Daily News Digest Featured News

Thursday July 19, 2018, Daily News Digest

Source: ADVFN and Forbes

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United States

International

European Union

China

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News Summary

United States

Coinbase didn’t get (or need) SEC approval for acquisitions after all, company says (TechCrunch), Rated: AAA

While a Coinbase spokesperson had initially indicated that the company had received approval from both FINRA and the SEC, it is now saying that the SEC did not offer approval, but only because Coinbase did not need their approval for a change of control application in the first place.

CheapAir Says Goodbye to Coinbase, Hello to BTCPayServer (Bitcoin Magazine), Rated: A

Online travel agency CheapAir.com has announced it is no longer working with Coinbase to process its customers’ bitcoin payments. In Coinbase’s stead, the company has turned to BTCPayServer, an open-source bitcoin payment processor.

Basic Attention Token Price Analysis: Coinbase announcement drives price (Brave New Coin), Rated: A

Since the announcement on Friday afternoon (GMT), the price of BAT has risen from $0.2765 (Index) to 0.35306 (Index) a 27.67% jump. The positive movement looks to continue buffered by a recent Bloomberg report that Coinbase received FINRA approval to purchase three companies that, once integrated, should theoretically enable Coinbase to trade securities.

Basic Attention Token
Source: Brave New Coin

Bitcoin Prices Up 16% In Seven Days At $ 7400, Still Undervalued (Forbes), Rated: AAA

A strong rally over the last seven days sent Bitcoin prices firmly above the $7,000. Ethereum and XRP registered double-digit gains, too.

cryptocurrencies
Source: Forbes

Most gains came in the last forty-eight hours, following positive comments by Goldman Sachs’ incoming CEO about the digital currency.

Then came a technical buy signal. Bitcoin prices crossed the 50-day moving average with a rising trade volume. Other cryptocurrencies followed suit, with 96 out of the top 100 cryptocurrencies registering big advances.

Bitcoin FOMO Is Back On Track (Forbes), Rated: A

As I said yesterday, the suppressive bear market conditions are fading and with yesterday’s move (especially if the momentum continues at this pace), it will be only a matter of time before the bear market is forgotten altogether. Remember, the FOMO (fear of missing out) element for Bitcoin is very strong and it drives the trading action aggressively.

Bitcoin Price Risks Pullback Before Testing $ 8K Again (CoinDesk), Rated: AAA

Bitcoin (BTC) could be in for a minor price pullback, having clocked a 39-day high above $7,500 earlier today.

The leading cryptocurrency rose to $7,562 on Bitfinex at 03:00 UTC and was last seen changing hands at $7,400 – up nearly 10 percent on a 24-hour basis. Further, the price rally has pushed the week-on-week gains higher to 15 percent.

So, a rally to $7,900 (inverse head-and-shoulders breakout target) could be on the cards. However, the move may not happen in the next 24 hours as the retreat from $7,562 to $7,370 indicates the bulls are keen on booking profits, having pushed BTC higher by more than $1,300 in the last 72 hours.

Bitcoin
Source: CoinDesk

Can We Predict The Bitcoin Trend By Watching Litecoin And Ethereum? (Forbes), Rated: AAA

When bitcoin and cryptocurrency crossed over from the underworld subculture it was developing in at the end of 2016 and start of 2017, the price took off.

From this perspective, altcoins are the big story. While bitcoin was the giant brand, the runners-up in brand awareness, ethereum and litecoin, rose further for their Hodlers.  The scale of the chart is normalised to BTC to USD:

Source: ADVFN and Forbes

So let’s look at what happened to BTC, ETH and LTC since bitcoin hit its peak.

Bitcoin Litecoin Ethereum prices January to July 2018
Source: ADVFN and Forbes

Fed Chair: Cryptocurrencies Are ‘Great’ For Money Laundering (CoinDesk), Rated: A

Speaking to the House Financial Services Committee, the head of U.S. central bank said Wednesday that cryptocurrencies have no “intrinsic value” and presented severe risks to investors, as CNBC reported. Part of his concerns seemingly stem from the apparent crypto bubble – he said that “relatively unsophisticated investors see the asset go up in price, and they think ‘this is great, I’ll buy this.’ In fact, there is no promise of that.”

