BlockTribune https://blocktribune.com All the News that's fit to Mine Thu, 21 Nov 2019 09:47:12 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.2.4 Singapore To Introduce New Crypto Derivatives Regulations https://blocktribune.com/singapore-to-introduce-new-crypto-derivatives-regulations/ Thu, 21 Nov 2019 10:05:07 +0000 https://blocktribune.com/?p=71541 The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has announced that crypto derivatives can no longer remain in regulatory scrutiny and require a legal classification as soon as possible.

Such talks were not seen with the regulator in the past, which is why it came as quite a surprise for many crypto companies.

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The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has announced that crypto derivatives can no longer remain in regulatory scrutiny and require a legal classification as soon as possible.

Such talks were not seen with the regulator in the past, which is why it came as quite a surprise for many crypto companies. According to the report, the implementation of these regulations on crypto derivatives specifically is mandated by the ever-so increasing volume of them being traded on the global markets.

According to MAS’ calculations, the volume ranges between $5 and $10 billion on a daily basis, outperforming spot trading by more than 10 times. Considering that hedge funds and large investment companies are starting to become more and more interested in these platforms, there was no way of avoiding some kind of regulations on institutional trading for crypto derivatives.

The United Kingdom going down the same path

A similar case can be seen in the UK as a public panel has been open about the legal classification of cryptocurrencies for the future.

The arguments remain the same as UK politicians, as well as businessmen, fear that cryptos have the capacity to become popular out of control, thus costing the government quite a lot in uncollected taxes and regulatory norms for the future.

One of the most important changes would go to popular cryptocurrency exchanges in the UK after Brexit is finalized. What this means is that legally defining cryptos will help UK investors utilize the European markets and vice versa.

But the regulatory scrutiny remains the same, thus costing the government extra overheads as well as the company owners some additional auditing costs.

Why is there so much interest in crypto derivatives?

Crypto derivatives are not necessarily cryptocurrencies themselves. The term itself is used to encompass things such as cryptocurrency CFDs, or Bitcoin futures. The reason why it’s so in-demand for crypto traders is due to the significantly higher leverage for these instruments.

For example, Bitcoin futures can sometimes go up to 1:100 leverage, thus giving the trader the opportunity to make 100 times more on their trade than on a regular crypto platform. The only issue with crypto derivatives is that they are not a representation of crypto ownership. What this means is that people trade crypto contracts rather than cryptos themselves, thus exposing the actual crypto market to a significant volume loss.

With large hedge funds and investment companies becoming more and more interested in these types of trades, the more regulatory scrutiny will it cause in this segment of the market. While cryptos themselves are still without well-defined legislation due to classification issues, crypto derivatives are very easy to classify and thus install a comprehensive regulation on it.

It’s unknown whether specific guidelines will discourage companies from delving into cryptos even further in the future, but many say that it’s likely to happen the other way around.

With a market as large as Singapore, we could expect dozens of crypto trading companies to simply move into the country and start doing business, thus classifying the city as yet another crypto hub.

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Global Digital Bank Consortium Blockchain Investment Fund Launched By Three Chinese Firms https://blocktribune.com/global-digital-bank-consortium-blockchain-investment-fund-launched-by-three-chinese-firms/ Thu, 21 Nov 2019 10:00:10 +0000 https://blocktribune.com/?p=71537 Shenzhen Hande Financial Technology Holdings Co., Ltd (HDFH), Yillion Bank and Zhongguancun Private Equity & Venture Capital Association (ZVCA) have launched the Global Digital Bank Consortium Blockchain Investment Fund.

Officially launched at the National Exhibition and Convention Center (Shanghai) during the 2nd China International Import Expo (CIIE),

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Shenzhen Hande Financial Technology Holdings Co., Ltd (HDFH), Yillion Bank and Zhongguancun Private Equity & Venture Capital Association (ZVCA) have launched the Global Digital Bank Consortium Blockchain Investment Fund.

Officially launched at the National Exhibition and Convention Center (Shanghai) during the 2nd China International Import Expo (CIIE), the fund will invest in digital banks and proven FinTech infrastructure platforms worldwide. It will also integrate the capabilities of the three parties’ management teams to facilitate the upgrading of investment targets, ultimately maximizing value in the capital markets.

