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Publicly-Listed Aussie Crypto Firm’s Shares Slump after $1.8 Million ICO Action.

DigitalX, an Australian blockchain and crypto advisory firm listed on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) has seen its shares slide nearly 12 percent on the day on revelations of a $1.8 million federal court claim.

In an obligatory disclosure under ASX guidelines, DigitalX today revealed it was served with an Originating Application and Statement of Claim in the Federal Court of Australia by a group of stakeholders involved in an initial coin offering (ICO) which DigitalX served in an advisory capacity.

The claim from the aggrieved group, who made an investment in the coin offering, stands at a total of USD $1,833,077 plus damages.

For its part, DigitalX denied any claim of wrongdoing and says it will – along with its legal advisors – continue to review and examine the claims made against it.

While few details are known about the ICO presently, Australian publication Business News is reporting that the “ICO was not local”. DigitalX is a Perth-based firm with offices in Sydney and New York.

Shares in the firm, one of the earliest publicly-listed cryptocurrency companies in the world, slid from AUD $0.09 to a low of AUD $0.081, a near 12% slide following the public disclosure.

The firm said it “has strong grounds to defend any claims bought forward by these applicants,” adding:

“As such, the Company intends to vigorously defend this matter and protect the reputation of the Company.”

Formerly Digital CC, a cryptocurrency mining firm with a specific focus on bitcoin, the company rebranded into Digital CC in late 2015 with a pivot from bitcoin mining to blockchain development and consultancy services. DigitalX launched a payments app for remittances to 14 countries, a majority of them in Latin America, using blockchain technology.

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Publicly-Listed Aussie Crypto Firm’s Shares Slump after $1.8 Million ICO Legal Action

DigitalX, an Australian blockchain and crypto advisory firm listed on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) has seen its shares slide nearly 12 percent on the day on revelations of a $1.8 million federal court claim.

In an obligatory disclosure under ASX guidelines, DigitalX today revealed it was served with an Originating Application and Statement of Claim in the Federal Court of Australia by a group of stakeholders involved in an initial coin offering (ICO) which DigitalX served in an advisory capacity.

The claim from the aggrieved group, who made an investment in the coin offering, stands at a total of USD $1,833,077 plus damages.

For its part, DigitalX denied any claim of wrongdoing and says it will – along with its legal advisors – continue to review and examine the claims made against it.

While few details are known about the ICO presently, Australian publication Business News is reporting that the “ICO was not local”. DigitalX is a Perth-based firm with offices in Sydney and New York.

Shares in the firm, one of the earliest publicly-listed cryptocurrency companies in the world, slid from AUD $0.09 to a low of AUD $0.081, a near 12% slide following the public disclosure.

The firm said it “has strong grounds to defend any claims bought forward by these applicants,” adding:

“As such, the Company intends to vigorously defend this matter and protect the reputation of the Company.”

Formerly Digital CC, a cryptocurrency mining firm with a specific focus on bitcoin, the company rebranded into Digital CC in late 2015 with a pivot from bitcoin mining to blockchain development and consultancy services. DigitalX launched a payments app for remittances to 14 countries, a majority of them in Latin America, using blockchain technology.

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REMME Sets Out Masternode Application Process.

Passwordless technology provider REMME has announced that it is now accepting applications from its community to run masternodes on the REMChain propriety blockchain.

The two stage process will prioritise early adopters of the REM token but also allow newcomers to participate.


REMME, which completed its ICO earlier in the year and achieved its $20m hardcap, has created an open-source distributed Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) protocol designed to replace traditional password technology. The project’s so-called masternodes will oversee key tasks such as signing transactions for certificate issuance and revocation.

Potential operators of the masternodes will need to meet certain technical requirements, lock up a fixed amount of REM tokens, uphold the network rules and ensure sufficient uptime.

When applying to be included in the first stage, applicants will be graded against a seven-tier criteria system.

Top priority will go to people who purchased a minimum of 250,000 REM during the tokensale, didn’t sell them on exchanges and also bought more tokens at a later date.

The final two tiers are allocated to investors who missed out on the token sale but subsequently purchased the required minimum of tokens on exchanges.

Full details of the descending requirements and full approval process has been published on REMME’s official blog and masternodes application website.

Applicants have until October 17th to register their interest.

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Insurers discuss sharing of medical data via blockchain, but privacy concerns remain Once the proposal is finalised, IRDAI will have to give its nod to data sharing by insurers.

Insurance companies are looking into the possibility of sharing medical data of policyholders with one another using a blockchain. However, protection of customer privacy is a factor that has been dragged into the discussions and they will now have to get a go-ahead from the insurance regulator on this matter.

The discussions, which have been on for almost eight months, are around using one customer's medical records across insurers. Using blockchain technology for this will ensure that the data is encrypted and also reduce the turnaround time for policy issuances.

“Customers will not be required to do multiple medical tests once their health data is available over blockchain. This will save costs and also enable seamless and secure sharing of data,” said a senior life insurance executive.

An average medical test costs Rs 1,800.

related news

Blockchain is a process whereby a series of records (blocks) are interlinked using cryptography. Each block contains a record of the previous block and also has a timestamp and details of the transaction.

Using a blockchain, multiple people can make entries into the series of the information. Further, the community of users can control the changes made in those records.

Typically, for policies above a certain threshold, medical tests are conducted to determine how healthy a prospective customer is. Only if he/she is found to be healthy does the insurer accept them as a policyholder.

Two large IT-services companies have already made presentations on the back-end support and management of the infrastructure of the blockchain. About 20 life insurers have agreed to share data with each other.


Now the insurers are discussing steps to be taken to ensure that customer privacy is not tampered with. A draft bill on data protection, prepared by a Justice BK Srikrishna-led panel, was released in July.

The bill clarified 'sensitive personal data' as any information on a person's ethnicity, sexual orientation, finances, passwords, caste, biometric data, health and official identifiers. Since health is on the list, any violations of privacy in this segment could be a serious offence once the bill becomes a law.

So, insurers will need to seek explicit consent from the individuals on the data being shared. Further, insurers will also have to inform the insured about how and where the health data will be used.

Once it is finalised, Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) will have to give a nod to this data sharing proposal by the insurers.

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Major Indian crypto exchange Zebpay shuts down its Exchange.


Indian Cryptocurrency exchange Zebpay which is one of the biggest crypto exchange today announces that they are going to stop their exchange. It was launched in 2015 with an app-only service and soon it becomes the most downloaded Bitcoin wallet in India.

In an announcement, Zebpay stated that “We are stopping our exchange. At 4 PM today, we will cancel unexecuted orders & credit your coins to your Zebpay wallet. No new orders will be accepted. The Zebpay wallet will work even after the exchange stops.”

“The curb on bank accounts has crippled our, and our customer’s, ability to transact business meaningfully. At this point, we are unable to find a reasonable way to conduct the cryptocurrency exchange business. As a result, we are stopping our exchange activities. At 4 p.m. today (28 September 2018), we will cancel all unexecuted crypto-to-crypto orders and credit your coins/tokens back to your Zebpay wallet. No new orders will be accepted until further notice.”

Rahul Raj, the Founder, and CEO of Koinex crypto exchange said in a telephonic conversation with Koinalert:


Basically, this was a surprise to us also because we didn’t expect that some kind of news like will come out from Zebpay. So, I was on the panel with Ajeet at International Blockchain Congress at Hyderabad where he said that Zebpay has no intention of setting up a P2P platform or enabling P2P transaction on the platform and then later on Zebpay announced that are pushing out all their user funds so, that happened and then suddenly this came out today that was a little bit of surprise for us also.

We didn’t expect Zebpay will shut down the business in this way and with a short notice but at Koinex we continue to do business as usual and we welcome all the believers of cryptocurrency and blockchain technology and we are continuing to make room for all users who want to migrate from Zebpay to Koinex.

Koinalert asked Rahul, Does this indicate that RBI is going to completely ban cryptocurrencies in India.

He replied “This is a very wild speculation, to be honest because now that the matter is being heard in the Supreme Court, nobody will be able to make a judgment other than the Supreme Court to the people will just have to wait to hear what Supreme Court says on this matter and depending on what the supreme court’s verdict is there will be some of the other kind of sentiment or movement in the regulatory framework, the regulators or the exchanges or the users will find themselves in situations with much more clarity on how this space is going to look like in the next few weeks or months, but before that any kind of speculation around that is actually a speculation only and we should rather wait for Supreme court with their own verdict and only then make any kind of assumptions and then only after that we are going to have some kind of concrete sense.

