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.
PicPay, the well-known Brazilian payment app, has got its shoe in the crypto door in partnership with Paxos, a leading regulated blockchain infrastructure company. Picpay is opening crypto trading services for its over 30 million customers and Paxos will manage the trading and custody of the digital assets. To be opened up gradually, the crypto service will initially cover bitcoin, ethereum and USDP, the regulated dollar-backed stablecoin from Paxos.
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More Stories on Digital Assets
BitGo, the leader in crypto custody services, acquires Harbor, the top name in digital securities. It’s a diversification move aimed at a role in the entire transaction chain of digital assets. In the deal, BitGo gets Harbor’s digital securities platform, as well as its broker-dealer and transfer agent subsidiaries. Financial terms of the transaction are not known.
Polychain Capital’s second venture fund, which targets a war chest of $200 million, opened at the beginning of 2020. The crypto venture fund is accepting minimum investments of $1 million for up to three years.
Binance, which is the world’s largest crypto exchange by trading volume, announced Monday the launch of its Binance Cloud. The Binance Cloud is an all-in-one solution for crypto market participants to launch digital asset exchanges quickly within their local markets.
BlockFi Inc. provides consumer financing services. Its platform offers loans to crypto-asset owners who collateralize the loan with their crypto-assets. On the other hand, its BlockFi Interest Account (BIA) lets depositors put their crypto to work and earn monthly interest payments in the asset-type that deposited with BlockFi. The company raised $30 million in its Series ‘B’ funding round, led by Valar Ventures.
CelticGold, a Frankfurt-based precious metals trading company, that trades “one of the largest portfolios of investment gold & silver coins and bullion worldwide,” has recommended bitcoin as an investment. “At least 10% and a maximum of 25% of one’s total assets should be invested in precious metals (mostly physically), while in cryptos and especially in Bitcoin one should hold at least 1% and a maximum of 5%,” CelticGold said in a post last week.
Regulatory progress may lay the base for a revival of blockchain-based securities such as tokens and ICOs. According to Aaron Kaplan, the SEC’s strategy to crack down on digital assets and apply the rigor of traditional securities’ regulation to blockchain securities is a welcome move.
He likened it to the days of old when the criminal excesses of “bucket shops” yielded to regulation through securities law.
About 40 banks have applied to Germany’s Federal Financial Supervisory Authority, or BaFin, for licenses to operate custody services for digital assets. (Coingeek)
Bafin last month released new guidelines that will impact firms offering or intending to offer custody services for digital assets such as cryptocurrencies and tokens. Effective January 1, 2020, depository or custody services for crypto assets stand classified as a financial service under the German Banking Act.
Former NYSE Institutional Broker Michael Ackerman Charged and Arrested for Alleged Crypto Fraud. He and two of his vehicles, Q3 Holdings, LLC and Q3 I, LP, are charged with alleged fraud and misappropriation of digital assets. Michael Ackerman allegedly raised $33 million in a fraudulent crypto trading scheme. Ackerman and his two partners misled investors by claiming they had developed an extraordinarily profitable crypto trading algorithm. One of the partners was a doctor.
Bitcoin to Beat the Dow to $40K, Says Analyst Tom Lee. The Fundstrat Global Advisors co-founder said in a CNBC interview on February 10 that he expected Bitcoin to record a gain of nearly 200% after it recently broke above its 200-day moving average.
The Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) announced Wednesday its agreement to acquire Bridge2 Solutions, a leading provider of loyalty solutions for merchants and consumers. ICE did not disclose the terms of the acquisition.
Bakkt intends to monetize for consumers the loyalty rewards programs that run on the Bridge2 platform. It will do this through its proposed Loyalty App.
International Money Express, Inc. (NASDAQ: IMXI), a cross-border remittances and payment services company operating primarily in Latin America and the Caribbean, announced its partnership with Ripple, the provider of enterprise blockchain solutions for global payments.
Founding Duo of Zima Digital Assets Arrested In $7.5M Criminal Complaint. The United States Secret Service arrested John Michael Caruso, 28, of Scottsdale, Arizona, and Zachary Salter, 27, of Paradise Valley, Arizona, on January 30, 2020, for allegedly conspiring to commit wire fraud and for money laundering
ConsenSys will attempt to put the stubbornly traditional municipal bonds market on the blockchain. A previous shy at the task by Neighborly, whose backers included Laurene Powell Jobs, proved stillborn.
