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UK markets watchdog: cryptoassets have 'no intrinsic value'

A collection of Bitcoin (virtual currency) tokens are displayed in this picture illustration

LONDON (Reuters) - People should be cautious about putting money into unregulated cryptoassets like bitcoin that have "no intrinsic value" and few protections, Britain's Financial Conduct Authority said on Wednesday.

The FCA was publishing final guidance to help firms in the sector understand if their cryptoasset activities come under existing rules.

"This will allow firms to have a better understanding of whether they need to be authorized and what they need to do to ensure they are compliant," the watchdog said in a statement.

Regulators in Britain, the European Union and the United States are looking at how they can slot cryptoassets into existing securities, anti-money laundering and consumer protection rules before considering new regulation.

Facebook's <FB.O> plans to launch its Libra digital coin has added urgency to the task.

The FCA's guidance is a milestone in regulating a sector that remains a tiny part of the broader financial system but attracts strong retail interest in parts.



(Reporting by Huw Jones; Editing by Jon Boyle)