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Top Trending Crypto News of the Week: Stellar, IBM, CBOE and Jack Dorsey Among Major Newsmakers

Key highlights Jack Dorsey’s Square recruiting for open source contributions Stellar and IBM launch global payments network 4 Countries moving towards crypto regulations CBOE brings Bitcoin Futures to hold Patricia plans to get stablecoin to Africa Jack Dorsey’s Square recruiting for open source contributions Jack Dorsey again made major headlines this week as he continued progressing on its crypto projects and plans. According to the recent tweet, Jack announced that Square is forming a new vertical called Square Crypto which will be an “open source initiative independent of [their] business objectives.” To accomplish this new venture, Jack mentioned that they have been hiring three to four cryptocurrency engineers and one designer. Stellar and IBM launch global payments network Cryptocurrencies and payments took another leap when IBM announced the launch of its Blockchain World Wire, a service that uses the  Stellar protocol to smoothly facilitate cross border payments and point-to-point money transfers. IBM had originally announced the World Wire in October 2017and since then has been working on its development. With this announcement, the network is finally here and officially accessible in a handful of markets. 4 Countries moving towards crypto regulations The market for cryptocurrency is just going to take a huge leap as 4 counties of the world are inching closer to regulating it. Canada and the emerging countries pack of Mexico, India, and Israel are all standing on the verge of regulating cryptocurrencies. While regulators in Canada are seeking input from the country’s crypto industry players regarding regulation, the government is soon to be presenting its set of rules in front of the apex court. Mexico and Israel are looking at various aspect before the give a legal nod. CBOE brings Bitcoin Futures to hold While the world is waiting for newer investment instruments for crypto, the existing one seems to be falling in danger. This week, the Chicago Board Options Exchange which launched Bitcoin Futures has put them on hold. The exchange purportedly stated that it is not going to list Bitcoin Futures in March this year, however, the previous Bitcoin Futures contracts listed on the exchange will remain listed till their expiry in June. Patricia plans to get stablecoin to Africa Africa to get its own stablecoin. Well, that’s true, PATRICIA Technologies, an e-commerce company, is planning to bring a stable for its African users. The company’s founder Hanu Agbodje was quoted saying “We intend to offer Africans something reliable, beneficial and that will boost the IGR of many African countries. Stable coins are important for exchange users, exchange operators, and for the cryptocurrency market as a whole”, The post Top Trending Crypto News of the Week: Stellar, IBM, CBOE and Jack Dorsey Among Major Newsmakers appeared first on Coingape.
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Caspian launches cryptocurrency-derivatives after CBOE delists BTC futures

Caspian, the virtual currency trading, portfolio and risk management firm, announced a partnership with Deribit, the crypto-derivatives exchange to launch cryptocurrency futures and options. The partnership marks the first time an institutional platform is providing both futures and options trading in the digital assets class. Announced on March 20 via a press release, the partnership will see Deribit included in the Caspian ecosystem, which includes “over 30 major crypto exchanges and liquidity providers”. Deribit, the Amsterdam-based exchange, currently facilitates trading in Bitcoin [BTC] and Ethereum [ETH] options and future contracts along with a Deribit perpetual swap product for the top cryptocurrency. The press release also added that the futures-crypto-exchange also offers “100x leverage and competitive trading fees”. Caspian will build an application to connect the crypto-derivatives exchange so that it can process “high volumes” and ease the client’s access to the order books. The statement said, “The Caspian platform connects to Deribit through an advanced API that supports high volumes with ultra-low latency and provides clients with access to the exchange’s full options order book.” Robert Dykes, the CEO of Caspian, aims to create a crypto-derivatives market that mimics the traditional markets in infrastructure. He stated: “Our goal at Caspian is to provide crypto traders and investors the same standard of tools and service that exist in the traditional market.” John Jansen, the CEO of Deribit, stated that institutional investors will see this partnership as a “gateway” into the cryptocurrency markets and that it will push the wave of crypto-adoption within the derivatives realm. Caspian is the product of a partnership between Kenetic Capital, a Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency firm, and the American trading services company, Tora. In September 2018, the Caspian project saw a massive $16 million investment from Galaxy Investment, Octagon Strategy, Global Advisors and Bletchley Park and Kenetic. Coincidently, the Chicago Board Options Exchange [CBOE] delisted their Bitcoin futures contract for March 2019. This delisting will provide a great impetus to its cross-town rival, the Chicago Mercantile Exchange [CME], to capture the Bitcoin derivatives market. Back in late-2017, the CBOE and CME introduced Bitcoin futures, which lead to a mammoth bullish wave to ensconce the market. Bitcoin rose over the $19,000 mark and the collective market was valued at over $800 billion. The post Caspian launches cryptocurrency-derivatives after CBOE delists BTC futures appeared first on AMBCrypto.
AMBCrypto