The size of fund will reportedly be around $1 billion with a term consisting of a 6-year investment phase and 2-year exit phase. The Global Digital Bank Consortium Blockchain Investment Fund will initially invest in and digitally transform a bank, which will then serve as the main node of the global digital bank consortium blockchain.

“Based on the investors’ accumulation of experience in the fintech sector, the fund plans to invest in and create a leading digital bank, through which it will build a global digital bank consortium blockchain,” said HDFH Chairman Cao Tong said. “The first step is to invest in and digitally transform a bank. The second step is to build a global digital bank consortium blockchain, with the digitally transformed bank as the main node. The fund empowers the targets through investment and fintech transformation, while building an innovative global digital bank consortium blockchain, achieving broader value for the participating digital banks.”

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Will Digital Currency Bring Internationalization Of The Renminbi? https://blocktribune.com/will-digital-currency-bring-internationalization-of-the-renminbi/ Wed, 20 Nov 2019 10:05:17 +0000 https://blocktribune.com/?p=71515 The push by the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) to develop a central bank digital currency (CBDC) serves as a reminder that central bank money is due for a major upgrade. The intent to offer a digital renminbi has the potential to recalibrate,

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The push by the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) to develop a central bank digital currency (CBDC) serves as a reminder that central bank money is due for a major upgrade. The intent to offer a digital renminbi has the potential to recalibrate, if not fundamentally change, national and international payments relations. Equipping the renminbi with new functionalities and utilities is likely to be a key part of China’s long-held ambition of renminbi internationalization. 

What’s happening is that the architecture of money is changing. Technology is transforming what money can do and what consumers want money to do. Central banks are catching up. The recent decision by the Federal Reserve to adopt a faster payment service is another indication that central banks are under pressure to modernize payments more generally. While this new service is merely about moving money faster, CBDC is about changing money itself. 

Central bank money remains essential as a medium of settlement. It currently exists in banknote and reserves formats. Banknotes allow the non-bank public to make retail payments. Reserves are commercial bank account balances at the central bank used to conduct large value transactions. CBDC is central bank money in token format, typically issued and run on a blockchain. It will likely be acquired similar to banknotes by exchanging reserves for CBDC. As such, the issuance of CBDC would merely be a substitution of central bank liabilities.

The PBoC indicated that its CBDC will not run on a ‘pure blockchain’ – so what could they be planning to do? This seems to point to a distributed ledger technology (DLT) consisting of a permissioned network run by a select number of participants where the PBoC retains full control over issuance. The PBoC also hinted that it will maintain the existing distribution channels for central bank money via commercial banks. If it were adopted now it would be a first.

A CBDC launch in the near future would reinforce that the PBoC is confident that DLT can meet needed technological requirements to support monetary transactions. While tests have shown that DLT e.g. can meet and exceed peak performance in U.S. equity trading, similar tests for retail payments remain rare. The deployment of DLT would affirm that the technology has come of age. 

CBDC would be both catalyst and enabler of new token-based financial ecosystems. Tokenization is a modern representation of assets, goods, and rights that encapsulates all necessary information to record and transfer ownership. Tokenization also promises to simplify exchanges by enabling asset token for currency token swaps through instantaneous settlement or atomic swaps. It also aims to bring greater liquidity to assets, lower transaction costs, enhance transparency and broaden access to payments.

This form of digital currency enables diversification, resilience, and choice in payments. At the retail level, it would allow the public to conduct digital payments in central bank money on separate payment rails. In wholesale payments, it would offer alternative channels for central bank liquidity and enable peer-to-peer transactions. In international payments, it would make it possible to conduct payments by a simple exchange of tokens and hold central bank money offshore, and potentially also as a substitute for central bank foreign exchange reserve allocations.

CBDC is not about making payments faster. It changes how currencies can be used. A DLT-enabled currency becomes an object that when equipped with smart contracts can exhibit utility itself. Currency is thus evolving from having intrinsic value as commodity money to having no intrinsic value as paper currency to having additional utility amid new functionality that could reset preferences for holding central bank money.

