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Stellar (XLM) Witnesses Buying Interest Despite the Crypto Slump

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Stellar

Stellar

When a cryptocurrency is made available in important exchanges, then its price usually gets a positive push, and that is what happened with Stellar (XLM) yesterday. Earlier on this week, Coinbase, which is among the biggest crypto exchanges in the world, revealed that it was looking to add many more tokens to its platform.

Yesterday, the company made Stellar Lumens (XLM) available on its platform for Coinbase users in New York. It is a significant development for the token in question, and it goes without saying that the news was welcomed with great optimism by investors.

Coinbase News Supports XLM

It also resulted in a major spike in the price of Stellar. The wider crypto market has been performing very poorly over the past 24-hours, and many of the biggest tokens in the market have lost a lot of value. However, the announcement from Coinbase led to a highly impressive rally in XLM over the course of the same period, and Stellar rallied by as much as 13%. This happened during a period when some of the world’s major cryptocurrencies lost in excess of 10% in some cases. Usually, such an impressive move on the part of any coin leads to further gains as new investors come in and it remains to be seen how it all pans out during the course of the weekend.

>> Bitcoin Drops 30% in Two Weeks: Should You Panic?

One of the most important aspects of a Coinbase listing is the fact that it exposes a particular cryptocurrency to a far bigger pool of investors and that eventually leads to a spike in price in most cases.

Although the current listing is only restricted to New York at this point in time, it could be made available to all users eventually, and that could be the next big event for XLM. The latest announcement has resulted in impressive gains for Stellar, but it remains to be seen whether it can hold on to them.

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JPM Coin Fails to Impress Ripple’s Brad Garlinghouse… Again

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JPM coin

JPM coin

Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse has spoken out about JPM coin once again. This time, he gave the major US bank some praise for its new venture. Garlinghouse participated in a fireside chat yesterday at the 4th annual DC Blockchain Summit in Washington D.C. where he further discussed his views of the new bank coin.

Brad Garlinghouse and JPM Coin

In the chat yesterday, Ripple’s CEO said that JPMorgan Chase’s entrance into the cryptocurrency community is a good thing. However, that was the only positive thing he said about the new JPM coin. Garlinghouse is sticking firm to his original stance on these new bank stablecoins, claiming they will ultimately cause more chaos.

JPMorgan Chase announced the news of its new stablecoin back on February 14th and Garlinghouse was one of the first major executives in the cryptocurrency space to chime in.

In the tweet above, Garlinghouse linked a post he wrote back in August of 2016 regarding his view of the potential future of bank coins. It seems his prediction is coming true. The CEO’s argument is that if banks start making their own stablecoins, like JPM coin, it will make the financial system far more dysfunctional than the current one.

Garlinghouse believes that the current financial system lacks interoperability and each bank adding its own stablecoin will not solve this problem. In the fireside chat yesterday at the DC blockchain summit, Garlinghouse described a system shifting to exactly what he predicted in his article.

>> Crypto News: Huobi Adds XRP and IBM Releases X-Force Red

He explained:

“This guy from Morgan Stanley was interviewing me last week, and I asked him, so is Morgan Stanley going to use the JPM Coin? Probably not. Will Citi use it? […] Will PNC? And the answer is no. So we’re going to have all these different coins, and we’re back to where we are: there’s a lack of interoperability.”

It’s clear that Garlinghouse firmly believes in his company and what they offer financial institutions. To an extent, he has a very valid point, but it seems these major US banks want nothing to do with XRP.

Why do you think banks aren’t adopting Ripple and XRP? Is it that XRP isn’t a ‘stablecoin’ like JPM coin is? Do you think they want their own control and power over the system? Leave your comments below!

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Kik Adviser to Face Deposition From SEC This Week

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kik

kik

The US Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) has requested the deposition of a representative from Kik, the former messaging app that now focuses on cryptocurrency, in its longstanding wrangle, which claims that the Canadian company violated securities laws when it carried out an ICO in 2017.

On January 23, a judge in the Southern District of New York ordered Kik to divulge information detailing how its business has changed since 2018, with the company shutting down its messaging service in order to focus on cryptocurrency. Initially hoping to hear from Kik CEO, attorneys representing both parties have agreed for technical advisor Tanner Philp to respond to the SEC’s inquiries on January 29.

