30 April

“Bitcoin’s price jumped Wednesday by the most in six weeks, outpacing U.S. stocks, after the Federal Reserve pledged to keep pumping new money into markets and government data showed the economy sliding into recession. Gross domestic product contracted at an annual rate of 4.8% during the first quarter.

The Fed said it would keep benchmark U.S. interest rates close to zero while reiterating a pledge to continue buying U.S. Treasury bonds and other assets in an unbounded amount to keep global markets functioning smoothly. Some economists had speculated the central bank might announce plans to start tapering the asset purchases, which along with emergency-lending programs have ballooned the Fed’s balance sheet past $6.5 trillion for the first time in its 107-year history.

We won’t run out of money. It’s an unlimited pot.”

See Also: Coinbase Crashes As BTC Skyrockets

“Eleven members of Congress are calling on the U.S. Treasury Department to look at new technologies, including blockchain and distributed ledger technology (DLT), to help streamline how cash and supplies are distributed.

A letter addressed to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin points to blockchain and DLT as secure “new mechanisms” for moving money quickly and transparently, which could in turn boost liquidity in distributing funds via the federal CARES Act.

The letter points to China’s rollout of its own blockchain system as an example of other nations pursuing the same technology.”

See Also: New App for COVID-19 Combines Blockchain With Web Inventor’s Privacy Tech

“When Circle bought Poloniex back in February 2018, it moved assets into better cold wallets and had strong reserves. However, when the exchange was acquired by a group that included Tron’s Justin Sun, it is speculated that some of these cold wallets were drained to become fractional reserves.

The wallets appear to have only been drained into exchanges listing Tron (TRX). Cochran questions whether the exchange’s purchase by Sun was actually just a scheme to boost the price of Tron.

Cochran also highlights the methods used by a group of at least 12 whale accounts. These accounts seem to manipulate the market in coordination with Bitfinex and possibly also BitMEX. The most controversial claim by Cochran is that cold wallets belonging to Bitfinex appear to get in on the dumping action around 40% of the time.

Another allegation against Bitfinex concerned the use of user-funds to vote for the move to Programmatic Proof-of-Work (ProgPoW). This shows that the community was not actually behind ProgPoW, which was being pushed by big self-interested parties.”

ETH is used 440 times more than Bitcoin for transacting. There has also been an influx of new ETH whales, coming from fiat on-ramp exchanges serving large scale customers.

Another finding is that whales have been accumulating in the down market and they have not been alone. A subsection of miners have also started to aggressively hoard Ether, potentially in readiness to convert mining operations into staking operations.

A deeper look into staking, predicted a 17–20% yield for early phase 0 adopters, dropping in stages before finally leveling out at 4–6% once ETH 2.0 is fully rolled out and transactable.”

Maker getting serious.

“Recruiting two highly respected and valued voices from outside the Foundation team pool helps to ensure the board has the experience required to fuel the next phase of growth and guide MakerDAO to full decentralization with transparency and accountability.

Tonya M. Evans, Associate Dean of Academic Affairs and Professor of Law at the University of New Hampshire Franklin Pierce School of Law, directs the school’s Blockchain, Cryptocurrency and Law online professional certificate program.

Shefali Roy boasts a wealth of experience in compliance and regulatory affairs within the financial services industry. She previously oversaw Apple’s regional compliance in Europe, the Middle East, India, and Africa, and later joined Stripe as MLRO and Chief Compliance Officer for Europe.

“Capital markets participants can now use Corda to support the issuance, trading, settlement and custody of digital assets.

The relationship with R3 plays an important role in Nasdaq’s development of solutions that support the creation of dynamic and trusted digital asset marketplaces.

In October 2019 Nasdaq listed an AI-powered index of the crypto market’s top 100 coins. A month before that, the exchange listed a new decentralized finance (DeFi) index.”

“With Bancor V2, scheduled for launch in Q2 2020, the team believes to have solved several risks incurred by liquidity providers to its platform. […] The solution to both these problems was to use a price oracle provided by Chainlink (LINK).

We expect and we hope that this [V2 upgrade] will bring tons more liquidity to the protocol.”

“The TON OS will soon become available on smartphones and personal computers for mainstream users, a source close to Telegram told Russian news agency RBC.

TON OS is not an alternative to existing operating systems, but will serve as an add-on for devices. The source said that with TON OS, users can create applications that are automatically compatible with the blockchain platform.”

“Weirdly, YouTube just decided to suspend my channel (SJoelKatz) for impersonation. I wonder who they think I was impersonating.

Wednesday’s events come a week after Ripple initiated a lawsuit against YouTube on allegations the platform had failed to prevent fake XRP giveaway scams on the platform.”

29 April

“A new decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) on Ethereum has legal protections baked right into the cake.

OpenLaw’s LAO, or “Limited Liability Autonomous Organization,” opened Tuesday for investors looking to compliantly earn returns on the next wave of Ethereum-based projects.

