Category Archives: Canada

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Canadian Draft Law Requires Crypto Exchanges to Report “Large Virtual Currency Transactions”

In Canada, an official draft of new regulations on crypto exchanges and payment processors has been released by the government, says a Canada Gazette reports.

The draft will tackle areas identified by a 2015-16 Financial Action Task Force (FATF) evaluation, principally strengthening Canada’s Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Terrorist Financing Regime (AML/ATF). The FATF is an intergovernmental organization that develops policies to combat money laundering.

New regulations will treat crypto exchanges and payment processors as money service businesses (MSB), which requires them to report transactions over CAD 10,000 Canadian dollars (USD 7,700). The new Know Your Customer (KYC) procedures will now have a threshold set at CAD 1,000 CAD (USD 770).

Canada’s move towards further cryptocurrency regulation and transparency reflect the growing trend with governments around the world to tighten the regulatory grip on the industry as a whole. The US Securities and Exchanges Commission (SEC) has been particularly active this year in tracking down and prosecuting fraudulent cryptocurrency exchange activity, according to Bitcoin News.

Francis Pouliot, co-founder of Montreal-based blockchain consulting firm Catallaxy, was particularly unhappy with current developments, and tweeted his response to the latest draft.

New requirement: “Large Virtual Currency Transaction Record” means businesses required to ask for and keep details of every transaction over $10,000, like large-cash transaction reports. That’s going to be extremely difficult and invasive to implement. I will object to this. pic.twitter.com/PdabH0uGj4

— Francis Pouliot ⚡ (@francispouliot_) June 8, 2018

The draft reveals the regulations would cost about CAD 61 million (USD 47 million) over the next ten years, with the Canadian government maintaining that implementing these regulations will have a positive impact on the country’s international reputation.

This year, Canada’s first blockchain exchange-traded fund began trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange and the Bank of Canada piloted a research program to examine the possibility of a national cryptocurrency.

Canada has been referred to as one of the most transparent countries globally when it comes to understanding laws surrounding the digital currency industry, aside from Switzerland, which reportedly wants to be “THE crypto-nation”.

 

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North America: Crypto and Blockchain News Roundup, 1st to 7th June 2018

North America

Welcome to our weekly roundup of all important blockchain and cryptocurrency news from around the world. Follow the latest developments in the cryptocurrency space continent by continent, country by country.

USA

Dennis Rodman’s trip to North Korea-US Summit possibly sponsored by Potcoin: Cryptocurrency platform PotCoin has announced that it is planning to sponsor the trip of Dennis Rodman to this month’s crucial US-North Korea moot in Singapore according to a PotCoin spokesperson.

While the news may seem incredulous, PotCoin has already sponsored him before in a previous trip to the secret country back in 2017 where only a handful of Americans are allowed to enter each year. According to Dennis Rodman, he is willing to go to Singapore to provide moral support for Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un.

Financial regulator says crypto will proliferate to every economy: A commissioner at US Commodities and Future Trading Commission (CFTC) has said that cryptocurrencies are likely to proliferate to economies around the world.

Rostin Benham, the said commissioner called cryptocurrencies a “modern miracle” and “cryptocurrencies will proliferate to every economy and every part of the planet”.

The CFTC declared Bitcoin a commodity as early as 2015 and has since then played a positive role in the regulatory efforts towards cryptocurrencies. Many small economies could also become dependent on cryptocurrencies to exist because of problems in central banking.

John McAfee to run for president based on pro-crypto platform: John McAfee, a leading cryptocurrency protagonist has said announced that he will be running for president in the 2020 US presidential election based on a pro-crypto platform.

In a tweet this week, the outspoken crypto enthusiast said:

“In spite of past refusals, I have decided to again run for POTUS in 2020. If asked again by the Libertarian party, I will run with them. If not, I will create my own party. I believe this will best serve the crypto community by providing the ultimate campaign platform for us.”

It is natural for crypto enthusiasts to run from the Libertarian platform because cryptocurrency is based on a free market model. The responding Twitterati generally held a positive view for him in response.