Nischal Shetty, the Founder, and CEO of WazirX exchange said in a statement to Koinalert:

“While Zebpay has been a competitor, it’s unfortunate to see they’re shutting down their exchange. The crypto community needs to stay strong & stick together. We need to keep the crypto fire burning in India. All Zebpay users are welcome to continue trading on WazirX.

The crypto landscape in India is adapting and shifting today. The first breed of exchanges saw growth because they were the first to market. The second generation of Indian exchange that WazirX represents is driven by technological and product innovation. For example, when the RBI ban kicked in, WazirX was the first in India to launch WazirX P2P as a solution and because of that, there’s been a rapid rise in the trading volumes of WazirX.

At this point, the crypto community needs to stick together. WazirX will continue in its mission to involve every Indian in the blockchain revolution. We are seeing rapid growth and we’ll continue to innovate and provide the right tools for Indian crypto traders.”

Mr. Kunal Barchha, Co-founder & Director, CoinRecoil exchange said in a statement to Koinalert:

“It’s a good and bad news for us. Good because we have one less competitor. Bad because it shows how intense the environment for Crypto business is in India. There are huge opportunities in this market but in the end, it all depends on getting a basic business environment; in this case, banking. We really hope the dark clouds are settled soon and everyone can get back to business.”

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Crypto Money Market Compound Lets You HODL and Earn

Wouldn't it be nice to earn interest on your crypto holdings?

Especially in a down market, those hodling crypto would love that. And ethereum-based startup Compound is launching a product to do just that.

Revealed exclusively to CoinDesk, Compound's platform for allowing crypto enthusiasts to make their holdings available for short-term loans, in turn, earning interest on those loans in crypto, launched on the ethereum blockchain today.

Compound is creating what the traditional financial world refers to as a money market – a fund that provides short-term loans at a flat, publicly stated rate. Investors put funds into a pool, loans get made against it and when the investor wants to withdraw, they get a share of the profit proportionate to their investment.


These financial instruments are typically for high liquidity loans with short (even as short as a day) time horizons. Plus, with publicly posted rates, both lenders and borrowers can know exactly what the interest will be without negotiation.

In this case, Compound is offering a smart contract-enabled money market for lending in five different coins: ether, Trust Token's trueUSD, 0x's ZRX, Brave's BAT and Augur's REP.

Each asset will have a publicly stated interest rate for supplying and borrowing, set algorithmically based on demand for each asset. Rates will be the same for all users.

In this way, Compound is giving holders a way to hedge against a weak market, and it should help big players cover the costs incurred from holding, such as custodial or security expenses.

And Compound has already seen a fair amount of interest.

The software was built with $8.2 million in venture funding, led by notable investors Bain Capital Ventures, Andreessen Horowitz and Polychain.

In an email to CoinDesk, Polychain CEO Olaf Carlson-Wee, said:

"We believe that Compound is building one of the core crypto-financial primitives for the financial system of Web3. This project fits well with our thesis that decentralized finance will be one of the first key use-cases of Web3."

In addition, more than 26 institutional partners have committed a minimum of $100,000 in crypto to the market, so there should be at least $2.6 million in crypto ready for lending at launch.

While returns on money in the market are likely to be small, every percentage point gain can make a difference for large institutional funds sitting on massive crypto holdings right now.

As such, while the software is built so that anyone with crypto holdings can supply capital to the money market, Compound founder Robert Leshner said, "In general, I think the majority of our users will be institutional."

Long or short?

Leshner sees three initial use cases for Compound, primarily driven by financial markets.

First, for traders that want to leverage a long position in a token, they can borrow from Compound and buy more of the token they want to place a bet on.

The ability to take on very short-term loans can be helpful if a trader wants to make a bet on a specific event in the near future. It gives traders a way to know the price of a risk they are taking in a straightforward way.

It's important to note here that a trader can use Compound to borrow for a position in almost any currency, as long as it can be easily traded into one of the five currencies Compound holds. So, for example, if a user wanted to make a bet on a price movement in OmiseGo's OMG, he or she could borrow ETH, trade it for OMG and wait.

This is an important point for the second major use case: shorting, a way of making money on an asset when its price does down.

As a simple example: one user can agree to borrow one ETH from another user, with an agreement to pay them 3 percent annually on the price of the ETH when it was borrowed till they return it. Let's say ETH was $300 at the time. So the first user borrows the ETH and immediately sells it. Then they have $300 in the bank.

Four months later, say ETH drops to $250. The borrower then buys one ETH with their banked money and returns it to the person it was borrowed from, with a payment of $3 to cover four month's interest. The borrower pockets $47 in profit.

It might look like the lender lost out, but it's good for both sides. Imagine the person who lent the ETH is someone deeply invested in the ethereum ecosystem – one who has no intention of exiting their long-term position – so they are now $3 richer and they still have just as much ETH.

This ability to more easily short crypto was a key consideration for one of Compound's main investors.

"There are already (centralized) solutions to borrow ETH and other crypto to short it," Salil Deshpande of Bain Capital Ventures told CoinDesk in an email. "We invested in Compound because it is a proper – decentralized – money market for crypto."

Deshpande argued that with more liquid markets to make short positions, overvalued cryptocurrencies will be forced to correct their prices in the market.

Intended purpose

The last use case – borrowing tokens to use them for their actual application – may be further out.

Leshner used Brave's BAT as his example. One day, Brave plans to launch a consent-based advertising model whereby agencies have to use the cryptocurrency to buy ad space. Rather than buying BAT outright, the agencies might prefer to borrow some BAT, thereby hedging against the possibility of prices going down.

This could be especially important in a world where most of that crypto lending is happening on exchanges.

That lending, as the Compound whitepaper points out, is typically virtual; borrowers don't really hold those tokens, making it impossible to use them on the decentralized applications (dapps) they were intended for.

Because the only counterparty is the smart contract itself, the money market is willing to take any business at its stated rate.

Users don't have to look for someone with the opposite position to theirs in an order book; they can just accept Compound's rates and take the short-term loan. And this also saves those supplying the capital the effort of managing the loans they make.

Speaking to how Compound differentiates, Leshner said:

"This is not a person-to-person marketplace like almost everyone is building."

Compound's role

Compound's business model is straightforward.

"We keep a small residual of all interest that moves through the system," Leshner explained. "The more assets inside the system the more we earn."

And currently, as the white paper states, Compound will have centralized control of the protocol, which will allow them to, for instance, choose the software model that sets interest rates for each asset.

For Bain Capital's Deshpande, these interest rates are integral to making sure people continue holding crypto.

"Without interest rates like Compound provides, crypto assets have a nominal and a real negative yield," he said, adding:

"The costs of storage and security (both on and off exchange) and the inflation of the token supply – this is a disincentive to hold crypto assets."

In this, Compound aims for its interest rates to provide a standard to judge other crypto investments by. Because the loans on Compound are collateralized, they are nearly risk free, so it establishes a floor for what each token should earn when it's put towork.

And having this unified, floating rate across any given asset provides an additional benefit to those supplying capital – lenders don't need to wait for loans to close to withdraw; they can take their funds out at any time.

"Everybody shares the same terms. This should be a neutral, open source, transparent infrastructure," Leshner said.

Yet, over time, the protocol will be transitioned into a more decentralized one, where community members and other stakeholders determine the path forward.

Until then, though, Compound is looking for more tokens to offer loans in, although, they have to have adequate liquidity and market confidence.

"We're looking for well known, highly liquid, larger market cap tokens to be listed," Leshner concluded.…ou-hodl-and-earn/

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Cryptocurrency markets and news round-up 28 September 2018.

Market Update

Bitcoin (BTC)

Bitcoin, which had spent most of the day defending that $6400/$6500 area shot up a couple hundred dollars in a matter of minutes to break through $6700. All that activity ahead of the quarterly Bitcoin futures expiring on OKex, BitMEX and CME.

Bitcoin volatility is also at an all time low. And CoinDesk is reporting that hodling is actually at an all time low, and you might have expected those two to operate in tandem.

CoinDesk quoted a report by Chainalysis, which says that 32% of bitcoin’s supply (minus lost coins) was held in active personal wallets at the end of last month. This is up from 26% at the end of last year when markets peaked. This means that there is a lot more liquidity in the market from non-institutional users.