“They are very challenging because cryptocurrencies are great if you’re trying to hide or launder money, we have to be very conscious of that,” he said.

Grayscale Releases First-Ever Digital Asset Investment Report (PR Newswire), Rated: A

Grayscale Investments, LLC today released the inaugural Grayscale Digital Asset Investment Report, a first-of-its-kind report that highlights industry trends and analyzes investment activity across the Grayscale family of products during the first half of 2018. Grayscale raised $248.4 million into its single-asset and diversified investment products, marking the strongest fundraising over any six-month period since Grayscale launched its first product, Bitcoin Investment Trust™ (OTCQX: GBTC), in September 2013.

Cryptocurrency market hits the roof as IBM announces its experimenting with stablecoin (FXStreet), Rated: A

IBM has entered a partnership deal with a fintech startup Stronghold to get involved with cryptocurrency, pegged to the US Dollar. The tech giant is interested in a so-called stablecoin, tied to an existing government-backed currency to mitigate volatility.

Mastercard Patents a Method to Manage Cryptocurrency “Fractional Reserves” (Bitcoin.com), Rated: A

Credit card giant Mastercard (NYSE: MA) was granted a patent for a “Method and system for linkage of blockchain-based assets to fiat currency accounts.” A disclosure from the US Patent and Trademark Office explains it relates specifically to the use of centralized accounts to manage fractional reserves of fiat and blockchain currency updated via transaction messages corresponding to fiat- and blockchain-based payment transactions.

Bitcoin Diamond (BCD) Makes 67% Gains Amongst Altcoin Spike (Crypto Coin Spy), Rated: A

Bitcoin Diamond has been making moves lately in the altcoin sphere with a recent spike that saw it make 67 percent gains at the highest point.

Bitcoin Diamond
Source: Crypto Coin Spy

Most ICOs Retain Centralized Control, Break Whitepaper Promises, Academic Report Shows (CoinTelegraph), Rated: A

Initial Coin Offerings (ICO) “failed” to provide protection against insider trading or stick to their whitepaper promises, a new report from the University of Pennsylvania Law School released July 17 reveals.

ICOs
Source: “COIN-OPERATED CAPITALISM” by the University of Pennsylvania

Read the full paper here.

US Congressman Calls for Ban on Crypto Buying and Mining (CoinDesk), Rated: B

A U.S. lawmaker has called for a blanket ban on cryptocurrency buying.

Congressman Brad Sherman is no stranger to controversial statements on the subject – back in March he called cryptocurrencies “a crock” – and during the Wednesday hearing of a subcommittee for the House of Representatives Financial Services Committee, he went so far as to advocate keeping Americans out of the market entirely.

Bank of America Reveals Blockchain Patent for External Data Validation (CoinTelegraph), Rated: B

Bank of America (BoA) has filed a patent for a blockchain-based system allowing the external validation of data, according to a United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) patent filing released July 17.

A Beginner’s Guide To Bitcoin & Blockchain Technology (Bitcoinfy), Rated: B

Bitcoin infographic
Source: bitcoinfy.net

 

International

MyEtherWallet (MEW) Adds Ethereum (ETH) USD & EUR Buying Options (Bitcoin Exchange Guide), Rated: AAA

Popular crypto wallet MyEtherWallet announced that it is now possible to purchase Ethereum (ETH) in USD or EUR.

Ethereum may drive blockchain to be as broadly adopted as the Internet, fintech CEO says (CNBC), Rated: AAA

Blockchain and cryptocurrency may one day be “as broadly adopted as the internet is today,” Jeremy Allaire, CEO and co-founder of fintech company Circle, told CNBC.

“It’s a really fertile space in terms of the fundamental, technical and infrastructure,” Allaire said on “Fast Money” Wednesday.

One major driver for this possible occurrence: ethereum. “Right now ethereum has an enormous amount of developer activity,” Allaire said.

Ethereum Client Parity Drops Wallet Tech in Major Upgrade (CoinDesk), Rated: A

Parity, the ethereum software client, has announced some major changes, including the stripping away of its graphical user interface (GUI).