China is expected to use CBDC to advance its objective of making the renminbi become a prominent international currency. A tokenized renminbi could exhibit properties making it easier to use in international transactions and attractive to hold compared with conventional currencies. New financial technology may help overcome constraints that would normally reduce currencies’ attractiveness as global settlement or invoicing media. If central bank money liquidity becomes more widely accessible, it may lead to a reordering of the importance of currencies and bring greater diversity in international payments. After monetary policy, fintech may be the new currency success factor.

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National Australian Bank Joins Blockchain Trade Finance Network Marco Polo https://blocktribune.com/national-australian-bank-joins-blockchain-trade-finance-network-marco-polo/ Wed, 20 Nov 2019 10:03:06 +0000 https://blocktribune.com/?p=71511 National Australian Bank (NAB) has announced that it has joined the Marco Polo Network, becoming the network’s first Australian banking partner.

NAB is one of the four largest financial institutions in Australia in terms of market capitalization, earnings and customers.

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National Australian Bank (NAB) has announced that it has joined the Marco Polo Network, becoming the network’s first Australian banking partner.

NAB is one of the four largest financial institutions in Australia in terms of market capitalization, earnings and customers. The bank offers banking services, credit and access card facilities, leasing, housing and general finance, international and investment banking, wealth and funds management, life insurance and custodian, trustee and nominee services.

The Marco Polo Network was launched in 2017 by the world’s leading financial institutions including ING, Commerzbank, BNP Paribas, Anglo-Gulf Trade Bank, NatWest, Natixis, Bangkok Bank, and others. The Marco Polo Network leverages Application Program Interface (API) and offers Corporates Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) embedded working capital and trade finance applications to significantly streamline communication with their bank relationships and integration with existing internal systems. R3’s distributed ledger technology enables all parties to share information across the network securely and in real time.

NAB will participate in the development of the platform alongside global financial institutions such as BNP Paribas, Commerzbank, ING, LBBW, Anglo-Gulf Trade Bank, Standard Chartered Bank, Natixis, Bangkok Bank, SMBC, Danske Bank, NatWest, DNB, OP Financial Group, Alfa Bank, Bayern LB, Helaba, S-Servicepartner, RBI, Standard Bank, Intesa Sanpaolo, Bank of America, MUFG, National Bank of Fujairah PJSC and Bradesco.

“With trade practices evolving rapidly, NAB is focused on increasing efficiencies through trade process digitization,” said NAB’s Executive General Manager Client Coverage Cathryn Carver. “Our partnership with Marco Polo Network and R3 is a big step forward in achieving better trade processes for our clients, and we are excited about its potential to help our customers grow their businesses.”

“There are currently over 25 banks in the Marco Polo Network and we are achieving great momentum in broadening our global footprint,” said TradeIX Chief Revenue Officer Tawfique Hamid. “With NAB onboard as the first Australian partner, we are a step closer to our goal of making trade and working capital finance smarter, more transparent, and better connected for our members.”

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Crypto Risk Management Platform TRM Labs Raises $4.2M USD In Funding https://blocktribune.com/crypto-risk-management-platform-trm-labs-raises-4-2m-usd-in-funding/ Wed, 20 Nov 2019 10:00:07 +0000 https://blocktribune.com/?p=71508 Crypto compliance and risk management platform TRM Labs has secured $4.2 million in funding, bringing the total raised in its seed round to $5.9 million. The round was led by PayPal Ventures, with participation from Initialized Capital, Blockchain Capital and Y Combinator.

Founded in 2018,

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Crypto compliance and risk management platform TRM Labs has secured $4.2 million in funding, bringing the total raised in its seed round to $5.9 million. The round was led by PayPal Ventures, with participation from Initialized Capital, Blockchain Capital and Y Combinator.

Founded in 2018, TRM helps financial institutions to measure, monitor, and mitigate their cryptocurrency risk exposure so they can safely embrace cryptocurrency-related transactions, products, and partnerships. The company’s risk management platform includes solutions for cryptocurrency KYC/AML, entity risk scoring, transaction monitoring, threat intelligence, and wallet screening. TRM launched out of the startup accelerator Y Combinator this summer. Since then, it has delivered its cryptocurrency compliance and risk management solutions to global financial institutions including major banks, brokerages, and exchanges across US, Latin America, Asia, and Europe.

The company will use the latest funding to grow its engineering and data science teams, expand into new markets, and accelerate product development.

