Kimchi Premium Turns into A Discount, Binance Removes Korean Won Trading Pairs & Trading Options

The good thing is that spikes in Kimchi premium are the ones that mark the market top. As for Binance, it just wants to “proactively comply with local regulations.”

Kimchi premium, which reached above 18% at one point in April, has now gone down to sub-zero.

Kimchi premium is the gap in the prices of crypto on South Korean exchanges compared to other exchanges globally. As of writing, Bitcoin is trading at $46,316 on Coinbase but $46,003 on the biggest South Korean exchange Upbit, as per Coinmarketcap. The same is the case for Ether, which as of writing, is at roughly $3,209 on Upbit while trading at just above $3,230 on Coinbase.

Currently, the Korean premium has turned into a discount, running in the -0.5-1.5% range.

Interestingly, much like always, while investors on other exchanges are interested in top assets like Ethereum (ETH), Bitcoin (BTC), Cardano (ADA), Polygon (MATIC), and Dogecoin (DOGE), in this order, for example on Coinbase, Upbit users are busy buying Axie Infinity (AXS), Dogecoin, XRP, Cardano, Bitcoin, Ethereum Classic (ETC), Ethereum, and BitTorrent (BTT), in this order.

Back in June, when the crypto market experienced a drawdown from its all-time highs, the premium started going down to zero. While the rest of the market was making moves to buy the bottom, it looked like the Koreans were busy selling their crypto assets.

Spikes in the Korean premium have actually marked the end of the bull runs, historically, which peaked at 47% in January 2018 and 63% in May 2017.

So, this Kimchi discount can be seen as a positive sign for the crypto market trend.

Binance Being Proactive

Amidst this, the leading cryptocurrency exchange Binance announced on Friday that it would remove Korean Won (KRW) trading pairs and discontinue Korean language support, effective immediately.

The exchange also discontinued P2P merchant application “to proactively comply with local regulations,” it said.

Binance P2P will remove KRW trading pairs on August 13 at 11:00 UTC (20:00 UTC+9), and users are advised to complete all the related trades and remove related trade advertisements to avoid potential trading disputes.

Back in December 2020, the exchange closed its South Korean affiliate citing low usage and volume.

“Binance welcomes developments to our industry’s regulatory framework as they pose opportunities for the market players to have greater collaboration with the regulators. We are committed to working constructively in policy-making that seeks to benefit every user,” said the exchange.

South Korean financial watchdogs, however, haven't issued warnings or notices against Bitcoin operating in the country, unlike many countries around the globe. The country's Financial Intelligence actually told foreign exchange last month that they until the end of September to register in line with new anti-money laundering (AML) rules.

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