Almost 200 cryptocurrency companies applied to register with the UK's financial regulator over the 12 months, as interest in bitcoin and other digital tokens rose around the world, new figures have shown. The UK's Financial Conduct Authority said 199 firms - from Bitcoin ATM operators to online exchanges - had applied to register with it in the year to January after the watchdog tightened its supervision of the sector. Bitcoin has rocketed in recent days after Elon Musk's Tesla announced it had snapped up $1.5 billion of the digital currency. More recently, Mastercard and BNY Mellon said they would start offering customers the chance to use cryptocurrencies, adding to the legitimacy of digital coins. The bitcoin price hit a record high of above $50,000 on Tuesday, taking year-to-date gains to around 70%. A rise in interest in cryptocurrencies from amateur and professional investors has caught the attention of regulators. In 2020, the UK's Treasury said crypto firms had to register with the FCA by January...read more...