“At TRM, we are fueled by a fundamental belief that cryptocurrency and blockchain can democratize access to financial services and empower billions of people,” said Esteban Castaño, co-founder and CEO of TRM Labs. “By building solutions to prevent cryptocurrency fraud and financial crime, we enable this vision and build a safer financial system for billions of people.”

Spencer Bogart, General Partner at Blockchain Capital, said that the company’s solution is desperately needed by financial institutions.

“TRM provides a solution that every financial institution needs today because they are either establishing plans to directly engage with crypto or because they inevitably have customers or partnerships that are in some way exposed to cryptocurrency transactions,” said Bogart.

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Blockchain Startup Bison Trails Raises $25.5M USD In Series A Funding https://blocktribune.com/blockchain-startup-bison-trails-raises-25-5m-usd-in-series-a-funding/ Tue, 19 Nov 2019 17:03:46 +0000 https://blocktribune.com/?p=71473 Blockchain startup Bison Trails has raised $25.5 million in a Series A financing round led by Blockchain Capital. The round also saw participation from Kleiner Perkins, Coinbase, Collaborative Fund, A Capital, Consensys, Sound Ventures, Initialized, Accomplice, Galaxy Digital and Notation.

Bison Trails claims to be the world’s first infrastructure as a service company designed for next-generation blockchain networks.

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Blockchain startup Bison Trails has raised $25.5 million in a Series A financing round led by Blockchain Capital. The round also saw participation from Kleiner Perkins, Coinbase, Collaborative Fund, A Capital, Consensys, Sound Ventures, Initialized, Accomplice, Galaxy Digital and Notation.

Bison Trails claims to be the world’s first infrastructure as a service company designed for next-generation blockchain networks. It claims to provide a full stack offering for next-generation infrastructure and its constituents, including staking, validating, voting, transacting, and securing blockchain protocols. Their goal is to make it easy for anyone to launch secure, highly-available, and geographically distributed nodes on a participatory blockchain network with only a few clicks. Bison Trails is the preferred blockchain infrastructure provider for more than 20 protocol projects. It is also a Founding Member of the Libra Association, where it will be playing a key role in strengthening the network to support billions of transactions.

The latest funding round will reportedly further Bison Trails’ leadership as the preferred Infrastructure-as-a-Service provider for the fastest growing blockchain protocols while continuing to tackle the most compelling opportunities in the infrastructure space.

“When we started building Bison Trails, we wanted to bring transparency and ease to entrepreneurs bold enough to build in a decentralized ecosystem, investors wise enough to back a nascent market, and enterprises courageous enough to commit to a technological inevitability like blockchain technology and cryptocurrency,” said Joe Lallouz, CEO of Bison Trails. “We have become the easiest way to run infrastructure on multiple blockchains. And have helped the world’s leading protocols, companies and builders launch and manage secure, highly-available, and geographically distributed nodes on blockchain networks.”

“We are building a block production and validation infrastructure platform that is secure, reliable, globally-distributed,” said Aaron Henshaw, CTO of Bison Trails. “Our team and culture plays a major role in that and is a huge focus for us as we continue expanding — we aim to bring together world-class engineering, product, and design teams to work together on some of the most interesting and challenging opportunities in the infrastructure space.”

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German Airline Hahn Air Issues Blockchain-Powered Tickets https://blocktribune.com/german-airline-hahn-air-issues-blockchain-powered-tickets/ Tue, 19 Nov 2019 10:05:45 +0000 https://blocktribune.com/?p=71478 Blockchain travel platform Winding Tree has announced its partnership with German airline Hahn Air.

Founded in June 2017, Winding Tree enables startups and companies to gain direct access to travel service providers’ offerings without the need for intermediaries.

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Blockchain travel platform Winding Tree has announced its partnership with German airline Hahn Air.

Founded in June 2017, Winding Tree enables startups and companies to gain direct access to travel service providers’ offerings without the need for intermediaries. It connects buyers and sellers via a set of smart contracts and open-source tools in a non-rent-seeking manner without taking a transaction fee. At the same time, the participants of the Winding Tree platform are able to govern the platform collaboratively. The platform already boasts numerous airlines including Air France-KLM, Lufthansa and subsidiary Eurowings, Swiss Air, Swissport, Brussels Airlines, Austrian Airlines, and Air New Zealand.

