Blockchain Daily News – Edition 132, 22.01.2018
January 22, 2018
Blockchain Daily News – Edition 134, 24.01.2018
January 24, 2018

Blockchain Daily News – Edition 133, 23.01.2018

Blockchain Daily News

by Florin Oprea

Edition 133, 23.01.2018

Fans’ Section

Banking Group Nordea Bans Bitcoin Trading

Reuters Staff – Reuters

Bitcoin Ban at Nordea Has Financial Regulator Taking Back Seat

Frances Schwartzkopff – Bloomberg (subscription)

As Nordea Bank blazes a trail in Europe by banning its employees from trading Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, the regulator is taking a back seat in a decision-making process it says is better left to the industry.

FAO: Pretty cool regulator. The markets will decide…

Goldman Issues Warning On Bitcoin — And An Even Bigger One On Ethereum

Ryan Vlastelica – Financial News

The chorus of bitcoin bears is growing louder by the day. The latest to issue a stern warning against the world’s largest digital currency is Goldman Sachs investment management division, which wrote that there is “no doubt” that the cryptocurrency’s astronomical rise over the past year “has pushed it into bubble territory”.

FAO: I am sure that most of our readers are aware that bitcoin’s price is about half of what it was in December. So, if we come to speak about “bubbles”, we can even say the bubble  has already burst, as the price is down 50%….

Vanguard Chief, Tim Buckley : You Will Never See A Bitcoin Fund From Us

Thomas Franck – CNBC  

Vanguard CEO Tim Buckley may think highly of blockchain technology, but he isn’t planning on investing in bitcoin anytime soon. Buckley, who succeeded the firm’s former chief, Bill McNabb, at the start of the year, oversees roughly $4.5 trillion in assets under management.

Bitcoin Is Not An Investment We Would Advise, UBS Chairman Axel Weber Says

Silvia Amaro – CNBC

UBS believes that bitcoin is a speculative investment and is not advising its clients to invest in the digital currency, the bank’s chairman Axel Weber said.

Deals, Investments & M&As

Startups Are Raising Billions Using ICOs

Yuji Nakamura – Bloomberg (subscription)

ICO funding surged to $6.8 billion in 2017, from $151 million in 2014, 2015 and 2016 combined, according to research firm Smith + Crown. The growth comes even as ICOs attract the scrutiny of governments, including China and South Korea.

FAO: Hence the urgent desire for regulation manifested by governments all over the world. Don’t forget this could (and will) represent new tax revenues for governments.

More than 10% of $3.7 billion Raised In ICOs Has Been Stolen: Ernst & Young

Anna Irrera – Reuters

More than 10% of funds raised through ICOs are lost or stolen in hacker attacks, according to new research by Ernst & Young that delves into the risks of investing in cryptocurrency projects online. The professional services firm analyzed more than 372 ICOs, in which new digital currencies are distributed to buyers, and found that roughly $400 million of the total $3.7 billion funds raised to date had been stolen.

FAO: Hopefully regulation will contribute to a decrease of such stats.

Cryptocurrencies

Cryptocurrency Markets Aren’t All The Same

Leonid Bershidsky – Bloomberg

There’s a compelling reason to consider what’s going on with cryptocurrencies a purely speculative boom-and-bust roller-coaster: Over a three-month period, the prices of all the top coins and tokens are rather strongly correlated, going up and down in unison. What does that make them if not the 21st-century incarnation of tulip bulbs?

Venezuela Is Trying To Float Its Own Cryptocurrency To Save A Sinking Economy – But Investors Aren’t Believing The ‘Petro’ Hype

Dawn Kissi – CNBC

Venezuela — rife with double-digit inflation, civil strife and signs of imminent economic collapse everywhere — has seen the future, and it’s in cryptocurrency. Now, it just has to convince elements of its own citizenry, as well as the rest of the world.

DNT: You can find in our FREE ARCHIVE a lot more stories regarding Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s plans to issue a cryptocurrency that would leverage its vast oil reserves as money. Just search.

BitConnect Promoters Are Still Targeting Naive Investors In Indonesia

The Next Web

Bitcoin investment website BitConnect might have closed down its fraudulent lending and exchange platform, but its task force of dedicated promoters are still at it – and are now targeting gullible “investors” in Indonesia and other parts of Asia.

Exchanges & Trading Venues

Crypto Exchange BitFlyer Embraces Regulation The Market Fears

Julie Edde – Bloomberg (subscription)

BitFlyer, The World’s Largest Bitcoin Exchange For Volumes, Is Launching In Europe

Lynsey Barber – City A.M.

The world’s biggest bitcoin exchange by trading volumes is opening its doors in Europe for the first time amid a major boom in cryptocurrencies.

Press release here.

FAO: Whooaa. BitFlyer flies to Europe to seize the opportunity.

China’s OKCoin To Make Debut In S. Korea, Provoking 2nd Round Of War With Exchanges

Yoon Yung Sil – Business Korea

South Korea’s Cryptocurrency Crackdown Isn’t Stopping This Exchange’s Launch

Steven Russolillo & Eun-Young Jeong – The Wall Street Journal (subscription)

OKCoin is planning to launch a bitcoin exchange in South Korea as soon as next month, a move that comes as the country’s government is considering whether to shut down cryptocurrency exchanges altogether.

DNT: The cryptoverse is expanding and this is a natural thing that will continue, despite the official resistance.

Vendors

Opera Browser Adds Cryptocurrency Miner Protection For Smartphones

Nikhilesh De – CoinDesk

Opera, which already introduced cryptocurrency miner protection in its desktop-based versions, is now putting the same feature into its smartphone browsers.

