Daily Archives: July 5, 2021

Equity Strategists, Portfolio Managers Share Bitcoin Price Predictions: Survey

Equity Strategists, Portfolio Managers Share Bitcoin Price Predictions: Survey

Equity strategists and portfolio managers were asked about what the price of bitcoin will be by the year-end. Almost half of the surveyed participants say the price of the cryptocurrency will fall below the $30K level but some believe it will rise to $60K.

Year-End Bitcoin Price Expectations by Equity Strategists and Portfolio Managers

Equity strategists and portfolio managers revealed what they think bitcoin’s price will be at the end of 2021 in a survey by CNBC, published last week. Every quarter, the media outlet polls about 100 chief investment officers, equity strategists, and portfolio managers about their views on the markets for the rest of the year. The latest survey was conducted from June 23-30.

According to the survey results unveiled last week, 44% of respondents said the price of bitcoin will be below $30,000 by the end of the year.

In addition, 25% of equity strategists and portfolio managers said it will be $40,000 and another 25% said it will reach $50,000. Only 6% expected the BTC price to hit $60,000 by the year-end.

Equity strategists and portfolio managers Survey’s results. Source: CNBC

Several surveys recently conducted indicate the growing popularity of cryptocurrency investments among institutional investors. The 2021 Trends in Investing Survey, conducted by the Journal of Financial Planning and the Financial Planning Association (FPA), found that more than 26% of financial advisors plan to increase their recommendation of cryptocurrencies over the next 12 months. Meanwhile, 49% of the advisors said that clients have asked them about investing in cryptocurrencies in the last six months.

The latest Bank of America’s Global Fund Manager Survey showed that “long bitcoin” is the second most crowded trade for fund managers. Moreover, a global poll of chief financial officers indicated that hedge funds are likely to significantly increase their cryptocurrency holdings.

Where do you think the price of bitcoin will be by the year-end? Let us know in the comments section below.

Twitter Permanently Suspends Splinterlands Account for Unspecified Violations

After tweeting through its account since 2018, Splinterlands, a blockchain-based NFT trading card game, has been banned from the service permanently as social media giant Twitter refuses to respond to appeals.

Suspension Coincides With Twitter Unveiling its Own NFTs

While non-fungible token (NFT) hype may have cooled, there is no shortage of controversy surrounding the space. The latest incident includes none other than the social media outlet Twitter.

Although Jack Dorsey warmly embraced the NFT movement after auctioning off his very first tweet in NFT form, the platform’s recent decision to suspend blockchain-based gaming operator Splinterlands has embroiled the social media platform in a fresh censorship debate.

Splinterlands, which offers gamers the opportunity to collect, trade, and battle with scarce NFT collectibles, was among the first to embrace the unique characteristics of non-fungible tokens as part of its platform experience. The company’s Twitter account was suspended from the platform on June 23rd for no discernible reason. This was done without warning or explanation.

There is some speculation that Splinterlands may have been suspended for violating certain Twitter policies about selling “illegal or certain regulated goods or services.” The policy states, “You may not use our service for any unlawful purpose or in furtherance of illegal activities. This includes selling, buying, or facilitating transactions in illegal goods or services, as well as certain types of regulated goods or services.”

Because the company does not sell financial products, is a gaming platform, and does not run secondary markets for its collectibles, which are overseen by the community, the violation is unclear. Still, given no prior warning from the platform about any violations, it’s challenging to ascertain whether they were the cause, especially given the multitude of other accounts engaged in similar practices.

Already, Splinterlands has lodged multiple appeals to reverse the suspension, with a cryptic message arriving on June 30th from Twitter explaining that the suspension would be permanent and that further appeals would be ignored.

The Not-So-Elegant Timing of the Twitter Suspension

Though entirely speculative, Chris Roberts, Splinterlands’ Content Director, pointed out the troublesome timing in a post published on Peakd. The company’s account ban corresponded with a same-day decision by Twitter to unveil its lineup of NFTs for sale to its 60 million followers, making the suspension either a little suspect or tone-deaf.