By creating a distributed group of investors, initially capped at 100, the LAO seeks to legitimize new forms of venture capital investment. Users can put ether (ETH) – at a minimum of 120 ETH (roughly $23,000 at current prices) – into the smart contract, vote and perhaps accrue payout based on those investments. The LAO will host multiple projects, which will sign over tokenized shares of stocks in exchange for investors’ ETH.

If Coinbase legitimized the model first put forth by Mt. Gox, Wright said, the LAO could do the same for DAOs, which have seen a relative comeback in the past year.”

See Also: The LAO

The World Economic Forum (WEF) is pitching blockchain as the savior of failing global supply chains. The Swiss NGO best known for its glitzy Davos summit published “Redesigning Trust: Blockchain Deployment Toolkit,” a guide to building more resilient supply chains on distributed ledgers.

The toolkit frames blockchain as a natural technological evolution for companies and governments emerging from this public health crisis.

One section [even] considers how zero-knowledge proofs, homomorphic encryption, role-based access controls and off-chain hashing configurations may offer workarounds for the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

The case for blockchain is stronger as the COVID-19 pandemic underscores the need for more resilient global supply chains, trusted data and an economic recovery enabled through trade digitization.”

See Also: Blockchain Deployment Toolkit

“‘Blockchain technology is being looked on to deliver a framework that can be used by stakeholders in the commercial drone industry,’ the government agency said in an April 15 report, noting benefits in areas such as security, ID management, conflict management, flight authorization and air traffic management.

The number and variety of UASs and the diverse operations they are or may be expected to soon be involved in make these aircraft especially suitable to the trust and operational integrity provided by blockchains.

In the latter half of 2019, both IBM and Walmart filed drone-related patents involving blockchain, showing a growing interest in the technology’s application in the sector.”

See Also: Samsung-Backed DLT Firms Launch Blockchain Think Tank for MEASEA Region

“Emergency protections found in the revised libra white paper are similar to the clearinghouse certificates the U.S. used to prevent bank runs prior to the establishment of the Federal Reserve in 1913.

Libra’s white paper proposes the network operators could issue “redemption stays” to prevent funds being taken out of the Libra Reserve.

Eichengreen and Viswanath-Natraj believe libra’s emergency protocols could simply be a stopgap until such time as a clearer relationship with the Fed is defined. They cite parts of the libra white paper that say an unspecified “third-party administrator” could be brought in to provide emergency liquidity in a crisis. But that all depends on whether the Fed chooses to support libra.

See Also: Cross-Border Payment Portal Checkout.com Is Latest to Join Libra Association

“The number of addresses with a balance in Kyber Network Crystal (KNC) – an Ethereum token that fuels operations on the DEX – reached an all-time high of 61,980 on April 27.

These additional ways to generate yield via staking, coupled with token burning is a major incentive to purchase and hold KNC.

However, KNC staking will earn rewards only if the holders vote on network issues under a new community platform for decentralized governance. That platform, known as KyberDAO, is to launch simultaneously with the Katalyst upgrade.

The fact that holding KNC will allow investors to participate in developing the protocol could also be a prominent reason for the rise in addresses with KNC balances.”

See Also: Network Bringing Bitcoin to DeFi Taps Libra Member Bison Trails for Staking Services

Skale Explainer

“IPFS 0.5 reportedly makes uploading new data 25 times faster, fetching content two to five times faster, while finding nodes that have it will be two to six times quicker.

There’s also a ton of smaller features – like support for .eth domains, tools for fast data importing and exporting, and developer tooling improvements.”

“The European Central Bank is studying solutions that would create homegrown systems to handle both brick-and-mortar and ecommerce payments. The digital euro is being assessed as part of that initiative.

Panetta however emphasized that the digital euro ‘should not discourage or crowd out market-led initiatives aimed at introducing private electronic means of payment.’ Whether that statement is intended for decentralized crypto or more traditional companies remains to be seen.”

See Also: SEC’s CryptoMom on Outlook for the Digital Dollar and the End of Her Term in June
See Also: ChicoCrypto on the Digital Dollar Project (Video)

28 April

Eth2 Multi-client Testnet is LIVE! Prysm and Lighthouse clients are currently validating.

See Also: Step by Step: How to join the Ethereum 2.0 Testnet
See Also: Vitalik: Obsolete Mining Hardware Could be Used for Zero Knowledge Proofs

“Six months after the beta test launch, China’s Blockchain-based Service Network — or BSN — is now officially available for global commercial use.

The BSN is a global infrastructure to help blockchain projects create and run new blockchain applications for a lower cost. It also aims to accelerate the development of smart cities and the digital economy.

The network currently has 128 public nodes. 76 of these nodes are in China, 44 are under construction, and the remaining 8 are overseas city nodes, which cover six continents. They plan to have at least 200 nodes in the network.”

BitMEX announced an ether quarterly futures product Friday, which it described as ‘the only one of its kind available in the market.’ Open interest on BitMEX, the largest market for ether perpetual futures, is just below $80 million.

Long positions in Bitfinex ether perpetual futures are also soaring ahead of the Ethereum upgrade. Those contracts began noticeably climbing starting in mid-March. Cryptocurrency over-the-counter desks are also seeing increased investor demand for ether.

