Cryptocurrencies are valuable not as an investment tool, but as a means of payment. This was stated by former CIA and NSA employee Edward Snowden at the Consensus 2022 conference. Snowden joined in the criticism of the “anti-cryptocurrency” letter that a group of technology experts sent to the U.S. Congress in early June. In his opinion, the authors deliberately misinterpreted some theses about the industry. Among the authors of the letter, the specialist mentioned cryptographer Bruce Schneier. However, he called most of the other signatories “prolific public trolls. On his Twitter page, Snowden also called gold “a bitcoin that can’t be sent over the Internet. Tether CTO Paolo Ardoino responded to him. He noted that the XAUT Stablecoin, which is tied to the price of the precious metal, can be sent over the net.
Category - Crypto News
U.S. bitcoin exchange Coinbase will cut its staff by about 18% due to the onset of crypto winter. Co-founder and CEO Brian Armstrong called it a “difficult decision. Armstrong noted that the company has more than quadrupled its staff in the past 18 months. Too rapid a growth has led to problems coordinating and integrating new team members, making the team less effective. Affected employees will be notified by personal messages. They will immediately be denied access to confidential customer information. Employees who leave Coinbase will be compensated at 14 weeks’ salary with bonuses for more than one year of service. Coinbase will also pay a four-month health insurance policy and provide assistance with future employment, including at portfolio companies in the venture capital division. According to CNBC, Coinbase has about 5,000 full-time employees. The layoffs will affect about 1,100 of them.
MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor said that the analytics software provider anticipated market volatility when choosing its bitcoin investment strategy. He assured that the company is ready to store the cryptocurrency further.
MicroStrategy initially allocated its assets in such a way as to continue to hodl in “unfavorable conditions” in the market. The company holds 129,218 BTC. Amid the collapse in the price of the first cryptocurrency, MicroStrategy’s loss from bitcoin holdings exceeded $1 billion. Saylor has consistently stressed that the company will continue to follow its strategy of buying and holding bitcoin. He is convinced that this policy will provide the software vendor with a “bright future” for years to come.
The head of MicroStrategy previously said that the price of bitcoin would have to fall below $3562 for the company to lack the digital assets to secure loans.
June 13 trading session on stock exchanges in the U.S. opened with a significant drop in shares of cryptocurrency-oriented companies. Over the past 24 hours, bitcoin has lost 13.3%, according to CoinGecko. The price of digital gold dipped below $24,000, with the asset trading near $23,740 as of this writing. At the open, shares of analytics software provider MicroStrategy were down 25.24%, Coinbase down 13.5%, and Silvergate Capital down 14%. According to Bitcoin Treasuries, MicroStrategy’s 129,218 BTC is now worth just over $3 billion. Earlier, the head of the company Michael Saylor reiterated his commitment to the first cryptocurrency.
Marathon Digital shares were down 12.33%;
Riot Blockchain, down 10.46%;
Core Scientific, down 12.45%;
Bitfarms, down 9.43%;
Bit Digital, up 8.8%;
Argo Blockchain, up 16.64%;
Hut 8 Mining and Hive Blockchain lost 10% and 9.6%, respectively.
Futures on the Nasdaq 100 fell 2.54% and the S&P 500 fell 2.5%.
The company that developed the popular cryptocurrency wallet Edge announced today its new Mastercard, which requires no identification (KYC) to use. According to Edge CEO Paul Puey, you won’t need a name, phone number, or email address to use the card, just 15 seconds of free time. According to Puig, there is still a large percentage of people who, for one reason or another, cannot open a bank account. The new card is not just for bitcoins (BTC), users will be able to top up their card with cryptocurrencies such as Dogecoin (DOGE), Dash (DASH), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), and Litecoin (LTC). The card is already ready to be accepted by some merchants in the U.S. Edge Mastercard users will have a daily spending limit of $1,000 for the first time after launch. To recharge the card, users will need to sell their cryptocurrency in the wallet and send the dollars received to the card account. There will be no charge for recharging. According to Puig, those who want to make purchases online with the card can do so seamlessly with the credentials.
Digital currencies pose a threat to the security of the global payment infrastructure. Anne Elizabeth Boden, founder and CEO of UK neobank Starling Bank.
During the Money 20/20 fintech conference in Amsterdam, the organization’s CEO noted that many cryptocurrency wallets are “directly connected to payment schemes”.
The CEO of Starling Bank also recalled fraud in the industry. According to her, it takes more time to protect customers than it does to promote cryptocurrencies.
Boden doubted that Starling would start offering digital assets in the next couple of years. She stressed that industry-affiliated companies have a lot of catching up to do when it comes to anti-money laundering.