CBOE Trashing Bitcoin Futures Signals Crypto Market Bottom: Brian Kelly

Cryptocurrency investor Brian Kelly believes that the decision to drop bitcoin futures by the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) represents a watershed in the history of bitcoin, signaling that the crypto market’s longest-ever decline has finally found a bottom. BKCM Founder: CBOE Exit Shows Bitcoin Bear Market is ‘Exhausted’ Speaking on Tuesday’s edition of CNBC Fast Money, the BKCM Digital Asset Fund founder and CEO stated that he sees improvement in bitcoin address growth and market sentiment since December 2018 as evidence that the retail end of the bear market is “exhausted.” CCN recently reported that CBOE ditched bitcoin futures, The post CBOE Trashing Bitcoin Futures Signals Crypto Market Bottom: Brian Kelly appeared first on CCN
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CBOE Pull the Plug on Bitcoin Cash Based Futures —and Why this is a Good Thing for Bitcoin.

CBOE Pull the Plug on Bitcoin Cash Based Futures —and Why this is a Good Thing for Bitcoin.‘Pull the plug’ is a phrase rarely associated with positive sentiment, but for the Bitcoin market, CBOE’s decision to cancel their Bitcoin futures is far more bullish than it sounds.Photo by Dmitry Moraine on UnsplashThe Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) is the largest U.S. options exchange, which offers options trading of over 2,200 companies.Cash based futures settlements are used in certain types of futures and options contracts. When the futures contract expires, instead of the seller settling in the underlying asset, in this case Bitcoin, they deliver the associated cash position.In December 2017, CBOE was the first ever exchange to introduce Bitcoin futures, coinciding with the top of the Bitcoin roller-coaster market, in an effort to introduce institutional traders to the leading digital asset.However, CBOE have recently announced that they’re intending to pull the plug on their current Bitcoin futures contract, which is set to expire in June 2019, following the 78% decline in BTC price since CBOE’s futures contracts began trading.Likewise, CBOE largely lost much of their volume to CME cash backed Bitcoin futures, which were released a few days later also during December 2017, and captured much greater trading volumes throughout most of the futures contracts history.Why is this Positive News for Bitcoin?With BTC’s current push above $4000, many crypto analysts are suggesting that Bitcoin may indeed have found its bottom.That’s certainly the sentiment offered by CNBC’s Fast Money panel, who speculate that the end of the CBOE cash backed futures coincides with retail investors and shorts becoming exhausted and losing momentum, whilst institutional investors gear up to enter the market later this year.Institutional money, from the likes of Bakkt and Fidelity’s offerings, are just around the corner. This comes as custody options have become more robust, significantly reducing the need to trade futures contracts through exchanges such as CBOE.Bitcoin Cash Backed Futures were Damaging for BitcoinBack in 2017 when BTC cash backed futures were first introduced, tech analyst Gene Munster stated:“[Bitcoin futures] could have a material negative impact on the price of Bitcoin [as] investors will have an easier time betting against bitcoin”As it happens, this was true. Shortly after CBOE and CBE launched their futures contracts in December 2017, the price of Bitcoin plummeted. Cash based Bitcoin futures essentially allowed speculative investors to bet against the price of Bitcoin, and settle in cash.In contrast, Bakkt’s upcoming BTC futures is settled in Bitcoin, providing a derivative much more closely correlated with the actual Bitcoin market itself.Many have speculated that CBOE’s cash backed futures led to particularly wealthy participants intentionally causing market volatility within the BTC markets, to profit in cash via positions in cash backed futures contracts.Whilst this is of course highly speculative, overall sentiment in the cryptocurrency community seems to have welcomed the close of the the CBOE BTC futures with open arms.CBOE Pull the Plug on Bitcoin Cash Based Futures —and Why this is a Good Thing for Bitcoin. was originally published in Hacker Noon on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.
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CBOE announces discontinuation of Bitcoin futures; CNBC contributor says BTC already hit bottom