The ETH 2.0 launch is being watched closely by investors and stakeholders.”

“Incognito is a new privacy and interoperability project that seeks to anonymize the tokens of every other blockchain. As part of that goal, it is launching private versions of leading Ethereum (ETH) decentralized finance platforms.

The pKyber initiative is the first part of Incognito’s initiative to make DeFi private. Incognito’s roadmap also includes integrations with 0x, Uniswap and the Compound lending platform, all to be finished before July 2020.

Essentially, Incognito acts as a trustless proxy for private trading instructions, allowing a person to swap ETH for the DAI stablecoin without ever interacting directly with the Ethereum blockchain.”

“The Innovation Hub head highlights the likely decline of cash-based payments amid the COVID-19 pandemic, asserting that the current economic climate has given greater cause for discussions surrounding CBDC.

He also revealed that the Bank of International Settlements, or BIS, is exploring tokenization as a possible solution for restarting segments of the economy during the lock-down.

Issues such as tokenization, open banking, and using technology to support regulatory and supervisory compliance (‘regtech’ and suptech’) are high on our agenda.”

“The United Arab Emirates is approaching its 2021 deadline for migrating at least 50% of all government transactions onto distributed ledger technology-based platforms.

When complete, the DLT overhaul is intended to save approximately $3 billion from reduced transaction and document processing, save 77 million work hours, and lower the number of printed documents by 398 million each year.

When juxtaposed against jurisdictions that have also taken a proactive approach, […] you start to see a global digital asset ecosystem being built.”

The War For Control Of Our Money Has Begun – Economist Simon Dixon

See Also: Ryan Adams Interview on Ethereum (Video)
See Also: Andreas Antonopoulos Interview on Bitcoin (Video)

“The Public Private Execution Network (PPEX), an alternative trading system (ATS) for exempted digital assets and other private securities, has regulatory clearance to launch in the U.S.

PPEX supports secondary trades for all manner of exempt securities, including digital assets native to a blockchain.”

“Smart Chain’s governance allows ‘CZ [to] likely reign control over the chain given his influence and his BNB stake.’

It is certainly not a competitor for building the decentralized future. […] Centralized chains miss the point, every time.

Yet another Chinese copy-cat, this time of EOS DPOS–one of the largest $2 billion nothing burgers ever built.”

“Andreas Antonopoulos compared working at Chainalysis to working for a weapons manufacturer or a company that builds cages for concentration camps.

Companies like Chainalysis and others are basically in an arms race against privacy. And what they’re doing is they’re providing the world’s worst dictators and regimes, either directly or indirectly, with information that violates the civil rights of millions of people.”

“Northwell Health, a New York-based healthcare group comprising over 800 hospitals, has joined IBM’s Rapid Supplier Connect network.

IBM’s network is a cloud-based application that uses distributed ledger technology to assist businesses providing coronavirus relief supplies to connect with buyers. IBM Blockchain has devoted its Rapid Supplier Connect network for assisting and vetting suppliers providing emergency goods needed for coronavirus relief efforts.

In addition to New York’s largest healthcare provider, IBM’s network is welcoming the Supply Chain Federation — comprising over 200 U.S-based members.”

See Also: H&M Targets Ethical Consumers with Blockchain Traceability
See Also: Top 50 Canadian Co-op Streamlines Supply Chain with Blockchain Tech

25 April

Private securities like VC ownership stakes or real estate investment trusts are difficult to trade due to restrictions on who can own them and when they are allowed to be bought and sold.

San Francisco-based Securitize plans to ease that by using smart contracts on the Ethereum blockchain that are programmed to ensure the rules are met. The firm will use technology developed by AirSwap, a peer-to-peer digital asset exchange.

Securitize will begin offering instant trading Thursday for private securities linked to five companies that include venture capital funds

People underestimated how long it would take for blockchain to penetrate finance, but I think it’s now happening.”

“Blockchain cuts the average time needed for food safety investigations from weeks to mere seconds.

It will also use that data to make consumers more informed. Dole said it plans to “eventually” pull back the curtain on its supply chain with scannable vegetable packages that reveal the product’s “journey from farm to store shelf.”

Government food watchdogs have been taking notice of blockchain. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) upcoming “New Era of Smarter Food Safety” blueprint will advocate for the implementation of “blockchain technologies.””

“The average daily trading volume of the whole market during the first quarter of 2020 hit $23.3 billion. The total market turnover in Q1 2020 is roughly eight times than Q1 2019.

The study also highlights that the correlation coefficient between futures and spot trading volume fell to 0.31 [from 0.76 in Q4]. Researchers concluded that this phenomenon explains that futures market participants ‘may have been relatively independent‘ from the spot.

We believe the cryptocurrency futures have already possessed some attributes of market-leading indicators, and spot market participants can refer to futures trading volume for position management.”

