Monthly Archives: October 2018

Russian Central bank and virtual currency: opinion of the system.

Different sections of society have developed different opinions regarding the sector of digital currency. That can be partly be attributed to the unpredictability that can bring in a vagueness in the sector and partly due to a complete indifference to the newly emerging field. But it can be noticed that different countries and various sections in these countries have different opinions regarding the field of cryptocurrency. One such view that was expressed recently was by the head of the Central bank of Russia. He is of the opinion that there can be noticed a decline in the “fever” of virtual currency. Such an opinion regarding the sector from the head of the central bank of Russia has created headlines.

The head of the Russian Central bank is Elvira Nabiullina, according to her, the “fever’ related to the virtual currency sector is on the decline. According to her, even as there was a lot of “enthusiasm” in the various economies for a long period of time, right now there can be noticed a more reasonable approach to them. It can be noticed that people are not giving vent to their excitement as they used to and are putting in more reason as far as the operations in the digital currency sector are concerned.

The head of the Russian Central bank also brought went onto state that the blockchain technology is now being used by the various people to raise funds and that it has been beneficial in raising funds. She also mentioned the role of Initial Coin Offerings in raising the money in the market. However, also stated that there was a lot that needed to be worked on as far as fraudulent practices when it comes to fraudulent practices concerning the Initial Coin Offerings and their operations. There is a lot that can be done to bring about an improvement in that area.

Nabullina also revealed some strong opinions regarding the sector of virtual currency, stating that Central Bank in Russia was not in favor of bringing about regulation in the field of virtual currency or consider it when it comes to playing the role of foreign currency.

Regardless of the opinions expressed by the head of the Central bank of Russia, there is a large section of the country that is interested in being a part of the sector. Various banks are also expressing an interest in Blockchain technology. A number of banks also organized a conference to see to it that there is enhanced knowledge regarding the industry of cryptocurrency. Therefore, it can be believed that the approach of Russian economic entities towards virtual currency is increasingly positive.

However, there is a struggle that is going on in the country when it comes to legislation. It is believed that there are several expert groups that are working on it right now. Moreover, the procedure is going on that can help in coming up with a bill to see to it that cryptocurrency can play an effective and positive role in the Russian financial situation.

Cryptocurrency Fever is Slowly Disappearing: Russian Central Bank

Elvira Nabiullina who is the head of the Central Bank of the Russian Federation has recently shared her views regarding cryptocurrency at the FINOPOLIS innovative financial technology forum.

In her belief, the failure of a majority of blockchain projects and their ICOs resulted in more practical and sober investors than ever. She said that the investors’ exhilaration toward cryptocurrency has begun to cool.

Nabiullina, the renowned Russian economist and former economic advisor to the Russian President Vladimir Putin explained businesses’ point of view to the bearish crypto market.

She stated, “We are holding the FINOPOLIS forum for the fourth time. Earlier, this event used to witness a cryptocurrency fever everywhere. But now, it is visibly beginning to disappear.” she added, “Back in old times, technologies like blockchain caused a great deal of enthusiasm, but, in our opinion, now a more sober attitude towards such technologies has begun.”

Meanwhile, crypto market and blockchain technology are evolving in Russia impressively. Earlier, President Putin has affirmed that they would create a regulatory framework for blockchain economy as the pressure of U.S.-imposed sanctions grows on the land. Though, the legislative walk to recognize bitcoin and similar digital assets so far has been slow.

Additionally, Nabiullina gave a hopeful view about the emerging technology, recognizing that aftereffect of 2018’s bearish action would enable businesses to grow blockchain by choosing practical projects instead of sensational ones.

She elaborated, “Business is trying to improve such technologies, looking for cases for the practical application of them.”

In Nabiullina’s perspective, the initial coin offering (ICO) model is an efficient way to raise funds. Her opinion differs with many of her global peers who hold a negative stance towards it.

However, The central bank chief points out that the first significant wave of ICOs was flooded with frauds, as evidenced by the failure or scammy nature of more than 90 percent of projects introduced in the last two years.

Her statements help to showcase the Russian central bank’s approach towards ICOs. Though her comments contrast with Nabiullina’s old attitude regarding crypto assets.

Apart from that, she compared cryptocurrency craze with gold fever back in 2017, after that she indicated her disinterest towards regulating cryptocurrencies or even putting them in the same category of foreign currency.

BitGo raises funding: to be put to use for the investors.

Funding plays a very important role in the field of virtual currency. Therefore it is a fairly big deal when any entity in the sector manages to raise money. It is for this reason that a lot of parts in the field of virtual currency that are looking up to, moreover, paying attention to BitGo. It is because BitGo has been able to come up with funding for itself, moreover, it has also gone onto state that the funding it received will be put to use by the numerous institutional investors dealing with BitGo. Therefore, this news is very well received in the market right now.

