Daily News Digest Featured News

October 19 2018, Daily News Digest

ROI ICOs
Source: InWara

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United States

Goldman Sachs and Novogratz Invest in BitGo’s $ 1 Trillion Crypto Wallet (CoinJournal), Rated: AAA

Goldman Sachs and Novogratz’s Galaxy Digital Ventures put forward around $15 million to BitGo’s Series B funding. According to the company, it raised $58.5 million in total with funding coming from Valor Equity Partners, Craft Ventures, DRW, and Redpoint Ventures.

The funding will support the development of BitGo’s $1 trillion crypto wallet.

‘WHAT A SHOCKER’ – CME BITCOIN FUTURES VOLUME SOARS 41% (Bitcoinist), Rated: A

The bear market is still a reality, but investors are steadily making moves behind the curtain. A new report from the CME  (Chicago Mercantile Exchange) shows that Bitcoin futures trading at the exchange have continuously risen throughout Q3, and the average daily volume (ADV) of BTC futures increased by 41 percent over Q2 to Q3.

Ripple’s Digital Currency XRP Forms Lower High! Set to Return to Downside? (Blokt), Rated: A

With the last high on XRP’s decline being at $0.49, XRP has failed to surpass it and maintains in a trend of lower lows and lower highs. Unless there is an upward movement sparked from here, the next move downward may very likely drop below the low close of $0.37. The market leader Bitcoin is likely to have a large impact on the direction of the next move as it represents 54% of the total market cap.

XRP price
Source: Tradingview.com

Ripple’s Head of Information Security Leaves for Token Startup (CoinDesk), Rated: A

Ripple’s head of information security is leaving the company.

Revealed exclusively to CoinDesk, Sujay Jaladi is departing the San Francisco-based firm, which is best known for its role in developing XRP, the third-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization. Jaladi is joining Harbor, a startup that provides a compliance platform for issuers of private securities housed as tokens on the blockchain.

Ripple Expands Partnership With Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (Ethereum World News), Rated: B

However, a few hours ago, Miller Abel, the Foundation’s deputy director, tweeted something that may lead to conclude that Ripple’s influence goes beyond any simple project, and now the company intends to expand its authority to serve as a core platform for software development in conjunction with Coil, a startup focused on web monetization.

0x (ZRX) Falls 15% After Initial Coinbase Surge, Not All Investors are Convinced (NewsBTC), Rated: A

Still, in a testament to the colloquially-dubbed “Coinbase Effect,” the popular altcoin saw a monumental surge to the upside, rising from $0.65 to a high of $1.04 on the back of the Coinbase news alone. However, since hitting multi-month highs at $1.04, the asset has since seen a pullback to $0.88 and is down 10% in the past 24 hours.

0x
Source: TradingView

Roubini’s crypto critique warns of China’s ‘looming threat’ (Asia Times), Rated: A

New York University economics professor Nouriel Roubini testified before the US Senate Banking Committee on October 11 at a hearing entitled “Exploring the Cryptocurrency and Blockchain Ecosystem” and spoke in detail about what he called “the crypto bubble of 2017 and the crypto apocalypse and bust of 2018.”

He asserts that “99.9% of all crypto-currencies instead have no backing whatsoever of any sort and have no intrinsic value of any sort; and even the so-called ‘stable coins’ have only partial backing at best with true US dollars reserves or, like Tether, most likely no backing at all as there has never been a proper audit of their accounts.”

What is Rootstock (RSK)? Bitcoin Sidechain to Enable Smart Contracts (Blockonomi), Rated: A

Rootstock (RSK) is a two-way pegged sidechain to Bitcoin designed to enable full Turing-complete smart contract functionality for the Bitcoin ecosystem. The RSK network is secured via merge-mining with a Federation checkpointing mechanism, effectively allowing it to retain the security of Bitcoin’s double-spend proofs and settlement finality.