Speaking with CoinDesk, Chainalysis believes that this is because people are at last ready to spend their bitcoin – should markets improve and the price is right. Things like lower fees and the Lightning Network, which wasn't operational this time last year, have allowed for this shift.

Chainalysis said:

"They are ready – if things were to change, [if] the opportunity to spend it were to arise – to actually spend it. We've kind of overcome the first hurdle of adoption, getting bitcoin into people's hands."

And they added that less volatility was a good thing.

"This is a sign of a maturing market with less volatility."

Bitcoin Cash (BCH)

Bitcoin Cash is continuing to enjoy a very strong rally. It's up by about 7% today, and 31% higher than it was this time last week.

As you can see there's also been an enormous spike in trading volume, nearly quadrupling between Wednesday and today. Over $2 billion has been added to the Bitcoin Cash market cap since this time last week.

There is no clear reason why Bitcoin Cash is rallying so hard, although the price rose in time with the news that Bitmain has finally filed an application to go public on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.

Bitmain are known to have substantial holdings in Bitcoin Cash, due to a leaked investor deck that showed they had about half a billion dollars in the cryptocurrency. Jihan Wu, the CEO of Bitmain, has been a historic supporter of Bitcoin Cash.

Ether (ETH)

Some quick facts on Ether for you, courtesy of Huobi Blockchain Big Data Weekly Insights:

  1. The number of active addresses in Ethereum has decreased by 18% from 1.28 to 1.05 million this week.
  2. Trading volume has decreased by 15%.
  3. The number of transactions (including smart contract calls) has drastically decreased by 80% to 5.28 million.

That's wild stuff. It really shows that now that a lot of other platforms are coming online or maturing – like EOS, WAVES, NEO, VeChain, etc – we really might see Ethereum lose its market share as other platforms are able to offer the same features, if not more.

Although some of those other platforms were experiencing similar downturns this week. EOS' number of transactions decreased by 80% since last week, the same as Ethereum, even as its total number of addresses marginally increased by 5%. NEO similarly saw across the board drops with 56% fewer active addresses and 39% fewer transactions. It might be difficult to draw solid conclusions without knowing exactly how

Ether is currently trading for $230 with a margin of about $2 billion of the market cap separating it from XRP.

Trading Trends


So. Ripple.

Almost no other coin inspires such conspiracy theories from its community. XRP speculation can get pretty crazy at times. Although this time, the speculators may on to something. For months there's been a lot of talk around the Ripple and XRP "Convergence".

What is it? What does it mean?

The popular theory is that Ripple's software products – xCurrent, xVia and xRapid (which uses the XRP token)– could merge into one simple solution – AKA, the “Convergence” (dun, dun, dun!).

Ripple's Director of Talent Acquisition mentioned something to this effect in a since-deleted tweet back in August, which read:

"Hi all – for clarity – we have 3 products – xCurrent (in production) and 2 more on the way - xVia & xRapid. They will be on a 'convergence' release soon. There isn't a software actually called 'convergence'" – Tweet from Jim Kelly, August 18th, 2018

And it appears it was more than just a tweet. The same Director of Talent Acquisition made reference to the convergence product while in the process of hiring new talent for Ripple. Again it has since been deleted, but it appeared on the hiring platform Interview Now and read as such:

"Earlier in the year, a big part of what my team was focused on was hiring a lot of engineering. This was probably our biggest push because we are building a software called Convergence that syncs together all of our 3 major products into one seamless format.

For example, if American Express (one of our clients) wants to send $500 to a bank in Thailand, there is an immediate quote of what that exchange is and the money goes through. This is something that brings together all of our products to further enhance RippleNet which is very exciting."

So that gives us a bit more detail on what the convergence might actually be. It sounds like they really do want to bring all three products into the fold to offer a single consumer-facing solution.

So – ahead of next week's big Ripple Swell conference in San Francisco, Ripple's recent xRapid announcement and XRP's gains – the speculation and hype is mounting again.

And last of all: Apparently Ripple has just updated its main website, and mentions of xCurrent, xRapid and xVia are all gone. Everything now seems to be branded RippleNet. Could it get any juicier?

So is RippleNet the convergence of XRP and Ripple?

Well the new website also has a new infographic that now places XRP at the centre of on-demand liquidity, so it's a plausible theory that everything will be rolled into one and the individual products will cease to exist – but you know what? It took us 2 seconds to find this page on

And xRapid, xCurrent and xVia are all there as though nothing has happened, or will happen.

So I guess nothing is set in stone – yet. Ripple's annual conference, Swell, starts on Monday. We'll keep you posted.

Cardano (ADA)

Cardano, which manages to sit at the 9th position by market cap, despite still being very much in development, has finally received wallet support on mobile for its native ADA cryptocurrency.

The Infinito wallet, which supports multiple currencies, says it's the first to support ADA on mobile, allowing users to send transactions and check their balance and history, as well as receive payments directly via a unique QR code.

So if you're an ADA holder, you can go ahead and download that on both iOS and Android today.

Cardano is currently sitting around $0.087 following a steady week which sees it up about 8% so far.


The AUD gets its first stablecoin

Big news for traders in Australia this week.

Yesterday finder published an exclusive announcement that OnRamp is releasing Australia's first ever AUD-pegged stable coin.

OnRamp Technologies has gone live with the world's first fully operational and fully compliant fiat-backed AUD stablecoin, which runs on the Ethereum blockchain as an ERC20 token.

AUDR got the stamp of approval from Australian regulators on 8 June, making it one of the first projects to achieve that level of legal compliance. They've been testing AUDR since then, and have gone live this week.

OnRamp also has another product, which is the slightly mind-bending ERC20 bitcoin-pegged BTCR, which is, in a sense, putting bitcoin on the Ethereum blockchain.

Interesting approach.

OnRamp is also working with the people at Hut34, who were the first to create a Google-powered Ethereum wallet. A Google-based wallet makes it a lot easier to onboard new users to crypto, which is no doubt part of what this project is about. From there users have access to AUDR and all their favourite ERC20 tokens.

But wait - there's more! Next week OnRamp will be here live in the Crypto Finder TV studio to answer all of our questions about this exciting new project.

Another stablecoin – Circle USD

And we couldn't let you go without a quick update on another stablecoin. This one looks like it will be big in the US market.

Circle Internet Financial, which owns the Circle cryptocurrency investment app as well as the Poloniex exchange, has announced that it is entering the stablecoin market with an ERC20 USD-pegged coin.

It will reportedly be available on 20 exchanges, including heavy hitters such as Coinbase, Huobi, KuCoin and of course Poloniex.

The news comes just days after the Winklevoss twins announced their USD stablecoin the Gemini dollar, and after Digifinex, a top 20 exchange by volume, announced that it is delisting the Tether USDT due to issues of trust.

The race is certainly on to capture the stablecoin market.

Binance announces Binance Info 2.0

So Binance has launched a new service, which compiles the rating reports of cryptocurrencies from various sources and lists them in an easy-to-use library. The service should be a handy tool for those who want to extend their research on particular cryptocurrencies.

The platform gives a star rating for each coin as well as the rating that the original agency gave it. However, this has received criticism because the ratings used by various agencies are not consistent, which can make it a bit more difficult for users who are not so discerning.

There is also a question of whether or not there is any bias is creeping in by the report publishers themselves. So while it’s a handy tool for research, users will need to keep their wits about them.

Exclusive interview with Freya Hunter from Beam

Freya Hunter is the Head of Community, Partnerships and Events for Beam, which is a global payments platform and digital wallet with built-in support for smart contracts.

Beam already has over 750,000 users and has processed over 4.3 million transactions. Beam’s throughput exceeds $250 million USD. All of which occurs on the Ethereum blockchain. It is also the leading mobile wallet in the United Arab Emirates.

We sat down with her to learn about more about Beam, as well as it's plans for the future and upcoming ICO.

  • Q: I understand the beam uses smart contracts to reward customers – can you tell us a bit about how that works?

FH: Beam is a demand generation platform which currently uses it's own smart contracts protocol to help businesses engage their customers in a more meaningful way. We're an existing business with over 3/4 a million users and we're looking to utilise blockchain technology to scale the business. So putting our current smart contracts protocol onto the blockchain is one way we will be doing this.

  • Q: So Beam is huge in the UAE? How did that come about?

FH: Yes, Beam is the leading mobile wallet app in that region. We were the first app to allow customers to pay for their fuel from their car using an app. We have a very strong local partner in the UAE called Majid Al Futtaim (the Westfield of the UAE) who launched Beam in the region with us.