Steve Wozniak prefers Bitcoin to all other crypto: Apple co-founder and innovator Steve Wozniak has said that he is excited about Bitcoin more than any other cryptocurrency and hopes that it becomes a global cryptocurrency of the future.

Wozniak made these comments during a CNBC interview on 4 June at the Money 20/20 conference in Amsterdam. He also predicted a massive hike in price for Bitcoin in the future.

Google set to ban all cryptocurrency ads from this month: Google is going to ban all cryptocurrency related adverts from its vast ad network by the end of June 2018 according to a financial products policy releasde by the tech giant.

Google initially wanted to ban all ICOs only but the ban will now encompass all cryptocurrency products including legal cryptocurrency exchanges, wallets and crypto trading and futures services. This massive ban is seen as a negative development for the future of the cryptoverse.

New York legislators deliberating over crypto task force: New York is looking to follow the footsteps of places like the United Kingdom by setting up a cryptocurrency task force according to the latest bill presented in the state legislature.

New York’s already tough laws for cryptocurrency startups mean that it is difficult for startups to get registered in the financial capital of the world as it battles several issues of its own. The task force will eventually submit its finding to the working committee in the near future after completing extensive studies.

The bill also states a requirement to review the current situation and reads: “laws and regulations on digital currency used by other states, the federal government, foreign countries, and foreign political and economic unions to regulate the marketplace.”

A nine-member team will be established for this purpose and will work directly under the governor for the investigation.

Canada

Quebec halts crypto mining projects and deliberates over increased power fees: The Canadian state of Quebec has announced that it is halting new mining operations in its area according to latest news reports from Reuters.

The decision comes after a cryptocurrency mining boom in the province because of lower power tariffs. But the increased mining operations resulted in the state electricity consumption increased dramatically and caused concern among government quarters. The Quebec government also announced that it is limiting power to all existing crypto miners as well as planning to increase electricity prices for mining operations.

 

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CEOs Say Amazon and Walmart Sparked Blockchain Revolution

CEOs are posing the question whether major companies such as retail giants Amazon and Walmart, and tech multinational Microsoft adopting blockchain technology will create a “blockchain revolution”, writes Hedge Co.net.

All of these companies have announced recent blockchain projects this year. Walmart published plans to use the technology in partnership with the IBM Corporation and Microsoft recently announced its Azure Blockchain Workbench, aiming to provide developers with tools to implement the ready-to-use infrastructure for blockchain application solutions, according to TruthMedia.

Amazon with its Amazon Web Services (AWS) blockchain templates, will now implement a system similar to Microsoft’s which claims “provide a fast and easy way to create and deploy secure blockchain networks using open source frameworks”.

Walmart’s vice president of food safety and health, Frank Yiannas, says that its new blockchain system reduces food tracking time from six days to two seconds, reducing contamination and food wastage.

According to Luis Manuel Lopez, the general coordinator at Workchain Centers, blockchain initiatives by Walmart and Amazon will have a positive impact on the retail industry.

He says, “Having started in a pure and theoretical technological world, blockchain has come second place in applications that make our life more comfortable, including assembly lines, traceability of objects… we are facing the beginning of a revolution that will change our way of doing business, buying food, curing our illnesses. And this will come sooner or later because it takes time, but it will come, sure.”

Vadim Kurochkin, CEO of Soundeon, sees the moves of multinationals unsurprising as the technology is brought to the mainstream, suggesting that research and development projects will reap the benefits due to increased activity in crypto space.

“As this technology is brought to mass-market, we foresee a robust merger and acquisition activity within the sector. Hence, early crypto-investors in successful, research and development driven projects will reap the benefits.”

Juan Imaz, founder, and CEO of Profede, also sees the potential of such companies influencing others to move towards updating its systems with the new technology:

“The cryptocurrency industry is likely to see a revolution in the near future across different industries, with the addition of giants adding, evaluating and planning to use blockchain which will change how the world works.”