In March 2021, UK-based Starling Bank closed a £272m ($341.6m) Series D funding round led by Fidelity. In April, the organization raised £50m ($62.8m) from Goldman Sachs.
At the end of May of the same year, Starling Bank temporarily banned customers from making deposits on cryptocurrency exchanges. The restrictions were promised to be lifted after testing a new financial crime prevention system.
In November 2021, Mastercard announced the launch of bitcoin-linked debit, credit, and prepaid payment cards in Asia-Pacific.
In January 2022, Mastercard announced a partnership with bitcoin exchange Coinbase. As part of the joint initiative, the companies planned to allow the purchase of NFTs with bank cards.
In June, PayPal opened up the possibility of transferring cryptocurrencies between accounts, as well as withdrawing them to third-party wallets.
Upbit, one of South Korea’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, warned users about delisting Litecoin (LTC) on 20 June 2022.
According to the report, Upbit requested more information from Litecoin Foundation about the MimbleWimble protocol and conducted its own analysis.
According to Upbit representatives, this violates local legislation. Users can withdraw funds from the platform until 20 July.
On 20 May, the Litecoin mainnet activated a protocol with extensive scalability and enhanced privacy capabilities. It uses several technologies, including confidential transactions and CoinJoin, which hides the inputs and outputs of senders and receivers and combines multiple transactions into one.
Bithumb has since announced the possibility of delisting LTC. Coinone, Korbit, and Gopax made similar decisions.
When PayPal announced in 2020 that it would expand its offering to include Bitcoin, the sensation was perfect. So far, however, only customers in the USA and Great Britain can trade Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin and Bitcoin Cash and store them in a wallet.
The biggest drawback so far was that no transfers to and from external wallets were possible. However, this is to change in the coming weeks, at least for US customers, as the company announced yesterday.
This means that the wallets will become fully-fledged solutions, apart from the fact that the owners do not control the private keys to their cryptos. Users will have the ability to send and receive bitcoin freely. In addition, they will be able to transfer cryptocurrencies internally to other PayPal accounts free of charge.
The new feature has been available to selected customers and is expected to reach all US customers in the coming weeks, provided they have gone through a KYC process and identified themselves.
While the group’s offering certainly doesn’t match the ethos of many Bitcoiners, it does go a long way towards bringing Bitcoin to the centre of society. PayPal is still limited to the US market and the UK, but it should be clear that sooner or later the group will take it to the global market. At the end of 2020, PayPal counted 377 million people worldwide among its customers.
The fact that PayPal is now opening up its wallets is a thoroughly positive step that should be welcomed. Those who cannot identify with the fact that KYC is now part of the good standard and that all parties are increasingly identifiable will probably have a hard time in the future anyway. After all, the rigorous regulation of the market in the course of anti-money laundering laws has recently been decided.
Last week we had already reported on the investments of large companies in Bitcoin. At that time, MicroStrategy had a fabulous 114,042 Bitcoin in its possession. Since September, the contingent has already been expanded by 20,000 Bitcoin. So, with the new purchase of 7002 BTC, the company continues its investment.
The CEO of the multinational company is Michael Saylor. In the past, he had stood out as a big supporter of bitcoin. Apparently, there is no end in sight for his investment strategy.
As he recently announced on Twitter, MicroStrategy acquired another 7,002 Bitcoins for about $414 million. This gave Saylor an average purchase price of $59,187.
Coinbase is launching a program for direct deposit of paychecks into cryptocurrencies. PayPal and Robinhood already offer this service in the US.
Coinbase will soon allow U.S. companies to deposit their employees’ paychecks directly into accounts at the crypto exchange. In a blog post Monday, Coinbase Senior Director of Product Prakash Hariramani announced the option. This will allow employees to use their paychecks to purchase cryptocurrencies without transaction fees. For their part, companies can set up direct deposits through a supported payroll company in the Coinbase app or through a company’s human resources department.
Billionaire Ray Dalio considers a Bitcoin ban is hugely potential from America in an identical manner as Gold straight back in 1934 to “shield the fiscal strategy.”
Whoever fund director and Billionaire Ray Dalio shared his notions regarding the long run Bitcoin and said crypto prohibition in America comes with a fantastic likelihood. Dalio summarized the fundamental banks want to know more about managing the requirement and distribution of these own countries, and inserted banks pick whether their attention to own a monopoly on banks at a nation and when matters just like crypto can proceed awful.
Even the crypto current market uses a fantastic bull streak under this systemic drive for crypto and expense businesses, supervisors, and firms such as VanEck, Goldman Sachs, and Fidelity most registered for ETFs together with all the US Securities and Exchange Commission. That directed the fundamental banking institutions to rethink the effect of electronic resources. Additionally, central financial institutions started out adapting to the development of new systems at the fintech distance and a few analyzing the prospect of devoting a CBDC, but that is maybe not true together with different associations using a competitive approach crypto-like India’s principal banking.