There are also curiosities about whether Twitter is leveraging its status to crush other NFT players by launching its product “a la” Amazon to knock out any formidable competition. Others, like Chris Roberts from Splinterlands, believe it could be a form of censorship, highlighting once again the need for more censorship-resistant platforms, like Hive Blockchain and Peakd.

Given that Splinterlands operates on Hive and tweeted the news on the blockchain’s latest token pairings the same morning, there are also concerns that the censorship-resistant properties that Hive Blockchain espouses could be under attack by social media giants. Like other platforms have had their hosting and other services canceled by tech giants, this might be a similar tactic, especially given Twitter’s history of forcefully evicting accounts without notice.

However, given the absence of more concrete evidence, this connection remains unsubstantiated at very best. While no new developments have emerged since the suspension notification received on the 30th and amid an absence of clarification from Twitter, questions continue to shroud the motives behind the social giant’s move and whether it was justified.

In the meantime, #freesplinterlands is circulating through Twitter as the community takes up the cause and fights back against what it considers to be an unjustified suspension. Further to the point, Splinterlands was selected as Marketsquare’s game of the month, bringing more attention to the issue for Marketsquare’s followers.

What do you think of Twitter’s decision to permanently suspend Splinterlands’ account? Let us know in the comments section below.

248% Weekly Gains — Baby Doge Coin Continues to Rally While Most Crypto Asset Markets Slump

248% Weekly Gains — Baby Doge Coin Continues to Rally While Most Crypto Asset Markets Slump

Four days ago, the crypto community and mainstream audiences caught a whiff of a new meme-based crypto asset called baby doge. The coin got a lot more attention when Tesla’s Elon Musk tweeted about baby doge and almost immediately after the tweet, the asset’s value skyrocketed. Musk hasn’t said anything about baby doge since then, but the crypto asset has continued to climb higher in value.

Weekly Stats Show Baby Doge Outshines Most Crypto Asset Market Performances

Last week, Bitcoin.com News reported on the cryptocurrency called baby doge (BABYDOGE) after the CEO of Tesla tweeted about the coin. At that time, baby doge jumped 228.3% during a 24 hour period on July 1, and during the last few days, the digital currency continues to gather gains.

248% Weekly Gains — Baby Doge Coin Continues to Rally While Most Crypto Asset Markets Slump
Ever since the CEO of Tesla, Elon Musk, mentioned baby doge coin (BABYDOGE) on Twitter, the crypto asset has seen mainstream media reports about it and the currency has doubled in value in four days. The picture above is a meme shared by the Twitter handle @babydogecoin which has 109,200 Twitter followers on July 5, 2021.

The following Monday morning (EDT), baby doge dropped a touch over 2% but seven-day statistics show BABYDOGE is still up 248.9%. Over the last two weeks, baby doge has captured a mammoth-sized 723% gain.

Baby doge has gathered mainstream media (MSM) attention after the Musk tweet, as many publications followed Bitcoin.com News’ lead and reported on the baby doge situation. Fool.com, a subsidiary publication owned by the Motley Fool asked: “Should You (or Anyone) Buy Baby Doge Coin?” Baby doge was also featured in articles published by newsdesks like the Indian Times, Futurism, Republic World, Benzinga, Gamerevolution, Techstory, Business Insider, Toysmatrix, and more.

248% Weekly Gains — Baby Doge Coin Continues to Rally While Most Crypto Asset Markets Slump
Baby doge coin has rallied during the last week gathering 248% in seven days and 723% in fourteen days.

The New York Post gave the public an introduction to baby doge in an article called: “Baby Doge? What to know about the Dogecoin spinoff that Elon Musk is hyping.” Since July 1, the number of trading platforms listing baby doge has increased by three centralized exchanges after it was initially available on Pancakeswap.