 

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Trump’s New Trade Tariffs Could Kick Start Bitcoin

As US president Donald Trump shocks the world with his surprise steel and aluminum tariffs targeted at Canadian, Mexican and EU markets, Bitcoin markets could be the beneficiary, according to Forbes..

The response from Canada, the UK, France, and Mexico has been one of surprise and total indignation, pointing to the possibility of a trade crisis between the nations involved. These apparently punitive and protectionist measures could provide the much-awaited positive swing for Bitcoin, as it could become an ideal hedge opportunity as a result, providing that President Trump‘s latest measures aren’t rescinded due to a global response against the US.

Traders are now bracing themselves against the possibility of market volatility which will work very much in Bitcoin’s favor, as investors look for fundamentals to support the price of Bitcoin and positive indicators and motivators for change.

The recent Consensus 2018 event in New York was seen by some as the kind of shot in the arm needed to reinject enthusiasm in the sluggish Bitcoin market, but it proved to lack any real energy as a contributing driver to market despite offering headlines about Lamborghinis to news sources.

The last two months have seen numerous positive comments from central banks regarding some kind of CBDC. On both sides of the English Channel, politicians have waxed lyrical about cryptocurrency with even Canadian Bank of England Governor Mark Carney manufacturing a dramatic turnaround after his earlier view that Bitcoin had “failed”.

China with a cryptocurrency ban in place has now begun to take blockchain technology seriously, led by recent comments by Chinese president Xi Jinping, who now promotes the benefits of the new technology. Chinese investors welcome this, and reports indicate that it’s a question of time before the Bank of China follows suit. If the People’s Bank of China takes that route, it may impact on the way that Bitcoin and other currencies are regarded by the government, blockchain being the underlying technology behind digital currencies.

Cryptocurrency investors will be watching the development of what is already becoming a trade war between the US and its former trading partners with great interest, hoping that it could become another important factor in reinjecting energy into the Bitcoin market.

 

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Over 3,000 Bitcoin ATMs Worldwide and Argentina Wants 30,000 of Its Own

New figures released by CoinATMradar show that there are now 3,125 Bitcoin ATMs worldwide, with six new installations daily, reports BitcoinistArgentina plans to become the world’s biggest player with pre-agreements to install 4,000 ATM around the South American country as part of a new government plan to install 30,000 machines in the future.

Bitcoin’s recent slump hasn’t seemed to have affected the ATM industry with reports that it’s healthier than ever, given that at the beginning of 2017 there were only 1,000 machines worldwide.

Bitcoin ATM startup BCB ATM saw its sales figures soar by 528% in just 11 months through 2017, and other companies are experiencing the same rise in sales in 2018. Rising Bitcoin prices over the past three years have accelerated the installation of machines with cryptocurrencies’ wider adoption around the world.

The United States remains the largest business provider for ATM companies with 1,800 machines across the country, followed by Canada with 477, and then Austria in third place with just 174, as the demand for buying and selling using the machines increases. The US capital recently doubled its ATM availability from 20 to 40 due to public demand.

Machines which allow customers to both buy and sell have increased by 35% as manufacturers have improved hardware. These machines have proved to be profitable for operators as they charge fees for both buying and selling transactions, charging an average fee to the client of 8.77%.

Out of the 31 total hardware manufacturers, the top three include Genesis Coin (34.37%), General Bytes (27.49%), and Lamassu (11.23%) who comprise over 70% of the entire market. Bitcoin is king with 99.9% of all ATMs supporting it, followed in popularity by Litecoin and Ethereum.

ATMs are not the only way of trading on the move as increasing outlets, now numbering in their thousands, give customers a quick trading opportunity. Customers can now purchase their Bitcoins through vouchers, gift cards and web-money kiosks, with Switzerland leading the way with Bitcoin now available as payment at 1,357 railway ticket kiosks around the alpine nation.