  • Q:Beam is holding an ICO to launch the Beam token – how will that change the way the platform operates?

FH: One of the main reasons why we are creating a Beam token is because it will enable us to decentralise our revenue model so we can incentivise and reward those players in the retail value chain who are adding value. Currently Beam plays the role of the issuer and acquirer and local partner. However using a token economy specifically built for retail, we want to distirbute these roles to other players and the revenue which comes with these responsibilities to make the retail ecosystem more efficient.

  • Q: Can you tell us a bit more about how Beam plans to enable users to take ownership of their data?

FH: Currently players in the market like MasterCard, Visa, Amazon, Facebook and Google etc all own a piece of the puzzle when it comes to understanding their customers, but these companies aren't will to work together to understand the full picture. Plus, they are monetising our data and not paying us for the value we create for them. It's crazy that this happens.

At Beam we want to build a new global acceptance platform for the retail ecosystem that will challenge the incumbents in the payments and marketing space but most importantly compensate customers for using their data. For example, consumers currently earn rewards for every transaction they do on the Beam platform which they can spend across the entire network.

Data sovereignty is a hot topic at the moment and we want to enable customers on the Beam platform to own their data and share it with retailers based on the compensation they see fit. We are looking to partner with suppliers that are building blockchain based ID management solutions.

For example consumers will be able to nominate their preferred data sovereignty platform -- ocean protocol,, -- to connect with Beam so they can share their data at their own discretion. We anticipate these protocols to be permissioned based and this customer information will help stakeholders of the retail value chain make better decisions.

  • Q: So can users of Beam pay with other cryptocurrencies, or just Beam token? Fiat too?

FH: The way in which Beam customers will pay won't change from how we currently operate and that is in fiat by connecting your credit/debit card. However for our local partners, issuers and acquirers who are helping us to grow the network, their revenue will be paid in Beam tokens.

We're tinkering with ways to integrate crypto for the customer but that's still a work in progress. Watch this space...

  • Q: I see your website describes it as a reverse ICO... Can you explain how that works?

FH: Sure, a reverse ICO is essentially an existing business. So take Beam for example, we're live across 4 cities, we have over 750,000 users and have processed over 4.3million transactions on the Beam network. We're established and have been in the space since 2012. We have real world customers and are solving real world problems. Unlike ICOs who are raising money to launch a business idea, we're currently raising funds to help scale our existing business.

  • Q: What trends are you seeing in the market right now?

FH: I just came back from a trip to Asia and a part of that trip was spent in China with Austrade on their blockchain mission. Interoperability came up quote a lot - that is the ability for blockchain networks to interact and integrate with each other. During this trip we attended the Global Blockchain summit in Shanghai and this topic came up a lot.

The other trend we're seeing at the moment is the bearish market. It's tough. I think a lot of Aussie companies on this mission had high hopes about opening up channels of investment from Chinese funds, but everyone at the moment really has their wallets closed. Not too many are leading and investing.

The other interesting this is just the size of the Chinese market and the rate in which they are innovaitng with Blockchain. It's absolutely crazy. Innovation in China is top-down, unlike Australis which is bottom up. We went to Ant Financial (AliPay) to understand the projects they were working on and it's just so far beyond what the market is doing here - and that's because they have the money and the user base to do it.

  • Q: And predictions for what we'll see in 2019?

FH: 2019 will be interesting. I think we'll see the SEC hand down some significant regulaton in the next 3 months which will set up 2019 to be an interesting year. Hopefully it really ignites some investing in the market and give it a kicker. However, I really do not think we've seen the last of the down turn just yet.

  • Q: When the clock strikes 12 at midnight on New Years Eve - what will the price of bitcoin be?

USD $5,500

  • Q: Any favourite coins or projects at the moment?

I'm really liking the way Blockchain is being applied to land rights and ownership issues. Initiatives like Bitland are using blockchain to help people in parts of rural africa to keep track of land titles. Often land titles are stripped from local people when the govenrment want to develop certain areas and these people aren't rightfully compensated. So I like that it's addressing such an important issue.

  • Q: What is your 5/10/20 year forecast for cryptocurrency?

5 years - EDUCATION + real-time cross border remittance

10 years - Bitcoin reachers $100K + consumers own their own data is the NORM.

20 years - Blockchain + AI with be doing all kinds of crazy things and hopefully crypto will be that easy to use we'll see mass adoption. Yes Mum, you will know how to use crypto too.

  • Q: If you could merge any two cryptocurrencies, what would they be?

FH: I have no idea....

Mainstream crypto awareness
Sometimes you find mainstream crypto awarness in the most unlikely of places…

  1. Bitcoin featured on Who Wants To Be A Millionare Australia.
  2. Merriam-Webster has just added Bitcoin to its official Scrabble dictionary (along with 300 other words). It'll be worth at least 9 points.
  3. More major sports teams continue to team up with crypto companies -- and in some cases are creating fan coins. Ant pool (owned by Bitmain) will be sponsoring the Houston Rockets NBA team next year. In Soccer, Paris Saint Germain (PSG) and Juventus are exploring creating their own crypto tokens. And, in the UK, at least 7 Premiere League clubs have signed partnership deals with online social crypto platform, eToro.
  4. Still in the UK -- Forbes is reporting that crypto is also getting mainstream exposure in the form of ... wait for it... long running UK soap... Coronation Street.

According to Forbes, one character -- who's a problem gambler DJ (naturally)-- tells his friend that he invested £50 in whipcoin some years ago.

“The pair do some research and find that his original investment is now worth some £250 million. However, Ryan — of course — cannot remember the password to his whipcoin account, a story that is fast becoming cliche in pop cryptocurrency writing. Eventually, they track down the password, but their previous research was apparently massively out of date — the coins are now near worthless — suggesting Coronation Street's writers have been following the altcoin price scene surprisingly closely.”

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Coinbase Bundles now let you buy 5 cryptocurrencies at once.

If you don't want to know or care about what you're buying, this bundle might be the answer.

If you have literal hams for hands, the Coinbase Bundle might be for you (not financial advice), presenting an easy way of buying a lot of bitcoin, a little bit of Ethereum and a negligible splattering Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin and Ethereum Classic.

These five coins were carefully hand-picked by Coinbase out of the five coins it currently has available, so you know you're getting a whole lot of availability with this bundle.

The breakdown of each is weighted by market cap, like so at the time of writing:

Functionally it's almost exactly like the Coinbase Index fund, except this time it's called a "bundle" which might make it sound a bit more chipper and friendly for retail speculators, rather than like a serious financial product for serious investors.

juicy crypto words

The main difference is that the Coinbase Index Fund was designed for accredited and sophisticated investors who want to spend a lot of money on a random splash of crypto, while the Coinbase bundle is largely for apparently for unaccredited and unsophisticated investors who want to spend a little bit of money on a random splash of crypto.

So far the Bundle is available to verified customers in the US, EU and UK, with the minimum purchase being $25, €25 or £25. Fee-wise it's exactly the same as any other Coinbase purchase, with a flat 1.5% commission on the fiat amount bought.

You can find the Coinbase Bundle sold here, along with a jaunty graph explaining how much it would be worth now if you bought it a week, month or year ago.

Buying $100 a week ago would be worth $100.24 now, while putting down $100 a month ago would be worth only $94.74 now. A year ago though, and you'd be up to $159.20.

And buy on January 3 2013, as far back as the graph goes, and a $100 purchase then would be worth $13,485.08. But most coins in this bundle didn't exist back then, so take the numbers with a grain of salt.

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New Zealand Law Foundation says it’s time to do cryptocurrency.

Among other recommendations, the report suggests NZ starts taking tax in crypto and trials a CBDC.

A recent report written by the University of Auckland and commissioned by the New Zealand Law Foundation, concludes that cryptocurrency is here to stay, and that New Zealand could and should be doing more to get on the blockchain train.

The full report in all its 179 page glory (PDF) is so comprehensive as to be a probably perfectly adequate primer to bring a keen reader up to speed on how the technology works, to better make sense of its recommendations, and it might have been intended to serve as New Zealand's blockchain bible for government decision-makers.

It concludes by addressing some of the main criticisms of cryptocurrency, and laying out 10 regulatory recommendations for the future.

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It strolls through some of the main objections against cryptocurrency, many of which are the same old arguments repeated over and over again by people who should know better.

