Blockchain Daily News – Edition 176, 23.03.2018
March 23, 2018
Blockchain Daily News – Edition 178, 27.03.2018
March 27, 2018

Blockchain Daily News – Edition 177, 26.03.2018

Fans’ Section

College Students Use Financial Aid Money To Invest In Bitcoin

Annie Nova – CNBC

More than 20% of college students use their financial aid money to invest in cryptocurrencies, according to new findings by The Student Loan Report.

FAO: Cool! We will have a bright(er) future.

Deals & Investments

Bitstamp Rumored To Be Acquired for $400 Million

Aziz Abdel-Qader – Finance Magnates

A group of South Korean investors is reportedly in discussions to acquire Bitstamp, a EU-‎licensed digital currency exchange, Nathaniel Popper, a reporter for The New York Times tweeted citing numerous, unnamed sources.‎

FAO: Although this is just a rumour, the M&A game is definitely “on” in the “cryptoverse”. It all started some time ago, with the Circle-Poloniex deal (reported here), which might have been the trigger of a fast consolidation process. Coinbase has recently hired a top dealmaker from LinkedIn, Emilie Choi, and last week was rumoured to be “in talks” to buy bitcoin startup Earn.com.

Telegram On Track to Push Its Cryptocurrency Sale To $1.7 Billion

Ilya Khrennikov & Nour Al Ali – Bloomberg (subscription)

Telegram raised $850 million from large investors last month, selling rights to virtual coins called Grams at $0.38 apiece, according to a filing. The second round is targeting another $850 million at $1.33 apiece this month, according to the company documents seen by Bloomberg News.

FAO: Yip, we are keeping an eye out. Use our FREE ARCHIVE to check previous coverage on the Telegram ICO topic.

FinComEco & Block Commodities Announce Blockchain Crypto Token Collaboration Agreement With Wala & The Dala Foundation

Mondovisione

FinComEco Limited the fully integrated Financial and Commodities Ecosystem fostering financial inclusion with social responsibility throughout the agricultural value chain and Block Commodities Limited the innovative commodity trader operating in Africa, previously known as African Potash, are pleased to announce they have entered into a strategic partnership with Wala, a blockchain-powered financial services platform, and Dala, a cryptocurrency token issuer that will support the operation and further development of scalable, blockchain-enabled financial platforms for developing markets.

Ant Financial Draws A Clear Line On ICOs

Asia Times

Blockchain will be the cornerstone of trust for the future digital society, said Jing Xiandong, CEO of Ant Financial, but that future will not include ICOs, which he dismissed as an act of getting something from nothing, The Paper reported.

Future Stars?

Have an interesting project/company looking for more visibility? Why don’t you send us more details, and after our review your project might get listed it in this section! Contact us HERE!

Exchanges & Trading Venues

Huobi Registers With FinCEN Ahead Of US Launch

Wolfie Zhao  – Coindesk

Huobi’s U.S.-based operation has registered with the U.S. government as a money services business ahead of a planned rollout of crypto-to-crypto trading this spring.

FAO: Chinese crypto-exchanges spread everywhere in the world after their clampdown back home.

Cryptocurrencies

Reddit Reportedly Removes Bitcoin As Payment, Cites ‘Coinbase Change’

Molly Jane Zuckerman – Cointelegraph

Reddit has reportedly removed the option for users to pay for their premium membership program, Reddit Gold, in Bitcoin citing an “upcoming Coinbase change”, according to a Reddit post. Reddit user BitcoinXio posted a video of the steps to give another user Reddit Gold, showing that the only payment options are PayPal and credit card.

Vendors

‘It’s Not Hype’: Why Lance Uggla: The CEO Of $20 Billion Data Company Thinks Blockchain ‘Has Potential To Be Transformative’

Oscar Williams-Grut – Business Insider (subscription)

The CEO of $20 billion data giant IHS Markit thinks blockchain technology has the potential to be transformational in finance.

Lance Uggla: “Technology moves in leaps and bounds. Storage and compute power has been a step change from when I set up Markit”.

Latest Developments & Agreements

IBM: We Already Use Stellar Lumens Live, Much More In Q2 2018

Finder

“Stellar is part of the IBM Blockchain platform strategy,” says Jesse Lund, IBM Blockchain vice-president.

In his own words, Jesse Lund is the leader of IBM’s blockchain market development and digital currency strategy. If anyone knows the inner workings of IBM’s blockchain strategy as it relates to cryptocurrency, it’s him.