Bitfinex exchange plans to list pTokens (pBTC) — a new token that aims to unlock cross-chain DeFi liquidity by connecting Bitcoin (BTC) to any blockchain. The token is pegged 1:1 to Bitcoin and is compatible with the Ethereum (ETH) and EOS DeFi ecosystems to date.

pTokens’ integration with Bitfinex streamlines the flow of liquidity between centralized and decentralized exchanges. The listing facilitates an easy token switch and creates a new gateway for BTC liquidity to stream into the DeFi ecosystem.”

“Valiu has partnered with Latin America food delivery app Rappi, which could offer a large user base to help with adoption.

The synthetic dollars are backed by Bitcoin, however, users without cryptocurrency knowledge can simply buy and transfer cryptodollars by depositing cash at one of Valiu’s thousands of remittance partners in Colombia.”

24 April

“Starbucks and McDonald’s are reportedly among 19 restaurants and retail shops that will be involved in testing China’s central bank digital currency in the country’s Xiong’An new district.

The move signals China’s wider efforts to test the digital currency project, with state-owned commercial banks already developing wallet applications for the digital yuan, also known as DC/EP. The report does not specify when the test would likely start or how long it will last.”

“Binance said its social payments app Bundle would provide users across Africa with a fee-free means to store and transact in both cash and cryptocurrencies, through a new digital wallet that can be downloaded on their phones.

The payments app went live initially in Nigeria, the continent’s largest economy, with support for its national currency, the naira. Other supported assets will include bitcoin, binance coin and BUSD, the exchange’s dollar stablecoin.

Using Nigeria as a launchpad, Binance said Bundle will be fully operational in as many as 30 other African countries by the end of 2020.”

“Called SmartSessions, the Ethereum-based crypto paywall developed by 2key New Economics allows firms and “solopreneurs” to take advantage of crypto payments when offering services through Zoom.

The solution would help people pushed out of their normal premises – for example, teachers of activities such as yoga, advisers or mentors – a way to offer video sessions and still receive payments.

Ticket purchasers will be able to buy ether using a credit card within the app, paying with a choice of 17 different fiat currencies.”

See Also: Bitcoin P2P Messenger Explores Censorship Resistance During Coronavirus Crisis

“Last fall, Reliance Jio Infocomm had installed what Ambani claimed was ostensibly one of the world’s largest blockchain networks ‘with tens of thousands of nodes operational on day one.’

Analysts proposed yesterday that the investment provides Facebook with a closed network of 388 million users to test on.

FB has Libra. Jio has been working on Blockchain Crypto tech. Libra may become a reality in India.”

See Also: Sony Bets on Blockchain to Reshape the Future of Public Transport

AA on a hypothetical return to the Gold Standard

See Also: Chris Dunn: Broken Oil Markets & China’s Fake Digital Currency (Video)

Bitcoin (BTC) hodlers are accumulating more coins every day than at any time in over a year, as crypto investment looks increasingly attractive. Roughly 75,000 BTC is being added to long-term positions daily.

The impressive figures build on previous insights from Glassnode into investor behavior changes. Whales are also stocking up on coins, while wallet balances of 1 BTC or more are on the rise.”

See Also: Smart Contracts on Ethereum up 75% since March, Totaling nearly 2M

Likely that this will be integrated into Chainlink.

“Today, we are proud to announce Coinbase Oracle — a signed price feed that anyone can publish on-chain. Starting today, anyone can use the Coinbase Oracle API to get signed price data for BTC-USD and ETH-USD markets.

The price feed is sourced from Coinbase Pro — one of the most liquid crypto exchanges in the world — and updates each minute.

Coinbase is uniquely positioned to provide oracle prices as they’re the most trusted and secure institution in the space. These prices can be used as an input to help create more decentralized and secure price oracles for the ecosystem.”

“Launched Thursday, the 7-Day Asset Price Prediction feed will give an outlook on future crypto prices based on purpose-built algorithms and the firm’s API.

There are a lot of poor signals out there that are getting a lot of clicks and we thought we could do a net positive for the space by just leveling up the quality of predictions.

The Nomics forecaster isn’t a standalone, investment-grade product, Collins added, but can help inform crypto investors based on curated exchange data. The free tool currently lists 100 of the top cryptocurrencies by market cap.”

“Blandina was named the CEO in December 2019, succeeding now-U.S. Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R-Ga.), who helmed the company since its launch in August 2018 until her appointment to the U.S. Congress. He is moving to take on a role at JPMorgan.

He will be replaced by David Clifton, vice president of M&A and integration at Bakkt parent company Intercontinental Exchange (ICE).

Bakkt, which currently offers bitcoin futures and options contracts to institutions worldwide, is in the middle of building a retail-focused payments and rewards app.”

23 April

Stablecoin issuances do not push up the price of bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies, according to research funded by University of California Berkeley’s Haas Blockchain Initiative.

Their report found stablecoins serve as tools for investors to react to market movements and not as drivers of price inflation or collapse. Their analysis of trading data shows flows are consistent with investors using stablecoins as a store of value during periods of risk or price depreciation.