 

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Over $1 Billion Crypto Stolen Worldwide in Last 18 Months as GDPR Activates

The Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG) estimate that over $1 billion (US) in crypto has been stolen since the start of 2017, states Blockchain Security Company — CipherTrace. This recent surge has led to numerous global investigations, aiming to bring the criminals resposible to justice.

According to CityWire, the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority is reported to have opened 24 investigations into cryptocurrency businesses. The investigations, some of which are the result of several whistleblower reports focus on regulatory compliance, states CoinTelegraph while citing the responses to Freedom of Information requests

The FCA has not mentioned names but claims that the investigations have been initiated into the companies in order to, “determine whether they might be carrying on regulated activities that require FCA authorization”

The cleanup is not unusual. Globally, regulators have been particularly active over past months with a focus on user protection, as the FCA point out, with investigations largely identifying “risk to consumers.”

The US-Canada “Operation Cryptosweep” is another such investigation underway, as reported recently by BitcoinNews. The focus of the North American operation is to target fraudulent investment programs, which to date has revealed 35 activities, the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) announced.

In Singapore, the Central Bank has issued warnings to eight exchanges regarding securities law infringements and has halted the activities of one ICO token issuer.

Blockchain security company Cipher Trace suggests that the EU’s new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which has now been activated, could reduce cybercrime. Cipher Trace claims that the new regulations could support these types of investigations due to critical ICANN WHOIS information.

Internet WHOIS data is a new resource for investigators comprising the Internet’s database of record, containing the names, addresses and email addresses of those who register domain names for websites on the Internet. Cipher Trace suggests that this data will become a crucial factor in recovering stolen funds and identifying criminals for eventual prosecution.

WHOIS is a fundamental resource for investigators and law enforcement officials who work to prevent these thefts. The Internet’s database of record is crucial in performing investigations that allow for the recovery of stolen funds, identifying the persons involved, and providing vital information for law enforcement to arrest and prosecute these criminals.

In the last year, $700M has been reported stolen by cybercriminals, and hundreds of millions of more thefts go largely unreported, according to the blockchain security company,

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North America: Crypto and Blockchain News Roundup, 18th to 24th May 2018

North America

Welcome to our weekly roundup of all important blockchain and cryptocurrency news from around the world. Follow the latest developments in the cryptocurrency space continent by continent, country by country.

United States

Department of Justice opens investigations into Bitcoin price manipulations: The US Department of Justice has launched a criminal investigation into the currency manipulation of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

The DOJ’s notable concern was that the volatility of the market comes with a suspected potential for investors and traders to influence price in their favor. In addition to price manipulation, DOJ is also looking at fraudulent activity due to lack of regulation.

Former Obama advisor attacked with anti-Bitcoin adverts: Ex-Obama advisor Brian Forde is being attacked for accepting donations in Bitcoin by Dave Min, a rival Democrat competing for a seat in the House of Representatives. The move comes despite the Federal Election Commission ruling that allowed donations to be received in Bitcoin.

The ad targeted Forde for being associated with hackers and malicious activities. In response, Forde said:

“These comments about my supporters are sensationalist, wildly inaccurate, and in line with my opponent’s lack of understanding of the technology… If they were speculating, they wouldn’t have donated to my campaign in Bitcoin. They didn’t HODL, they donated to my campaign in Bitcoin because they believe in the technology.”

Bitcoin Pizza transaction now worth $80 million: The Laszlo Hanyecz story is a legend in Bitcoin world as the person purchased two large pizzas in 2010 with BTC 10,000. Now, after eight years, the Bitcoins are worth USD 80 million and increasing every year.

The legendary story is seen as a missed opportunity for HODL and the first instance in which a major company accepted payment in Bitcoin. Hanyecz had mined the Bitcoins on his personal computer. On 23 May or Bitcoin Pizza Day, the crypto world looks back at how far it has come from BTC 10,000 for two large pizza eras.

Walmart integrating blockchain to Help with Sales: American retail giant Walmart has filed a patent for an application with the US Patent and Trademark Office for a sales platform that uses blockchain technology. The platform was designed by Donald R High, Michael D Atchley, and Chandrashekar Natarajan.