The meme-based crypto asset is available on Pancakeswap, MEXC Global, XT.com, and Lbank. Pancakeswap version one shows baby doge has lots of liquidity with $71 million in 24 hour swaps and the protocol’s version two shows more than $3 million.

Top Meme Tokens Coins by Market Capitalization List Shows Other Doge-Like and Musk-Related Meme Coins on the Rise

During our last report, baby doge coin was swapping for $0.000000002014 per unit and it’s doubled since then at $0.000000004585 per BABYDOGE. Every time a baby doge transaction happens, people must pay a 10% fee but the 5% of the fee is redistributed to every baby doge holder.

The other 5% taken from the fee is added to the BABYDOGE/BNB liquidity pool hosted on Pancakeswap. According to Coingecko’s “Top Meme Tokens Coins by Market Capitalization” list, dogecoin (DOGE) hasn’t done as well as baby doge in recent times. DOGE is down 11.4% during the last seven days compared to baby doge’s 248% rise.

248% Weekly Gains — Baby Doge Coin Continues to Rally While Most Crypto Asset Markets Slump
There are all kinds of dogecoin-like and Musk-related meme coins these days, as there’s tokens like Dogelon Mars, Polydoge, Dogefi, SHIBA BSC, and many more. Some of the dogecoin-like and Musk-related meme coins have seen double-digit gains this past week.

Now shiba inu (SHIB) is up 7.4% today and a few other DOGE-like tokens have seen decent weekly gains. A crypto-asset called dogelon mars (ELON) jumped 31% this week and another one called elon doge token (EDOGE) jumped over 20%. Baby doge doesn’t have the amount of trade volume seen by its predecessors SHIB and DOGE, but it’s rising fast. Today, dogecoin (DOGE) captures $1.3 billion in trade volume while SHIB has over $400 million.

Collective baby doge trade volume during the trailing 24 hours has been around $103 million. Baby doge coin holds the 31st position among the dozens of meme-coins listed on Coingecko’s aggregation site. Most crypto coin aggregation sites don’t say what baby doge’s market cap is today but four hundred twenty quadrillion multiplied by $0.000000004585 is approximately $1.925 billion.

What do you think about the Baby Doge project and the coin’s rise this week? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

As Miners Leave Bitcoin in Droves, Space Allocation Dedicated to Filecoin and Chia Surges

As Droves of Miners Leave Bitcoin, Space Allocation Dedicated to Filecoin and Chia Surges

While a large quantity of hashrate has stopped dedicating resources to the Bitcoin network, a great number of alternative mining ecosystems are swelling with new participants. China’s ASIC exodus has ignited a significant increase in demand for accessing storage power on both Filecoin and Chia’s proof-of-storage networks. Both networks have seen space allocation spike significantly since the bitcoin mining crackdown in China.

Alternative Consensus Algorithms Reap Benefits of the SHA256 Hashrate Drop

A lot has been happening in the cryptocurrency mining space recently, as the industry is seeing a massive shift since the start of the bitcoin mining crackdown in various Chinese provinces. SHA256 hashrate dedicated to the Bitcoin (BTC) network has plummeted over the last few weeks and the hashrate drop caused the network’s mining difficulty to dip close to 28% this past weekend. Interestingly, this was the largest epoch mining difficulty drop BTC has ever experienced and in two weeks it may be even larger.

At press time, according to coinwarz.com’s hashrate chart set for a one-month interval, BTC’s hashrate is 87,660,572,446,369,430,000 hashes per second or 87 exahash per second (EH/s). The mining difficulty drop made it easier and more profitable to mine BTC but alternative crypto assets that leverage different consensus algorithms have been far more profitable. Today’s most profitable consensus algorithm is Blake256R14 which can mine the crypto asset decred (DCR).

As Miners Leave Bitcoin in Droves, Space Allocation Dedicated to Filecoin and Chia Surges
Today’s most profitable mineable coins leverage consensus algorithms like Ethash and Blake256R14.