It's not money!

Actually it kind of is, the report says. People are getting paid in crypto, other governments have declared it to be a money equivalent, you can buy things with crypto and many people regard them as money.

Whether or not it meets some particular definition of money is irrelevant when it's being used as such, so it's worth considering and regulating it as such.

Crypto is for criminals and terrorists

Nah, the report says.

It notes that the demise of Silk Road did little to dampen bitcoin enthusiasm, and that arguments about a certain type of technology being inherently evil tend not to hold much water.

It gives examples of gift cards, self-published books on Amazon and good old cash being used to launder money far in excess of what's realistically attributable to cryptocurrencies. Plus, it says, bitcoin is most definitely not anonymous.

Cryptocurrencies cannot scale

"To judge cryptocurrencies by bitcoin would be akin to dismissing powered flight because the first aeroplanes by Richard Pearse and the Wright brothers were clumsy. The technology is still maturing, and is barely one decade old, yet in tests Red Belly blockchain has shown that it can process payments considerably faster than Visa’s network," the report says.

Crypto may result in financial instability

Banks serve as an important buffer against downturns and widespread defaults by creditors, the report notes, so threats to bank profitability may also pose threats to the reliability of this buffer.

At the same time being too big to fail is also a risk to financial stability, as seen in the GFC, and cryptocurrency is just one fintech and business development that's forcing banks to adapt. Their profit margins are under threat from a great many sources beyond cryptocurrency, and tying use of new technologies to bank profits is just not a good recipe for innovation.

It's a potentially very real problem, but it goes beyond cryptocurrency and a reflexive opposition to digital currencies isn't a sensible way of handling it.

Crypto can be used for tax evasion

The report reminds readers that cash is a thing which is still much more popular for tax evasion purposes.

Plus, the most sensible way to collect taxes from cryptocurrency is probably to legally require appropriate taxes to be paid on cryptocurrency.

Risky for consumers

Volatility, forgotten passwords, irreversible transactions, cybersecurity concerns and a lack of regulation all pose serious consumer risks, the report notes.

But between ongoing advances in technology and ecosystem infrastructure, and regulatory moves, the authors point out that moving forward helps mitigates risks more effectively than pulling back.

10 recommendations

1. "The New Zealand Government should continue to allow cryptocurrencies to be traded as well as used for the payment of goods and services within and outside New Zealand."

It might be counter-intuitive for central banks, but adding a bit of marketplace competition to currency itself might help raise the bar, the report suggests. It quotes an expert saying:

"The threat of competition from private monies imposes market discipline on any government that issues currency. If a central bank, for example, does not provide a sufficiently "good" money, then it will have difficulties in implementing allocations. This may be the best feature of cryptocurrencies. In a world in which we can switch to Bitcoin or Ethereum, central banks need to provide, paraphrasing Adam Smith, a tolerable administration of money. Currency competition may have a large upside for human welfare after all."

2. "New Zealand-based cryptocurrency exchanges to be encouraged and clear guidance provided as to their AML/CFT obligations by both the DIA and the FMA (that is, follow Australia’s example)."

"It is generally safer for individuals and businesses to deal with cryptocurrency exchanges based in New Zealand than ones based overseas. Arguably Japan and now Australia have clearly stated the requirements for cryptocurrency exchanges in terms of AML/CFT, and they have not created a bespoke regulation as occurred in New York with BitLicense" the report says.

"New Zealand regulators, principally the DIA, do not need to amend their laws for cryptocurrency exchanges; rather, they need to provide more guidance on what those laws are specifically for cryptocurrency exchanges. Australia serves as a good example."

3. Greater advice and therefore protection provided to consumers on cryptocurrencies by the FMA, DIA and other organisations.

"Despite regulators and others preferring that people not purchase cryptocurrencies, some people will. It is preferable that those who do buy cryptocurrencies do so in ways where risk is reduced. To that end it is preferable that New Zealanders purchase cryptocurrencies from New Zealand exchanges rather than ones based overseas, which may not be regulated."

The report also notes with a bit of surprise that the New Zealand Department of Internal Affairs (DIA), which is responsible for overseeing exchanges, does not actually have any cryptocurrency information for consumers.

The NZ Finanancial Markets Authority (FMA) does, "although it could be improved."

Once NZ exchanges have more regulatory guidance, customers can start being more reasonably advised to look at NZ exchanges, it says. It also takes a brief moment to point out that the FMA currently advises consumers to check whether an exchange holds their NZ dollars in a trust account, but that there's no real way for someone to actually check.

Better to encourage exchange growth in New Zealand to allow for better consumer protection, it says.

4. "Cryptocurrency exchanges and blockchain businesses that comply with AML/CFT and other requirements must have access to bank accounts with New Zealand banks."

Once again it's easier to protect consumers close to home, and when banks refuse services to crypto companies they're not helping.

As the report notes in a previous section, it's difficult to take banks seriously when they assure everyone that it's simply part of their de-risking process, when the same excuse has, in New Zealand, previously been used with the apparent effect of undermining competition.

Practically, the report recommends amending the banking code of practice to require banks to give a clear reason when they drop a crypto customer, coupled with clearer exchange regulation.

5. "Merchants must be able to accept cryptocurrency payments by people or organisations for under NZD 100 or payments made through a New Zealand exchange (or an overseas exchange) that complies with AML/CFT requirements, without the merchants losing their bank accounts."

"The banks have made it clear to a number of merchants that if they wish to accept cryptocurrencies from their customers they will lose their bank accounts. Granted, the concerns are based on AML/CFT fears, yet the same banks allow those merchants to accept cash from their customers."

"One way to break the impasse is to stop banks from preventing merchants accepting cryptocurrency payments made through cryptocurrency exchanges or wallets that are registered in New Zealand, or ones registered overseas that meet the same or similar standards."

6, 7, 8. Tax stuff

The report recommends ending double taxation of cryptocurrency by removing GST when crypto is used to pay for things,

"This double taxation cannot be justified, even less so when Australia changed its GST on cryptocurrencies to remove GST from certain cryptocurrencies... Not all of the Australian changes should be adopted, however. Stable coins, cryptocurrencies that are backed by other currencies and assets, including fiat and other cryptocurrencies, are not GST excluded in Australia."

juicy crypto words

"The purpose of such stable coins is entirely for use as currencies and should also be excluded from GST in New Zealand."

It also encourages more clarity around crypto tax in general, and even takes the big step of suggesting that the tax office starts accepting cryptocurrency for taxes paid on cryptocurrency trading.

"Requiring the IRD to accept cryptocurrencies as payment for taxes on income gained on the trading cryptocurencies should have the effect of collecting more tax. For, paying tax in cryptocurrency is arguably psychologically easier than paying in fiat currency. It would also ensure that there are exchanges in New Zealand so that the IRD can use those exchanges, thus driving further economic activity in New Zealand and not offshore. In addition, for New Zealand to be seen as a progressive country the IRD should also the payment of cryptocurrencies for all taxes."

9. "The RBNZ trials the creation and issuance of a New Zealand CBDC"

Curiously, the paper might have spilled the beans on New Zealand's central bank already trialling a central bank digital currency (CBDC).

"In one comment the RBNZ’s paper on cryptocurrencies hinted itself rather cryptically at work on a CBDD," it says, citing an author who wrote "work is currently under-way to assess the future demand for New Zealand fiat currency and to consider whether it would be feasible for the Reserve Bank to replace the physical currency that currently circulates with a digital alternative. Over time, analysis associated with this project will filter through into the public domain."

It recommends that tests continue, or start if they haven't already.

10. Create a regulatory sandbox

"Although wider than cryptocurrencies, New Zealand should follow countries, such as the UK and Australia, and create a regulatory sandbox to ensure that the
regulators work alongside fintech companies. While one government department could be the primary sponsor, it would be advantageous for it to be a cross agency initiative."

"That way the regulators can see first-hand the successes and roadblocks that fintech companies are experiencing. New Zealand needs to ensure that it is not left behind other countries. As Kiwibank’s Digital Advisor, Peter Fletcher-Dobson, has been reported as saying, "New Zealand needs to get a move on, otherwise we’ll miss out on the massive opportunity presented by cryptocurrencies" and “regulatory sandboxes should potentially be created."

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The Impact Ledger announced: A meta social impact blockchain.

Blockchain on the blockchain, with an eye on impact investment for future development of the space.

