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Cointelegraph By Adrian Zmudzinski

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Monday, May 20 — most of the top 20 cryptocurrencies are reporting moderate losses on the day by press time, as bitcoin (BTC) has fallen below the $7.900 mark again.

Market visualization courtesy of Coin360

Bitcoin is down over 1.7% on the day, trading at $7,883 at press time, according to CoinMarketCap. Looking at its weekly chart, the coin is up over 10%.

Bitcoin 7-day price chart. Source: CoinMarketCap

As Cointelegraph reported earlier today, strategists from United States banking giant JPMorgan Chase have argued that bitcoin’s recent rally has ostensibly soared past what they calculate to be its intrinsic value.

Ether (ETH) is holding onto its position as the largest altcoin by market cap, which currently stands at $26.5 billion. The second-largest altcoin, XRP, has a market cap of $16.6 billion at press time.

CoinMarketCap data shows that ETH is down over 2.7% over the last 24 hours. At press time, ETH is trading around $249. On the week, the coin has also seen its value increase by over 24%.

Ether 7-day price chart. Source: CoinMarketCap

XRP is down over 2.2% over the last 24 hours and is currently trading at around $0.395. On the week, the coin is up about 19.5%.

XRP 7-day price chart. Source: CoinMarketCap

Among the top 20 cryptocurrencies, the only ones reporting gains are dash, which is up over 8.75%, and monero (XMR), which is up over half of a percent.

At press time, the total market capitalization of all cryptocurrencies is $245.2 billion, over 12.8% higher than the value it reported a week ago.

Total market capitalization 24-hour chart. Source: CoinMarketCap

In a tweet yesterday, Fundstrat Global Advisors co-founder Tom Lee has claimed that the crypto winter is over.

In traditional markets, the United States stock market is seeing discrete losses so far today, with

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Dutch bank ABN AMRO abandoned its plans to launch a custodial bitcoin (BTC) wallet dubbed “Wallie” because of risk concerns, according to a report published on May 20 by tech news outlet The Next Web.

Per the report, the bank’s senior press officer, Jarco de Swart, said in an email to the outlet that the bank decided not to continue its plans after it “concluded that cryptocurrencies because of their unregulated nature are at the moment too risky assets for our clients to invest in.”

The rumors concerning alleged tests of the wallet first started spreading in January. Still, according to The Next Web, the bank had actually just asked 500 of its customers if it should develop the wallet and if so, how. Owler estimates the bank’s annual revenue to be $10.3 billion, and reports that the firm has 18,720 employees.

As Cointelegraph reported in November last year, major oil companies BP, Shell and Equinor have united with large banks — including ABN AMRO — and trading houses to launch a blockchain-driven platform, Vakt, for energy commodity trading.

Last week, Alexandre Kech, CEO of Onchain Custodian, predicted that collaboration between crypto and traditional custodians will grow.

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A vote about whether to decrease the so-called stability fee for MakerDAO’s ethereum blockchain-based decentralized stablecoin DAI has started. The vote was announced on the organization’s blog on May 17.

If approved, the latest proposal would decrease the stability fee by 2% to 17.5% per year. According to the announcement, the need to decrease the fee was discussed during the MakerDAO governance call that took place on May 16.

MakerDAO is looking to change the yearly stability fee in an attempt to improve the token’s peg to the U.S. dollar after its exchange price has been hovering above the $1 level. The stability fee is a charge levied by Maker participants when Dai is used for loans.

In March, Maker already raised the stability fee twice, first to 3.5% and then to 7.5% per year. In April, the fee was further increased by another four percent in the fifth such vote this year, bringing it to 11.5%. Further votes brought the rate up to 19.5% at the beginning of the current month.

As Cointelegraph reported at the end of April, DAI has been previously struggling to maintain its peg. MakerDAO’s president and chief operating officer, however, claimed that DAI’s value had been stabilized as of the beginning of May.

Also at the end of April, Andy Milenius, formerly the chief technology officer at MakerDAO, published an open letter dated April 3 explaining his concerns over the project’s internal conflicts.

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Ted Livingston, the CEO of Canadian-based messaging startup Kik, told cryptocurrency news outlet Coindesk that the company spent over $5 million on ongoing negotiations with the United States Securities Exchange Commission (SEC). The news was revealed in a report published on May 16.

As Cointelegraph reported at the end of January, the SEC stated that it believes that Kik’s “Token Distribution Event” two years ago violated securities laws when the company raised $97 million during the sale. Following the SEC’s recommendation of an enforcement action in November 2018, Kik was served with a “Wells Notice,” a letter to the company that needs to be responded to within 30 days.