A machine that boasts more than 52 terahash per second (TH/s) — and pulls 2,200 watts off the wall with an electricity consumption rate of $0.12 per kilowatt-hour (kWh) — can see profits of up to $116 per day using DCR exchange rates on July 5. A machine that can mine the Ethash algorithm and coins like ETH, ETC, CLO, PIRL, and UBQ can get roughly $42 per day using today’s crypto exchange rates, the same electrical consumption with 750 megahash per second (MH/s), and 1,350 watts of power.

Chia and Filecoin Networks Benefit From the ASIC Exodus

These specific consensus algorithms have seen an increase since the SHA256 exodus, but in comparison to times prior to China’s crackdown, these networks also lost a considerable amount of hash during the shift as well. Two notable crypto networks, however, saw the opposite effect as space allocations dedicated to the Chia network and Filecoin network have grown exponentially. In mid-October, Bitcoin.com News reported on Filecoin’s miner strike which saw a standoff between members of the Filecoin mining community.

As Miners Leave Bitcoin in Droves, Space Allocation Dedicated to Filecoin and Chia Surges
Filecoin’s 7.087 exbibytes (EiB) of effective storage on July 5, 2021.

At that time, Filecoin’s “Network Storage Power” according to filfox.info was 600 pebibyte (PiB) of effective storage. When the first warnings of a miner crackdown in China came out of Inner Mongolia back in March and went viral, Filecoin’s effective storage rate skyrocketed. The effective storage rate climbed higher and higher as each week passed, as today’s rate is 7.087 exbibyte (EiB). he network crossed a milestone of 1 EiB on November 24, 2020. The network crossed a milestone of 1 EiB on November 24, 2020, then a great majority of the effective storage increase stemmed from Q2 2021.

As Miners Leave Bitcoin in Droves, Space Allocation Dedicated to Filecoin and Chia Surges
Chia’s 30,505 PiB of allocated storage on July 5, 2021.

The crypto asset network Chia has also seen the space allocated to the Chia network grow exponentially and after the Sichuan crackdown, it spiked considerably higher than usual. Chia network statistics show 30,505 PiB of allocated storage dedicated to the chain on July 5. It was only 26,718 PiB on June 22, which shows it has increased 14.17% since the start of the Sichuan mining crackdown that week. The Chinese journalist Colin ‘Wu’ Blockchain tweeted about the demand that Chia and Filecoin mining was seeing on June 20 and since then space allocated to both networks has increased a great deal.

“The computing power of Chia and Filecoin in China has not been affected,” the regional reporter noted that day. “[The] Chinese government mainly controls the power sector to crack down bitcoin mining, but they consume less electricity. Their computing power is continuing to rise, and some bitcoin miners may switch to them,” he added.

What do you think about the other consensus algorithms besides Bitcoin’s SHA256 seeing more demand these days? What do you think about the exponential increase in space allocated to Chia and Filecoin’s networks? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.

Joe Biden Directs US Intelligence to Investigate Ransomware Attack Against Florida IT Firm

Joe Biden Directs US Intelligence to Investigate Ransomware Attack Against Florida IT Firm

Joe Biden wants to crackdown on ransomware according to statements he made on Friday, after hackers hijacked software from a Miami-based IT supplier called Kaseya. Hundreds of American businesses were affected by the breach as the attackers encrypted the files of some 200 clients. Biden said on Friday that he’s ordered an investigation into the exploited Florida-based IT infrastructure.

Biden Directs US Intelligence Agencies to Look Into the Kaseya Ransomware Attack

Following the Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack, this past week an IT supplier called Kaseya was breached and the company’s software management tool called VSA was exploited. This attack affected a great number of Kaseya clients on Friday and suspicions of Russian gang involvement were sparked by investigators. Huntress, a security company, said that the company believes Russians were involved and blames a gang called Revil. The Revil ransomware gange is suspected of attacking the meatpacking company JBS last month as well.