Dalio remarked that India’s existing position is aggressive in the direction of crypto. Simultaneously, the county transferred forward with all the programs to prohibit digital belongings preventing crypto holding and trading and blocking the Web Protocol as stated by an anonymous resource by your Indian origins. India’s Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman clarified there is a tiny window of chances to get BTC. However, it looks like a window usually means the US government will experiment with BTC while implementing blockchain technological innovation on different businesses.
A planned financial product from Goldman Sachs can allow the significant bank to invest indirectly in Bitcoin. The financial institution filed the corresponding application with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on March 19.
The financial product is a so-called “linked note.” Such notes are linked to other financial products – in this case, an ETF. Interestingly, the Goldman Sachs note is related to the ARK Innovation ETF, of all things, a fund that is intertwined with the Bitcoin economy.
The Ark Innovation ETF (trading symbol: ARKK) has been around since 2013. The actively managed exchange-traded fund’s stated goal is to invest in technologies and companies with disruptive potential. The ETF is interested, for example, in the energy sector, genetic engineering, artificial intelligence, and precisely also FinTechs and cryptocurrencies. Goldman Sachs’ SEC filing states:
“The ETF may have exposure to cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin indirectly through an investment in a Grantor Trust. The ETF’s exposure to cryptocurrencies may change over time, and, accordingly, such exposure may not always be represented in the ETF’s portfolio.”
As of today, it is possible to pay with Bitcoin in the US online store of the US car manufacturer Tesla. “You can now buy Tesla with Bitcoin,” writes company founder Elon Musk on Twitter.
Tesla does not work with third-party providers for BTC payments, who exchange Bitcoin for US dollars in the background and then transfer them to Tesla, but accepts the BTC directly. According to Musk, Tesla would work exclusively with internal open-source software and also operate a Bitcoin node itself.
The company announced this promise back in February 2021. At the same time, 1.5 billion dollars were invested in digital currency. The value of Bitcoin had risen sharply in recent months – at the beginning of January, it climbed temporarily to over 40,000 dollars. In mid-March, it even cracked a record value of over 60,000 dollars.
Coinbase, the largest U.S. trading platform for cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin or Ethereum, is already highly prized by investors even before its debut on New York’s Nasdaq. This year, the company’s shares changed hands for an average of $343.58 in over-the-counter trading, Coinbase disclosed in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Wednesday. That puts the California-based group’s latest valuation at least $67.6 billion (56.8 billion euros), it said.
Coinbase is benefiting greatly from the enormous cryptocurrency hype ahead of its IPO, which is expected later this month. Last year, the over-the-counter average price for the company’s shares was just $28.83.
Most recently, according to U.S. media reports, even a total valuation of more than 100 billion U.S. dollars was considered a good possibility for the IPO since private transactions usually achieve much lower prices than after the premiere on the public capital market.
Coinbase plans to list 114.9 million shares on Nasdaq, according to a filing with the SEC. However, this is not a traditional IPO but a direct placement without investment banks’ assistance and a prior pricing process.
Coinbase said it made about $1.3 billion in revenue in 2020, more than double the previous year. The bottom line was a profit of 322 million US dollars, after a minus of 30 million in the previous year.
Meitu, a China-based software development company, has invested another £35.8 million in Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH). A report revealed this news on March 18, noting that this purchase has increased its crypto holdings to £64.45 million. According to reports, the company bought 386.08 BTC for £15.5 million and 16,000 ETH for around £23.3 million.
This is the company’s second crypto purchase this month. On March 5, Meitu, listed in China and Hong Kong, made its first investment in the crypto space, buying 15,000 ETH for £15.11 million. On the same day, the company bought 378 BTC for £12.83 million. As such, Meitu now owns approximately 31,000 ETH and 764.08 BTC.
According to Meitu, cryptocurrencies are still in the early stages of their growth. However, blockchain has already shown its potential to become a disruptive tool in the current financial and technology sectors.
San Francisco-based leading crypto exchange, Coinbase Pro, has added support for Cardano (ADA). Coinbase announced the news through a blog post on March 16, noting that it has begun accepting incoming transfers from ADA to Coinbase Pro. The company went on to say that ADA trading is scheduled to begin on March 18 at 4:00 PM UTC, provided the coin receives sufficient liquidity.
According to the blog post, users can trade ADA for four pairs using the Coinbase Pro platform. These are ADA/USD, ADA/BTC, ADA/EUR, and ADA/GBP. However, the coin must first accumulate ample supply on the platform. Like other Coinbase listings, ADA trading will go live after three stages. These are post-only, limit-only, and full trading.