Headquartered in Dreieich, Hahn Air offers scheduled and charter flights within Europe from its base at Dusseldorf Airport. Hahn Air’s core business, however, is a ticketing solution that gives travel agencies access to airlines via computer reservation systems and allows them to issue tickets on the Hahn Air HR-169 document. The company also offers distribution services for other airlines, such as tariff and flight plan transmission.

The partnership enabled Hahn Air to issue the first airplane tickets powered by blockchain technology. On Monday, the German airline reportedly flew passengers holding blockchain-powered tickets on its scheduled flight from Dusseldorf to Luxembourg. The first “blockchain passengers” were Maksim Izmaylov, Founder of Winding Tree, Davide Montali, CIO of Winding Tree, and Frederick Nowotny, Head of Sales Engineering at Hahn Air.

“We at Hahn Air are constantly exploring new technologies and we are proud to now demonstrate our technical capability to issue blockchain-powered Hahn Air tickets,” said Nowotny. “We are pleased to be partnering with Winding Tree, the most established company when it comes to distributing travel inventory in the blockchain. Our goal is to investigate and monitor the opportunities this technology holds for travel distribution, even if widespread acceptance is still a vision of the future.”

Using the Winding Tree platform, Hahn Air is able to list inventory, manage the reservation requests, and receive payments once the booking process is complete. Accepted payment methods are cash, credit card, or cryptocurrency (LIF token or Ether).

“Hahn Air is the ideal partner for Winding Tree as they are the leading company in airline distribution solutions with broader knowledge, an innovative mindset and an unparalleled network,” said Pedro Anderson, COO and Co-Founder of Winding Tree. ”We are very pleased that we were able to complete the first transaction for an airline ticket on the blockchain.”

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Alibaba Denies Partnership With Bitcoin Cashback Company Lolli https://blocktribune.com/alibaba-denies-partnership-with-bitcoin-cashback-company-lolli/ Tue, 19 Nov 2019 10:01:47 +0000 https://blocktribune.com/?p=71482 On November 11th, During China’s Singles Day shopping event, China Merchants Bank said its credit card transactions hit a record 27.2 billion yuan, while industrial and Commercial Bank of China said it processed at least 20 billion yuan. The annual event spearheaded by Alibaba turned out to be a success with 268.4 billion yuan in sales,

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On November 11th, During China’s Singles Day shopping event, China Merchants Bank said its credit card transactions hit a record 27.2 billion yuan, while industrial and Commercial Bank of China said it processed at least 20 billion yuan. The annual event spearheaded by Alibaba turned out to be a success with 268.4 billion yuan in sales, but it wasn’t without any controversies.

Lolli, a company that offers bitcoin cashback, made an announcement on China’s Singles day that it was possible to get Bitcoin Rewards from their app when shopping on Alibaba. Cryptocurrencies have been slowly paving their way into the mainstream throughout the world. More and more establishments offer their customers to pay with cryptocurrencies. While Gunsbet.com uses Coinspaid, other establishments accept Bitcoins and Ethereum. This isn’t limited to casinos only, a wider range of services are embracing the idea of accepting cryptocurrencies during payment, with some like Lolly even offering cashback services to attract more attention to Bitcoin and to encourage its users to try it for more everyday activities.

The bitcoin cashback company announced a partnership with Alibaba through their facebook page, even linking to a blog that went in-depth about the company’s recent collaboration with an e-commerce giant. But since then Alibaba has come out publically and denied any sort of partnership with Lolli. Alibaba’s statement event went to say that Loli never had the right to claim a partnership with Alibaba.com or imply one with Alibaba Group.

The part of the reason why Alibaba seems to be so overly enraged by the incident is that the statement made by Lolli misrepresented the deal as Alibaba accepting bitcoin directly and supporting cryptocurrencies. Alibaba made it clear in the statement that it does not work with any bitcoin-related companies. The Chinese government, although keen on blockchain technology, does not support cryptocurrencies and their widespread usage. It’s highly likely that Alibaba didn’t want to damage its relationship with the Chinese government and decided to clear the air as soon as possible, hence the Alibabas quick reaction to the statement. 