American president Joe Biden remarked during a public appearance that he had directed U.S. intelligence agencies to investigate the matter and that the U.S. would do something if Russia was found to be behind it. Last month, Biden met with Russian president Vladimir Putin and told the leader that if ransomware attacks continued and were found to be from Russia there would be consequences. However, Biden said “we’re not certain” who was behind the attack on the Florida IT company and added:

The initial thinking was it was not the Russian government but we’re not sure yet.

Kaseya’s chief executive, Fred Voccola, told the press that the company had found the vulnerability and would “release that patch as quickly as possible to get our customers back up and running.” John Hammond, Huntress senior security researcher, said that this single piece of shared software allowed hundreds of companies to get exploited. “This is a colossal and devastating supply chain attack,” Hammond stressed on Friday.

Ransomware Has Pushed the Biden Administration Toward Investigating the Crypto Ecosystem

Biden’s statements follow U.S. Department of State’s undersecretary of state for political affairs Victoria Nuland’s comments about the Colonial Pipeline hack. Speaking of a discussion she had with Salvadoran president Nayib Bukele, Nuland remarked that after the Colonial Pipeline ransomware hack the U.S. State Department was taking a “tough look at bitcoin.”

The U.S.-based energy firm Colonial Pipeline saw its infrastructure fold in May after a ransomware gang exploited the system. Colonial Pipeline then paid the hackers 75 bitcoin (BTC) to get its infrastructure back online. However, in early June, U.S. law enforcement agencies said they recovered a majority of the funds (63.70 BTC) that were meant to go to the ransomware gang members.

Before the Kaseya hack, Biden’s administration had already published a “Memorandum on Establishing the Fight Against Corruption as a Core United States National Security Interest” in the first week of June. Biden’s directive to federal agencies put cryptocurrencies in the spotlight and the administration explains that the directive is meant to bolster national security.

A Kaseya hack response team member said that the breach on Friday sent out a myriad of ransom demands to all the businesses that were infected. Reuters reports that demands for “a few thousand dollars to $5 million or more” were sent to the clients affected by the Kaseya ransomware attack.

What do you think about Joe Biden giving a directive to U.S. intelligence agencies to investigate the Kaseya ransomware hack? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

4,000 Institutional Funds in Germany Can Now Invest 20% of Portfolios in Crypto Assets

4,000 Institutional Funds in Germany Can Now Invest 20% of Portfolios in Crypto Assets

Around 4,000 institutional funds with almost 2 trillion euros in assets under management in Germany can now invest 20% of their portfolios in cryptocurrency, including bitcoin.

  • The highly anticipated Fund Location Act (Fondsstandortgesetz) went into effect on July 1 in Germany. The German federal parliament, the Bundestag, cleared the legislation on April 22.
  • Under this law, new and existing domestic special funds (Spezialfonds) are permitted to invest up to 20% of their portfolios in crypto assets, like bitcoin.
  • There are approximately 4,000 such special funds covered by this legislation. According to a report by BVI Investments, 1.88 trillion euros ($2.23 trillion) were invested in open special funds, excluding special real estate funds, as of the end of December 2020.

  • If all special funds were to allocate the full 20% in cryptocurrency, it would equate to more than 376 billion euros ($446 billion).
  • Traditionally, special funds are open-ended, regulated investment funds limited to institutional investors, such as financial institutions, insurance companies, corporations, foundations, and churches.

What do you think about this law allowing special institutional funds to invest in cryptocurrency? Let us know in the comments section below.

Share Buyback Magic: Financial Forecaster Says Stock Market Rally Is All ‘Smoke and Mirrors’

While the American economy witnesses small business failures across the nation, historical unemployment rates, major issues with the supply chain, countless product shortages, and the cost of goods and services inflating, the stock market continues to rally. The CEO of the Forward Thinking Group UK, Neil McCoy-Ward, thinks the current stock market is “completely disconnected from the economy,” for various reasons, but McCoy-Ward believes today’s bubbling stock market mostly stems from things like excessive stimulus and share buybacks.