This is a big milestone for the future development of blockchain startups as Walmart is one of the biggest companies in the world with 11,700 stores in 28 countries. The application allows users to re-sell products from Walmart using blockchain as proof of authenticity.

Federal Trade Commission holds workshop for ICO Scams: The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) will host a cryptocurrency workshop to address the considerable challenges that ICOs pose for investor security because of the possibility of scams. The conference called Decrypting Cryptocurrency Scams will comprise law enforcement, research organizations and consumer groups in the space.

The conference will allow the FTC to make new protections for consumers in the future by getting their feedback.

Warren Buffet taunted for his anti-Bitcoin views: Warren Buffet’s anti-Bitcoin views are universally disliked in the cryptocurrency space and Genesis Mining, a mining company purchased a billboard sign right outside his office to taunt him on his views on Bitcoin.

It reads: “Warren: you said you were wrong about Google and Amazon. Maybe you’re wrong about Bitcoin?”

Buffet’s dislike for new tech is obvious but he is the third richest man in the world due to his successful investments in conventional enterprises including banking and stocks.

Only 5 companies holding BitLicense in New York: New York’s notorious BitLicense has resulted in only five cryptocurrency exchanges operating in the city. The grand total only got to five recently when the New York Department of Financial Services gave a new license to Genesis Global Trading Inc.

Stringent BitLicense policies include AML, KYC, anti-fraud and cyber security measures but it is widely seen as a roadblock for further development of cryptocurrencies.

Canada

Unlicensed crypto trader jailed: An unlicensed Canadian crypto trader was jailed in the US after admitting undercover federal agents that he was trading in Bitcoin.

Louis Ong, a trader from Vancouver has received a 20-day sentence in the US after running an unlicensed cryptocurrency trading platform. Ong also had to forfeit over USD 1.1 million worth of Bitcoin to the investigators and was given three years of supervised release.

Ong claims that it wasn’t his intention to break the law and most of the trading he did was on legal channels.

Sweeping operation launched by US and Canada: US and Canadian governments launched investigations into 70 suspect ICOs and cryptocurrency scams in a wide-ranging operation called ‘Crypto Sweep’.

The operation by the combined North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) was termed only as “the tip of the iceberg” by the association by the president Joseph Borg.

Marshall Islands

Government breaks away from US Dollar and launches crypto: The Marshall Islands are looking to break away from the US Dollar and launch their own cryptocurrency called Sovereign.

The tiny Pacific nation is in free association with the US but is now looking for greater economic independence. The government has already signed the move into a new law.

 

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 2017 Bad Year for Aussie Crypto Scams as US Launches ‘Cryptosweep’

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) announced on Monday that consumers lost more than USD 2.1 million to cryptocurrency scams last year, CoinDesk reported.

Of this figure, the ACCC reported, consumers lost approximately USD 100,000 per month between January and September of 2017. These losses increased in December to USD 200,000 when Bitcoin price rose to nearly USD 20,000, recording losses of more than USD 700,000. The commission noted that these figures showed a correlation between the number of scams and the price of Bitcoin.

The common cause of consumer losses was due to scams involving fake ICOs, cryptocurrency pyramid schemes, and ransomware payments.

Although the figure is high, it was noted that scams overall last year Australians lost more than USD 340 million, with USD 64 million being lost to investment scams specifically last year.

Cryptocurrency fraud is by no means limited to Australia, with fraud occurring in all countries which have a crypto market. In North America, seven scams and hacks last year netted around USD 490 million of consumer funds for the criminals. The Wall Street Journal has reported that of the 1,450 ICOs it reviewed, 271 had “red flags that include plagiarized investor documents, promises of guaranteed returns and missing or fake executive teams”.

The North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) has launched its own task force to attempt to clean up the crypto space in the US and Canada, primarily by conducted thorough investigations of ICOs and cryptocurrency related products, according to CoinDesk.