We find no systematic evidence that stablecoin issuance affects cryptocurrency prices. Rather, our evidence supports alternative views; namely, that stablecoin issuance endogenously responds to deviations of the secondary market rate from the pegged rate, and stablecoins consistently perform a safe-haven role in the digital economy.”

ANSAcheck stamps legitimate articles with traceable, irrefutable proof an article is among the 3,000 ANSA distributes to its 24 shareholder publishers and 87 news partners every day. 

ANSAcheck registers vital details [and] makes this information available through a little green graphic emblazoned at the bottom of nearly every newly published piece on the site. Though ANSA deployed ANSAcheck during the zenith of medical misinformation, it had begun designing the system a year before in partnership with Ernst & Young (EY).

If we can start to engineer things in such a way that it’s easier to tell the truth than it is to send out something fake, that could be transformational.”

“A recent Bloomberg report states that Bitcoin (BTC) is preparing for a massive bull run. The report mentions a number of reasons that the Bitcoin market is maturing, and that it is due for a bull run.

Bitcoin and gold also stand to be primary beneficiaries of the unprecedented monetary stimulus that’s accompanied by a mean-reverting stock market.

This year will confirm Bitcoin’s transition from a risk-on speculative asset to the crypto market’s version of gold.”

See Also: Traders Make Sense of Renaissance Filing (Good Read)

Good interview with MakerDAO founder Rune Christensen

ICC is an institutional representative of more than 45 million companies in 100 countries.

ICC says that the primary goal of founding the Carbon Council is to collaborate with both public and private companies to create a better system for funding global climate action. Their intended use of blockchain technology is to bring more liquidity, transparency, accessibility, and standardization in the carbon markets.

Carbon Council will complement the Carbon DAO for project funding we are launching, which will provide unprecedented access to best-in-class carbon projects worldwide.”

See Also: Power Ledger Rolls Out Blockchain-Based Solar Energy Trading in Western Australia

“Its new “Cryptocurrency Exchange” plugin, released Wednesday, would allow anyone to add trading features to websites “in minutes” or even create their own branded cryptocurrency exchange.

Using the API from crypto swaps platform Totle, the plugin routes orders to decentralized trading platforms said to be listing the best prices. Totle’s API is described as providing developers a way to ‘integrate aggregated exchange functionality into a product for ether and popular ERC-20 tokens.‘”

“Blockchain banking solution Dharma has implemented a new feature called Social Payments, allowing users to send U.S. dollars to any Twitter handle. Payments can be made regardless of geographical location or whether the recipient has a Dharma account.

As per all deposits in Dharma accounts, the balance will be earning interest through Compound, even before it is claimed.”

“The “independent validation” of Gemini’s financial reporting operations gives credence to the system’s design and mitigates ‘the risk of significant error, omission, or data loss.’

Providing this level of transparency and building this level of trust is key to broader crypto market adoption.”

“There is an effort underway to roll out a blockchain voting app in time for November elections which uses blockchain technology to “make fraud detectable”.

Eustis has had conversations with some state-level officials and is optimistic about its adoption in time for the U.S Presidential elections in November. They are exploring several private blockchains for their application and the developer will be announced soon.”

22 April

“The Synthetix (SNX) project, one of the biggest ecosystems in decentralized finance (DeFi), recently launched the Hadar upgrade, which enabled tokenized real-world assets like Brent oil and the Nikkei stock index.

Tokenized securities and commodities are often heralded as one of crypto’s most important use cases.

Many traditional markets close on weekends and holidays. For now, this feature has been ported into Synthetix’s contracts as well — a special pause function was introduced for both Brent and Nikkei synths.

But in the future, this restriction should be removed and the token should be left to its own devices for that period. In this way, even institutions will benefit from trading synthetic assets, and the synthetic assets will themselves contribute to price formation.”

“According to two academic papers published in March and April, relatively straightforward cyberattacks could unearth balances on the Lightning Network. Authors of the March paper also unraveled pathways and parties of hidden payments.

By forwarding payments with fake hashes to channels opened with 132 test network nodes and six of the 10 largest main network nodes, the first balance attack accessed the balances of 619 test network channels and 678 main network channels.

Identifying the sender and recipient means that we identify them according to their public keys and any other information linked to the node.

As it is designed right now, the Lightning Network opens the door for various attacks. For strong and good privacy, cryptographic solutions such as zero-knowledge proofs and confidential transactions are needed.”

“The Dutch Central Bank (DNB) thinks the eurosystem’s central bank digital currency (CBDC) should be more programmable than bitcoin. DNB wrote that smart contracts could help “future proof” CBDCs.

A smart contract system with complex logic potentially increases the demand for CBDC and offers opportunities to reduce transaction costs. In this way it could contribute to diversity and innovation in the payment market.

The Netherlands went a step further in the report: DNB wants to be a research, development and deployment hub for a European CBDC. [In all], it amounts to a striking endorsement of CBDC.”

Oil Industry Advisor Explains the Collapse of Oil Price Into Negative Territory

See Also: 10 Takeaways for Bitcoin From Negative Oil Prices

“Blockchain developer IOV Labs said Tuesday it had created a proof-of-concept for a permissioned blockchain network based on the RSK Smart Contract Network, in conjunction with the central bank and major commercial banks in Argentina including Santander and BBVA.