Neil McCoy-Ward Describes an Unsustainable Economic Situation

Just recently, the investor, financial forecaster, and housing market expert Neil McCoy-Ward was featured in a Youtube video produced by the Financial Monster channel. This Youtube channel is dedicated to daily videos about bitcoin, investing, finance, and wealth building. The five-minute video called “How The Stock Market Crash Will Happen Step By Step” is quick and to the point. McCoy-Ward starts off by asking why the stock market came roaring back after the Covid-19 crash and explains right away that the Federal Reserve’s massive stimulus helped this happen.

There’s been a lot of debate as to why the M2 Money Stock reporting was discontinued by the Federal Reserve. Steve Hanke, professor of Applied Economics at Johns Hopkins University, discussed the change in a Kitco news video called “Is the Fed hiding something? Why weekly money supply data just got discontinued.” The M2 successor is the M2SL, which is a similar reporting chart updated every month rather than the weekly M1 and M2 money supply series.

The video featuring McCoy-Ward explains in this economy “everything is going down except unemployment, which is going up.” The stock market should be failing, alongside all the smaller U.S. businesses that are hurting, but this is not the case in 2021. The reason for this illusionary effect and the current stock market bubble is because of stimulus, McCoy-Ward remarked.

He further highlighted that in a year’s time, the U.S. money supply increased by 30%. Essentially, all the stimulus is “going into hard assets or the stock market and housing,” McCoy-Ward stressed. He emphasized that the U.S. housing market “is booming.” Furthermore, when you have “historically low-interest rates this creates a bubble,” the financial forecaster said.

McCoy-Ward’s video clip explains why he thinks the stock market continues to rally and why major indexes have returned to all-time highs. In fact, the top stock indexes have seen valuation highs not seen since the dot-com bubble, the 2008 crisis, the financial crash of ‘87, and the infamous 1929 stock market crash. McCoy-Ward detailed how today’s financiers currently have access to easy credit and while interest rates are at zero, “there really isn’t much risk for individuals and companies to take on debt.”

Share Buybacks Giving Today’s Financiers a ‘Clean Bill of Health’ Since 1982

The financial forecaster claims these companies simply ramp up debt to the absolute maximum. Instead of improving the company with all the stimulus and reserves on hand, the businesses will simply participate in share buybacks, McCoy-Ward said. Basically, a share buyback, also known as a share repurchase, is when a firm buys its own shares from the market. McCoy-Ward highlights how it boosts the appearance of the company’s bill of health.

While the scheme represents an alternate way of returning money to some shareholders, the investor believes it’s just “smoke and mirrors.” Share buybacks were in fact banned after the 1929 stock market crash, but a 1982 Securities and Exchange Commission rule under the Reagan administration allowed them again. Five years later, the stock market was shaken by “Black Monday” (Oct. 19, 1987) and the stock market crashed.

If you ask many economists what caused the 1929 stock market crash “they will say share buybacks,” McCoy-Ward remarked in the video. He added that he was quite surprised to see that there is very little discussion on the subject of share buybacks in the media today. A quick Google query of the subject shows McCoy-Ward is correct and the subject is not being discussed by mainstream media at all.

The Fed’s recent stress tests claim that Wall Street’s biggest corporate giants like Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan, Bank of America, Goldman Sachs, and Wells Fargo all had a clean bill of health. After the Fed gave Wall Street banks the stress test green light, the firms simply hiked shareholder payouts. McCoy-Ward also notes that if massive debt-holding firms repurchasing their own shares fail, they will be bailed out. He reminds the Youtube audience that governments don’t make money and the only way bailouts succeed is via taxation and more debt.

After describing the issue with share buybacks, McCoy-Ward circles back to the housing market and the Federal Reserve’s odd relationship at the end of the video.

The investor mentions that the central bank currently owns a third of all the mortgages in the United States. “That means, one out of every three of you watching this video, the Federal Reserve owns your home.”