In effect, the changes mean that Parity’s “wallet” – that is, its repository of private keys – does not now exist for general, non-technical consumers. All “installers and operating-system specific packages” have also been removed.

WHY YOU CAN’T TRUST MORE CRYPTOCURRENCY WHITE PAPERS (Wired), Rated: AAA

IN 2008, A mysterious figure named Satoshi Nakamotouploaded a PDF to the internet outlining a digital framework for spending money without centralized banks. He sent the paper to a cryptography mailing list, and thus bitcoin—and the blockchain—were born. Ten years later, an entire cryptocurrency industry valued at $300 billion has bloomed from those nine pages.

“It set the stage for people afterward—that it’s OK to write stuff on your own, put it on your website, and let the world see it,” says computer scientist Emin Gün Sirer of Cornell University. Some 1,600 cryptocurrencies exist today, each of their releases accompanied by a paper explaining the need for its existence. Their inventors write these so-called white papers to communicate how their cryptocurrency is better than the last—and to attract investors.

But without formal vetting, it’s rare for a white paper to achieve Nakamoto-level quality. Some papers are outright scams, veiled in pseudo-technical language that might not even be logically sound.

In a widely publicized example this year, the platform Tron, currently the eleventh largest cryptocurrency, released a white paper that seemed to plagiarize two other ones. In some cases, Tron duplicated phrases word for word, without any citations. In response to the accusations, Tron took down the white paper, and its founder wrote on Twitter that the seemingly copied text was due to a translation error. (Tron’s original paper was written in Chinese.)

Fiat Currencies Are About to Become Essential to Public Blockchains (CoinDesk), Rated: AAA

In particular, cryptocurrency boosters talk a lot about how central bankers have debased currencies over the years and how the printing of money by central banks has done much to impoverish people around the world. In an imagined future world of cryptocurrencies, fallible and politically influenced central bankers are replaced with algorithms and currencies get more valuable over time, not less so.

There are a lot of problems with this narrative, starting with the fact that a little bit of inflation is actually useful and the painful era of stagflation is more than 30 years in the rear-view mirror. Independent central banks are among the most trusted institutions in our economies, and also the most transparent. And while the market capitalization of cryptocurrencies seems large by absolute standards, it’s tiny compared to the rest of the global economy. Daily trading of cryptocurrencies is between $5 billion and $6 billion right now. Daily trading on the foreign exchange markets is closer to $5 trillion.

81% OF ALL ICOS ARE SCAMS – AND OTHER ICO FACTS THAT YOU SHOULD KNOW (Irish Tech News), Rated: AAA

It’s been calculated that for the past 1.5 years, ICOs have delivered 3.5x more capital to blockchain startups than the traditional venture capital (VC) rounds.

ICOs are big, and the bubble is growing. According to the stats by Coinschedule, within the first half of 2018, blockchain startups have already raised over $12B through ICOs. That’s almost 4x more than in the entire year of 2017.

Total number of ICOs
Source: Coinschedule

1: Less than 25% of all ICO projects reach their goals

While back in June 2017, 90% of ICO projectsmanaged to reach their hard cap and sell out all their coins.

3: Block.one is the most-funded ICO project to date

Block.one ICO
Source: Business Insider

Binance Successfully Compensates Users After Syscoin Incident (EconomTimes), Rated: B

Binance, the largest crypto exchange firm in the world by trading volume, announced that it has now successfully transferred the rebates that it promised its users, Etherum World News reported. The compensation was due to the attack suffered by the exchange which resulted in 1 Syscoin trading for 96 Bitcoin.

DLive, the First and Largest Live Streaming Platform on Blockchain, Now in Spanish (Digital Journl), Rated: A

DLive, the first and largest live streaming and video community platform on blockchain, unveils its new user interface optimized for the international audience, including dedicated menus and options in Spanish.

DLive has surpassed 600,000 daily active users in only six months and has distributed more than $2.6 million worth of STEEM cryptocurrency through upvotes, gifts, and donations. On DLive, even viewers can be rewarded by upvoting for their favorite content, making meaningful comments, and growing the community by referring new users to join DLive.