CBOE, a major US exchange, announced that it will halt Bitcoin futures once its current contract expires in June 2019. The US exchange was the first institution to launch Bitcoin futures back in December 2017. However, it is speculated that a devaluation of 75% of Bitcoin price might have triggered the discontinuation. According to CNBC, the exchange released a statement announcing that they will not add new Bitcoin futures in March. The company was assessing its approach and did not rule out the possibility of adding other cryptocurrency derivatives, the statement said. Brian Kelly, Founder and CEO of BKCM LLC, a digital currency investment firm, spoke about the announcement on a CNBC segment of Fast Money Traders. Brian suggested that the Bitcoin market might have hit its bottom, after trading between the $3,000-$4,000 range. He also added that the Bitcoin market witnessed improvements in its underlying fundamentals since the passing of the worst bear market. Kelly further added, “We are starting to see address growth. We have started to see sentiments like this. This tells me that retail traders are out of the picture because the CBOE futures would run contracts for $3900, so I think retails are exhausted. And I think sellers are exhausted and with institutions coming in, where Fidelity acting like a catalyst and coming up.I think all these things combined we might look back and say $3000 was a good time to buy Bitcoin.” CBOE introduced Bitcoin futures in December 2017 with the intention to garner more institutional involvement. However, institutional involvement has been slower than expected, Brian added. Brian also stressed the many Bitcoin avenues open to financial institutions. He added that custody had improved, implying that institutions can now buy physical Bitcoins. The need for future contracts was also low, he said, following the increasing robustness of trade functionality. The post CBOE announces discontinuation of Bitcoin futures; CNBC contributor says BTC already hit bottom appeared first on AMBCrypto.
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The Market Responds Nonchalant to CBOE BTC ETF Pull Out

Yesterday, 23 January, the US Securities and Exchange Commission released a two-page document revealing the temporary withdrawal of the proposed rule change by the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) BZX Exchange Inc. This proposed rule change was said to lay the groundwork for the long-anticipated VanEck/SolidX BTC ETF

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OPINION

Why Do We Need to Wrap Bitcoin?

BitGo, Kyber Network, MakerDAO, IDEX and many other crypto companies partnered to create a Bitcoin-backed Ethereum token, Wrapped Bitcoin. This token will represent BTC, 1 token equal to 1 BTC stored in the custody of BitGo. It could be used to trade BTC on DEXes, the whole administration will be via DAO, similar to Maker system

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DIGEST

Tether destroyed 500 million USDT, Swissquote allows ICO participation, Coinbase added its first stablecoin, IDEX to block NY users, Vertex Ventures invests in Binance, the biggest crypto theft in Australia, Sony creates contactless hardware wallet, Japanese crypto exchanges got a self-regulatory status, Bitcoin Futures still lack volume — in this weekly news

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ESSENTIAL

Today’s cryptocurrency market is young and volatile. Cryptocurrencies have no backing, as such their value is not attached to a physical asset in fact. Their prices are, by and large, speculative meaning they are highly dependable on news and people talking about them. In an effort to bring stability to the market, CBOE and CME, world’s largest derivatives exchanges, decided to introduce Bitcoin futures.

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Crypto Exchanges Under Fire: DragonEx Hacked, Coinbene Undergoes Sudden Maintenance