The spokesperson for Alibaba claimed that there was no direct contact between Lolli and the Alibaba Group, despite the AliExpress rewards processed. Alibaba then suggested that Lolli should stop promoting Alibaba immediately.

Lolli spoke with Cointelegraph about the situation and tried to clarify the circumstances of the alleged partnership. CEO of Lolli Alex Adelman said that there was definitely a partnership between the two and that Lolli partnered with Alibaba Group back in May, through AliExpress and that the company has driven a significant revenue and has distributed rewards to their users through this partnership. Adelman continued to say Alibaba.com trialed their service for 24 hours and decided to deactivate the partnership without cause and broke the rules of their contract. Apparently, the agency representing Alibaba.com approved a contractual agreement on behalf of Alibaba.com that included the promotion of Alibaba.com. Adelman claims that there was no ill intent on Lolli’s part to misrepresent Alibaba and that the company actually looks forward to the opportunity to possibly work with Alibaba Group in the future.

Lolli representative then spoke again to clarify that had they chosen to stay silent it would negatively affect the company’s reputation, so they wouldn’t allow Alibaba to continue with this narrative. According to them, Lolli has done nothing wrong, when Alibaba’s actions were “misleading” because the bitcoin cashback company abided by everything that the contract covered.

Since the public disagreement first started more information has come out explaining the details of the alleged partnership. It seems like one of Alibaba’s contractors hired a subcontractor who brokered an affiliate marketing program with Lolli. This entailed the usage of “Alibaba related Keywords” in online material. Sometimes blockchain companies will claim to have partnerships with brands when they actually just have an affiliate contract but somehow this case seems different because paperwork from both sides was finalized and payments to shoppers were processed before the announcement from Alibaba regarding the alleged partnership came out to the public. It is safe to say that Alibaba viewed this collaboration as a private deal meditated by third parties, hence no necessarily an Alibaba partnering up with another company.

Either way, this interaction highlights the divisive nature of bitcoin in China right now. Even though the government seems less hostile it’s evident that openly supporting bitcoin is not a winning strategy for Chinese companies, or so it would seem when looking at Alibaba’s statements. But there could also be that Lolli saw this partnership as an opportunity to grow and hence they were granted the right to use Alibaba related Keywords they took the chance. It is still not clear who’s in the right in this situation because the contracts arent public yet, but on one hand, we have Alibaba who says that Lolli has to stop promoting Alibaba’s website, meanwhile Lolli sees a chance that they will work with Alibaba in the future anyway, despite the controversies and the harsh statements

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Amid Market Instability, Don’t Stuff Your Crypto Under Your Digital Mattress https://blocktribune.com/amid-market-instability-dont-stuff-your-crypto-under-your-digital-mattress/ Mon, 18 Nov 2019 10:05:46 +0000 https://blocktribune.com/?p=71441 Not a day seems to go by in global politics at the moment without some fresh new drama. Whether its escalating trade wars, Brexit or an impending recession, global markets just can’t seem to catch a break. And investors are starting to take notice. Rather than dip their toes in by investing in the stock markets,

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Not a day seems to go by in global politics at the moment without some fresh new drama. Whether its escalating trade wars, Brexit or an impending recession, global markets just can’t seem to catch a break. And investors are starting to take notice. Rather than dip their toes in by investing in the stock markets, money is flooding into the “safe haven” assets such as precious metals.

While this is common behaviour whenever a recession looms, unstable markets have led to a rise in investment in another far less traditional asset: cryptocurrencies. Given the timing, some have theorised that as crypto prices are swinging less dramatically than normal, investors are categorising it alongside gold and silver as a “safe haven asset”. For those new to the market, this is an understandable assumption to make – the influx of new users, institutional capital, and other types of investor seem to have stabilised markets somewhat.

However, those who think that professional investors are using crypto as the digital equivalent of stuffing notes under the mattress could be in for a rude awakening further down the line. While the market downturn means that cautious investors are backing safer assets, it also means that there are fewer options when it comes to generating profits. This means that the influx of money into crypto is more symptomatic of investors abandoning the limited gains to be made in the traditional markets and turning towards more speculative investments which can generate returns.