Stellar Becomes ‘First’ Sharia-Certified Blockchain for Payments And Asset Tokenization (CoinTelegraph), Rated: A

Stellar, an open-source platform for distributed payments, is reportedly the first distributed ledger protocol to obtain Sharia compliance certification in the money transfer and asset tokenization field, according to a Stellar blog post publishedJuly 17.

Top 10 crypto scams around the globe (Coinnounce), Rated: A

  1. Giza

The company offered a service to its customers to store all of their virtual assets in the company’s super secure currency holder. The company conducted a very professional looking initial coin offering and the investors were completely blown by the concept. It manages to raise almost $2.4 million USD within just one month of its offering.

  1. Mining Max

Based on the Ethereum mining operation the company managed to attract Investments worth up to $250 Million USD.

  1. Benebit

From their seamless presentation and clean outlay, the scam managed to blindfold some of the major investors in investing in their project. The company promised a return of a unique cryptocurrency in Exchange with the customer loyalty. As per some of the media outlets the company managed to raise almost $3 Million USD along with its appealing concept.

European Union

Binance Invests in World’s First Decentralized Bank (Crypto-News), Rated: AAA

In an emailed statement to Bloomberg, Binance revealed that the new bank, which will be known as “Founders Bank”, has a $155 million pre-money valuation. It will conduct its initial token offering on the blockchain-based Neufund platform, adhering to German regulations. Based in Berlin, Neufund is a decentralized fundraising platform based on the Ethereum blockchain which allows companies to offer any security or financial product as a digitized token.

The Bulls Are Strongly Behind Ethereum (ETH) As It Surges Over the $ 500 Mark (Smatereum), Rated: A

The value of Ethereum (ETH) surged higher and broke some major resistance levels on its way to the $500 mark. The digital currency is gathering momentum against Bitcoin (BTC) and the US dollar. The digital currency is still sailing in the boat of the bulls and it could break the next resistance at the $525 mark to open door for more gains.

Blockchain Startup Launches Platform for Risk-Managed ICO Investments (Nasdaq), Rated: A

CoinMirror , a Berlin-based startup, is launching the public beta of its platform for ICO investments on the Ethereum mainnet today, July 18, 2018. The platform seeks to provide investment opportunities to investors regardless of available capital.

Blockchain news app, CryptoCatnip, partners with top crypto projects (bit-media), Rated: B

MEDIA Protocol, a blockchain enterprise creating new economic models for digital content today announced enhancements to its news aggregation app, CryptoCatnip, that will further make the app a one-stop destination for a vast range of blockchain-related news. These new features expand CryptoCatnip’s offerings beyond news about regulation, exchanges, and other hot-button cryptocurrency topics, the app will now feature announcements from some of crypto enthusiasts’ favorite projects. The first group of projects to be featured within the CryptoCatnip feed includeBluzelle, Loki, Quadrant Protocol,SWIPE, CanYa, Cardstack, andCOTI with more to be added over the coming weeks.

United Kingdom

Bitcoin’s mad 10% spike could have been a short squeeze (Business Insider), Rated: AAA

The huge spike in bitcoin‘s price on Tuesday may have been driven in part by a squeeze on leveraged short sellers, according to market commentators.

Bitcoin jumped more than $600, or about 10%, in a short amount of time on Tuesday. The cryptocurrency broke above $7,000 for the first time in about a month thanks to the rally. It remained above that level on Wednesday, trading up 1.13% against the dollar, at $7,397.86, at noon BST (7 a.m. ET).

China

Bitcoin Mining Firms Make Unicorn List for First Time (CoinDesk), Rated: AAA

Three bitcoin mining companies have joined a list of “unicorns” – private companies valued at over $1 billion – for the first time.

The Shanghai-based Hurun Research Institute published its Q2 Unicorn Index for the Greater China region on Wednesday, which notably included the names of several major bitcoin mining firms: Bitmain, Canaan Creative and Ebang. The third Hurun list of 130 Chinese unicorns has never before featured a fully cryptocurrency-focused firm.

Ranking highest of the three, Bitmain appears at 13th on the list with a valuation of around 70 billion yuan, or about $10.4 billion, close to other notable companies such as JD Logistics.