Genesis Global Trading Inaugural Digital Asset Lending Snapshot (PR Newswire), Rated: A

Genesis Global Trading, an industry pioneer and leader in over-the-counter digital currency trading, today released its inaugural Digital Asset Lending Snapshot. The first-of-its-kind report analyzes institutional digital asset loan activity facilitated by Genesis since launching its new lending business earlier this year. In total, Genesis originated $553 million in digital currency loans since launching in March.

Genesis maintains $130 million in active loans outstanding, a figure that has steadily grown over the year despite the reduction in digital asset prices.

To read the entire Digital Asset Lending Snapshot, click here.

Bitcoin And Blockchain Jobs In The U.S. Are Surging (Forbes), Rated: AAA

The U.S. jobs boom, which saw a record 7.14 million unfilled positions in August — coupled with last year’s bitcoin mania — has resulted in a 300% increase in the number of jobs related to bitcoin, cryptocurrencies, and blockchain over the last 12 months, according to new research from jobs site Glassdoor.

As of August 2018, there were 1,775 bitcoin and blockchain-related job openings in the U.S. — up from 693 at the beginning of the year and 446 at this time last year.

Bitcoin job growth
Source: Glassdoor

Read the full report here.

Crypto M&A is on a tear as deal-makers see opportunity in bitcoin’s price slump (CNBC), Rated: AAA

Deal-makers seem to be anything but deterred by bitcoin’s price pain this year — they’re actually using it as an excuse to go bargain hunting.

Total blockchain and crypto-related deals have surged more than 200 percent at an annualized rate this year, according to data from PitchBook that was compiled by JMP Securities. Bitcoin, meanwhile, has lost 54 percent of its value.

As of Monday, 115 deals involving cryptocurrency or blockchain had been announced, on pace to hit 145 by the end of 2018. The count is up significantly from the 47 total deals completed last year, when bitcoin’s price was surging to almost $20,000.

Crypto merger and acquisition
Source: JMP Securities

Decentralizing The Dollar: Crypto-Collateralized Stablecoins (CryptoBriefing), Rated: A

Decentralizing The Dollar is a three-part series on stablecoins, each addressing one of the three key methods postulated for tying a stable cryptocurrency to a fiat currency. In Part One, we examined how TrueUSD might rectify the flaws in Tether; in Part Two we looked at Kowala, and algorithmic stablecoins; and in Part Three we’ll look at crypto-collateralized coins.

SEC Launches Fintech Hub To Engage With Cryptocurrency Startups And More (Forbes), Rated: A

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is launching a portal for engaging with companies using blockchain, artificial intelligence and more.

Available today, the new fintech hub, or FinHub for short, is designed to bring the SEC’s existing services to a single access point and provide an easier way for companies to communicate with the public.

US Marshals Put Up More Than 600 Confiscated Bitcoins at Auction (CoinTelegraph), Rated: A

A federal law enforcement agency within the U.S. Department of Justice has recently announced a bid auction for approximately 660 confiscated Bitcoins(BTC), the U.S. Marshals Service (USMS) reports Thursday, Oct.18.

The bid, held by the USMS, will take place on Nov. 5, but the participants have to register themselves no later than Oct. 31 and deposit $200,000 in order to take part.

Ticketmaster snaps up blockchain company (Biz Journals), Rated: A

Acquisition marks the latest blockchain transaction in the Bay Area, as the sector comes under high demand.

BitConnect faces fresh class action lawsuit (CoinGeek), Rated: A

A newly consolidated lawsuit has been filed against BitConnect, several months after several cases have been brought forth against the company’s alleged fraudulent pyramid scheme at the beginning of 2018. BitConnect has been considered as the crypto sector’s biggest scam to date, following its false promotions and offering unregulated securities in connection with its initial coin offering (ICO).

North Dakota Securities Commissioner Issues Cease & Desist to Multiple Initial Coin Offerings (Crowdfund Insider), Rated: B

Last week, the North Dakota Securities Commissioner Karen Tyler issued three separate Cease & Desist (C&D) orders against three initial coin offerings (ICOs).