ConsenSys will tokenize the $3.8 trillion municipal bonds (munis) market.
GK8 has dared hackers to burgle a bounty of $125K stored in a cold wallet, with the promise of another payout of a $125K bonus. The first person to crack the GK8 system could, therefore, earn about 28 bitcoin for their efforts. GK8 promises unhackable custody for crypto-assets that is NEVER connected to the Internet.
Bitcoin in bullish setup and Bakkt futures OI at an ATH
The BTCUSD daily chart above shows a very bullish setup for the cryptocurrency. When taken with the blast-off in the open interest in Bakkt’s physically-settled Bitcoin futures market, and the continuing surge in volumes of the CME cash-settled futures contract, there is every likelihood of an explosive move higher.
South Korea is scrambling to make up for the lost time in the global moves towards central bank developed digital currencies. It now intends to constitute a new research team for the very same purpose, according to cryptonews.
Last year, it demobilized a research task force it had constituted for digital and cryptocurrencies. The ostensible reason given at the time was that South Korea had no intention of issuing a central bank digital currency (CBDC): “There is no plan to issue a CBDC in the near future because CBDC is no incentive to respond to the reduction of cash use or to increase financial inclusion.” (translated)
What seems to be the cause of the rethink by the central Bank of Korea on CBDC?
Bitfinex, the Hong Kong-based crypto exchange, commenced margin trading for Tether Gold with US dollar (XAU₮/USD), tether (XAU₮/USD₮), and bitcoin (XAU₮/BTC) on Thursday at 2:00 PM UTC.
This follows the listing of Tether Gold (XAU₮), a stablecoin backed by physical gold. Trading in XAU₮ commenced on January 24 at 2:30 PM UTC. One token represents ownership of one troy fine ounce of physical gold, held in a Swiss vault with TG Commodities.
Swiss Ski Resort Zermatt Goes Crypto; Will Accept Taxes in Bitcoin. A curious mayor and the precedents from other municipalities trigger the move.
Inspired by Swiss Municipality Zug, which started accepting payments in Bitcoin in 2016, the Swiss ski resort of Zermatt followed suit.
Insurance coverage for digital assets is gradually adapting to the rapid changes and growth in crypto assets, says a presentation by Marsh JLT Speciality, a global leader in risk management and insurance broking . However, 2020 will be the test year for digital assets’ insurance.
The Gold Standard, which Nixon junked in 1971, might come back in a new avatar: Bitcoin
According to Hans Hauge, a crypto asset investment analyst at Ikigai Fund, bitcoin and not gold, is the most suitable asset to back the oncoming rush of Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs) from various countries.
Covantis is a blockchain-focused project backed by multinational agri-business companies Cargill, Archer Daniels Midland Company, Bunge and Louis Dreyfus Company. Launched in 2018, the project aims to digitize the firms’ global shipping transactions using distributed ledger technology (DLT) and AI.
Covantis and Consensys will set up the blockchain-powered platform. The founding firms have also announced covantis.io, the new website for the project. The platform will launch this year and will initially focus on digitizing grain and oilseed post-trade execution.
Tether announced the launch of the Tether Gold (XAU₮), a digital token that is backed by collateral of physical gold (XAU). These tokens can be held in a Tether wallet and reside as an ERC-20 token on the Ethereum blockchain and as a TRC20 token on the TRON blockchain, according to a Tether announcement.
One token represents ownership of one troy fine ounce of physical gold, currently worth approximately $1,581.
Digital Assets: Ray Dalio – Cash is trash; BTC is Untouchable; Libra Maybe; Stocks are Good; Gold is Best
Ray Dalio, a long time bitcoin sceptic, again panned the cryptocurrency at Davos. Cash is trash; BTC is Untouchable; Libra Maybe; Stocks are good; Gold is Best, he said.
Payments processor Square won the US patent number 10,540,639 titled “cryptocurrency payment network” for a new network that could seamlessly process crypto-to-fiat transactions and the reverse. The transactions would occur automatically, in real-time, and instantly.