Singapore Exchange Loses A Mass Of Crypto Exchanges haven’t had the best start to 2019. Sure, Binance has been doing A-OK with its initial exchange offering (IEO) model, with its resident token rallying past $17, but lesser-known crypto platforms have been suffering. Earlier this year, QuadrigaCX was revealed to have ‘lost’ access to over $150 million worth of Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other assets, as Cryptopia suffered a devastating hack. This facet of the industry’s misfortune has continued, unfortunately enough. According to CoinDesk, DragonEx, a Singapore-based exchange, was hacked. The company announced this unfortunate happening via its Telegram channel, in which DragonEx’s PR staff claimed that funds of users and the platform itself were “transferred and stolen.” DragonEx has yet to divulge the exact details of the crypto assets stolen, including the type and the nominal value. However, the company did post the addresses of the assumed hackers, of which there were about 20 pertaining to a series of assets (Bitcoin, XEM, EOS, XRP, ETC, etc.). From a brief look, a minimum of 135 BTC, 500 Ether, and 4,670 LTC were forcibly yanked from the exchange’s coffers. This, for those who are wondering, racks up to ~$800,000. The full amount hacked, however, could easily be much higher than this sum. DragonEx has purportedly informed a number of local authorities, including those in Estonia, Thailand, Singapore, and Hong Kong, to the attack. Elaborating, the crypto startup wrote: “We’re assisting policemen to do investigation. All platform services will be closed and the accurate assets loss recovery situation will be announced in a week. It was added that the firm will “take the responsibility no matter what.” Coinbene Under Seige? This comes as Coinbene suddenly revealed it would be undergoing maintenance. A tweet from the company claims that it “upgraded the platform wallet… operations such as deposit and withdraw will be affected.” While this is a normal announcement for exchanges across the board, Coinbene’s session came straight out of left field, leading to ramping speculation. Nick Schteringard posted the below message in a bid to draw suspicion to the exchange’s Ethereum wallets, which sent out a mass of ERC-20 tokens yesterday. Some strange activity spotted on #Coinbene. Users report that #ETH wallets were hacked and attach these two addresses. https://t.co/f5NxvfscSC https://t.co/S1WnwI8CUx #bitcoin #exchange— Nick Schteringard (@schteringard) March 26, 2019 Coinbene’s ongoing imbroglio comes after Bitwise Asset Management, an American crypto-centric investment services provider, targeted the exchange in its scathing report on fake Bitcoin trading activity. As reported by Ethereum World News previously, Bitwise drew attention to “suspicious exchanges” such as the little-known CoinBene to back its report. CoinBene purportedly utilizes “trade printing” between the bid and ask prices, hinting that there could be an automated system behind much of the trades. Thus, some have concluded that this sudden period of maintenance could be the platform’s bid to rectify bots and other bad actors. Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash The post Crypto Exchanges Under Fire: DragonEx Hacked, Coinbene Undergoes Sudden Maintenance appeared first on Ethereum World News.
Ethereum World News

Japanese E-Commerce Giant, Rakuten, Gets Nod of Approval by FSA to Launch Crypto Exchange

Rakuten, the e-commerce giant and Japan's Amazon has completed the registration of its cryptocurrency exchange Rakuten Wallet that will be going live next month, as per the press release of the company on March 25. The official announcement reads: “We are pleased to announce that our registration with the Kanto Finance Bureau has been completed […]
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$3.4M Huobi Prime Sale Shows Investor Enthusiasm Remains High

Huobi Prime successfully completed its first initial exchange offering (IEO) on Huobi Prime this afternoon. The sale concluded in a matter of seconds, and raised $3.4M – proving that investor enthusiasm for the new token sale format isn’t confined to Binance Launchpad. TOP Network, a blockchain-based messaging service, was the first project featured on the new platform. More than 1.5bn TOP tokens were sold, around 7.5% of the total supply. The token was made available for trading almost immediately, and at the time of writing was exchanging hands at a multiple of around four times the asking price. The sale comprised three funding rounds, each offering larger quantities at a slightly higher asking price than the last. Although each round was set to last 30 minutes, each round was heavily oversubscribed and finished within seconds of opening. The first round completed within seven seconds. Huobi only announced its new Prime feature last week, as Crypto Briefing reported. Unlike the first few sales on Binance Launchpad, which were open to the general public, Huobi requires eligible participants to hold 500 Huobi Tokens (HT) – used to purchase tokens – at least 30 days prior to the sale. As Ross Zhang, Huobi’s head of marketing said at the time, this was to ensure the exchange gave equal opportunities to investors who were “involved and invested in our ecosystem”. Binance announced Sunday that Launchpad sales would now feature a new lottery-based format to its token sales. Better Protections For Investors… Unless Conflicts Arise? What makes IEOs interesting is that they tweak the token sale model. Instead of direct transactions between investors and projects, the exchange itself forms the counter-party. Participants must register and create an account on the platform, and this requires them to first pass KYC/AML checks. It’s also within the best interests of exchanges to ensure sales are full compliance. It’s their necks on the line and this means they are likely to carefully vet projects first. As Huobi said in its initial announcement, tokens must first pass a “[r]igorous screening and selection processes to ensure only premium projects that have yet to be listed on any major exchange are included.” Binance upgraded its own KYC/AML procedures today. Other exchanges are also looking at the IEO model, and despite a failure to launch with their first effort, Bittrex is seeking to offer VeriBlock as its next attempt. The VeriBlock project, which counts Bittrex CEO Bill Shihara as an advisor, would be valued at over $200M if the sale is completed successfully. Bittrex includes a disclaimer on its website explaining that as a result of Shihara’s dual role, “Bittrex holds a customary minority equity position in an affiliate of the sponsor of the VBK Coin Initial Exchange Offering, and will indirectly benefit from the successful completion of the Initial Exchange Offering.” Whether this discourages investors remains to be seen. Few would have thought three months ago that sales such as BitTorrent (BTT), Celer Network (CELR) and now TOP Network would have been possible. KuCoin’s Spotlight platform will be hosting its first token sale next week. Is an IEO season upon us? The author is invested in digital assets, but none mentioned in this article. Join the conversation on Telegram and Twitter! The post $3.4M Huobi Prime Sale Shows Investor Enthusiasm Remains High appeared first on Crypto Briefing.
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Why the New ‘Apple Card’ Credit Card Doesn’t Compete With Bitcoin