The most recent ICO investigations include the following companies: Crystal Token, Advertiza Holdings (Pty) Ltd., and Life Cross Coin a/k/a LifecrosscoinGmbH.

Bitcoin Hedge Fund and CEO Slapped With $ 2.5 Million Penalty for Ponzi Scheme (CoinTelegraph), Rated: B

A New York federal court has ordered cryptocurrency hedge fund Gelfman Blueprint, Inc. (GBI) and its CEO Nicholas Gelfman to pay over $2.5 million for operating a fraudulent Ponzi scheme, according to an official announcement published Oct. 18.

International

ICO Landscape Report Q3, 2018 by InWara  (Hackernoon), Rated: AAA

Financial services remain the most popular sector in ICOs with novelty offerings gathering momentum in Q3. Blockchain as a technology has seen traction with Technology and Blockchain platforms gaining traction in Q3, 2018.

Private funding has seen significant growth of ~90% in 2018 with total rounds of funding doubling as compared to 2017 clearly indicating VC and Hedge funds interest in ICOs.

private funding ICOs
Source: InWara

USA dominated marketplace with the VCs preferring to operate out of USA. Asia leads Europe in Private funding with both China and Singapore seeing ~150 rounds of funding.

USA ICOs
Source: InWara

Mergers and Acquisitions in Blockchain

ICO mergers and acquisitions
Source: InWara

The delay, as you can very well see caused a massive crash in the Crypto space with ICOs tanking more than 50%.

ROI ICOs
Source: InWara

See the full report here.

$ 50,000 to $ 2,800: How Bitcoin Price Targets of Experts Dropped 95% (NewsBTC), Rated: AAA

Respected entrepreneurs and investors including BitMEX CEO Arthur Hayes, Morgan Creek Digital partner Anthony Pompliano, and Wall Street analyst Tom Lee predicted the price of BTC to exceed $50,000 by the end of 2018.

“I’ve stuck to my $50,000 Bitcoin price target for end of year 2018. Still have high confidence on the $50,000 number. The timeframe is the big unknown. The next 5 months will be fun to watch,” Pompliano said at the time.

While Hayes stated $20,000 to $50,000 is possible for BTC, he recognized that a fall to $5,000 is also a possibility.

Since then, Hayes, Pomp, Lee, and Charlie Shrem, have retraced their predictions, due to the length of the correction of the cryptocurrency market.

In late August, Pomp stated BTC could decline to $3,000 before it hits $10,000.

crypto markets
Source: @MustStopMurad on Twitter

Meltem Demirors Called Out For Allegedly Fuelling Crypto Market Bubble (CryptoGlobe), Rated: A

Coin Shares Chief Strategy Officer Meltem Demirors has been called out for allegedly contributing to bubble conditions in crypto markets by denying that there was a price bubble, advocating for more investments and ignoring advice to the contrary. In a scathing post published on Medium, Demirors was accused of being a consistent purveyor of “ignorant hype” prior to the end of the crypto market bull run of 2017 as well as presently.

How the Electric Vehicle Industry Provides a Roadmap for Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Startups (Forbes), Rated: AAA

Startups focused on cryptocurrency and blockchain – which are different kinds of digital cash and the platform that allows this cash to be exchanged — are enormously hot right now. Investments in these companies nearly doubled in 2017 compared to the previous year and have only been increasing in 2018. In late May, Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, announced it was launching a $1 billion venture fund for blockchain and cryptocurrency startups.

Of course, today it is clear they would buy electric vehicles. A recent report from the research firm Frost and Sullivan determined that global sales of EVs are expected to climb from 1.2 million in 2017 to 1.6 million in 2018, and then jump to 2 million in 2019. Porsche wants to make half of its cars electric by 2025. BMW and other leading automobile makers have announced aggressive plans for introducing electric vehicles. Today, no one bats an eye when they see an EV parked at a charging station at the local supermarket.

