Blockchain Daily News – Edition 138, 30.01.2018
January 30, 2018
Blockchain Daily News – Edition 140, 01.02.2018
February 1, 2018

Blockchain Daily News – Edition 139, 31.01.2018

Blockchain Daily News

by Florin Oprea

Edition 139, 31.01.2018

Fans’ Section

Japan’s Line To Launch Cryptocurrency Exchange Amid Hacking Fears

Thomas Wilson – Reuters

Japan’s Line Corp plans to launch a cryptocurrency exchange, a move that comes as regulators investigate such exchanges in the country after hackers stole $530 million in digital money from Coincheck in one of the world’s biggest cyber heists.

FAO: Interesting announcements everywhere in the “cryptoverse”. Don’t you think things are starting to precipitate? Looks like EVERYBODY wants to enter the “cryptoverse” these days. Line, which has 168 million monthly active users, already provides money transfer and payment services through Line Pay. Starting its own exchange was a natural step. Remember Telegram is planning to launch its own cryptocurrency backed by a massive ICO – more here. Yeah, and Facebook’s Zuckerberg also declared he plans to study encryption and the blockchain.

Facebook To Ban Cryptocurrency-Related Ads

Reuters Staff – Reuters

Facebook said on it will ban ads promoting financial products and services tied to cryptocurrencies and ICOs. The new policy will be implemented across its platforms, including Facebook, Audience Network and Instagram, the company said.

DNT: Uh, oh…This comes short time after Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said, at the beginning of January, (Fans Section) that Facebook will be looking into cryptocurrency in the new year.

FAO: Is Zuckerberg starting his own kind of crackdown on cryptocurrencies? Muhaha…

World’s Largest Investment Company: ‘Interesting’ Bitcoin Is Under ‘Close Review’

William Suberg – Cointelegraph

Isabelle Mateos Y Lago, chief multi-asset strategist at BlackRock has said that the company is keeping cryptocurrency under “close review” as an “interesting development.” The senior executive said that although cryptocurrency did not constitute “an investable asset” for the world’s largest money manager at present, it was actively tracking progress as it is “clearly evolving very fast.”

FAO: Remember there was a story the other day about two former BlackRock employees starting their own cryptocurrency hedge fund (among many many other crypto hedge funds that appeared last year). Anyway, Y Lago’s statement is clearly different than her own boss’ (Larry Fink) opinion – he said Bitcoin was an index of money laundering – more here.

Deals & Investments

U.S. SEC Halts AriseBank’s ICO, Alleges Fraud

Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss & Susan Heavey – Reuters

The U.S. SEC has halted what it alleged was a fraudulent ICO by Dallas-based AriseBank to raise $1 billion for its “AriseCoin” cryptocurrency, the agency said in a statement. The SEC said it had obtained a court order to halt AriseBank’s efforts to target investors, and alleged that the entity had “falsely stated that it purchased an FDIC-insured bank” and had “allegedly omitted to disclose the criminal background of key executives.”

FAO: Regulation coming this way…there’s no doubt.

Crypto Hedge Fund Polychain Says It Won’t Proceed With IPO

Scott Deveau & Natalie Obiko Pearson – Bloomberg (subscription)

Polychain Capital, the crypto hedge fund backed by venture firms Sequoia Capital and Andreessen Horowitz, has decided not to go public in Canada after holdings talks with bankers about an IPO.

3 Big Silicon Valley Venture Firms May Be Ready To Dip Toes Into ICOs

Cromwell Schubarth  –  Silicon Valley Business Journal

Kleiner Perkins, Caufield & Byers, Benchmark and Sequoia Capital have each indicated they want to invest $20 million in a planned $1.2 billion offering by encrypted messaging app developer Telegram.

Cryptocurrencies

Digital Coins Tumble in January Amid Facebook, Tether Concerns

Eric Lam – Bloomberg (subscription)

U.S. Regulator Subpoenas Cryptocurrency Platforms Bitfinex And Tether: Source

Michelle Price & Anna Irrera – Reuters

CFTC has sent a subpoena to two of the world’s largest cryptocurrency platforms as watchdogs globally increase their scrutiny of the emerging asset class.

FAO: This happened in at the beginning of December, last year.

Bubble, Bubble, Fraud And Trouble

Paul Krugman – The New York Times

So is Bitcoin a giant bubble that will end in grief? Yes. But it’s a bubble wrapped in techno-mysticism inside a cocoon of libertarian ideology. And there’s something to be learned about the times we live in by peeling away that wrapping.

DNT: Such big words “..a bubble wrapped in techno-mysticism inside a cocoon of libertarian ideology”…Maybe a bit too big, even if BTC is in a bubble…Question: what do you make of financial markets without bubbles from time to time? 🙂  Oh, don’t have to answer this…But if you insist, tell us what you think.

Venezuela Says Will Pre-Sell ‘Petro’ Cryptocurrency On Feb. 20

CNBC

A pre-sale of Venezuela’s new “petro” cryptocurrency will begin on Feb. 20, President Nicolas Maduro said,  a move that the government hopes will help pull the country out of a dire economic crisis.