According to his website, Philp began working in crypto after writing a college thesis on Bitcoin in 2013, which helped him land a job “supporting the CFO of a fledging chat app called Kik,” which led to his involvement in creating the initial proof-of-concept for Kin, Kik’s native coin.

The allegations against Kik stem from its Kin ICO in 2017, which raised over US$100 million. While the SEC alleges that the token is actually a security and, therefore, the offering should have been registered with the commission, it also argues that management at the company was aware that it would run out of cash by the end of 2017, and that the offering was simply a thinly veiled attempt at keeping the company afloat.

>> Bitcoin Hits $9K on Strong Momentum: Will It Sustain?

After an initial attempt to have the case thrown out on the grounds of vagueness was dismissed by Judge Alvin K. Hellerstein, Kik has pushed for a formal definition of a trial date for the lawsuit to be set. Livingstone has expressed his desire for the case to go to trial as soon as possible, and the two parties have since agreed on a roadmap to conclude the trial in June 2020 in response to a court order issued November 26.

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Bitcoin Cash Hard Fork | Segwit Recovery & Schnorr Signatures

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Bitcoin Cash Hard Fork

Bitcoin Cash Hard Fork

A Bitcoin Cash hard fork was implemented earlier today as of block 58268. Although the network-split initially met with a hiccup, the upgrade has now successfully completed.

Bitcoin Cash Hard Fork

The hard fork sees the Bitcoin Cash network implement two new features. They are Segwit recovery and Schnorr signatures.

The Segwit recovery means network participants can now recover funds that were sent accidentally to Segwit addresses.

Before today, this was impossible due to the “enforcement of the new CLEANSTACK rule” which was implemented in the last upgrade in November.

The second new feature is the Schnorr Signatures. This is a digital signature scheme that allows for complex signing abilities.

According to news.Bitcoin.com:

“the basics of Schnorr signatures can slash roughly 4% off current transaction storage. In the future, after another Schnorr related upgrade, the scheme could provide for public signature aggregation and more complex sign-to-contract concepts”.

Segwit Recovery & Schnorr Signatures

Invented by Claus Schnorr, the signature scheme was patented for years and that patent has only recently expired. Now Bitcoin Cash developers have added the preliminary basics of it to the main chain.

The Schnorr scheme means multiple parties can transact with simple multi-party “aggregation schemes”. At 64 bytes, Schnorr signatures are smaller than the traditional ECDSA signatures which run at 70 bytes in size. The overall scalability of the network will be enhanced when further upgrades and the
“implementation of public signature aggregation” are enabled. Predictions suggest the network’s scaling abilites could be improved by reducing blockchain storage and bandwidth by 20-25%.

NewsBitcoin.com explains further:

“When Schnorr is combined with concepts like pay-to-public-key-hash (P2PKH) addresses and the recently added opcode OP_CHECKSIG, other benefits can be added to transactions like privacy and decision-based smart contracts”. 

>HTC’s Blockchain Phone Exodus | Adds In-Wallet Crypto Swaps

Bitcoin Cash 

With a market capitalization of over $6 billion USD, Bitcoin Cash is the fourth largest cryptocurrency in the world.

Are you a Bitcoin Cash holder? Are you excited by the upgrade to the network?

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The SEC Guidelines are HERE! Release of Crypto Token Guidance

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SEC Guidelines

SEC Guidelines

It’s been nearly six months in the making and now the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has finally published its regulatory guidelines for token issuers. Though many questions remain unanswered, crypto enthusiasts have finally got some clarity on the issue of “tokens as securities.”

SEC Guidelines

The SEC Guidelines focus on tokens and how and when they may be classed as a security. It includes examples of networks and tokens that fall under security laws, as well as examples of those that don’t.

It outlines a number of elements of a project that token issuers must consider to see if a token qualifies as a security. The following are some examples, (but not all):

  • an expectation of profit;
  • who within the project is responsible for what specific tasks within the network;
  • and whether a group is creating or supporting a market for a digital asset.

Reevaluation

The SEC guidelines also look at tokens that have already sold. It gives an evaluation guideline for investors to see if these tokens should have been registered as securities, as well as whether “a digital asset previously sold as a security should be reevaluated.”