The investigation, labeled ‘Operation Cryptoweep’ according to statements, has involved to date “nearly 70 inquiries and investigations and 35 pending or completed enforcement actions since the beginning of the month”.

The Texas State Securities Board (TSSB) conducted its own survey on cryptocurrency crime recently in an investigation involving 32 cryptocurrency investment plans over four weeks.  The report indicated that almost two-thirds of these promoters did not give investors a physical address and that five out of the 32 promoters did not disclose any investment risks, as well as the risk of cybersecurity threats and hacks, and instead simply promised gains of up to 40% every month.

Joseph Rotunda, the TSSB’s Enforcement Division director, commented that “the market for cryptocurrency investments is saturated with widespread fraud, and our work is only revealing the tip of the iceberg”.

 

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Global State Bank Crypto Adoption Still in Its Infancy

With banks increasingly switching on to the current global interest in cryptocurrencies, digital currencies are now being utilized by the same institutions they were designed to subvert, writes Cointelegraph.

More and more banks around the world see blockchain as a panacea to banking issues, all long overdue for improvement and update. They are realizing that, due to today’s already digitalized banking, which has changed the nature of payment and storage of monies, the technology behind Bitcoin clearly has a place within global financial systems.

Only a fraction of money is paper money bills in circulation, and current digital systems lack speed, stability and security. This, coupled with customer demand, as in the case of Goldman Sachs’s adoption of a digital dollar recently, is driving many nations to consider or actively support central bank cryptocurrency.

Governments and central banks from India, Japan, Canada, Russia, Switzerland to Singapore and the Marshall Islands are all currently looking into a government-backed digital currency. Several other governments, including China, Estonia, and Iran, have discussed plans for their own digital currency. Of these, the Marshall Islands have taken one step further and plan to issue its own cryptocurrency that will be circulated as legal tender along with the US dollar.

Singapore has project UBIN and the Bank of Canada has Project Jasper, while the United States is toying with the idea of a FedCoin. Last year, in the Middle East, the Bank of Israel was considering a digital Shekel.

In Sweden, many retail stores no longer accept paper money and some Swedish bank branches no longer disburse or collect cash. In response, the Riksbank has a current project in progress examining the viability of an e-Krona for retail payments.

Crypto-friendly Switzerland is looking towards the viability of a Swiss National Bank (SNB) e-Franc, but has little support within the Swiss government. The often controversial Venezuelan Petro, seen as both an economy saver and possible sanction breaker, was launched in February 2018 to supplement the plummeting bolivar fuerte, reportedly backed by the nation’s oil reserves.

In Russia, deputy minister of economic development Oleg Fomichev suggested the proposed CryptoRuble, conceived in a climate of heavy anti-crypto sentiments regarding adoption by private companies but nonetheless in state hands, becoming another powerful sanction breaker in the current political climate. Russian president Vladimir Putin stated that the Stone Age has not ended because humanity has run out of stones, but because new technologies have appeared.

“If if central banks were to back cryptocurrencies, the central banks would be better positioned to predict money demand and therefore adjust supply accordingly,” writes Mohamed Damak of S and P Global, adding, “It is still too early to tell in which direction this instruments will move.”

Alternatively, he writes, “If cryptocurrencies were to take off and become an effective currency issued in a decentralized manner, the impact on monetary policy implementation would be deep, since central banks might lose their ability to control the money supply.”

It is a view more closely aligned to Satoshi Nakamoto’s original vision.

 

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North America: Crypto and Blockchain News Roundup, 11th to 17th May 2018

North America

Welcome to our weekly roundup of all important blockchain and cryptocurrency news from around the world. Follow the latest developments in the cryptocurrency space continent by continent, country by country.

USA

Crypto markets likely to surge with Wall Street interest: Crypto markets may be up for a boost amid interest from Wall Street according to BKCM digital asset former founder and CNBC contributor Brian Kelly. Kelly maintains the opinion that the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and Goldman Sachs’s entry into the crypto space will increase popularity of crypto markets.