The solution is aimed speed fiat payments, make them more reliable and introduce end-to-end traceability. While currently in the testing phase, IOV and BCRA said the new network could form the basis for an alternative clearing system.”

See Also: Bitcoin Smart Contract Solution RSK Sees New Stablecoin and Leveraged Token

“According to data visible on the Ethereum blockchain, multiple transactions were initiated from 6:00 UTC on Tuesday from an address labelled “Lendf.Me Hack” to the admin address for the Lendf.Me project.

Curiously, the hacker did not return exactly the same balance of assets as were stolen, but returned some of the value in other types of tokens. It’s unknown at this stage why the hacker didn’t simply return the assets that were stolen, or indeed why they were returned at all.

“Ripple Labs and its CEO Brad Garlinghouse have filed a lawsuit against Youtube for its alleged complicity in a spate of repeated “XRP giveaway” scams.

Using a malicious email, the attackers commandeer the Youtube channels of content creators – often those with legitimate ties to Ripple. Viewers of the videos in question are then urged to send “between 5,000 XRP and 1,000,000 XRP” to a listed address, which promises 5x returns from the receiver. 

YouTube profits from the Scam by knowingly selling paid ads on behalf of the fraudsters who are impersonating Ripple and Mr. Garlinghouse. These ads — so-called ‘video discovery ads’ — are designed by YouTube to appear at the top of its search result page.”

“EOS Ecosystem, a wallet app that attracts investors to deposit EOS with promised high returns, has reportedly shut down and possibly run away with close to $52 million. The report also says there might be more yet to be discovered. 

Transaction metadata suggests that the funds might already be moved to Huobi Exchange. Huobi promised to put an alert on it and freeze the funds as soon as they could detect it.”

“The CCC certificate can reportedly be issued to organisations, products and even people to confirm that they have followed appropriate steps to mitigate risks from COVID-19.

[The certificate] confirms that a supplier adheres to highest standards of public health, sustainability, anti-bribery and even modern slavery. And in this case, we can verify the level of supply risk due to the coronavirus.”

“A blockchain protocol designed by one of the most prominent blockchain scholars has launched a public testnet. One of the key features of this “empty framework” is that virtually any blockchain network can become interoperable with AVA.

We’ve built this ecosystem where you can launch new blockchains, whether they’re permissioned or permissionless, it does not matter. And they can all interoperate with each other freely, and move value around. And each one of these deployed blockchains within the AVA Internet are running at blazingly high speeds.”

See Also: Multi-Chain DeFi Protocol Raises $750K in Token Sale With Framework Ventures

21 April

“The approval, granted Monday, brings a new player to the still-small world of bitcoin futures in the U.S. The company will start with quarterly futures, micro futures and options. Contracts trade on 37 percent margin and will settle on-chain rather than book entry.

Unlike CME, Bitnomial appears to be focusing strictly on physically-settled contracts, meaning customers receive the actual bitcoin when the contract expires, rather than the fiat equivalent.

Bitnomial is now setting up user acceptance testing, expected to begin on April 27, and has opened user signups.”

“Of all the wild, unprecedented swings in financial markets since the coronavirus pandemic broke out, none has been more jaw-dropping than Monday’s collapse in a key segment of U.S. oil trading.

The price on the futures contract for West Texas crude that is due to expire Tuesday fell into negative territory — minus $37.63 a barrel.

The reason: with the pandemic bringing the economy to a standstill, there is so much unused oil sloshing around that American energy companies have run out of room to store it. And if there’s no place to put the oil, no one wants a crude contract that is about to come due.

There is little to prevent the physical market from the further acute downside path over the near term.”

See Also: Crude Oil Gutted to Sub-Zero Prices as Bitcoin’s Purchasing Power Soars

“An influential government authority responsible for planning China’s economy has said blockchain will form an integral part of the country’s data and technology infrastructure.

An NDRC subsidiary has been working on a new Blockchain Service Network (BSN) that would provide companies with access to the tools they need to develop blockchain-based applications. Having already launched for domestic commercial use, it will open for global companies later this week.

As support for the technology now goes all the way to the top, blockchain firms may well soon find themselves treated more favorably.

See Also: Just a Test: China Central Bank Confirms Digital Yuan Mobile App Trials

“Tencent’s digital bank WeBank is exploring the integration of the DAML smart contract language for its consortium blockchain FISCO BCOS. BCOS is an open-source and coinless blockchain platform built by the Financial Blockchain Shenzhen Consortium (FISCO).

Developed back in 2016, DAML is an expressive language designed for financial institutions to model and execute agreements using distributed ledger technology (DLT). Digital Asset has ostensibly designed the language for optimal use in private execution environments.

“The annual percentage rate a user would earn by lending dai on the platform rose above 14 percent as of 19:00 UTC Monday – the highest level since March 16.

Over the past few days, many Compound users have begun withdrawing dai, and in some cases selling it above $1 in anticipation of dai returning to its peg.

