California Agency Rescinds Statement on Regulating Bitcoin

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California’s business-regulation agency reversed course hours after saying the state wouldn’t regulate digital currencies such as Bitcoin.

Tom Dresslar, spokesman for the California Department of Business Oversight, said in a phone interview that his earlier statement was no longer valid.

“We’re still assessing the extent to which, if at all, we regulate virtual-currency businesses under California law,” Dresslar said.

Agency officials concluded in December that they had legal authority over Bitcoin, Dresslar said at the time, but were debating whether to exercise it.

Evan Westrup and Jim Evans, spokesmen for Governor Jerry Brown, didn’t immediately return a call seeking comment.

(A previous version of this story gave an incorrect title for Dresslar.)