BitGo has raised an astounding amount of money, that is, $58.5 million. This money has been raised for its series B. It has now become one of the most well-funded companies in the sector of digital currency. This wallet provider can now pave the path towards its further goals in the market. In the words of the authorities from the company, it may be looking at the development of $1 trillion crypto wallet. If such a development takes place, it would be a major landmark for the company and would enable it to scale new heights.

The patent of BitGo was for multi-signature wallet and had attracted several entities in the sector. It is because it provides the kind of custody service and interface that is beneficial for a large number of enterprises. Besides this, the security that is provided will also take the users a step ahead. It is due to all these reasons that the product has created a lot of hullabaloo in the industry. Moreover, will go a long way in the manner in which it affects the working of the corporate sector as well the industry of Blockchain technology.

Majority of the people in Chile not aware of the sector of virtual currency.

Financial knowledge is an essential aspect of any economy. It is for this reason that various countries are striving to get better results in terms of their knowledge regarding the various economies in the world. It is also the reason for several universities offering the courses about the Blockchain technology. Besides, virtual currency is a fairly new sector in the economy and there is an anxiety in the various economies regarding the manner in which it functions. However, it would come as a surprise that there is a section of the society that is completely unaware of the section. For example, in Chile, only 39% of the citizens are aware of the digital currency section.

According to the Financial Knowledge Index, a small number, that is, 39% is aware of the sector of the virtual currency. This survey was conducted by Chilean Central Securities Depository. The company that conducted the survey was Consulting company Cadem. People from both the genders were interviewed from the various capitals and the outcome was that a small section of the Chileans was aware of the sector of digital currency. The questionnaire that was given dealt with some important inquiries related to the sector of virtual currency. Bitcoin, being the popular virtual currency, several men in the country had heard about it, men had also heard about other digital coins. However, when it came to women, the figures went down with only 27% of women have heard about it in their lives. There is a significant discrepancy that was noticed in the levels of awareness about the various coins in the market. It can also lead to the conclusion that the sector is yet to reach out to the women of Chile even as it has already started to make an impact upon the men in the country to some extent.

There were also several other conclusions that were drawn from the survey. Younger people in the country showed a greater awareness in the field than the older section of the society. Similarly, the variation in the awareness could also be noticed when it came to the differences in the economic situation, for example, the upper middle class or the rich came forward with an enhanced knowledge of the virtual currency sector than those people belonging to the middle class or the lower middle class. 75% of the people belonging to the upper class stated that they were aware of the digital currency, a similar thing cannot be stated about the other sections.

The lack of awareness of the Chileans when it comes to digital currencies is surprising considering the popularity it has been reaping in recently. According to the survey that was conducted, cryptocurrency terms were the least used and least familiar terms when it comes to financial jargon. Whereas, there was an enhanced knowledge regarding the banks as well as insurance companies.

Several upheavals have also taken place in the virtual currency sector in Chile, for example, the banks closing down the accounts of the numerous virtual currency exchanges and then the courts eventually taking the side of the exchanges leading to them resuming their operations. It was discussed as to what should be done to see to it that there is enhanced security in the digital currency sector of Chile, it is yet to be determined if more regulation will be put by the governments. However, there is a lot that has to be corrected as far as the knowledge of the people of Chile is concerned regarding the digital currency.

African Cryptocurrency Exchanges will have to Improve Security

The worldwide crime ratio, particularly in the crypto market, is pretty alarming. Advanced regulations and security measures can protect the users, especially from hackers. African bitcoin markets are thinking to redesign the security which can prevent attacks from hackers, reportedly.

However, comparatively Exchanges in Africa continent is less harmed, it has faced minimal losses amidst the $930 million this year.

Around this March, a heavy attack on investor funds in the continent of 1.2 billion people occurred in South Africa. A so-called cryptocurrency investment firm escaped with about one billion rands ($80 million) trapping 28,000 South Africans in the false promise of incredibly high, quick returns on their investment, reportedly. It was a scam.

With that African exchanges are aiming to tighten the security. On that note, Suleiman Murunga, the chief executive officer at Ugandan exchange Coinpesa stated that “We have noticed a number of attempts to breach our system, but we have managed to maintain our defenses, and we keep on learning.”

Noting that the company, one of the biggest in the East African country, also uses two-factor authentication, he added, “We (now) use suspicious activity monitoring tools to track user behavior in order to spot bad actors.”

Additionally, there were some more theft and fraud cases happened in Africa, with exchanges like Zimbabwean exchange Golix, Naira4dollar firm, and wallet.

With the idea of strengthening the security, there is also a belief which says that it’s not exchanges which are always to blame, users also need to be careful and aware.

Although it’s not very easy or simple to bring such safety to digital currency, as crypto is quite largely spread. Also, hackers and scammers are a step ahead of their targeted victims.