So, you want to do some impact investing? A common starting point might be one of the project libraries out there, such as The GIIN or ImpactSpace, not to be confused with ImpactBase, or Australia's own Impact Investing Hub.

And if you want to be impact invested-in, that will often mean going through a number of these kinds of listing sites, similar to how charities will have to register as a nonprofit in their own countries, and might then want to maintain a presence on other databases such as Charity Navigator or Chnet.

When information needs to be updated, it means multiplying efforts across all these kinds of platforms who in turn might need to multiply their own efforts if they want to do any real vetting of projects, while serious nonprofit organisations themselves will often have to spend heavily on IT if they want to achieve strong results.

Don't forget to explore potential conflicts of interest, examine the vetting and grading processes of each hub and get detailed information about each option before putting any money in.

It's inefficiency and overheads everywhere.

What if...

What if there was a way to create a single reliable source of truth for others to draw freely from? Ideally without the most obvious problem.


That competing standards problem might be impossible to avoid initially, but in the longer run a decentralised system could serve as a more reliable source of truth for all those other organisations to draw from, while bringing some transparency advantages and offering standards to help cut overheads for all.

That might be what the newly created The Impact Ledger is going for somewhere down the line. Initially, it intends to be a new hub dedicated to cultivating a vetted registry of blockchain-related social impact investing opportunities.

The Impact Ledger itself is a product of the Blockchain Trust Accelerator, a nonprofit dedicated to leveraging blockchain for social impact. The project was funded in part with a six figure grant from the Social Alpha Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to giving no-strings funding for projects which leverage blockchain for social impact and help advance the space.

This chain might be an example of why The Impact Ledger might be so needed as a decentralised, yet well-vetted and comprehensive, registry of blockchain social impact projects, such as The Impact Ledger itself. It's all very meta.

juicy crypto words

And blockchain technology in particular has so many applications beyond the fintech space, especially as a foundation on which to grow further efficiencies (such as how The Impact Ledger project could have benefited from having access to The Impact Ledger). But a simple lack of funding and education is often holding it back.

"Blockchain technology is emerging at a time when broken systems, a lack of trust, and bureaucratic dysfunction are preventing civil society leaders from achieving their objectives," said Tomicah Tillemann, founder of the Blockchain Trust Accelerator at New America and chairman of the Global Blockchain Business Council. "Many high potential blockchain for social impact projects — projects that could affect all facets of civil society — are currently underway. But these projects are far-flung, and differ widely in terms of their potential, the degree to which they leverage blockchain's capabilities, and their stages of development."

"Attempts to catalogue activity in the space have lacked rigor, a mechanism for keeping information up-to-date, and a communication strategy to ensure information about projects reaches the right audiences. The Impact Ledger will solve those issues by convening experts in the field to define parameters for inclusion in the registry; applying those parameters to researched and referred projects; implementing a plan for updating The Impact Ledger regularly with additions, deletions and relevant news on listed projects; and crafting a communications plan to raise awareness of the registry among key constituents," Tillemann continued.

"The Blockchain Trust Accelerator will elevate the field of blockchain for social impact with The Impact Ledger, and we are proud to be supporting them as they build a definitive, vetted registry which promotes the understanding and flow of resources to blockchain for social impact projects, and which separates hype from projects with real impact and potential," said Nydia Zhang, co-founder and chair of the Social Alpha Foundation.

"Blockchain is one of the most significant technical innovations of our time. The technology can create records, contracts, and transactions that are highly secure, transparent, and resistant to manipulation. Blockchain is already being deployed in the finance sector, with over $1 billion invested in potential fintech applications. From strengthening resilience and managing identity, to improving the efficacy of relief efforts, blockchain is poised to have a profound impact on the world."

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Litecoin price analysis 28 September: Token passes US$60, fuelled on by trading volumes.

LTC pushes higher in early trading, encouraged by a significant jump in the coin's 24-hour trading volumes.


Key takeaways

  • Litecoin, as with most of the leading cryptocurrencies, remains in the green today.
  • Trading volumes have increased by more than 55% in the last 24 hours.
  • Bitcoin's value remains relatively flat.

Litecoin is riding high on a break above US$60 right now. The cryptocurrency is up 6.6% over the past 24 hours.

The token had been trading sideways for most of yesterday, ranging between US$57.00 and US$59.00. Then, during the early hours of this morning the value of the coin rose from US$57.23 to US$63.17 in only two hours.


At the peak of this rally, the token hit a weekly high of US$63.22. However, this is still some way off from the monthly zenith witnessed at the beginning of September when Litecoin's value exceeded US$68.00.

At the time of writing, LTC was valued at US$62.66.

24-hour trading volumes have shot up dramatically overnight, from US$294 million to US$460 million.

Litecoin's dramatic price rise seems to correspond with a large volume of trading activity on minor digital currency exchange DOBI Trade. At press time, DOBI trades made up 13.8% of LTC's 24-hour trading volume.

Coinspeaker reports that the last high demand period for Litecoin was back in May this year and there have been no major buyouts since. Analysts suggest that, for now, the key support level for Litecoin is at US$55.76.

You can learn all about different exchanges, understand exactly how to buy and sell cryptocurrencies, calculate your taxes, discover digital wallets to hold assets and explore a list of all the alternative coins on the market.

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One of the First Bitcoin Miners is Quietly Cashing Out: Blockchain Researcher

As of Thursday, Sept. 25, the bitcoin price has climbed about 3 percent, briefly crossing the $6,700 level and extending toward $6,750 at one point in the early evening.

While this movement has made plenty of cryptocurrency  traders and investors happy in the short-term, a recent analysis of spending patterns relating to some of the earliest blocks of bitcoin has revealed that a very early miner has been taking advantage of the last several years’ long-term upward trajectory to slowly cash out tens of thousands of coins since Dec. 2016.

A recent tweet from a cryptocurrency expert, Blockchain data analyst Antoine Le Calvez, has revealed that a mysterious bitcoin miner has managed to send approximately 30,000 BTC cryptocurrency exchanges between Dec. 2016, and Jan. 2018, potentially cashing them out for a mammoth payday.

Mystery Miner Cashes In

According to Le Calvez, the mysterious bitcoin miner has been smart enough to cash in on their youngest blocks of bitcoin to not reveal the full extent of their mining period.

View image on Twitter

View image on Twitter

Antoine Le Calvez@khannib

An analysis of the spending patterns of the earliest blocks of Bitcoin seem to indicate that a very early miner sent around 30k BTC to exchanges from Dec 2016 to early Jan 2018.

12:00 PM - Sep 26, 2018

Twitter Ads info and privacy


It would seem that, at the latest, the mining started somewhere around Dec. 2009, back when the value of BTC wasn’t much above $0, still wasn’t anywhere near reaching dollar parity, and the flagship cryptocurrency could be profitably mined with a standard-issue CPU. The first Bitcoin Pizza Day, you will remember, did not occur until 2010.

Furthermore, the researcher believes that the mystery miner had mined for at least seven months. Through this time, he managed to acquire more than 30,000 BTC since block rewards were high and miners were few.

Antoine Le Calvez@khannib

Sep 26, 2018

Replying to @khannib

For those confused by the chart:
X-axis is block height, time flows to the left.

Y-axis is when that block was spent, if it was, also expressed in height, the higher the dot, the most recent the spending.

X-axis runs from 2009-01-03 to 2010-04-10

Antoine Le Calvez@khannib

Before people ask, I don't think it's Satoshi.

12:09 PM - Sep 26, 2018

Twitter Ads info and privacy


He speculates that the miner could have even commenced mining operations earlier than Dec. 2009 since, recognizing that spending older coins is more likely to attract attention, he desires to conceal his sell-off. For some, this may raise questions, such as whether the mystery wallet owner is not Satoshi Nakamoto himself, although the researcher seems to think otherwise.

Featured Image from Shutterstock

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U.S. Court Grants CFTC Request to Sue $6 Million Crypto Fraud

A U.S. district court on Wednesday gave leave to the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) to proceed with the lawsuit against Nevada-based My Big Coin Pay Inc. who had allegedly been operating a $6 million fraud, per the court’s Memorandum of Decision. The federal judge who presided over the case affirmed that the cryptocurrency in question falls within the definition of a commodity, and as a result gave the regulator the authority to charge for fraud since it falls within its jurisdiction.