What do you think about the video with financial forecaster Neil McCoy-Ward? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

8,000 BTC Belonging to Mirror Trading International Traced, Investors Urged to Lodge Claims

A total of 8,000 bitcoins belonging to Mirror Trading International (MTI) have been traced while an additional 29,000 bitcoins could soon meet a similar fate. The traced coins, which are valued at over $280 million (4 billion rand), represent a potential breakthrough for beleaguered MTI investors.

Liquidators Want Court to Declare MTI a Ponzi Scheme

The latest revelations came shortly after the granting of a final liquidation order against MTI by a South African court. Before this announcement, liquidators of the Ponzi scheme had only recovered 1,281 bitcoins that were surrendered to liquidators by MTI’s previous broker, FX Choice. As previously reported by Bitcoin.com News, the 1,281 bitcoins were ultimately sold and more than $70 million was raised from the sale.

However, as a Moneyweb report explains, liquidators intend to argue in favour of having MTI declared a Ponzi Scheme on their return to court on September 8. This declaration, according to the report, makes it “easier to chase down funds the liquidators believe rightfully belong to the insolvent estate.” The report also notes that those opposed to the declaration have until August 31 to file their replying affidavits.

Meanwhile, the report quotes Riaan van Rooyen, who is one of the liquidators, explaining why it is important for investors to lodge their claims against MTI. Rooyen said:

We obviously want to recover as much money as possible for members, particularly the elderly and the vulnerable. It’s important for members to know that they will not be required to pay into the estate just because they benefitted from withdrawals. It merely means that their claims will be reduced by the amount that they have already received in terms of withdrawals. If they paid in for example, R30 000 and withdrew R10 000, this means their claim against MTI would be reduced from R30 000 to R20 000.

Roadshow for MTI Investors Planned

Before its collapse in December 2020, MTI repeatedly claimed it had over 280,000 accounts and a majority of these belonged to investors based in South Africa. However, liquidators insist this number will be reduced to between 150,000 and 180,000 “once accounts opened in the name of family pets and other bogus accounts are stripped out.”

In the meantime, the report reveals that liquidators are also planning to launch a national roadshow to assist MTI investors. This initiative is expected to help liquidators contact as “many members of MTI as possible and to assist them in lodging their claims.”

Do you think MTI liquidators will succeed in recovering all the missing bitcoins? Tell us what you think in the comments section below.

Prime Minister of Vietnam Asks Central Bank to Pilot Digital Currency

Prime Minister of Vietnam Asks Central Bank to Pilot Digital Currency

Pham Minh Chinh, the prime minister of Vietnam, has asked the country’s central bank to conduct a study of cryptocurrency and pilot the implementation of a blockchain-based currency within the next two years. The efforts are part of the Asian country’s new e-government strategy.

Cryptocurrency Highlighted in Prime Minister’s Decision

Cryptocurrency is one of the highlights in a decision regarding the establishment of a digital government issued recently by the Vietnamese premier. “Cryptocurrency based on blockchain is among core technologies Vietnam hopes to develop and master,” Vietnam Plus said in a report, obviously referring to a coin issued by the state. Other priority areas include artificial intelligence, big data, and augmented and virtual reality, the English-language news outlet detailed.

Before mastering crypto, however, the Vietnamese government needs to adopt specific definitions for the various types of digital currencies and virtual assets as well as comprehensively regulate the crypto space. In April last year, a working group was established by the Ministry of Finance to study the matter and propose regulatory policies.

The State Bank of Vietnam (SBV) has in the past warned that cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin are not legally recognized in the country. The same applies to their use as a means of payment. The central bank has previously instructed financial institutions not to regard crypto as currency and the regulator has not licensed any coin trading platforms so far.

According to Huynh Phuoc Nghia, deputy director of the Institute of Innovation at the University of Economics in Ho Chi Minh City, it’s time for the government in Hanoi to study and carry out a pilot implementation of digital currency. The academic emphasized:

Digital money is an inevitable trend.