Examples of reevaluation criteria include checking if:

  • The blockchain network and tokens are fully developed and useable straight away;
  • The token has a focus or use and isn’t speculative;
  • There is a limitation for the “Prospects for appreciation” in the token’s value; and
  • It says it is a currency that the token actually works as a store of value.

>> Bitcoin Price: BTC Extends Rally on Strong Momentum, Now What?

A Longtime Coming

As stated, the SEC guidelines have been in the works for almost six months. SEC Director of Corporation Finance, William Hinman, first revealed plans for the guidelines last November. At the time he said the SEC guidelines would help token issuers easily determine whether or not their cryptocurrency would qualify as a security offering.

However, investors and issuers should note that while it provides some legal clarity, the SEC guidelines is not a legally binding document. Back in February, the SEC released its ICO guide.

You can read the latest SEC guidelines in full here.

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Elliptic, A Crypto Forensic Startup, Raises $23 Million USD

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Elliptic

Elliptic

Elliptic, a British startup firm aimed at tracing suspicious crypto activity, has raised $23 million USD in a funding round led by SBI Holdings.

Elliptic to Expand into Asian Markets

The Series B funding round was led by Japanese financial institution SBI Holdings and will enable Elliptic to continue expansion into Asian markets where it has recently opened an office in Singapore and will open another in Japan this week. Elliptic CEO and founder James Smith cited Asia as a highly attractive market for the company due to its prominent crypto community and the fact that Asian regulators tend to be more technologically advanced than elsewhere in the world.

“The Monetary Authority of Singapore and the Japanese Financial Services Agency are very well-versed in crypto. Japan has its own licensing scheme for exchanges; I think all that is really key to the growth of crypto because once you set the ground rules, then businesses can engage and innovate,” Smith told CoinDesk.

SBI to Incorporate Elliptic’s Technology into VC Trade

Elliptic has developed artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies that are capable of tracing and locating suspicious transactions on blockchains. The company was founded in 2013 in London and had previously raised $12 million USD in five funding rounds. SBI was keen to get involved with the company as it has a number of crypto assets under its portfolio, including an exchange called VC Trade, which will incorporate Elliptic’s technology.

>> Walmart Deploys Blockchain Technology: Things You Need to Know

Elliptic is also looking beyond expansion into Asia with this investment, as it also has plans to develop a monitoring service for Facebook’s under-fire Libra network. Libra has received heavy criticism and scrutiny from regulators who question how they are meant to trust Facebook given the social media giant’s recent history of data misuse. Elliptic hopes to give somewhat of a helping hand to Libra by providing added transparency and security to the network.

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Tezos (XTZ) Outperforms in 2020: Here are the Key Drivers

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Tezos

Tezos

The New Year has seen a degree of a turnaround in the crypto space, as many tokens have recorded significant gains. One notable gainer is Tezos (XTZ). Since the start of the year, the XTZ token has more than doubled in price, and it goes without saying that it could be on the radars of most crypto traders by this point.

More importantly, the coin has managed to break into the top 10 crypto projects by market cap thanks to this rally. Currently, XTZ enjoys a market cap of $1.9 billion. However, this begs the question …

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Bitcoin Price | Brian Kelly Tells CNBC Watch for Rising Price

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Bitcoin enthusiast and crypto fund manager Brian Kelly has told CNBC that Bitcoin price could rise further in the coming months.

His prediction isn’t unfounded; there is an impending supply cut on the horizon and this should help to push prices higher.

Brian Kelly Predicts Bitcoin Price will Rise

In an interview on CNBC’s Fast Money program yesterday, May 21st, Kelly explained that “the halvening,” which is due to take place in 2020, will cut mining rewards in half.

As such, he expects miners to begin hoarding BTC if they aren’t already doing so. This increased demand should see Bitcoin price rise as the supply becomes lessened.

Further, the coin is being spurred on by increased industrial adoption and use in retail.

Kelly described the four-year cycle that leads up to “the halvening,” saying:

“You generally have a rally a year into it, and a year out of it. And so we’re just at the beginning of that stage […] a supply cut is generally bullish.”

The fund manager goes on to say that investors should dedicate between 1% to 5% of their portfolio to cryptocurrency while prices remain stagnated around the current levels of $7,900.

Brian Kelly Predictions

Kelly has been a guest on Fast Money several times where he has made predictions for the future of Bitcoin and cryptocurrency.