But, it was also reported that NYSE won’t be launching a futures market but instead a regular cryptocurrency trading desk or app where customers can trade in cryptocurrencies like stocks.

According to NY Times:

“The parent company of the New York Stock Exchange has been working on an online trading platform that would allow large investors to buy and hold Bitcoin, according to emails and documents viewed by The New York Times.”

Elon Musk challenges Warren Buffet’s take on crypto: Warren Buffet’s anti-cryptocurrency views are famous around the globe and constantly draw flak from pro-blockchain figures. Recently, Elon Musk was involved in a social media exchange with his rival that led to a light-hearted jab.

Elon Musk said in response to Buffet’s rigid ideas on cryptocurrency in a tweet: “ok ok, just for the sake of argument, what do you wish for Candy? Cryptocandy?”

The reference was a light jab at Buffet’s investment in See’s Candy. Musk hasn’t taken to much of a strong stance on cryptocurrencies but the tweet shows he is ready to defend the currency and the tech.

Mutual fund VP says blockchain to drive companies into next industrial revolution: Mutual fund Federated Investors’ VP and portfolio manager Steve Chivarone has ranked blockchain as one of the top five techs that will usher the world into the next industrial revolution.

Chivarone went beyond that and said blockchain could become an “economic driver” along with robotics, AI and IOT.

He said, “When you think about it from an enterprise perspective, it has the ability to replace reconciliation, which is expensive and requires back-office and time and paperwork with more instantaneous verification […] that will allow cost to be cut and that savings [sic] to be passed along.”

Microsoft and Amazon adapting to blockchain: Two of the biggest companies in the world, Microsoft and Amazon, are now trying multiples approaches to get into the blockchain space as part of their transition into decentralized economy and cashless society.

Microsoft had been one of the pioneers in the business it has already toyed with Bitcoin payments in the Xbox and Windows store but is now looking at its technology for the future rather than just monetary value.

Similarly, Amazon has been under pressure to start accepting cryptocurrency payments. While that is not possible right now, Amazon has announced that it is looking into blockchain-related proposals for its Amazon Web Services (AWS).

The involvement of both these tech giants is seen as a boost by the crypto community.

Californian candidate running on pro-crypto platform: Californian politician Brian Forde is running on a pro-crypto platform for Congress. The candidate is aiming to become the representative of the 45th District seat in Washington and is promising to bridge the gap between the government and the crypto community.

Speaking at an Ethereum summit in Queens he said:

“What I want to do is create transparency for the voice of the citizen, so that if I do make a decision that’s not consistent with what all the votes said, then I’ve got to explain myself.”

New York looking to become blockchain hub: The New York Economic Development Corporation (NYEDC) has announced that it is taking initiatives to make the city a Blockchain hub in the country. With Blockchain Week underway in the city, several plans for the future of cryptocurrencies have been proposed. The development of a Blockchain Center is one of the initiatives and its purpose is to educate and raise awareness of the groundbreaking technology.

New York’s notorious BitLicense requirements are seen as anti-crypto policy and that may well change following this move by the administration.

NYC Blockchain Week underway: The first Blockchain Week is underway. The inaugural edition is taking place in partnership between NYDEC and CoinDesk.

Over 8,000 attendees are likely to participate in the conference and speakers include Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, Federal Reserve Bank of St Louis President James Bullard and CEO FedEx Corp Fredrick Smith according to co-sponsors Coindesk.

After parties will include a bash hosted by Ripple featuring Snoop Dogg.

Canada

Bank of Canada says blockchain effective for securities settlements: Canada’s central bank and Toronto Stock Exchange has said that blockchain technology is an effective method for automating securities exchange in real time.

British Columbia regulator warns against investing in crypto: British Columbia securities regulator has voiced the same concerns as his Ontario counterpart by coming out against investment in cryptocurrencies because of the risk of financial scams.

The official channel of the commission states that residents should take extreme caution in deciding whether or not to buy cryptocurrencies.

 

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