBit secured 3,000 bitcoins, Coindesk said, which would be worth US$699,600 as of 30 April. 

itBit has hired three new employees recently, The Register said: former Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation chairman Sheila Bair, former Financial Accounting Standards Board director Robert Herz, and former New Jersey senator Bill Bradley.

The NYDFS first held a Notice of Inquiry on virtual currencies in August 2013.

Coinbase, a bitcoin digital wallet and platform provider, announced the launch of what it claimed was the first licensed US bitcoin exchange in January, available in 24 states. However, at the time, California's Department of Business Oversight (DBO), said that it had not give its approval to the company's exchange.

Recent Financial Services Experience