Recently, the crypto-analyst stated that an approval for a Bitcoin Exchange-traded fund (ETF) was most likely to come in February 2019. We are still waiting on that one, however.

Other analysts believe there are several reasons for BTC’s recent surge. One idea suggests the United States and China trade war could be a reason. Another impetus could be the increased adoption of the mainstream. For example, Ebay recently caused a stir when photos of its banners at the Consensus conference in New York, leaked onto the web.

Saying: “Virtual Currency. it’s happening on Ebay”, the banners made many believe that the e-retailing giant is about to enter the cryptocurrency space. Ebay has yet to confirm anything, however.

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Polkadot Targets Onboarding Ethereum Ecosystem with Chainlink Oracles

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Polkadot

Polkadot

Polkadot is readying itself for its expected network launch after it announced its integration with Chainlink oracles on February 25. The progress made with the integrations is an indication of a systematic approach that will allow porting with Ethereum infrastructure.

Polkadot Announces Integrations of Chainlink Oracles

The integration of Chainlink oracles is vital in the creation of Polkadot’s decentralized finance and other smart contracts. Chainlink has finalized the preliminary integration on Kusama, which is a Polkadot canary network synonymous with a testnet.

Following the move, Polkadot developers will now be able to get access to external data through Chainlink oracles. This is important, and it will enable most of the more advanced features connected with smart contracts. The nature of the operation of oracles is through the transmission of real-world information to a blockchain in a form that a smart contact will understand and thus act on that data.

Currently, the most prominent use of oracles is for price feeds of crypto and other digital assets. For instance, MakerDo depends on the ETH/USD price feed to create a DAU stablecoin despite being a different and exclusive oracle.

Chainlink will integrate on Polkadot with a committed parachain, which refers to a blockchain chip that has personalized features. The other parachains on the interoperable network will access data from Chainlink chips to power dApps. The heterogeneous sharding approach will help solve most of the common blockchain problems, such as scalability, interoperability, and governance, as well as network security.

>> The Libra Associated Gets a New Member in Shopify

Parity Seeks to Onboard Ethereum Ecosystem Developers

Parity Technologies was the lead developer behind Polkadot because of its unique structure. Gavin Wood, the co-founder of Parity, was also among the co-founders of Ethereum. The Parity Ethereum client is one of the company’s products used in connecting with peers and processing the blockchain.

In December last year, Parity indicated that it will stop the development of its client and spin-off to a decentralized autonomous organization. Parity and the Web3 foundation have been making moves to onboard Ethereum ecosystem developers to their network. The addition of Chainlink indicates that there is a way of porting over Ethereum infrastructure.

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Tezos (XTZ) Hits New High for 2019, Market Cap Tops $1.4 Billion

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Tezos

Tezos

Tezos (XTZ) is having a strong end to 2019, with the token seeing its price surge over 85% since early November. This boosts expectations for appreciation going forward as adoption continues to grow following initial skepticism.

XTZ Storms into the Top Ten

This week, the digital coin continues its impressive performance and gained 25%, making it the best-performing token among the top ten digital coins. Currently, the coin is trading at $1.72. On December 8, the token stormed into the top ten coins by market cap for the first time. The coin’s market cap rose to $1.4 billion to exceed its closest rival, Cardano, by around $300 million.

The rally may be cut short following the recent market slide, but so far, Tezos is among the biggest crypto gainers. In the meantime, the gap between Tezos and Bitcoin SV (BSV) has continued to narrow, which means that it could get into ninth place if it surges by another double-digit.

Staking is the New Trend in the Industry

The rally was a result of Kraken adding direct staking from Ledger hardware wallets through the Ledger Live app. The exchange offers passive income to those who choose the platform for greater security of their coins. It offers a 6% reward in comparison to Coinbase, which added staking early last month but trimmed rewards to 5%.

>> Binance Adds Fiat Payment Options with Paxful Partnership

Staking changes how tokens work in an ecosystem by minimizing their significance as speculative assets but also increasing their demand as a way of generating income. As a result, this means that there is enhanced price stability as well as coin demand.

The crypto market has been bearish, but XTZ has managed to defy that on several occasions in the last few months. Staking has become the new trend in the industry among various exchanges that have moved to provide custodial services with some returns. The Tezos staking rewards vary depending on the number of coins locked in.

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