Per the report, Livingston told the publication on Thursday at the Token Summit in New York that the company spent over $5 million on its negotiations with the regulator. He also reportedly added:

“We’ve spent a lot of time on this, we’ve spent the last 18 months traveling to Washington.”

In January, the firm also warned U.S. regulators that it would fight a proposed enforcement action against it.

Last week, Amy Starr, chief of the office of capital markets trends at the SEC, expressed the regulator’s willingness to interact with local crypto and blockchain-related businesses. Starr argued that U.S. securities laws are “written to be dynamic.”

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Sunday, May 19 — most of the top 20 cryptocurrencies are rebounding to report moderate to notable gains on the day by press time. Bitcoin (BTC) has pushed to just below the $8,000 mark again. The market rebound comes after a sharp correction on May 17 that followed almost a week of massive growth.

Market visualization courtesy of Coin360

Bitcoin is about eight percent up on the day, trading at $7,928 at press time, according to CoinMarketCap. Looking at its weekly chart, the coin is up close to 11%.

Bitcoin 7-day price chart. Source: CoinMarketCap

As Cointelegraph reported earlier today in a dedicated analysis, figures published by bitcoin core developer Luke Dashjr show that more than half of the full nodes in the bitcoin network are still running client software vulnerable to an inflation bug discovered in September 2018.

Ether (ETH) is holding onto its position as the largest altcoin by market cap, which currently stands at $27 billion. The second-largest altcoin, XRP, has a market cap of $16.9 billion at press time.

CoinMarketCap data shows that ETH is up over 7% over the last 24 hours. At press time, ETH is trading around $254. On the week, the coin has also seen its value increase by over 35%.

Ether 7-day price chart. Source: CoinMarketCap

XRP is also up about 7% over the last 24 hours and is currently trading at around $0.40. On the week, the coin is up over 28%.

XRP 7-day price chart. Source: CoinMarketCap

Among the top 20 cryptocurrencies, the ones reporting two-digit gains are bitcoin cash (BCH) and dash (DASH), up 13% and 10% respectively

At press time, the total market capitalization of all cryptocurrencies is currently at $247.8 billion, over 18% higher than the value it reported a week ago.

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Goldman Sachs-backed crypto finance startup Circle has published the latest third-party audit of its USD-pegged stablecoin, USD Coin (USDC). The company reported the update in a blog post published on May 17.

USD Coin is an Ethereum-based token compliant with the ERC20 standard that was first announced in May last year and released in September.

Per this week’s announcement, the audit of the coin’s fiat reserves was conducted by major Chicago-based accounting firm Grant Thornton LLP.

The report released by the firm states that as of April 30, 2019 at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time there were 293,184,174 USDC issued, and that there were $293,351,374 in the firm’s reserves. Lastly, the auditing firm claims that, at the time specified above, the issued and outstanding USDC tokens did not exceed the balance of the U.S. dollars held in custody.

According to CoinMarketCap data, USDC’s market cap currently exceeds $359 million and is up over 40% from the value it reported a month ago.

At the end of April, lawyers from the company behind USD stablecoin tether (USDT) reported that the coin only has enough cash to back three-quarters of its increasing supply.

As Cointelegraph reported yesterday, social media giant Facebook has evidently formed a new financial tech firm, Libra Networks LLC, presumably to work on its rumored stablecoin.

Earlier this week, Francois Villeroy de Galhau, the governor of the Bank of France,expressed interest in stablecoins, stating that the bank is “observing [the developments] with great interest.”

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Hong Kong cryptocurrency derivatives trading platform BitMEX claims that on average, its users don’t use the maximum 100x leverage that the platform offers. BitMEX reported on the data in a post published on its official blog on May 15.

According to the post, the company’s co-founder and CEO Arthur Hayes had the data science team of the exchange pull up historical data on the average leverage usage for the bitcoin (BTC)/United States dollar perpetual swap.

Hayes stated that the data obtained this way show that “traders are quite ‘responsible’ in that they do not on average use the maximum amount of leverage.” Data shows that the monthly weighted average effective leverage on the bitcoin perpetual swap in May 2018 is 29x on long positions and 26x on short positions.

In April 2019, the monthly weighted average effective leverage on the same contract was reportedly 22x on long positions and 30x on short positions. The post also claims that — in the previous 12 months — 80% of the long positions had a leverage lower than or equal to 54x, while 80% of the short positions didn’t use more than 47x leverage.