Regarding that, a Zimbabwean cryptocurrency enthusiast and former VP at Golix, William Chui suggested that “A ‘walk-in’ model, where users [enter physical premises] to buy [cryptocurrency] and are served while they wait.”

He also said, “This is not scalable nor feasible with the internet and will prove to be too slow. I doubt we can get a foolproof, secure system, but the [aim] will be to minimize losses as much as possible.”

He concluded by recommending, “invest in a technical development department that will continually penetrate the website, and offer bounties for external developers to do the same … Store a larger percentage of clients’ funds in cold wallets.”

All in all, in Africa, regulators will get into action to guard users against losses and frauds, just like it has happened across the world.

A new tool based on Blockchain technology to be developed.

A group based in the UK has come up with a tool to see the level of sustainable commitments. This is just one more way in which Blockchain technology can be more relevant in day-to-day corporate activities. Moreover, it would make blockchain technology more relevant in the sector. The group to come up with this tool is The Responsible Finance and Investment Foundation. This group is coming up with such a tool to see to it that it becomes possible to look at those companies which do not live up to the standards of the ethics set by the government. It is necessary to identify the companies that lack in ethical standards.

It is here that this tool will aid the sector. A major role that will be played by this tool of the foundation is to see to it that firms do not indulge in the wrongful practices. One such practice that several companies have become part of is a phenomenon called “greenwashing”, this involves firms trying to prove that they are more concerned about the environment than they really are. It involves looking at the firms trying to prove that they are more ecologically aware than they are. It is this phenomenon that this tool might be intending on challenging.

RFI is looking at several other countries in order to expand its operations. There are a lot of projects regarding the issue that this firm is dealing with and therefore, there are 23 other firms that would participate in these activities. The increase in the interest level was stated by Blake Goud. According to Goud, there are a lot of firms that are misusing the characteristics of the sector, this new tool from the Blockchain technology will help them combat the unethical practices of the market and it is this that will come to the aide in developing a stronger and better tomorrow.

Several nations from across the world have signed a declaration for a better regulation as well as for enhanced standards of Blockchain technology. These countries have also committed to bringing about an increased level of regulation in the country. Several of these countries belong to the European Union. All these countries have made a pact to bring about better standards of regulation as well as ethics in the corporate as well as Blockchain sector. Thus altering the manner in which the economy is affected by it.

Fmr. CFTC Chair Emphasizes on the Necessity of Regulation in Cryptocurrency

Gary Gensler is a Former Commodity Futures Commission (CFTC) Chairman, and a current lecturer of blockchain technology. He chaired the organization from mid-2009 to early 2014.

In an interview by Bloomberg, he stated that “has a real chance to be a catalyst for change in the world of finance”. And he marked how the decentralized nature of blockchain is significant, indicating that when he teaches blockchain technology at MIT, “the class is crowded”.

He was asked about regulation regarding the crypto markets, he responded that “if cryptocurrency truly is to be a part of the future, it must “come inside of the public policy envelope”. Also, stressed on the importance of protecting investors and guarding against illegal activity.

He then indicated that “the large cryptocurrency exchanges have to comply with either the SEC or the CFTC, the organization that he was “once honored to chair.” He revealed further, “pure cash cryptocurrencies, like bitcoin, need more protection than frankly, even the oil markets, or corn and wheat.”

However, he did not comment on which organization should be regulating the market in general, declaring himself “regulator-neutral.”

He strongly marked the significance of remaining “technology neutral” to encourage innovation, but also pointing out the necessity of regulations. It concludes that blockchain technology as a whole should not be restricted, but the control and protection against possibilities of frauds and manipulation are required.

He said that if you want more widespread adoption of emerging technology, then more asset managers investment is required. Additionally, when asked regarding the manpower to regulate the industry, given the new sort of the technology, he stated, “It’s always a challenge…that was true when the internet came along in the 1990s…but I don’t think that means we give up.”

He believes that more confidence in markets results in more participation of investors. He added, “blockchain technology is at present still more “hype than reality.” he thinks it is years away from “being scaled”. Although he firmly states that the scaling issue will be resolved.

Pantera CIO Believes Next Bitcoin Bull Run Will Uplift Crypto Market ‘10x’

Pantera is one of the leading investment firms in the crypto world. In a recent interview with Bloomberg, the Co-Chief Investment Officer of the firm Joey Krug, shared his vision regarding the future of crypto markets.

With optimism, he said that he presumes the next bitcoin bull run to carry the cryptocurrency market cap 1,000 percent above its current valuation.

During the interview, he estimated that the next rise could propel the cryptocurrency market cap to more than $2 trillion. He noted, “If you look at that next bull run, I think the crypto space overall could hit 10x from here.”

