Lots of Crypto-Related Positive News From Institutions (Weekly Digest, Oct 15—19)

Pantera Capital CEO thinks that Bitcoin ETF is years away, Tether and Bitfinex finally find a new bank, HTC releases its blockchain smartphone next week — in this weekly news digest


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Bitcoin (BTC) Darknet Transactions Doubled In 2018: Why This Is Bullish

Crypto Darknet Transactions Boomed In 2018 Since Bitcoin (BTC) burst onto the global stage in 2009, the cryptocurrency, known for its decentralized, immutable, censorship-resistant, pseudonymous, and borderless nature, has become a medium for transactions of all shapes and size. And just like U.S. dollars and other government-issued currencies, BTC has found use cases in illicit transactions. Whether it be purchasing questionable goods or otherwise, the flagship cryptocurrency has found a place. Per a recent report by the way of Reuters, which cited data gathered by Chainalysis, a leading blockchain data analytics consortium, Bitcoin-related transactions on darknet markets, which offer fake IDs, over-the-counter drugs (recreational), among other articles of contraband, have risen dramatically since January 2018. This rally in darknet-related transactions comes as BTC fell from an all-time high of $20,000 to a yearly low of $3,150 in late-December. It isn’t clear how the analytics group, which is often employed by governmental agencies to weed out bad actors, discerned ‘normal’ transactions from those questionable, but Chainalysis revealed that $2 million per day worth of BTC were routed through the darknet’s peer-to-peer marketplaces. Overall, $600 million was spent on darknet markets throughout 2018, compared to $700 million in 2017. While the decline in transaction value could be seen in a negative light, considering BTC fell by over 70% within the same time period, a 14.3% drop is relatively mere. Kim Grauer, a senior economist at Chainalysis, chalked the slight decline in darknet transactions to the closure of AlphaBay and Hansa, two “major markets,” in mid-2017, which purportedly stunted flows into early-2018.  Grauer added: The reason for that drop is more law enforcement activity… It would be misleading to think that this year it (the volume) will go down. Why This Stat Is Bullish For Bitcoin So you may be gandering at the title and thinking, why is this non-innocuous statistics an optimistic sign for BTC and the broader cryptocurrency market/sector? Well, let me explain. Although I do not agree with (much of) what goes on via the darknet, the rise in ‘illicit’ transactions underscores a forward-thinking, bullish Bitcoin trend. More specifically, the monumental growth of Bitcoin’s underlying multi-faceted fundamentals throughout 2018. So make no mistake, while the collapse in price is harrowing, people are still using BTC in transactions, not just pure speculation. Per previous reports from Ethereum World News, data compiled by Jameson Lopp, the chief technology officer of Casa, accentuated that from a fundamental perspective, 2018 was Bitcoin’s best year yet. Hashrate doubled, while a cumulative $410 billion in value was transacted on the “world’s most secure transactional settlement layer.” Bitcoin’s scaling solutions also saw notable levels of adoption. SegWit, a short-term, ‘bandaid-esque’ solution that squeezes more transactions into blocks, saw use swell from 10% to 40% over 2018. The Lightning Network, a long-term scaling solution that takes advantage of off-chain ledgers to facilitate effectively free, low cost, scalable, immutable, and private transactions, swelled to 500+ BTC capacity. And while 2019-specific statistics are scant and hard to come by, preliminary data indicates that the following 12 months will continue to see the flagship cryptocurrency & blockchain network continue to gain traction. This isn’t baseless speculation. Per our previous reports, Coinstar, a North American kiosk provider with tens of thousands of offerings across the U.S. & Canada, recently joined hands with Coinme, a Bitcoin ATM upstart, to implement their services into Coinstar’s terminals. Now, over 20,000 kiosks can buy BTC with their spare change. Title Image Courtesy of Noah Silliman Via Unsplash The post Bitcoin (BTC) Darknet Transactions Doubled In 2018: Why This Is Bullish appeared first on Ethereum World News.
Ethereum World News