The rate hike is the result of those withdrawals and the resulting shortage of funds to lend. Data from Ethereum blockchain explorer Etherescan shows a total of 6.9 million dai were withdrawn from the Compound protocol on Saturday and Sunday.”

See Also: Why MakerDAO Should Consider Negative Interest Rates for Dai

“The social media giant is looking to hire 50 people for its payments subsidiary Calibra – charged with creating a wallet for storing and sending libra – to start work at its offices in Dublin by the end of 2020.

Many of the new Dublin openings are for a new compliance team to liaise with regulators, as well as for specialists who can work on the wallet’s fraud protection program. There will also be a new customer service team to handle complaints – a sign the project is readying its launch.

“The Brooklyn, N.Y.-based firm known for incubating Ethereum projects is cutting “just over 90” people, a spokesperson confirmed. That’s about 14 percent of the firm’s headcount.

ConsenSys has carefully analyzed its business in relation to what is occurring globally. Like most of its peers, the company is seeing extraordinary uncertainty in the market, with businesses rebalancing priorities and reevaluating timelines.

All key operational aspects of the business are preserved to ensure the development and service of key products and solutions.”

“One trillion rubles ($13.6 billion) were issued from ATMs and banks through March – more than for all of 2019.

A large surge in withdrawals was seen after Putin announced a tax on bank deposits of over one million rubles, with further cash hoarding apparent after the president extended self-isolation measures.

In the United States, too, cash withdrawals have seen a major spike amid the crisis. As reported in late March, U.S. currency in circulation saw its largest percentage increase since the panic around the ‘Y2K bug.'”

20 April

Good read.

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“COVID-19 emphasizes the need to transact from anywhere, quickly. Since stablecoins are programmable, their future counterparts will change how we think about money itself.

Just how Synthetix gives people exposure to gold and other communities, there will be a growing list of local and regional stablecoins that will give community members exposure to their local economies.

Programmable stablecoins will enable further experimentation around incentivizing spending during recessions. Direct cash rebates and negative interest rates (or demurrage) become possible on a much bigger scale than previously.

Finally, people will begin to experiment with how money itself is created. Much like how money was backed by gold, new stablecoins can be backed by tokenized resources that we want to see more of in the world (e.g., tokenized rainforests). When picking between two stablecoins, you may soon be able to choose between, say, helping to solve global warming, or contributing to it.”

“Today, we’re extremely proud to announce that community governance has replaced the administrator of the Compound protocol. From this point forward, all changes (from supported assets, to system parameters) will originate from COMP token-holders.

COMP token-holders can delegate voting authority to any address. Anyone with a good idea can marshal support to change the protocol; we’re curious and excited to see how the ecosystem evolves.

After the governance system has been publicly tested, and is operating in a reliable, distributed manner, we’ll remove the last governance failsafe — our ability to disable community voting in an emergency — and begin distributing the remaining COMP to Compound protocol users.”

See Also: Governance Dashboard

Programmatic traders and market makers now have a DEX to deploy their algorithmic or high-frequency trading strategies. High speeds, low (or no) fees, free cancels. Trade via the API like you are on a CEX, but with 100% Ethereum security guarantees for your assets.

With the API release, there is now a home for fast, cheap, ‘true trading’ in the Ethereum DEX landscape.”

See Also: Say Hello to the Baseline Protocol

“We are pleased to announce a new tool that allows users to upload files to IPFS and save the IPFS hash to their ENS records all directly from the ENS Manager.

This greatly simplifies the process and makes it even easier for people to launch decentralized websites.

“The core benefit to employing rollups is lower gas costs for users, which translates to more transactions per second (several hundred TPS at least) for the network as a whole.

Cheaper transactions also means that certain applications that would otherwise be too gas intensive to even be possible, like privacy solutions that employ complex cryptography, now become feasible. Thus, while rollup itself doesn’t inherently offer privacy benefits, it’s a fitting substrate on which to build privacy preserving technology. Likewise, rollup doesn’t inherently increase transaction latency (speed), but gives a nice environment on which channels, which can offer virtually instant transactions, can be built.

From the perspective of a user, interacting with a dApp—DeFi or otherwise—on a rollup will feel nearly identical to using it were it on layer 1. Popular wallets like Metamask and the Burner wallet can be supported, as can block explorers to monitor rollup-chain activity.”

Good read.

“Bailouts send a signal to the market that alters corporate behavior, encouraging rent-seeking behavior and rewarding excessive risk taking.

[Additionally], the virus will not leave society unchanged once it is eliminated; it will fundamentally change the nature of many industries for the foreseeable future. Bailouts ignore this, vainly attempting to preserve the economy in amber, laboring under the misapprehension that society’s pre-virus resource allocation is optimal for the post-virus world.

Corporate destruction and reorganization under well-understood bankruptcy processes would allow our resources to be deployed in a fundamentally more productive manner, rather than simply entrenching the existing corporate balance of power.