The Apple credit card launches this summer. Here’s why it nothing like Bitcoin and is more underwhelming than a utility token with no use-case. Apple Announces Credit Card Apple has long been revered as the world’s most innovative company. There’s no denying that the smartphone changed the way billions of people around the world live their lives forever. But it’s time for the trailblazing tech company to wake up and smell the roses. While Apple was releasing one carbon-copy product after another at higher and higher prices, the competition was busy doing the opposite. Now the high-end, high-priced tech manufacturer is scrambling to hold its own in a rapidly evolving market. And with the launch of its underwhelming Apple Card, there’s something sad about the stench of its desperation. Apple Card vs Samsung’s Built-In Bitcoin Wallet Apple’s largest competitor apart from the slew of cheaper Chinese products is undoubtedly Samsung. The South Korean giant hasn’t had an easy ride either with equally pricey products getting undercut left and right. But as one large company embraces the future, its flagship Galaxy S10 coming with a built-in Bitcoin wallet, Apple’s response is disappointing, to say the least. Rather than acknowledge the cryptocurrency revolution, and appeal to a younger market, the smartphone manufacturer aims to ‘disrupt’ the credit card industry. Isn’t that the wrong pool to be swimming in? The revolution won’t come in the form of borderless transactions since it’s only available in the United States. It also won’t be peer-to-peer, eliminate centralized institutions, or greatly reduce fees. Although its interest rates will be: Among the lowest in the industry Mind. Blown. Apple’s game plan is more about additional security of payments, no annual or foreign transaction fees, and the fact that (wait for it) its partner Goldman Sachs will never sell your data for marketing. You can even buy yourself a coffee on the Goldman Sachs blockchain. You just have to trust Apple and Goldman Sachs to do so. It’s a Custodial Hardware Hot Wallet The Apple Card will come built into the iPhone’s Wallet App, which effectively makes it a custodial hardware hot wallet for USD. Apple claims they will never track your transactions, and all the information will be held on your device. Users can request a laser-etched titanium card, should they be so inclined, although, there seems to be little point in that. In fact, why even offer a traditional card for a wallet the company wants you to get rid of in the first place? If you’ve failed to be bowled over by so much innovation so far, there’s more. Users can track their spending on their phone through a user-friendly app. You Have to Trust Goldman Sachs In the wake of major gaffes by tech companies like Facebook and Google, Apple is pushing its next-generation security and privacy features. The centralized entity will not track your transactions and Goldman Sachs (the other centralized entity) has agreed not to sell user data. Explosive stuff compared to a decentralized alternative financial system which requires no intermediaries at all. Increased adoption of Apple Pay? Perhaps. A revolution in finance? It’s just as well Cook wasn’t speaking at a Bitcoin conference, the audience would have walked out in droves. Steve Jobs Would Have Had Bitcoin in iOS by Now Apple Card seems like a desperate bid to push Apply Pay onto the people rather than let them to choose how they manage their finances. CEO Tim Cook enthused that the card was: The most significant change in the credit card experience in 50 years. Exactly where has he been lately? Steve Jobs would have Bitcoin integrated into iOS by now.  The aim of the game is presumably to bump up the adoption of Apple Pay in partnership with market leaders MasterCard and Goldman Sachs. Two giant financial institutions that will hardly feel the pinch from Apple Pay and its meager card. There are no real tangible benefits for users of the card beyond a few outstandingly mundane offers. For example, paying for Apple products with your built-in Apple Card gets you a whopping 1-3% cash back on purchases. So what is Apple thinking entering an already saturated market that swathes of people are trying to overthrow? Once on the cutting-edge of innovation, Apple now seems to be extremely myopic when it comes to the future. What do you this of this new credit card? Will it undermine payment-focused cryptocurrencies with low fees? Share your thoughts below! Images via Shutterstock The post Why the New ‘Apple Card’ Credit Card Doesn’t Compete With Bitcoin appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.
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