Regulation

SEC Worries That Crypto Markets Could Be Full Of Manipulation

Annie Massa – Bloomberg (subscription)

Stock Market Principles Needed In Crypto World: SEC Official, Brett Redfearn

John McCrank – Reuters

The cryptocurrency trading marketplace could be improved by applying some of the principles from the stock market such as best execution and surveillance, Brett Redfearn a senior U.S. SEC official said

While the cryptocurrency market is still evolving, it resembles a sort of “Wild West,” said Brett Redfearn, who heads SEC’s trading and markets division, and the regulator has a number of concerns it would like to see addressed.

FAO: Maybe worth reading again these two last week editions, here (Fans’ section) and here (Regulation section). Oh, and since the SEC considers that stock market principles are needed in the “cryptoverse”, here’s a natural implication…read below.

Crypto-Focused Hedge Funds On SEC’s Radar

Dave Michaels – The Wall Street Journal (subscription)

SEC is preparing to examine as many as 100 hedge funds focused on cryptocurrencies, according to a person familiar with the matter. The initiative is separate from the dozens of enforcement investigations already under way, which largely target ICOs, or digital tokens that startups offer in exchange for investments. The SEC has pushed aggressively to police the unregulated world of ICOs, saying that many token deals flout investor-protection laws.

FAO: The total number of crypto funds reached 226 in February 2018, according to Autonomous NEXT.

What the World’s Governments Are Saying About Cryptocurrencies

Bloomberg (subscription)

Getting your head around cryptocurrencies was hard enough before governments got involved. But now that policy makers around the world are drawing up fresh regulations on everything from exchanges to ICOs, keeping track of what’s legal has become just as daunting as figuring out which newfangled token might turn into the next Bitcoin.

FAO: Read this, it is very useful. Although, if you need professional advice in Financial Markets, FinTech, Blockchain and Crypto Assets you can send me your queries via Earn.com – here’s my profile.

Analysis

The Reasons U.S. Blockchain Adoption Has Stalled

Penny Crosman – American Banker

Enthusiasm for blockchain technology in the financial services industry seems to be ebbing.

JPMorgan, which developed its own open-source distributed ledger, Quorum, was rumored on to be spinning off the Quorum unit into a separate company. Unnamed sources told the Financial Times that “some rival banks may have been reluctant to use Quorum because it was so closely associated with JPMorgan, leading the U.S. bank to conclude that its chances of becoming the industry standard were greater as a standalone entity.”

Sweden Is Becoming A Haven For Cryptojackers

Hanna Hoikkala – Bloomberg (subscription)

Hooked-in Sweden is becoming a haven for cryptojackers siphoning off capacity and energy to mine for digital currencies.

Utilities Step Into Blockchain To Stay Ahead Of Europe’s Energy Shakeup

Vera Eckert – Reuters

European utilities plan to begin some direct trades with one another using blockchain technology within months, hoping to stay ahead in a world in which individuals may eventually sell green energy to one another.

Other news

China Leads Blockchain Patent Applications

Laura Noonan – Financial Times (subscription)

China was the most active filer of blockchain patent applications last year as the country’s technology and financial services groups rushed to claim exclusivity on the “mutual distributed ledger” that could revolutionise finance and other supply chains. Data collated by Thomson Reuters from the World Intellectual Property Organisation (Wipo) database showed that in 2017, more than half of the 406 blockchain related patent applications were from China.

Establishing Ethical Guidelines For Marketing Cryptocurrencies

Vijay Chattha – TechCrunch

So far, the U.S. is taking a cautionary approach to regulating cryptocurrencies and ICOs, issuing more statements than clear-cut regulations.

Opinion

Ripple Co-founder, Jed McCaleb.: Cryptocurrency Needs A Decentralized Network To Be Successful

Kellie Ell – CNBC

Cryptocurrency and the underlying blockchain technology need a decentralized network in order to be successful long term, said Ripple co-founder Jed McCaleb. Use of a centralized financial payment network will result in “a system that is no better than SWIFT or PayPal,” McCaleb said.

Enough About Cryptocurrency. Let’s Talk About Virtual Cats

Eric Newcomer – Bloomberg (subscription)

We spend way too much time talking about digital currencies and not nearly enough time on digital cats.

 

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

DNT: Decebal Nicolaie Todarita, Editor Blockchain Daily News