The Alleged My Big Coin Scam

As the crackdown on virtual currency scams gained momentum, the CFTC pursued a case against technology entrepreneur, Randall Crater, and his corporate entity — My Big Coin — in January. Crater had allegedly perpetrated a $6 million fraud on naive individuals who were keen on purchasing the shady virtual currency.


In the lawsuit filed against Mr. Crater and My Big Coin, the CFTC accused the defendants of misappropriating $6 million from 28 clients by selecting a name that sounds like bitcoin and also claiming the cryptocurrency was backed by gold. The plaintiff further alleged the defendants falsely indicated the cryptocurrency had trading representation on several currency exchanges. Mark Gillespie, an associate of Crater, was also accused to have conned investors of their funds and then redirected such funds to personal bank accounts in connivance with Crater.




The defense counsel, however, attempted to dismiss the case on the grounds of virtual currency not being a tangible good or service on which futures contracts are being traded — the agency’s clear jurisdiction.


Judge Questions Both Parties


Source: Shutterstock

In reaching his judgment on the definition of a commodity, U.S. Judge Rya Zobel in Boston put questions to the defendants and plaintiff about the operations of cryptocurrencies. Zobel did not unilaterally overrule Cater’s request for the case to be dismissed but maintained she would decide in the shortest possible time.


In her judgment, she noted that My Big Coin  fell under the classification of a commodity in line with the definition of the Commodity Exchange Act which incorporates broad categories. Following her clarification on the commodity status of virtual currencies and bitcoin futures, the CFTC by extension can exercise its oversight function on other virtual currencies.




“That is sufficient, especially at the pleading stage, for plaintiff to allege that My Big Coin is a ‘commodity’ under the Act,” she wrote in Wednesday’s judgment.


Controversy Still Remains

The lacuna on the jurisdiction over cryptocurrency remains evident in the United States. Earlier this year, a judgment  delivered by U.S. District Judge Jack Weinstein in Brooklyn stated that CFTC could regulate virtual currencies as commodities. This ruling was leveraged by Crater’s counsel, who disputed its application over bitcoin on which futures contracts are traded.

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Newsflash: Bitcoin Price Pops to $6,745 ahead of Quarterly Futures Expiration.

The bitcoin price broke out of its early-week slump on Thursday, scrambling back above $6,700 to return to its weekend levels.


Bitcoin had entered the week near $6,700  after briefly extending as high as $6,815 last Friday. However, the flagship cryptocurrency took a moderate dip on Monday, a correction that ultimately forced BTC below $6,400 on Tuesday ahead of a recovery back to $6,500 on Wednesday.



BTC/USD | Bitfinex

That’s where BTC/USD continued to trade for most of Thursday morning and afternoon, at least until 19:48 UTC when a surge in volume carried the bitcoin price from $6,549 to $6,690 in less than four minutes. At 20:02 UTC, bitcoin broke past $6,700 for the first time since Sunday and popped as high as $6,745 one minute later. As of the time of writing at 21:09 UTC, BTC/USD was trading just above the $6,700 level at $6,702 on Bitfinex.


Several traders have noted on social media that tomorrow, Sept. 28, is the date that quarterly futures expire on OKEx, BitMEX, and CME, events that tend to be accompanied by increased price volatility in the spot markets.




Click here for a real-time bitcoin price chart or here to read CCN’s latest intraday BTC/USD technical analysis.

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Gridiron Legend Joe Montana Invests in Cryptocurrency-Powered Football League.

The Fan-Controlled Football League (FCFL), has announced the addition of legendary NFL quarterback and venture capitalist Joe Montana, who will join the cryptocurrency-powered league as an investor and chief strategic adviser.


Sometimes hailed as a “real-life Madden,” the FCFL is a blockchain-based real-world sports league where fans make all the decisions including deciding team play calls, branding, coaches, and player drafts. It is designed to bring together the fan experience of live sports and fantasy sports with the engagement and global reach of video games and esports.


As CCN reported, the FCFL raised about $5.2 million in an initial coin offering (ICO) carried out through Indiegogo before concerns about changing regulatory circumstances made the platform’s broker, Micro Ventures, pull out and refund investor money.




Widely regarded as one of the best American football players ever, Montana boasts a successful 16-year career in the NFL including nine divisional championships and four Super Bowls. He is also a technology pioneer and partner in early stage venture capital firm Liquid 2 Ventures, where he oversees and advises a sizable portfolio of start-ups.




As the FCFL’s chief strategy officer, Montana will be responsible for the creation and development of the league’s brand messaging, and he is expected to play a prominent role in adding football and technical innovations. He will also provide expert guidance on other areas of FCFL’s operations from fan engagement strategy to front office operations.


Speaking about joining FCFL, Joe Montana said:


“I’m tremendously excited to be partnering with the FCFL. What this team has created is innovative, engaging, and will energize the digital age football fan. Fans will hire the coaches, draft the players and call all the plays in real time. It’s a real-life video game and the future of sports.”


Working alongside him will be a highly experienced team of advisers with experience from a wide spectrum of fields including gaming, technology and sports. Notably, he will work alongside recently hired COO Andy Dolich, who brings more than fifty years of experience as a sports executive, including front office positions in the NFL, MLB, NHL, and NBA.


Commenting on the new addition to the team, FCFL CEO and co-founder Sohrob Farudi said:


“We couldn’t be more thrilled to have the GOAT, Joe Montana, join the FCFL. As we continue to build and launch the sports platform for the digital fan, we will look to Joe for leadership and expertise in every facet of the league.”


Following Montana’s capture, the next expected moves for the league include the announcement of “fan captains” for the inaugural eight teams, initiation of fan voting rights, and announcement of other strategic alliances before the season kicks off in May 2019.

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SBI Ripple is Officially a Licensed Payments Agent, Will it Boost XRP Adoption?

Over the past year, SBI Ripple Asia has brought in 61 Japanese banks to its consortium representing 80 percent of Japan’s total assets. In the upcoming months, the consortium could begin to utilize the Ripple network to process cross-border payments.


On September 26, SBI Ripple Asia successfully registered with the Kantou Bureau of Japan’s Ministry of Finance as a licensed electronic payments agent. The license allows the organization to operate as a money transmitter, processing and clearing transactions on behalf of individuals and businesses.


Initially, the organization Asia will test out its MoneyTap payments app, a blockchain-based money transfer service for retail users, but the licence is expected to lead to an increased adoption of Ripple.


Increasing Demand in Japan

Last week, the price of XRP, the native cryptocurrency of Ripple, increased by nearly three-fold. Around the same time, the volume of XRP-to-yen and XRP-to-crypto trading pairs surged in the Japanese cryptocurrency exchange market, fueling the rally of XRP.


Analysts attributed the abrupt increase in the price of XRP to the increase in demand for the asset from the Japanese cryptocurrency exchange market, which remains as the largest crypto market ahead of the US and South Korea.




It is entirely possible that growing anticipation towards the integration of Ripple by the 61 banks involved in the consortium and two of the biggest commercial banks in South Korea Woori Bank and Shinhan Bank is contributing to the newly found momentum of XRP.


Based on local regulations, businesses that intend to work with banks and their APIs to process payments are required to be licensed as a electronic payments agent and register with local financial bureaus.


The recent move of SBI Ripple Asia frees the institution from holding back the integration of various blockchain-based products such as xRapid and xCurrent into the existing infrastructure of major banks.


Already, in March of this year, Woori Bank and Shinhan Bank conducted a pilot test of Ripple’s liquidity products to process cross-border payments between banks in the SBI Ripple Asia consortium.


In December 2017, the Ripple team wrote:


“The Japan Bank Consortium will use Ripple’s settlement technology, xCurrent, to settle transactions between participating Japanese banks and Woori Bank or Shinhan Bank. The pilot solidifies the Japan Bank Consortium’s commitment to modernize payment systems — specifically in the Japan/Korea corridor where Korea is Japan’s third largest trade partner — to send money instantly, removing the need for intermediaries while reducing the cost of sending global payments.”


Earlier this year, Woori Bank hinted full integration of XRP by the end of 2018, if it is ready to be implemented onto the bank’s services for international payments. The status of SBI Ripple as a licensed payments agent increases the probability of large commercial banks in Asia collaborating more actively with the organization to speed up the integration of XRP.


Dozens of Banks Will Use XRP

At the Money 20/20 conference, Ripple CEO Garlinghouse  explained that dozens of major banks will utilize the Ripple network to process payments.


“I’ve publicly stated that by the end of this year I have every confidence that major banks will use XRapid as a liquidity tool. You know, by the end of next year, I would certainly hope that we would see you know in the order of… dozens,” Garlinghouse said.