He added that the market is currently waiting on concrete adoption to catalyze a bull run. For this to happen cryptocurrency networks will need to achieve increased scalability, as the current state of cryptocurrency blockchain development is akin to the internet before dial-up.

Notably, huge names like Fidelity Investments and Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) involved in the cryptocurrency space would have begun a surge in investment.

He further stated, “If you look at the internet, it’s easy to say, ‘Well, you just create an app, get some users, and then you solve the scalability problems.’ But these are all markets, and so if you don’t have scalability, you don’t have market makers, and so you don’t have liquidity.”

Apart from that, Lightning and Liquid networks, are quite recent innovations regarding bitcoin. The Lightning Network (LN) is a second-layer protocol that operates on top of Bitcoin. With that, users can move funds “off-chain” into LN payment channels. The transactions do not require miner validation.

Now, The Liquid Network is developed by blockchain startup Blockstream and targeted at cryptocurrency exchanges, financial institutions, and other bitcoin power users. It is a federated Bitcoin sidechain and helps to move large amounts of bitcoin faster and privately as compared to the main blockchain. However, these technologies are not yet available for primetime.

On that, Krug said that he expects some cryptocurrency networks to achieve the Visa/Mastercard scale within the next couple of years, though that does not necessarily mean the bear market will endure for that long.

With that, he added, “the cryptocurrency market has hit bottom and will remain range-bound until the next catalyst arrives.”

Tether: decrease in the price of the virtual currency dependent on dollar.

Monday saw a huge bounce in the sector of virtual currency. This was because, Tether, that is, a virtual currency pegged with the US dollar saw a decrease in the price. At the same time, there was a drastic increase in the value of the numerous prominent currencies. In a feat shocking several experts in the sector, the value of Bitcoin soared past the $7000 mark and the price of Bitcoin reached a point higher than any other value, $7700. Moreover, Tether which is attached to the US Dollars so a decrease in price by 7 percent. There can be noticed an increase in the premiums on the virtual currency as well.

Needless to mention, a subsequent decrease in the prices was expected considering that there was a drastic surge in the rates in the past. There can be noticed a decrease by 4 percent in the price of Bitcoin. Even as the decrease was expected from the various experts, it can be believed that the condition of Bitcoin in the market is better than it used to be previously. There is a lot of positivity that can be noticed in the value of Bitcoin compared to the previous week. With the increase in value can be noticed an increase in the trading volume as well.

To indicate a definite increase in price in the future, the value of Bitcoin will have to stay stable at $6550 and also break out of the mark that was set by it as resistance, that is, $6800. Moreover, the statement issued by Tether authorities was that the currency was sufficiently backed by the dollars and that there will be stability in its value. However, there is little that the authorities within Tether can say to change the manner in which Tether has been affected by the latest developments. increasingly, a number of people are preferring safer, better alternatives like PAX and Gemini dollars.

There is a chance that more legitimacy can be added to this sector through the means of a number of prominent names entering the sector, the recent name added to this list is Fidelity.

Fidelity, a Massive Investment Firm to Introduce Digital Assets Services

Fidelity is a multinational financial services corporation and a huge name in investments. It operates over $7.2 trillion in client assets. Recently, it has declared that they are launching a new company, Fidelity Digital Asset Services.

As given in the press release of the firm, the new company will provide custody and trade execution services for digital assets, focussing institutional investors like “hedge funds, family offices and market intermediaries.” Though now it will not be opened for retail investors.

Also, it says that Fidelity Digital Assets will aim to offer a “secure, compliant, and institutional-grade omnibus storage solution for bitcoin, ether and other digital assets.”

On that note, Tom Jessop, head of the newly-created business, spoke to CNBC. He stated, “Fidelity began exploring blockchain and crypto several years ago, and the idea of commercializing a “standalone” crypto firm began in mid-2017.”

Jessop added, “the new company will leverage all “of the resources of a big organization”. Reportedly, Fidelity has been already working with ‘over 13,000’ institutional clients, to draw these actors into the emerging space.

According to Jessop, the recently created firm will create its reputation as a major Wall Street incumbent and will utilize technological solutions that have been ‘repurposed’ from other parts of its organization.

Additionally, Fidelity indicates research from Greenwich Associates which figured out that “70 percent” of institutional finance executives think crypto will have a role in the future of the financial sector, but, many are still ‘sitting on the sidelines’ before they enter the market.

The press release also addresses the crypto trades, by stating, “the firm will be using “a proven internal crossing engine and smart order router for trade execution of digital assets” that will “allow for execution at multiple market venues.”

As speculated Fidelity was hiring developers to build a cryptocurrency exchange in this June, noting internal correspondence at the time.

Notably, Fidelity’s innovation lab had a collaboration with major crypto exchange Coinbase as of mid-2017, to enable clients to view their Bitcoin (BTC) holdings with traditional assets in their portfolios.

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