The publication added that if any of the above order books fail the exchange’s assessment of a properly functioning market, it will remain in the same stage for an extended period of time. Coinbase added that it could suspend trading on the order book altogether, based on its trading rules.
Ethereum, currently in second place in the ranking of the most important cryptocurrencies, can overtake Bitcoin in a period of about ten years. Crypto analyst Ryan Watkins is convinced of this. He bases his steep thesis on various indications of varying importance.
The entire argument is based on the ongoing progress of the Ethereum network. As is known, the project is working on version 2.0 of its blockchain. It is supposed to fix various problems.
The move from the consensus proof-of-work model to proof-of-stake, he said, reduces energy consumption, speeds up operations, and leads to value-preserving scarcity by burning Ether as part of transaction processing. Moreover, the protocol upgrade would ultimately make the network even more secure than Bitcoin.
Watkins sees a massive value driver in the service portfolio around the defi sector, which Bitcoin does not have to offer at all. Applications of the decentralized financial sector (Dapps), especially the rapidly growing NFT sector, increase the Ethereum network’s importance in modern everyday life.
Dapps, in particular, is forcing Ethereum to work on performance. In small steps, the network is moving in the right direction. For example, Ethereum Improvement Proposal (EIP) 1559 is set to be implemented in July. This aims to make the Ethereum network cheaper and faster by restructuring transaction fees.
Instead of transaction fees set by miners on their own responsibility, the so-called gas fees, there will be an algorithmically determined base fee in the future, i.e., a base fee that does not have to be re-auctioned for each transaction. The base fee will be burned in the course of the transaction, i.e., destroyed by the protocol.
No one benefits from these payments, which will always remain fixed to Ether under the new regime, stabilizing the currency’s value. This pleases everyone involved, except the miners. They are losing massive amounts of revenue and now want to fight back with a so-called 51 percent attack.
Digital currency investment firm Grayscale has announced the launch of five new digital asset trusts. Grayscale launched a series of new digital asset trusts to the market, reportedly offering investors more diversification options. The U.S.-based cryptocurrency asset manager previously offered nine investment products, and the latest additions will bring the total number to 14. The new digital currency investment trusts are slightly different from other Grayscale products, as they include alternative digital assets such as Filecoin, Decentraland, Livepeer, and Basic Attention Token.
All five trusts are currently open for subscription daily to retail and institutional investors who meet the eligibility criteria. The company’s CEO, Michael Sonnenshein, cited increasing investor demand for diversification as the reason for launching the new trusts.
“Investor demand has never been higher, and we see new entrants every day in what has certainly become a real asset class,” he said.
Sonnenshein explained that investors were looking to invest in trusts other than the renowned Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC). According to Bank of America, the trust debuted in 2013 and has become the most prominent public holder of bitcoins. This allows investors to take exposures to bitcoin without having to hold the actual asset. This way, they don’t have to worry about security or custody issues.
Visa CEO Alfred Kelly believes crypto-assets could be widely used in the next five years. He seemed to hold cryptocurrencies in high regard when he made the remarks that seemingly contradict his stance on the same issue in January.
The Visa executive spoke vaguely about cryptocurrencies earlier this year when the multinational financial services company announced its quarterly results. For more than three years, Kelly has not reported any upcoming or planned projects involving digital assets at the helm of the company.
Now he acknowledges that cryptocurrencies could turn out to be established or be a short-lived craze.
“The thing about our business that I really like is […] we don’t pick winners and losers. You know, as you and I sit here today talking, I don’t know to what extent cryptocurrencies are going to take off. Are we going to say five years from now that it was a fad and not a big deal? Or will they become extremely mainstream?”
Investment bank Morgan Stanley will offer its wealthy clients access to Bitcoin funds. This makes it the first leading bank in the US to take such a step. Morgan Stanley currently manages over $4 trillion for its clients, and its move into bitcoin (BTC) could be huge for the crypto market.
Sources closely familiar with the matter told CNBC that Morgan Stanley told its financial advisors in an internal memo yesterday to grant access to three funds and allow clients bitcoin assets.
According to Morgan Stanley, the move to offer bitcoin funds results from increasing demand from its clients. The bitcoin rally over the past year has caught the attention of Wall Street. Several wealthy investors are demanding exposure to cryptocurrency.
There would be certain restrictions regarding bitcoin funds. Morgan Stanley would only allow wealthy clients to access the funds. To qualify, an investor must have at least $2 million in assets, while the minimum requirement for investment firms is at least $5 million. In both cases, accounts must be at least six months old.