How blockchain will allow for fewer counterfeit goods and faster product recalls (Vox), Rated: AAA

De Beers is putting diamonds on the blockchain. Walmart is putting lettuce on the blockchain. Startups are putting skin care and liquorand fancy watches on the blockchain. By now, it may be safe to say that if someone, somewhere is selling something, someone else is thinking about how a distributed ledger with a buzzy name might help them do it better.

According to a recent study by IHL Group, a research and advisory firm, stockouts (industry parlance for the aforementioned out-of-stock scenario) cost retailers nearly $1 trillion per year globally.

Walmart, as one of the most powerful retailers in the country, may be having the most success in this arena. The company can wield its influence and mandate that its suppliers get on the same platform, as it did last month when it launched its Food Traceability Initiative in partnership with IBM. When the program goes into effect in 2019, Walmart will be able to trace the origin of any leafy greens it carries back to their source in 2.2 seconds — a process that used to take six days, 18 hours, and 26 minutes, according to Jason Kelley, IBM’s general manager for blockchain services.

Cryptocurrency Loans Company Genesis Processes $ 550 Million in First Six Months (CoinTelegraph), Rated: A

Institutional cryptocurrency over-the-counter (OTC) broker Genesis Global Trading revealed its loans spin-off processed over half a billion dollars in its first six months in a new report Thursday, Oct. 18.

Genesis, which began its digital asset lending activities in March, revealed its current order book consists of $130 million in outstanding loans, a figure which has “steadily grown” since inception, it says.

Total cash flow reached $553 million for all supported assets.

TRON pledges to donate an initial amount of $ 3 million to Binance BCF (BCFocus), Rated: A

Binance-initiated Blockchain Charity Foundation (BCF) announced a partnership with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) last month. During that time, TRON founder Justin Sun extended his support to BCF and UNDP. Now, TRON has pledged to donate an initial amount of $3 million to BCF.

Institutional crypto provider Quantreq teams with Cryptonomic for insured hot wallet (Cryptoninjas), Rated: B

Quantreq Capital Markets, an international provider of cryptocurrency capital market services and the first crypto fund-only administrator with over $1 billion in assets under administration, announced today its partnership with blockchain technology developer and engineering firm Cryptonomic to further assist in the development, deployment, and support of its prime services group.

European Union

World’s Largest Crypto Exchange Binance Looks to Add New Stablecoins (CoinDesk), Rated: AAA

Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchangeby adjusted volume, is actively looking to list more stablecoins in addition to the three it already supports, which include the recently beleaguered tether (USDT).

The rise and fall of Ethereum (Financial Times), Rated: AAA

Ether’s sell-off has been even more severe than its larger peer. After rising fivefold in the final few months of last year, it has lost around 70 per cent in the year to date to trade around $200 today. Bitcoin has fallen about 50 per cent to reach $6,500.

ICOs

Analysis of more than 220 ICOs by trading platform BitMEX found they had already sold almost as much Ether as they raised in US dollar terms — around $5bn worth — while many are still sitting on “unrealised gains”.

Many highlight technological limitations such as a lack of scalability or user friendliness. Ethereum can process around 15 transactions per second — far lower than the 45,000 processed by Visa.

Ethereum: Another Wild Ride, But Don’t Stand In Its Way! (Seeking Alpha), Rated: AAA

Insomuch as ETH is tradeable, and has a chartable pattern that is reasonably predictable, coupled with a large dose of common sense to “right-size” exposure to this highly volatile sector, then it’s an area that can be focused on for capital returns. Again, I’m not here to opine on the differences between blockchains, how Ethereum differs from Bitcoin, or any aspect of this crypto vs. another, other than to focus on the price action and how it relates to probable outcomes.

The chart and analysis for ETH are relative to the US Dollar. ETH saw its all-time low in July 2015 at $.15. From that low, in 3 short years, it’s seen a spectacular increase in value, peaking at $1,410.78 in January of this year. Since then, it’s been in a deep consolidation this entire year, having hit a low of $166.35 in early September – last month.