The pilot implementation should help the executive power to identify both positive and negative aspects as well as to develop a “more appropriate management mechanism,” Nghia also said. In his view, the recognition of digital currencies by the SBV will facilitate this process.

Vietnam to Catch Up With Other Nations in the Digital Currency Race

Le Dat Chi, deputy head of the university’s Finance Faculty, thinks the study should be accelerated to allow Vietnam to advance in the global race in the field of digital currencies. According to a survey he quoted, central banks around the world are at different stages in these efforts. Over 60 institutions are already piloting digital currency use and others are working on plans for pilot implementation, while a third group of banks is only observing developments. Vietnam now wants to move to the second stage.

Traditional currencies such as the U.S. dollar, the euro and the Japanese yen have a greater impact on the world currency basket and international trade than other fiat currencies, Vietnam Plus notes. But in the race to develop and apply new technologies, countries like Vietnam will have a chance to increase their influence on the global financial system, the publication points out.

Among the central banks working on projects to issue central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) are those of China, Russia, the U.S., and the Eurozone. The People’s Bank of China has the most advanced project so far, with numerous domestic trials underway and a plan to test the digital yuan (e-CNY) in cross-border transactions with Hong Kong.

Do you expect Vietnam to adopt crypto-friendly regulations and issue a blockchain-based digital currency? Share your thoughts on the subject in the comments section below.

Bitcoin Cash Payment Processor Evolves Adding URL Shortener, Paypal API Integration

Bitcoin Cash Payment Processor Evolves Adding URL Shortener, Paypal API Integration

Prompt.cash, a bitcoin cash noncustodial payment processor, is adding a bunch of interesting functionalities. The payment processor now features a URL shortener that allows users to monetize content on any site on the net. Also, Prompt.cash added Paypal API integrations, making it easier for merchants to test Bitcoin Cash payments seamlessly.

Prompt.cash Adds URL Shortener Functionality

Prompt.cash, a hosted permissionless bitcoin cash (BCH)-based payment processor, is adding a slew of important updates that extend the functionality of the platform. While the platform launched just three months ago, they are already introducing new features to make its proposal more useful to its users. One of these interesting additions is a URL shortener. This will allow users to monetize access to any website. Prompt.cash can also accept any Simple Ledger Protocol (SLP) tokens minted using the Bitcoin Cash chain.

While URL shorteners are not something new, most companies providing this service are fiat-based. Prompt.cash uses a bitcoin cash address to send the received payment directly to the wallet of the user. This provides instant redemption of the funds received. It also gives the user an advantage compared to traditional service offerings. Using these fiat-based competitors, the customer needs to withdraw the funds manually after a certain amount is reached.

Paypal API Integration Allows for Seamless Migration

One of the biggest problems that incipient payment processors face is the cost of integration. Many companies that would like to test new payment processors will often pass on them. This due to the price associated with integrating them into their structure. Prompt.cash is aware of this issue and is working to minimize the friction and cost of adding bitcoin cash payments to every platform out there.

Ekliptor, the developer of Prompt.cash, stated that Paypal Rest API integration will go a long way in achieving this goal. Ekliptor stressed:

Compatibility on the API layer enables websites using Paypal to try out bitcoin cash payments without investing many resources and developer knowledge.

As a result of this work, merchants can modify any of the thousands of plugins out there to make it compatible with Prompt.cash. Consequently, just by changing a couple of things, these merchants will be able to offer bitcoin cash payments in no time.

To make things even easier for merchants, Prompt.cash features integration with many popular platforms. For this reason, static pages, WordPress, Node.js, PHP, WHCMS, and Android-based platforms can integrate Prompt.cash payments. In addition to these benefits, Prompt.cash offers examples for noncoders to understand what needs to be done and apply it to their own platforms.

What do you think about Prompt.cash functionality upgrades? Tell us in the comments section below.