Digital assets are about more than just Bitcoin. The global adoption of blockchain, expansion of cross-border payments, new investment vehicles tied to intellectual property, and more, could one day establish a global market of digitized assets worth $50 trillion. This channel provides access to the latest developments, opportunities, risks, and thought leaders in the growing Digital Assets space.
Binance and Mastercard (NYSE: MA) have jointly launched the Binance Card in Brazil, allowing Binance users in the country to make purchases and pay bills with cryptocurrencies like bitcoin and BNB at over 90 million Mastercard merchants globally. However, the user must have a valid national ID.
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More Stories on Digital Assets
In an announcement Monday, Grayscale Investments, the world’s largest digital currency asset manager, said that FINRA had approved the shares in its Grayscale Bitcoin Cash Trust and Grayscale Litecoin Trust to quote under the symbols BCHG and LTCN respectively on the OTC Markets.
Telecom Argentina has to pay up $7.5 million by 23:48 on July 21. Hackers are becoming more aggressive and demanding larger ransoms for freeing up hijacked computer resources. The latest entity to fall prey to these machinations is Telecom S.A., Argentina’s largest telecommunications company.
Bank of Thailand assistant governor Vachira Arromdee announced Wednesday, July 16 that the Thai central bank was moving to the third phase of development of its central bank digital currency (CBDC). In a significant revelation, she said the bank was already using the Thai CBDC in transactions with some large-sized businesses.
Bad actors used a domain named CryptoForHealth.com as bait to lure bitcoin as part of their hack of the Twitter (NYSE: TWTR) accounts of many luminaries on Wednesday. The attacks began at 19:00 UTC and were a “bitcoin giveaway” scam. Even Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) and Uber (NYSE: UBER) were not spared.
Despite innumerable delays, a yen-backed stablecoin from the stable of Japanese banking giant Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (NYSE: MUFG) will likely see the light of day by late 2020. CEO Hironori Kamezawa broke the news at an interview with the Mainichi Shimbun newspaper. The token, dubbed “MUFG coin,” for now, could be used by anyone in the country.
Speaking to students on a webinar, Bank of England governor Andrew Bailey said the bank was considering whether a UK central bank digital currency (CBDC) was feasible.
Clear, a blockchain startup founded in 2018, specializes in removing complex frictions in B2B trade. One such pain point is the contractual settlement and reconciliation for roaming agreements between telecom operators. Clear came up with a blockchain solution for the settlement of roaming discount agreements for Spain’s Telefónica, Deutsche Telekom, and British provider Vodafone.
The Chinese ride-hailing megacorp, DiDi Chuxing, has agreed to collaborate with the Digital Currency Research Institute of the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) on the DCEP – the CBDC under development by China. According to another report, Meituan, the major eCommerce service platform with over 240 million consumers and five million local merchants, as well as video-sharing site Bilibilibili, has begun to cooperate with banks developing the digital yuan.
Ceres Coin LLC, based in Chicago, filed with the SEC on June 30, 2020, requesting permission to issue digital securities comprising tokens of $30 million and Ceres coins worth $20 million. The tokens will capitalize the company for its proposed business to build an end to end transaction network for cannabis on the blockchain. The coins will be used as a mode of transactions in the cannabis payments network.
The Arca U.S. Treasury Fund is the first-ever financial product regulated under the Investment Company Act of 1940 allowed to offer digital securities. Digital asset investment firm Arca launched the closed-end fund on July 6. Though the Arca U.S. Treasury Fund will invest 80% of its portfolio assets in U.S. Treasury securities, shareholders investing in the fund will be issued digital securities called “ArCoin.”
Travala.com is a blockchain-based, crypto friendly travel booking platform with access to over 2 million hotels in 230 countries. In a partnership with Expedia Partner Solutions announced Monday, more than 700,000 Expedia group accommodations can now be booked by travellers on Travala.com.