3-day ETH bar chart
Source: Seeking Alpha

The Elliott Wave count for ETH is playing out to perfection. The peak seen in January 2018 hit the 138.2% Fibonacci extension based on the length of the initial (Wave (1)) up off the lows into the June 2016 high and the projected up off the related (Wave (2)) low seen in December 2016. From that (Wave (2) ) we expect to see the related Wave (3) subdivide into a full 5 wave sub structure and also reach at least the 161.8% Fibonacci extension.

WHY ARE ALTCOINS FALLING FASTER THAN BITCOIN? (Irish Tech News), Rated: A

The rise and fall of cryptocurrencies is an interesting topic because no one is sure where these digital assets are headed. Investors and promoters feel that the biggest bull run is yet to come (even when the signs lean far from that notion). Detractors, on the other hand, are still convinced that cryptocurrencies are nothing short of the Dotcom craze and just another bubble.

Most crypto projects, except Bitcoin, have shed almost half of their profits and are back where they were before 2017’s massive bull run. Bitcoin may have lost 70% of its value since its ATH of $20,000, but unlike the rest, its price is still way high than it was at the beginning of 2017.

Cryptocurrency Exchanges Lost $ 882 Million to Hackers (Bank Info Security), Rated: AAA

An analysis of attacks against cryptocurrency exchanges over nearly two years shows hackers have inflicted $882 million in damages, according to Moscow-based cybersecurity firm Group-IB.

cryptoattacks
Source: Group-IB

Irresistible Targets

Still, in the first five months of this year, 537 ICOs collectively raised $13.7 billion, according to the Crypto Valley Association and PwC’s Strategy & Consulting unit. That amount already represents more than ICOs had raised collectively since 2013, according to a Crypto Valley Association study released in June.

“In 2019, cryptocurrency exchanges will be a new target for the most aggressive hacker groups usually attacking banks. The number of targeted attacks on crypto exchanges will rise.”

Bitcoin price
Source: CoinMarketCap

Malta: Two-Thirds Fail Crypto Agent Exam Despite Authorities’ Attempts to Ease Process (CoinTelegraph), Rated: A

Almost two-thirds of those taking Malta’s cryptocurrency agent certification have failed, despite examiners’ last-minute changes to ease the marking scheme, English-language daily Times of Malta reports Oct. 18.

United Kingdom

Wallet Provider Blockchain Releases New Framework For Crypto Airdrop Program (Bitcoin Exchange Guide), Rated: AAA

Blockchain.info is a crypto wallet and data provider service, which has made a big name for themselves in the industry. Recently, they released a whitepaper that lays out the reasons that an airdrop could benefit both the crypto ecosystem and the community as a whole.

Specifically, without any wavering, they said,

“Airdrops are good for crypto users. The launch of the whitepaper is, in part, a way for the company to announce their new program that will support approved projects that decide to offer airdrops as a force for good.”

UK Foreign Exchange Firm Joins Ripple Blockchain RippleNet (CCN), Rated: A

Moneynetint, a UK-based provider of foreign exchange services for the corporate sector has integrated and deployed decentralized payments using Ripple blockchain network RippleNet.

CryptoCompare Report Reveals Only 16% of Cryptocurrencies Are Decentralized (Bitcoin Exchange Guide), Rated: A

According to a new report released by CryptoCompare, the majority of the virtual currencies and blockchain projects are still very centralized. The company released the annual Cryptoasset Taxonomy Report and they see that just 16 percent of cryptocurrencies are fully decentralized.

Top 6 Tips To Secure Your Bitcoin Wallet (ZyCrypto), Rated: B

  1. Encrypt your Bitcoin wallet
  2. Use two-factor authentication
  3. Update Bitcoin client and system
  4. Backup your active wallet
  5. Use multisig addresses
  6. Maintain anonymity
China

Crypto Wallet Cobo Raises $ 13 Million Series A Led By DHVC (Forbes), Rated: AAA

Beijing-based startup Cobo, the developer of a software wallet for cryptocurrencies with baked-in Proof of Stake (PoS) mining rewards, has raised $13 million in Series A funding. DHVC, which is an investor in numerous blockchain projects including Dirt Protocol and Messari, led the round with Wu Capital. Cobo plans to use the funds to expand the app globally and launch a new hardware wallet, Cobo Vault.