Gov’t Shutdown Freezes SEC Activity, But Bitcoin ETF Date Unaffected

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has frozen all pending administrative proceedings due to the government shutdown. According to a legal expert, however, the Commission is not allowed, by law, to delay the decision on VanEck/SolidX Bitcoin ETF past its current deadline.  No More Delays Despite Government Shutdown The SEC has issued an order on January 16th, putting all pending administrative proceedings on hold because it has “experienced a lapse in appropriations.” According to the documents, all proceedings which have to face a hearing before the Commission or an administrative law judge, are currently frozen. Jake Chervinsky Legal expert Jake Chervinsky said that even though the SEC has been shut down before that order, administrative proceedings were still in motion, hence deadlines were unaffected. Now that the SEC has stayed all administrative proceedings, interested parties may file a motion to dismiss the stay if their proceedings are an exception of the activities stated in the order. Bitcoinist reported that the SEC needs to come up with a decision on the approval of the CBOE-backed VanEck/SolidX Bitcoin ETF by February 27, 2019. Irrespective of the newest order, the SEC isn’t allowed to further delay its decision, the legal expert holds: This does not change anything about the ETF deadline, which is imposed by the statute and cannot be delayed further. This does not change anything about the ETF deadline, which is imposed by statute and cannot be delayed further. I stand by the following:https://t.co/1EpAv1B0Nm — Jake Chervinsky (@jchervinsky) January 17, 2019 The commission has already delayed its decision multiple times, with the last one happening in December. SEC’s shutdown saw mounting rumors that the Bitcoin ETF might get automatically approved if the commission misses the deadline. While this is true in theory, Chervinsky recently dismissed the possibility, saying that “in reality, it would never happen.” It’s true that a proposed rule change is auto-approved if the SEC doesn’t make a decision by the deadline, but in reality it would never happen. The SEC has enough staff to put out a decision, even if it’s a one-pager saying ‘denied for reasons to be explained later. Chervinsky, who’s also a frequent commentator on cryptocurrency-related matters, has previously said that the chances of a Bitcoin ETF approval are down to 10%. What do you think about the chances of a Bitcoin ETF approval? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments below! Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Twitter@jchervinsky   The post Gov’t Shutdown Freezes SEC Activity, But Bitcoin ETF Date Unaffected appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.

Tron [TRX]’s Justin Sun: We want to become the most famous brand in the world

In almost a month’s time, Tron [TRX] has managed to grow multifold by doubling its value and become the ninth the largest coin on the CoinMarketCap. At the time of press, the coin was valued at $0.0250 with a market cap of $1.6 billion. The coin has a 24-hour trade volume of $175 million with a growth of over 2% in the past 24 hours. The coin has, however, slipped by 0.10% over the past hour. The Chief Executive Officer [CEO] of Tron, Justin Sun is in the middle of all that the company has to offer, especially its much-awaited niTRON summit, a Tron sponsored conference in San Francisco. The conference begins today and features stars like former NBA star Kobe Bryant as keynote speaker, along with Sun and an executive from Swisscom AG, a $25 billion telecommunications company, reported Bloomberg. Sun, recently bought the file sharing application BitTorrent for $120 million in 2019. The announcement of BTT tokens which runs on the Tron and BitTorrent networks has proved to be beneficial for the company as the demand increased for the coin. The Chief Executive Officer [CEO] at researcher Messari Inc. said to Bloomberg in an e-mail: “A lot of people wrote off Tron as all hype/marketing and no substance, but they made a lot of noise with the BitTorrent acquisition, and now I think it’s an open question of whether they will be one of crypto’s most high profile ‘fake it til you make it’ success stories,” The CEO also added: “It’s been wild to watch.” Along with the company, Justin Sun is becoming popular as the face of the company and increasing following on the social media site, Twitter. Sun told the publication in an interview: “We want to become the most famous brand in the world”. Sun elaborated saying when someone thinks about cryptocurrency, Tron will be the first one, while drawing parallels to the popularity of Bitcoin [BTC]. While the smallest unit of Bitcoin is called Satoshi, after its creator, Tron’s smallest unit is called sun after Justin Sun. As per Sun, Tron had raised $70 million in Initial Coin Offering [ICO] which is largely untouched. Sun shared a similar vision for BitTorrent and so do many others. Justin Knoll, head of the BitTorrent project said to the publication that their goal is to convert all the 100 million monthly users of BitTorrent into cryptocurrency users. BTT could be used to increase the download speed of the movies, and tip the performers, but eventually it will be used for paying for site storage, informed the head of the project. Sun had informed that BitTorrent is profitable and is generating around $25 million in revenue per year. The aim of the company is to increase the number of distributed apps, such as games running on their network. Tron currently has 107 Dapps compare to Ethereum’s 1,374 as per DappRadar. However, this number will increase as Sun recently announced up to $100 million funds for developers who are creating Tron gaming apps. Tron also claims to have much faster transaction times compared to Ethereum as it uses a different mechanism for verifying transactions. Tron’s 27 super representatives produce the blocks that are then voted for by the account holder of the cryptocurrency. Ethereum, on the other hand, uses miners to verify transactions, which also now moving to the proof-of-stake system. Sun said: “Converting to PoS is a huge effort. It’s like moving a building a block away. It might be easier to tear down the building and rebuild it. It doesn’t work that way. For Ethereum, it may cost them a year or two to migrate, and that seems optimistic.” The post Tron [TRX]’s Justin Sun: We want to become the most famous brand in the world appeared first on AMBCrypto.

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