The Japanese and South Korean finance markets are closest to adopting XRP and its liquidity products.

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Bitcoin Price Could Crash to $100, Claims Forex Analyst.

There’s something about a prolonged cryptocurrency market downturn that leaves bears jockeying to be the one to twist the final knife in bitcoin’s battle-scarred back. The latest jab comes from Marek Paciorkowski, a financial market analyst at Polish forex platform Aforti Exchange S.A.


Speaking in an interview with Romanian financial publication  Business Review, Paciorkowski speculated that the bitcoin price  could plunge as far as $100, a threshold it hasn’t touched in more than five years and a mark that would place it 99.5 percent below the all-time high it set in Dec. 2017.




“Considering the triangle pattern that the Bitcoin market has been tracing since March 2018 and most importantly the height of this pattern, if a breakout takes place in line with the prevailing downward trend of the descending triangle pattern, the technical target price for the Bitcoin implied by the range of the pattern will come at … USD 100,” he said.


“It may be hard to believe, but everything is possible in the financial markets and this scenario should be taken into consideration, especially if the subsequent attempts to resume the long term uptrend eventually fail and Bitcoin ends up breaching the USD 5,500 level.”



BTC/USD | Bitfinex

Paciorkowski based his historically-bearish forecast on proprietary technical analysis, alleging that the bitcoin price is caught in a severe downward trend out of which there is a significant chance that it may not emerge.


“Every recovery that we’ve seen so far, starting February 2018 to date, was each accompanied by lower volumes and interest from the buyers and under these circumstances we’ve concluded that ever since marking the USD 11,700 peak at the end of February/beginning of March, we’ve been clearly dealing with a downward trend within the triangle pattern,” he said. “In recent months, we have also been experiencing a contraction in the market’s volatility, as illustrated by the sideways movement in Bollinger Bands, which have acted for many times in a row as support and resistance levels.”




Nevertheless, he said that if bitcoin can manage to break above $7,715, he would take that as a reliable buy signal. Conversely, a move below $5,613 would be a “definite” sell signal. He explained, “Should the market continue to track the Bollinger Bands, then only breaking above the USD 7,715 level will count as a reliable buy signal, while dropping below USD 5,613 will be a definite sell signal. ”


According to the “ Bitcoin Obituaries” index compiled by cryptocurrency resource site 99Bitcoins, bitcoin has died 312 times since the website began keeping track. You can chalk Paciorkowski’s eulogy up as number 313, but history seems to suggest that his apocalyptic prediction will not prove any more prescient than those that came before.

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‘Ripple for Good’: Ripple Commits $100 Million to Social Giving Program.

Blockchain payments giant Ripple has formally announced its social impact program ‘Ripple for Good’, with donations to exceed $105 million for a number of projects already underway.


In an announcement today, the San Francisco-based fintech firm said the social giving program will focus on educational projects that further financial inclusion around the world. Ripple for Good will also collaborate with RippleWorks, a nonprofit that has already worked on 70 projects in 55 countries across a number of social causes including medical aid, education, healthcare and more.


Ripple says the funding will focus on education, particularly in science, technology, engineering and mathematics alongside fintech. “In particular, Ripple for Good will focus on applications and real-world use cases with the potential for scalable social impact,” Ripple said.




Ripple co-founder and executive chairman Chris Larsen said:


“We have to stop being self-righteous disruptors and instead focus on building things that solve real world problems. If we focus the blockchain movement on that, over two billion underbanked people can become full economic citizens.”


As CCN reported previously in June, Ripple donated $50 million to 17 universities around the world to propel research and bolster adoption of blockchain technology, cryptocurrency and digital payments, part of the University Blockchain Research Initiative. The universities receiving the funding include the likes of Princeton, MIT, IIT, UC Berkley, University College London, Korea University and the Australian National University cCollege, among others.


Ripple also funded educational crowdfunding website DonorsChoose by backing all 35,000 classroom projects in a single move earlier in March, deeming it a $29 million gift to the cause.




Ripple confirmed an additional $25 million committed to the program today, coinciding with the formal launch of the program. The company said it’s currently assessing “a number of high-quality projects” to determine funding.


Ripple’s head of social impact Ken Weber added:


“If we are truly committed to transformative global change, we will work to help ensure that innovations in banking and global payments are available everywhere to everyone, among unbanked and underbanked populations and in economies and economic sectors that serve the greater good. Our goal is to deliver on the promise of an Internet of Value for all.”

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Bitcoin Cash Analysis: BCH/USD in Breakout Zone after 25% Spike from Bitmain IPO Filing.

Bitcoin Cash on Thursday jumped more than 25 percent against the US Dollar owing to strong fundamentals.


Bitmain, one of the world’s largest digital miners and also the most energetic backer of BCH tokens, yesterday applied for its long-planned IPO round. If accepted, the Beijing company will go public on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKEX). The application, however, is in draft-state. It is unclear whether the Bitmain will receive approval or not. Nevertheless, the mere announcement of the company applying for an IPO has injected upside sentiments among the BCH speculators.


The BCH/USD market, as a result, was host to bulls in the past two days. The upside sentiment arrived only after the Bitmain announcement. Therefore, it would be safe to say that speculators started entering long positions on a strong near-term bullish feeling. The market can still erase its gains if longs begin to get executed near the new highs.


BCH/USD Technical Analysis



BCH/USD has successfully executed a breakout action above it’s medium-term – quite giant – descending trendline. The pair is now inside what the analysts call a “breakout zone,” with its resistance lurking near 666-fiat (quite a Devil), the retracement level of early September’s upside. As long as we stay inside the breakout zone, the chance of a reversal would be high. That too, in a market, that is known to erase a large portion of its gains gained from speculative upside rallies.




As far as our technical indicators are concerned, it is neutral. The BCH/USD has crossed above the resistance posed by its 50H SMA but is still below its 100H and 200H SMAs. The Stochastic Oscillator has just reversed from its buying selling area threshold and is attempting another go towards the overbought area. The RSI indicator, too, is heading towards the strong buying territory, while inside a neutral zone at the time of this writing.


BCH/USD Intraday Opinion



We are looking at a potential reversal from 580-fiat, our interim resistance, which could excite bears to go short towards 500-fiat. As they do, a stop loss order only a two-pip above the entry position would save the trade from aggressive harm. There is also a possibility of a breakout scenario inside the “breakout zone.” A break above 480-fiat should, therefore, open an easy long position towards 600-fiat, while eyeing 666-fiat as the primary upside target.




In case of an aggressive downside action, we would recommend traders to watch out for the rising trendline support depicted in red. As in the case of every fundamentally-backed rally out there in the crypto world, a strong reversal is not a news. Watch out as you trade!

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Chinese Tech Giant Baidu Releases ‘Super Chain’ White Paper

Chinese search engine and web services company Baidu has released the Baidu Blockchain White Paper V1.0 on Wednesday, September 26, which describes the development of a “Super Chain” network system.

Baidu Blockchain Lab released the blockchain white paper focused on “the independent development of the ‘Super Chain’ network system.” The paper introduces the idea of commercializing the Baidu cloud blockchain blockchain-as-a-service (BaaS) platform in addition to six applications based on the Super Chain; Totem, Degree Universe, Baidu Association, Treasure Chest, Encyclopedia Online, and Hubert.

According to the white paper, Baidu’s Super Chain is more efficient than a traditional blockchain in that performs with a higher degree of hardware utilization. Per Baidu, Super Chain nodes “use multi-core parallel computing to maximize CPU utilization and increase throughput.”

The Super Chain is a stereo network that supports parallel sidechains. There is a root chain, which manages parallel chains and the operating guidelines of the entire network, that supports data exchange with each chain.

The Super Chain operates on what is dubbed a “pluggable consensus mechanism.” Within the network, the Super Chain allows different parallel chains to choose their own consensus mechanisms. It also supports consensus escalation through a voting mechanism.

The white paper states that Baidu will focus on applying the technology in food safety, product quality, new retail, new manufacturing, supply chain finance, intellectual property and trading, travel, tourism and social networking.

Modular services with the Baidu Super Chain will include scenarios in certification, digital rights, clearing and settlement, supply chain finance, digital assets, and games.

In June, the internet search giant revealed its Super Chain protocol in the context of reducing energy consumption in cryptocurrency mining operations.…hain-white-paper/

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