DNT: Useful. This is an example to be followed by others!

BitPeople

Via CNBC – Coinbase hires Twitter Exec Tina Bhatnagar, who oversaw user services, to improve customer support.

FAO: Coinbase makes a major move with this hiring!

BlackRock Duo (Michael Wong & Adam Grimsley) Quit To Launch Cryptocurrency Hedge Fund

Paul Clarke – Financial News

Michael Wong, who was a senior portfolio manager and head of fixed income asset allocation at BlackRock, and fixed income specialist Adam Grimsley have launched Prime Factor Capital alongside Nic Niedermowwe, the Oxford PhD who moved into cryptocurrencies at the beginning of 2017.

City Hiring To Rumble On Despite Brexit As Bitcoin Boom Creates Jobs

Lucy Burton – The Telegraph

The Bitcoin boom is set to boost hiring in the City this year as financial companies race to stay ahead of the game in developing Blockchain technology, a leading headhunter has predicted.

Regulation

South Korea Will Require Real-Name Crypto Trading By The End Of This Month

Zheping Huang – Quartz

South Korea To Ban Cryptocurrency Traders From Using Anonymous Bank Accounts

Cynthia Kim – Reuters

South Korea will ban the use of anonymous bank accounts in cryptocurrency trading from Jan. 30, regulators said on in a widely telegraphed move designed to stop virtual coins from being used for money laundering and other crimes.

FAO: And the markets reacted quite aggressively in the last 24h.

Blockchain Name Changes Are Still Paying Off

Joe Easton – Bloomberg (subscription)

Almost three months after British IT investment firm On-Line Plc saw its shares rocket after adding the word blockchain to its name, the strategy is still paying off for imitators.

FAO: And regulators were expected to react, and they did, in some places…read below…

SEC Is Scrutinizing Overnight Blockchain Companies

Reuters Staff – Reuters

What’s In A Blockchain Name? SEC Demands More Than Investor Bait

Benjamin Bain – Bloomberg (subscription)

Companies looking to ride the cryptocurrency wave are drawing a stern warning from the top U.S. securities regulator: You better do more than change your name.

FAO: The mysterious ways of the blockchain…

Blockchain Small Caps A Better Bet Than Bitcoin

Tim Boreham – The Australian  (subscription)

Just as the listed bitcoin sector emerged from the depths of the cyber haze at the end of last year, 2018 is shaping up as the year of the blockchain — the underlying technology supporting cryptocurrencies.

Startups, Accelerators & Hubs

Why Berlin Remains The Bitcoin Capital Of Europe In 2018

Tanzeel Akhtar – The Local

When it comes to spending the digital currency Bitcoin, it seems Berliners have been on trend longer than the rest of Europe. Nowadays people can buy an apartment, book holidays, eat and drink in a number of trendy bars and even pay for further education using the controversial cryptocurrency Bitcoin.

DNT: Looks like Berlin is a pretty cool place for BTC fans who want to have some fun or even invest in real estate. Thumbs up for that!

Waves Lab Begins Operations With A Budget Of $9 Million

Simon Golstein – Finance Magnates

Waves has announced a budget of one million Waves tokens (approximately $9 million) for the first group of startups making use of its new incubator, Waves Lab.

Analysis

What A Facebook Blockchain Token Might Look Like

Michael J Casey  – CoinDesk

Mark Zuckerberg, worth $71 billion at just 33, has done rather well by Facebook’s centrally managed system. Over the past decade and a half, the social media behemoth’s closed-source algorithm has quietly manipulated its millions of users’ news feeds to capture maximum ad dollars and steer them all to Zuck and his shareholders. So, why is he exploring a more decentralized model?  And what role might crypto technology play in that?

Can You Really Make Money Mining Bitcoins?

Wendy Connick – The Motley Fool

If you want to join in the bitcoin frenzy without simply buying the digital currency at today’s inflated prices, then bitcoin mining is another way to get involved. However, mining bitcoins does come with expenses — and risks — of its own. And the more popular bitcoins become, the harder it is to mine them profitably.

DNT: Really important question..so send us some feedback. Can you make money mining BTC?

Other news

A Soybean Shipment To China Became The First Commodity Deal To Use Blockchain Tech

Oscar Williams-Grut – Business Insider

A recent soybean shipment from the US to China has become “the first full agricultural commodity transaction using a blockchain platform,” according to a consortium of banks and trading businesses involved.

Opinion

Yes, Bitcoin Is a Means of Payment. Just Not Yet for You

Elaine Ou – Bloomberg

Critics of Bitcoin often argue that it’s useless as a means of payment, one of the key elements of any successful currency. That’s not quite right, and likely to become less so.

DNT: It’s true. But it can be for everyone. Just ask the cool people of Berlin!

Why The I.R.S. Fears Bitcoin

Richard Holden and Anup Malani – The New York Times

The bigger concern about cryptocurrencies may be the damage they could do, in the long run, to government finances through lost tax revenue.

DNT: Quod Erat Demonstrandum!!!

FAO: Could we say that governments are experiencing their own kind of “Fear of missing out” (FoMO)…

Top Swiss Cryptocurrency Lawyer Questions ‘Stupid’ ICO Structure

Brenna Hughes Neghaiwi – Reuters

One of the top lawyers in the booming cryptocurrency industry says the legal structure he helped set up to raise funds for new virtual currencies is “old, inflexible and stupid” and may no longer be fit for purpose.

 

 

FAO: Florin Adrian Oprea, Editor-in-chief Blockchain Daily News

DNT: Decebal Nicolaie Todarita, Editor Blockchain Daily News