| News |

Texas Is Ordering a Southlake Oil Company to Stop Taking Investments in Bitcoin

Keep Dallas Observer Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Dallas and help keep the future of Dallas Observer free.

You can buy anything with Bitcoin (pictured above) these days: A sandwich; art; insurance. And, until yesterday, at least, you could also buy shares in Texas oil wells.

The oil well shares were offered by a Southlake company called Balanced Energy, which, according to its website, is currently offering a couple prospects in Runnels County near San Angelo. Typically, investors buy interests using U.S. dollars. But at the Texas Bitcoin Conference in Austin last week, Balanced Energy president Kirk Johnson apparently told attendees that he also accepts the popular crypto-currency.

See also: A Federal Judge in McKinney Man's Digital Ponzi Case Rules that Bitcoin Is Real Money

The state of Texas is not pleased. On Monday, Texas Securities Commissioner John Morgan sent Johnson and Balanced Energy an emergency cease-and-desist letter telling him to stop.

Morgan's complaint isn't just that Balanced Energy is accepting Bitcoin. It's that he's recruiting non-accredited investors, saying things like "we don't do any verification" and "we're not going to play paperwork police," and "intentionally failing to disclose any material facts relating to the nature of the risks associated with the investment."

Those risks he's not mentioning include the uncertainty associated with Bitcoin, whose price fluctuations "may affect business operations," so, for the sake of headlines and agency press releases, it's Bitcoin.

Bloomberg reports this may be the first Bitcoin-related cease-and-desist order issued by a state securities commissioner, which is something to be proud of?

Send your story tips to the author, Eric Nicholson.

Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.


Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.