Sequoia China, Polychain Lead Blockchain Startup’s $ 28 Million Round (CoinDesk), Rated: A

Blockchain startup Nervos Network has announced the completion of a $28 million Series A funding round.

The company said on Wednesday that major investors in the round included token-focused hedge fund Polychain and venture capital firm Sequoia China, as well as several China-based blockchain startups like wallet services Bixin and imToken.

Blockchain Is Helping to Circumvent Censorship in China (Slate), Rated: AAA

So far this year, governments around the world, including those of the Democratic Republic of CongoSri Lanka, and Ethiopia, have blocked access to a number of websites and platforms, sparking outcry over restrictions on online freedom of speech and expression. In April, Russia began blocking Telegram, a popular encrypted messaging app—a ban that inspired a protest joined by thousands of people in Moscow later that month. The Telegram block was made possible at least in part by Google and Amazon’s decision in May to implement changes that made it harder to access digital anti-censorship tools. Despite the growing landscape of threats to digital rights and online freedom of speech, however, there are some reasons for hope—and one of them may be blockchain.

In early April, eight students at China’s prestigious Peking University filed a freedom of information request for the school’s official records on Gao Yan, a student who reported two decades ago that she had been sexually assaulted by a professor and subsequently killed herself. The university refused to disclose further information, but on April 5, a friend of Gao’s shared her story online nonetheless. The exposition of Gao’s case and the university’s role in covering it up sparked outcry, and hundreds across the country called on the university and government to do more to prevent sexual assault and harassment.

Australia

First Cryptocurrency Vault in Australia to Be Launched (Crypto Disrupt), Rated: AAA

News is hitting the streets that a blockchain investment company called Decentralised Capital could launch the first cryptocurrency vault in Australia. This would be the first ever cold storage vault of its kind to store digital assets in the nation, which is great news for Aussie crypto users looking for solutions to secure their digital currencies.

Decentralised Capital has announced that the vault will be created with the help of Custodian Vaults, which is a subsidiary of the Pallion group, the precious metals firm. As the first cryptocurrency vault in Australia, the demand for such a thing is already reaching fever pitch.

Asia

Japanese Cryptocurrency Exchange Publicly Launched by SBI Holdings (Crypto Disrupt), Rated: AAA

A new Japanese cryptocurrency exchange platform is open for business after a series of delays. It is the world’s first bank-backed cryptocurrency exchange. The cryptocurrency exchange platform is called ‘VCTRADE’. While it was previously launched on a smaller basis, it is now accepting applications to the wider public.

South Korea Plans Tax Perks for Blockchain Startups (CoinDesk), Rated: A

The South Korean government has announced a plan to revise the current tax rules to widen benefits for companies that focus on the development of nascent technologies, including blockchain, as part of the country’s push for innovation growth.

Announced Wednesday, after a meeting of ministers from eight government agencies working on economic policy, tax rates are to be reduced for companies dealing with a range of 157 “new-growth technologies” in 11 areas, according to a report from CoinDesk Korea.

Latin America

Bitcoin Exchange Paxful Reveals Plan to Reach Venezuela’s Unbanked (CoinDesk), Rated: AAA

Peer-to-peer bitcoin exchange Paxful is doubling down on developing markets.

Revealed exclusively to CoinDesk, the startup plans to open an office in hyperinflation-ridden Venezuela in September and release an Android app, its first for mobile devices, in October.

According to Paxful co-founder Ray Youssef, the reason for both moves is that exchange use is surging in developing nations, where mobile phones are abundant and cheap but access to crypto remains scarce.

Canada

Coinsmart Launches Cryptocurrency Exchange for Canadian Tax Payers (Bitcoin.com), Rated: AAA

Coinsmart, a Canadian startup, has launched a new cryptocurrency exchange for investors in the country. The platform targets the “Crypto Curious” market, meaning people who are just entering the market. It does this by offering an easy-to-use interface, educational resources, and 24/7 live support. Coinsmart will also offer a tax-time reporting tool to help clients determine their taxable income and capital gains. An automatically-generated report will account for both fiat-to-crypto and crypto-to-crypto transactions.

Authors:

George Popescu
George Popescu
Allen Taylor
Allen Taylor

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Allen Taylor

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