By selectively bailing out industries that might otherwise be justifiably shrinking, consolidating, or chasing efficiencies, the government attempts to dictate market outcomes. There’s a better way: Let the free market, not the state, price these companies, and let capital flow only to those evaluated as solvent.

See Also: The Cost of Money Printing

“A secretive yet reportedly highly lucrative hedge fund now has the green light to invest in Bitcoin (BTC) futures markets. Bitcoin futures have been witnessing a return to form after suffering reduced participation in previous weeks.

Renaissance’s $10 billion hedge fund recently gained notoriety in the press, having gained 24% year to date despite the tumultuous volatility plaguing traditional markets over coronavirus.”

18 April

“There are simply too many questions left unanswered regarding why Facebook is even developing a cryptocurrency and how it will affect the global economy and consumers.

Garcia’s comments suggest libra’s roots as a Facebook initiative remain a political liability despite the consortium’s steps to appease critics.

I will continue to work to make sure that the SEC regulates any such asset as the security that it is under current securities laws.”

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“European researchers have published a paper detailing an attack that can be used to deanonymize channel balances on the Lightning Network.

The academics claim to have used transfer routing to ‘probe’ Lightning channels and discover the sum of Bitcoin held in balances. The ‘probe attack’ takes “under a minute per channel” and requires “moderate capital commitment and no expenditures”. 

The team proposes several potential solutions to the probing attack, however, emphasize that each possible fix requires a trade-off between privacy and efficiency.”

“Rocket LP DAO, a 4-month-old loan provider that uses non-fungible tokens (NFTs) as collateral, issued a $1,000 loan this week, backed by only one Ethereum domain name — brantly.eth. The loan was issued for 90 days with a 15% interest rate and is the first loan to ever be issued with only an Ethereum name service domain name for collateral.

This raises the question of whether we can accurately tokenize or value sentiment. Although the transaction is recorded on the blockchain, some users suggest the valuation was too high or that it has little correlation to an NFT.

[At any rate], the cryptocurrency community continues to push the boundaries set in place by the traditional financial system.”

“The company saw the number of Circle Business Accounts – introduced last month for corporate clients to conduct business using USDC – grow 700 percent over the past few weeks, with more than two-thirds of these businesses coming from outside the crypto space.

Allaire’s explanation for the surge suggests the crisis is accelerating mainstream adoption of blockchain technology, albeit a relatively tame variant.

We believe we are seeing a real turning point in the adoption of digital currency.”

DCEP: Will China DOMINATE Digital Currencies?

“A recent report claims that the representatives of nearly 80% of crypto valley’s firms said they will most likely go bankrupt over the next six months. Furthermore, 56.9% already had to lay off employees and 90.7% expect to do so in the future.

The report is based on the answers from 203 crypto valley firm representatives. Unfortunately, the report also notes that 68.3% of the crypto valley startups that requested a Covid-19 loan did not receive one.

Given that many were just emerging from the effects of a long crypto winter, this double punch will be hard for many to emerge from.”

“Consulting firm Advantage Blockchain is teaming with Vertalo and alternative trading system tZERO to tokenize the portfolio of Class A properties owned by a boutique firm.

Hotels in Pennsylvania and Costa Rica will be the first to be tokenized in the deal. 

Through Vertalo, Advantage will use the Tezos blockchain to tokenize the real estate. On tZERO, investors can sign up to trade tokens through Dinosaur Financial Group.”

“Developers working on Baseline, an enterprise smart contract and tokenization platform developed by Microsoft, Ernst & Young, and ConsenSys, are working to solve several flaws identified with Apple and Google’s proposal for coronavirus tracking initiatives.

Baseline can be used to deliver a contact monitoring system with greater privacy and security than the plan articulated by Google and Facebook.

The system prevents the collection of ‘a group of ‘anonymous’ IDs […] that would permit, say, a government with some friends that are really good at AI to generate ‘interesting’ classifiers on populations.‘”

See Also: Spanish Researchers Try to ‘Flatten the Curve’ with Blockchain App

“The cryptocurrency exchange said Friday the new Binance Smart Chain (BSC) would work as a smart contract layer running parallel to its existing Binance Chain.

Its consensus mechanism is a hybrid of EOS’ delegated proof of stake (dPoS) system and a proof of authority (PoA) system. Binance also wants to make BSC fully compatible with Ethereum.”

“With the XRP price down 95% from its peak, the XRP Army has largely packed up its bags and gone home. During the last two years, Ripple has lost over 63% of its active community, according to data collected from Telegram chat groups.

XRP was the worst-performing crypto asset in the top 25 coins by market capitalization within the first quarter of 2020. Worse still, Ripple, the company dedicated to the coin, has been adding to the downwards pressure on the price.

Besides Ripple, a large number of users have apparently lost their interest in Litecoin too, as the project lost over 67% of its Telegram following since 2018.”

“The network — which is launching today — allows shippers or freight forwarders to instantly book and confirm any of AirAsia’s 247 aircraft to carry cargo.

Agile software platforms like Freightchain help to connect uneven supply and demand amidst a rapidly evolving environment. Trust and transparency are needed now more than ever.”