This is an understandable approach; cryptocurrencies have always been prone to periods of both relative stability and sharp volatility. And while the increase in institutional and regulatory involvement may have served as a temporary stabiliser, we are far away from having the infrastructure to prevent dramatic rises and falls in the future.

It all boils down to the fact that the asset simply isn’t as mature as those in the traditional markets. It is certainly less susceptible to announcements than it was – Bitcoin’s price didn’t crash after Bakkt’s lackluster launch, for example – but there are still a myriad of factors which can cause dramatic swings in price. Take the uncertain regulatory climate for example; moves from regulators like India banning cryptocurrency can mean Bitcoin suddenly finds itself with a significantly diminished userbase. There is also still a large amount of Bitcoin held in stockpiles by small groups referred to as “whales”. Should a “whale” choose to transact, it can have a major impact on the markets.

Finally, and most importantly, it still has nowhere near the same volumes as traditional currencies. The number of dollar or sterling transactions per day dwarfs Bitcoin. This means that the market is comparatively still quite illiquid. Any transactions which take place are far more likely to be large sweeping moves as there is a limited number of buyers, so we tend to see large transactions which have a dramatic effect on prices. As a result, until the market grows and a regulatory consensus is reached, we are a long way away from “safe haven” status.

It’s essential that we accept that crypto is not a life boat which will carry you through the current storm of market instability. This doesn’t mean that it shouldn’t be considered as an important part of a varied portfolio. It is still a uniquely volatile asset, meaning there are profit opportunities to be made for those who take a sensible approach. You need to understand the market rather than rush in all guns blazing. What you can do is have a solid hedging strategy in place which takes historical market volatility into account rather than optimistically viewing the recent lull in volatility as a new era of stability. Those who get this right will be able to both ride out the lulls and capitalise on the highs.

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Veterinary Education Industry To Adopt Blockchain Technology https://blocktribune.com/veterinary-education-industry-to-adopt-blockchain-technology/ Mon, 18 Nov 2019 10:03:46 +0000 https://blocktribune.com/?p=71433 Tech giant IBM is collaborating with VetBloom, the digital learning ecosystem from Ethos Veterinary Health, to form a group focused on the application of blockchain for learning credentials in the veterinary industry.

VetBloom is an innovative learning ecosystem featuring the expertise of the finest veterinary professionals in the industry,

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Tech giant IBM is collaborating with VetBloom, the digital learning ecosystem from Ethos Veterinary Health, to form a group focused on the application of blockchain for learning credentials in the veterinary industry.

VetBloom is an innovative learning ecosystem featuring the expertise of the finest veterinary professionals in the industry, along with cutting-edge, online instruction. Team members learn through direct and virtual instruction, interactive case-based scenarios and 3D simulations. VetBloom allows veterinary professionals to advance their skills from anywhere in the world.

The goal of the new group is to create a framework for competency-based medical education using digital badges to support credentialing. Initial collaborators exploring the concept include the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC), the International Council for Veterinary Assessment (ICVA), and the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA). The two companies will name other collaborators in the coming weeks.

“We have worked diligently with IBM over the last year to bring key industry stakeholders into this initiative, creating a veterinary ecosystem that will join IBM’s broader work around learning credentials and blockchain,” said Patrick Welch, DVM, MBA, DACVO, Chief Knowledge Officer of Ethos Veterinary Health and Founder of VetBloom. “Blockchain is a team sport, and the only way this initiative will succeed is through collaboration with likeminded entities in the veterinary space.”

Blockchain aims to address the challenge of competency-based learning by creating tamper-evident, digital credentials stored on a distributed blockchain network. This will reportedly make it significantly easier for companies to identify promising candidates, for academic institutions to manage the huge increase in demand for learning credentials, and for jobseekers to more holistically chart their career trajectories.

“It has been incredibly rewarding to work with VetBloom and the other collaborating entities in the veterinary learning space over the past year,” said Alex Kaplan, IBM’s Global Leader, Blockchain and AI for Credentials. “IBM sees tremendous potential for the learning credential blockchain to support competency-based learning and digital credentials in veterinary education, and we look forward to continuing our work together in 2020.”

The group has already built a minimum viable product and is currently working to develop a second iteration. Next year, the group’s primary goals will be scaling the network by signing on additional participants and fine-tuning an equitable governance structure.

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