Posts belonging to Category blockchain

Britain unveils new fintech plans, including cryptocurrencies

G20:  no consensus for global regulation of cryptocurrencies

Britain announced a task force on Thursday to exploit the technology underpinning cryptoassets, such as bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, as part of new plans to help fintech companies find more customers.

British finance minister Philip Hammond said he was committed to helping fintech grow and flourish by taking a series of domestic steps and forging links overseas.

“As part of that, a new task force will help the UK to manage the risks around cryptoassets, as well as harnessing the potential benefits of the underlying technology,” Hammond told a fintech conference hosted by the finance ministry.

Investors have flocked to cryptocurrencies like bitcoin despite wild price swings.

Regulators have warned that investors could lose all their money, but see promise in the blockchain technology that underpins cryptoassets.

Britain’s announcement comes after finance ministers from the Group of 20 richest economies (G20) were unable this week to find enough consensus for global regulation of cryptocurrencies.

Machines have replaced human stock market traders

Impact on the next financial crisis could be devastating

The February sell-off in stocks demonstrated the impact of automated trading on markets, according to Charles Himmelberg, Goldman Sachs’ cohead of global markets research.
“In this new market structure, machines have replaced humans, and speed has replaced capital,” Himmelberg said in a note.
This new ecosystem dominated by machines has dried up the sources of liquidity that would be needed in the next major wave of selling, he said.

Telegram wants its own blockchain platform and native cryptocurrency

Enormous Initial Coin Offering

Encrypted messaging startup Telegram plans to launch its own blockchain platform and native cryptocurrency, powering payments on its chat app and beyond. According to multiple sources which have spoken to TechCrunch, the “Telegram Open Network” (TON) will be a new, ‘third generation’ blockchain with superior capabilities, after Bitcoin and, later, Ethereum paved the way.

The launch will be funded with an enormous Initial Coin Offering, with forthcoming private pre-sales ranging into the hundreds of millions, potentially making it one of the largest ICOs to date. Demand is driven by the fact that rather than the ICO coming from a fresh startup, Telegram is a well-established messaging platform used around the world.

Adopting a homegrown cryptocurrency could give Telegram’s payment system enormous independence from any government or bank — something Co-founder and CEO Pavel Durov is known to covet after investors took over his last company, Russian social network VK. Durov has not responded to TechCrunch’s several attempts to contact him regarding this story. … Tue., 16  January 2018

Eastman Kodak unveils cryptocurrency

Stock doubles

Shares of Eastman Kodak Co (KODK.N) more than doubled on Tuesday after the one-time leader in photography became the latest company to jump on the cryptocurrency bandwagon.

The storied Rochester, New York-based company said in a statement it is launching a cryptocurrency called “KODAKCoin” for photographers, part of “KODAKOne,” an image rights management platform in a licensing partnership with WENN Digital.

The platform uses blockchain technology, the backbone of bitcoin and other digital currencies that have surged in recent months and raised fears of a price bubble. … Wed., 10  January 2018

SEC warns bitcoin, cryptocurrency investors at risk

Investors should “exercise caution”

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission warned Thursday that investors should “exercise caution” with cryptocurrencies like bitcoin, noting state and federal regulators may not be able to recoup any lost investments from illegal actors.

Many promoters of initial coin offerings (ICOs) and other cryptocurrency investments are not following federal and state securities laws, SEC Chairman Jay Clayton and Commissioners Kara Stein and Michael Piwowar said in a statement. While regulators are trying to police these quickly growing markets, the SEC urged investors to be vigilant. … Fri., 05  January 2018

What is Blockchain?

Bitcoin and Blockchain explained in detail

This explainer will offer simple definitions and analogies for blockchain technology. It will also define Bitcoin, Ethereum, blockchain broadly, and initial coin offerings, and highlight promising use cases for the technology. (For a deep dive into how Ethereum works, you can read our What Is Ethereum explainer.)

Lastly, this report will make clear the distinctions between distributed ledger technology and blockchain, and highlight where these technologies have an application – and where they do not.… Wed., 03  January 2018

Bitcoin becomes volatile

Bitcoin falls by more than $2,000 in 12 hours

Bitcoin and several other major cryptocurrencies plunged Thursday evening New York time as the end of an exponential year of growth neared. The slashing decline triggered temporary, built-in trading halts in the bitcoin futures traded on the CME and Cboe.

Bitcoin plunged more than 17 percent to a low of $13,077.94 according to CoinDesk, down more than $2,000 from $15,830 less than 12 hours ago. The digital currency recovered to near $ 14,039, as of 1:07 a.m., ET.… Fri., 22  December 2017

Bitcoin’s illiquidity

Which scenario if the bubble bursts ?

Imagine how bad this is going to get on the day some negative news hits the wires and the really significant holders of bitcoin decide, “I’ve had enough of this. I’ve made my money. I am bailing.” The majority of bitcoins are held by a tiny percentage of the market. 40% are held by 1,000 people. Those few major holders can crash the market whenever they want.

As anyone who remembers the market crashes of 2000 and 2008 knows, these things happen fast. Billions get wiped off the market in minutes. People who need to cash out now, but who are an hour or so behind the news, can lose their shirts.

It is brutal.

And blockchain just isn’t equipped to deal with it.… Mon., 18  December 2017

Bitcoin Futures Launch Sees Price Spike

CBOE Website Crashes

The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE)’s website became unavailable just as it launched its first bitcoin futures contracts at 6 p.m. EST on Sunday.

The website downtime – which CBOE attributed to significant traffic around the futures launch in a post on Twitter – coincided with a sudden surge in the price of bitcoin, which jumped from $14,509 at 22:59 UTC to $15,732 at 23:06 UTC according to CoinDesk’s Bitcoin Price Index (BPI). Yet as of press time, CBOE’s website is becoming more available – delayed information about the contracts being offered can be found here – and the price of bitcoin has maintained a somewhat steady pace since that initial jump, trading at $15,226.29 per the BPI.

The data coming in thus far suggest that buyers are indeed moving to purchase contracts. Activity has been largely centered around the first contract to expire, dated January 17, 2018, with social media posts pointing to purchases of contracts scheduled to expire on March 14. According to CNBC, 672 January contracts have been sold as of 7:10 pm EST, with the news service reporting a price of $15,800.… Mon., 11  December 2017

Bitcoin Rockets Above $12,000

Billion-Dollar Crypto Unicorns Swell to Nineteen

The cryptocurrency markets made another advance on Tuesday, fueled by continued bullishness over the impending launch of regulated bitcoin futures contracts on Sunday. Buoyed by this factor, the bitcoin price rose within striking distance of the $12,000 milestone, and the flagship cryptocurrency’s market cap came within a hair’s breadth of the $200 billion marker. Meanwhile, altcoins reaped the gains of a bullish market, and the number of cryptocurrencies with billion-dollar valuations swelled to a new all-time high of nineteen.… Wed., 06  December 2017