This Completely Offline Crypto Wallet Will Self-Destruct If Physically Hacked (Forbes), Rated: A

Setting up the device was a tedious process includes first downloading Cobo’s companion app, then powering on the Cobo Vault, input a randomly generated 24-word sequence in order, set a password that must be at least 10 characters long with special characters, and then scan a dynamic (aka constantly refreshing) QR code on the app with the Vault’s camera. That last bit — QR code — is the only way to connect the information inside the Vault to the app.

This, in theory, means if someone were to steal your smartphone and somehow have your Cobo app password, they still can’t access the crypto inside without physically holding the Cobo Vault. Or conversely, if someone breaks into your home and steals the Cobo Vault, they’d still need to gain access to your smartphone to complete the QR code connection process.

Qtum Partners With Amazon Web Services In China (Invest in Blockchain), Rated: B

Qtum, the public blockchain project designed to help enterprise businesses implement and utilize blockchain technology, has announced a partnership with Amazon Web Services (AWS) in China. This partnership, which was revealed to CoinDesk,  will make Qtum’s smart contract and dapp development platform available on Amazon Web Services.

Asia

Switcheo Decentralized Coin Exchange to Release Advanced Crypto Wallet Manager (Bitcoin Exchange Guide), Rated: AAA

The Switcheo crypto coin exchange recently made advancements to its wallet to enhance its digital asset management services for the platform’s clients. This multi-chain blockchain built network expects that the new wallet milestone will contribute to its fundamental value. The new innovation is customized to make each process of transacting the crypto coins easy & enjoyable. According to the project’s developing team, they focused on the whole Switcheo trading ecosystem hence improving both the deposit, executional & withdrawal features!

Japanese Taxation Committee Seeks to Simplify Cryptocurrency Tax Reporting (CoinTelegraph), Rated: A

Japanese taxation policy committee held a debate with the aim of simplifying cryptocurrency tax Wednesday, Oct. 17, Japanese daily news outlet Sankei Newsreports.

Highlighting the complex tax filing regime currently in place for Japanese citizens, officials from the committee — which advises the government on policy — said there was a need to adjust the procedure to stimulate a more thorough reporting of cryptocurrency gains.

Latin America

Only 39 Percent of Chileans Are Aware of Cryptocurrencies, Study Shows (CoinTelegraph), Rated: AAA

The results of the first Financial Knowledge Index conducted in Chile reveal that only 39 percent of citizens have ever heard of cryptocurrencies, according to a paper published Tuesday, Oct. 16, by the Chilean Central Securities Depository (DCV).

According to the paper, Chilean men know more about cryptocurrencies, particularly Bitcoin (BTC), with 51 percent saying they’ve heard of digital coins before. The situation with women is slightly lower, with only 27 percent aware of its existence.

Eurasia

Russian Central Bank Reports Cryptocurrency “Fever” Is Waning (Ethereum World News), Rated: AAA

On October 18, the head of the Russian Central Bank joined this discourse by referring to the drive for cryptocurrency investing as a “crypto fever,” and one that seems to be gradually tapering off with the ongoing bearish cycle of 2018. Elvira Nabiullina said in a report published by Russian news agency RIA Novosti, while speaking at a finance innovation forum held in Sochi, that she finds that the fervor surrounding cryptocurrency and blockchain to be waning,

“Fortunately, the crypto fever has begun to diminish. Technologies such as blockchain have inspired great enthusiasm, but now, as far as we can see, the approach to them is more sober.”

Authors:

George Popescu
George Popescu
Allen Taylor
Allen Taylor

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Allen Taylor

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