DNT: Check our FREE ARCHIVE for more data regarding the “petro” cryptocurrency.

Exchange Launching ‘Soccer-Related’ Cryptocurrency In World First Using Ripple Network

Roger Aitken – Forbes

Sooner or later it had to come – cryptocurrency entering the soccer arena with its legions of supporters around the globe. Now the London Football Exchange is set to launch a cryptocurrency to power an ecosystem of “inter- related components” made up of sports, media, entertainment, finance and a foundation.

DNT: I just remembered this old song: The name of the game – football! Football (soccer) is already a big business around the world and I think this a good and natural step for creating a “ultimate sport community”.

Exchanges & Trading Venues

Japan’s $500M Crypto Hack Couldn’t Have Come At A Worse Time

Erich Reimer – Seeking Alpha

Sloppy Management Was Behind The Coincheck Cryptocurrency Hack

Nikkei Asian Review

Japan’s Coincheck To Announce When It Will Lift Withdrawal Suspension

Reuters Staff – Reuters

Exclusive: Coincheck Hackers Trying To Move Stolen Cryptocurrency

Jemima Kelly & Tommy Wilkes – Reuters

Hackers who stole around $530 million worth of cryptocurrency from the Coincheck exchange last week — one of the biggest such heists ever — are trying to move the stolen “XEM” coins, the foundation behind the digital currency said.

DNT: The hack of the century for now…

FAO: We have picked a few titles regarding the “hack of the century”…to keep you updated. They say some things happen for a reason. This is one of those things…

More Than 1 Million People Sign Up For Early Access to Robinhood’s New Crypto Trading Service

Evelyn Cheng – CNBC

In the latest sign of tremendous interest in cryptocurrencies, more than 1 million people have joined the waitlist for Robinhood Crypto in just four days. No-fee stock trading app Robinhood announced it was rolling out commission-free trading in digital currencies bitcoin and ethereum beginning in February.

FAO: This is a message for the 1M people signing up for early access to Robinhood’s crypto trading service: “Nothing in this world is free”.

Vendors

Hyperledger Releases Hyperledger Sawtooth 1.0, Its Second Distributed Ledger Project

Ron Miller – TechCrunch

Hyperledger, released Hyperledger Sawtooth 1.0, its latest open source digital ledger project. Sawtooth joins its sister project, Hyperledger Fabric which reached 1.0 in July last year.

Press release here.

BitPeople

Fake Charlie Lee Tries to Scam People on Twitter

Arnab Shome – Finance Magnates

As the value of cryptocurrencies rises, more and more scammers are trying to dupe people. Someone faked Litecoin creator Charlie Lee’s Twitter account and launched a fraudulent scheme in which he claimed to be giving away 180 LTC. Many users reported the account, but it is still active.

Hong Kong To Educate Public On Crypto And ICOs

Wolfie Zhao  – CoinDesk

Hong Kong authorities have launched a campaign to educate the public on the risks associated with ICO and cryptocurrency investment.

Latest Developments & Agreements

Korea Starts Real-Name Trading System For Cryptocurrencies

Yonhap News

South Korea began a real-name trading system for cryptocurrencies banning the use of anonymous bank accounts in transactions to prevent virtual coins from being used for money laundering and other illegal activities.The real-name trading system is also part of the government’s latest measures to curb speculative investment into virtual coins amid growing fears that a cryptocurrency bubble may be set to burst.

FAO: As previously announced…

Regulation

South Korea Says No Plans To Ban Cryptocurrency Exchanges, Uncovers $600 Million Illegal Trades

Dahee Kim & Cynthia Kim – Reuters

South Korea’s finance minister said the government has no plans to shut down cryptocurrency trading, welcome news for investors worried that authorities might go as far as China’s tough action in blocking virtual coin platforms.

FAO: So they said “yes” to keeping the business in the country. Good call…

Startups, Accelerators & Hubs

Israel’s Blockchain Mining looks At Nasdaq, Toronto listings

Steven Scheer – Reuters

Blockchain Mining said it was preparing to list its stock on Nasdaq and the Toronto Stock Exchange by July after Israel’s market regulator said it might ban companies involved in cryptocurrencies from the Tel Aviv exchange.

FAO: “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade”.

Analysis

Kodak’s Dubious Cryptocurrency Gamble

Kevin Roose – The New York Times

An eon or two ago, Eastman Kodak was a bleeding-edge technology company. It hired the smartest engineers and put them to work racking up patents, pioneering new chemical processes and building a globe-spanning camera and film business that, at its peak, employed 145,000 people.

Other news

Kentucky Tries Brigands – BitConnect Sued in Kentucky Court

Simon Golstein – Finance Magnates

BitConnect has been hit with another class-action lawsuit, according to Law360.com.

The complaint, filed in a Kentucky court by plaintiff Brian Paige, alleges that the company’s investment platform is actually a Ponzi scheme, and seeks an undisclosed amount in damages.

 

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

DNT: Decebal Nicolaie Todarita, Editor Blockchain Daily News