As Cointelegraph reported in mid-April, United States-based professional trading infrastructure firm Trading Technologies International partnered with the parent company of BitMEX to open up its products to crypto derivatives traders.

At the end of last month, sources familiar with the matter reportedly said that online trading firm E*Trade Financial Group is preparing to offer cryptocurrency trading on its platform.

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Estonian consulting firm Eesti has claimed that it is getting harder to get a cryptocurrency license in Estonia in a press release published on May 16.

The Estonian government’s Ministry of Finance introduced changes to the licensing process on May 3. The new regulations adds a numbered formal obligation, extends the processing time from 30 to 90 day and establishes the requirement for a company or branch to be incorporated in Estonia.

Furthermore, the registered office address and the board of directors now needs to be located in Estonia, and the state fee for the emission of the license has been increased from €345 ($386) to €3,330 ($3,729). The country’s minister of finance, Martin Helme, explained the reasons behind the change:

“We have learned our lesson from the banking sector the hard way, and we must now deal with new international risks, with cryptocurrencies among the most urgent of these.”

Eesti claims that it will be hard to obtain a cryptocurrency license now with the new regulations. Current license holders will reportedly have time until the end of the year to fulfill the new requirements, otherwise their license will be withdrawn by the regulator.

As Cointelegraph reported in December last year, the Estonian Ministry of Finance already announced at the time that it would have added amendments to a recently-passed financial bill in order to tighten crypto-related regulation.

Last week, Cointelegraph also wrote that Germany plans to introduce draft regulations allowing blockchain bonds as soon as this summer.

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Thursday, May 16 — most of the top 20 cryptocurrencies are reporting moderate gains on the day by press time, as bitcoin (BTC) has fallen below the $7.900 mark again.

Market visualization courtesy of Coin360

Bitcoin is over 1.5% down on the day, trading at $7,899 at press time, according to CoinMarketCap. Looking at its weekly chart, the coin is up nearly 23%.

Bitcoin 7-day price chart. Source: CoinMarketCap

As Cointelegraph reported yesterday, new data suggests that bitcoin’s growth is explained by its maturation as an asset based on conversations surrounding the leading cryptocurrency.

Ether (ETH) is holding onto its position as the largest altcoin by market cap, which currently stands at $26.6 billion. The second-largest altcoin, XRP, has a market cap of $17.4 billion at press time.

CoinMarketCap data shows that ETH is up over 8% over the last 24 hours. At press time, ETH is trading around $251. On the week, the coin has also seen its value increase by over 32%.

Ether 7-day price chart. Source: CoinMarketCap

XRP is down over 3.5% over the last 24 hours and is currently trading at around $0.415. On the week, the coin is up over 27.7%.

XRP 7-day price chart. Source: CoinMarketCap

Ripples’ director of regulatory relations, Ryan Zagone, stated earlier this week that technology needs to be a national issue for the United States, with digital currencies and blockchain to be recognized within that goal.

Among the top 20 cryptocurrencies, the ones reporting the most notable gains are nem (XEM), which is up nearly 27%, and stellar (XLM), which is up nearly 15%.

At press time, the total market capitalization of all cryptocurrencies is $246.3 billion, over 23.5% higher than the value it reported a week ago.

Total market capitalization 24-hour chart. Source: CoinMarketCap

In traditional markets, the United States

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Blockchain infrastructure firm Blockstream announced the launch of its security token platform in a press release shared with Cointelegraph on May 15.

Per the announcement, the new Liquid Securities platform is a solution for businesses to issue security tokens on the Liquid Network.

Blockstream Chief Security Officer Samson Mow claims that while businesses are willing to issue tokenized securities, platforms such as Ethereum are not the right choice because of their scalability, privacy and reliability limitations. Blockstream claims that its platform is more suitable for such use:

“Now, with the launch of Liquid Securities, businesses can quickly issue Liquid-based security tokens with the click of a button,and establish sophisticated rulesets to conform with their regulatory requirements…”

The platform will reportedly launch with four partners: investment platform BnkToTheFuture, multi-blockchain issuance platform TokenSoft, United States-based bank Zenus Bank, and game development studio Pixelmatic.

The announcement explains that the Liquid Network is a settlement network connecting cryptocurrency exchanges, market makers, brokers, and other financial institutions.

In March, Blockstream released a new version of its bitcoin (BTC) scalability software, c-lightning. The release included performance enhancements, bug fixes and augmented privacy.

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