Digital Assets: Cubans Take to Cryptos Amidst Food Shortage; Over 2,500 Austrian Merchants to Accept Cryptos
Cuba is grappling with a national food crisis stemming from Venezuela’s decision to cut off its aid to the country. Problems have been compounded by the nonavailability, due to the virus, of cash couriers and “mules” that are a critical part of the financial and supply chain in the island nation. The socialist regime at the helm of Cuba’s affairs has instructed the people to grow food on every available patch of land. Hapless citizens are increasingly using cryptocurrencies in place of cash and as a hedge against inflation.
The Supreme Court of India recently struck down a circular issued by the Reserve Bank of India that barred banks from serving crypto businesses such as traders, exchanges, or others. The decision by the Indian top court has been a shot in the arm for the prospects of crypto businesses in India. Crypto-related apps, startups, and exchanges are blossoming in the country.
According to a report, Australian digital exchange bitcoin.com.au has made it easy for Australians to purchase bitcoin. They can now place an order on the exchange but then walk across to an Australia Post office and pay for the ordered bitcoins. Bitcoin.com.au CEO Holger Arians believes that the arrangement will enhance the legitimacy and adoption of bitcoin in Australia.
The NYDIG Institutional Bitcoin Fund LP filed documents with the SEC to disclose its closure of a $190 million bitcoin fund. It said it has 24 investors but did not disclose their identities.
The University of California San Francisco said in a notice last Friday that it paid $1.14 million, a “portion” of a demanded ransom, to hackers who installed malware and encrypted its servers. The hacker attack, which the University describes as a “security incident,” took place in the UCSF School of Medicine’s IT environment on June 1.
Digital Assets: MineHub Processes The First Iron Ore Transaction on the Blockchain Between BHP and China Baowu
Privately held MineHub Technologies said BHP (ASX: BHP) and China Baowu had completed their first iron ore trade on MineHub’s blockchain-based platform. The transaction is said to be a precursor to many more commodity transactions in a supply chain that will be fully digital from end-to-end.
Tokai Tokyo Financial Holdings Inc (TYO: 8616), a Japanese financial institution with a market cap of ¥61.1 billion ($571 million), is buying a stake of 33% in blockchain firm Hash Dash Holdings. Hash Dash has developed the blockchain technology for issuance of digital securities and trading them on smartphones. iSTOX, the blockchain-based digital exchange, is also a shareholder in Hash Dash. Tokai and iSTOX plan to tokenize Japanese real estate and list the securities.
Digital Assets: KPMG Launches Chain Fusion to Bridge Analytics Across Blockchain and Traditional Assets
KPMG, the big four auditing firm announced the launch of KPMG Chain Fusion. It is a patent-pending suite of advanced analytical tools presented in a structured model that combines data from blockchain infrastructures, and traditional systems for managing business, risk, and compliance requirements.
According to a report by Coin Telegraph, PayPal (NASDAQ: PYPL) is looking to recruit digital experts such as a Crypto Engineer and a blockchain research engineer. Significantly, the first posting describes the role to include “designing, developing and maintaining key crypto products/features targeted towards availability, performance, and scalability of PayPal services.” These job ads have popped up simultaneously with rumors in the crypto world that payments giant PayPal and digital wallet subsidiary Venmo are about to make a splash in cryptocurrencies.
On Friday, June 19, Attorney General William P. Barr announced that President Trump intended to nominate Jay Clayton, currently the Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission, to serve as the next United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York (SDNY). The crypto industry is excited that the chances for approval of a bitcoin ETF may improve with Clayton’s exit.
Industry leaders across finance, technology and the non-profit sectors have come together to launch PayId, a simplified payment ID process for global remittances. The Open Payments Coalition, an alliance of leading companies such as GoPay, Ripple, Blockchain.com, BitPay, Brave, Flutterwave, Mercy Corps and others, will develop PayId.
In the second ransomware attack on Australian drinks manufacturer Lion in less than a week, the cyber villains have demanded a ransom amount of $800,000. The amount must be paid in the Monero cryptocurrency by June 19, failing which the amount doubles to $1,600,000.