Swiss regulators have given Zurich-based Falcon Private Bank approval to provide its clients with Bitcoin asset management offerings. On Wednesday, the bank began offering customers the ability to trade Bitcoin using their cash deposits. Falcon has partnered with Swiss cryptocurrency broker Bitcoin Suisse, which will provide the bank with access to the digital currency.
Nikolay Storonsky’s startup banking firm Revolut Ltd is receiving investor funding totaling $66 million. The two-year-old company has attracted capital from several investors, including Ribbit Capital, index Ventures, and Balderton Capital. Revolut has announced that it intends to use the funds for expansion of operations, and has plans to add digital currency trading for its customers.
South Korean digital currency exchange Bithumb has announced plans to compensate its users for any damages suffered because of compromised customer data records. The company has confirmed that roughly 30,000 customers had their data stolen when an exchange employee’s personal home computer was hacked. According to the online news site, BraveNewCoin, the company claims that the hack didn’t involve the Bithumb main server:
In recent months, South Korea’s digital currency trading activity has been among the most robust in the world. Many policy experts have been uncomfortable with the lack of industry regulation, however, with some worrying that any sudden downturn in the cryptocurrency markets could negatively impact the country’s broader economy. This week, Democratic Party of Korea Representative Park Yong-jin announced that he intends to introduce a new bill to enact a framework for regulating digital currencies like Bitcoin.
While many analysts have been expecting Bitcoin’s recent price doldrums to continue for some time, one market analyst is projecting growth that could see the world’s most well-known digital currency rise another 50% above its current price. Goldman Sachs analyst Sheba Jafari offered that assessment in a recent note that was reported on by CNBC and other news outlets.
The Nikkei Asian Review has reported that the Japanese government is moving forward with plans to begin testing blockchain technology for its public procurement process. The Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications will be conducting the trials to assess the technology’s usefulness for streamlining the tendering process though improved interagency data-sharing. The test is reportedly part of a broader government effort to improve e-government efficiency and security, and is expected to conclude in March 2018.
If you live in New York and want to send your preschoolers to one of the city’s two Montessori luxury preschools, don’t expect to put those tuition costs on your credit card. The schools don’t accept that form of payment. However, Montessori Schools co-founder Marco Ciocca wants you to know that the Montessori schools in Flatiron and Soho will be more than happy to accept your Bitcoin. In fact, they now accept Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin as payment options.
It wasn’t that long ago that cryptocurrency enthusiasts in Russia faced the very real possibility that their government might ban Bitcoin and even jail anyone who owned or used digital currency. Those types of threats are now all but forgotten, as acceptance of digital currency technology is growing by leaps and bounds. That increasing interest in cryptocurrency was perhaps best highlighted by a single Bitcoin merchant transaction at an unidentified Burger King restaurant in Moscow on June 27, 2017.
Despite the GDAX exchange’s announced decision to honor all trades that occurred during the Wednesday flash crash, many of the exchange customers who lost money during that event will apparently see the value of their holdings restored. GDAX vice president Adam White made the announcement in a Friday blog post, and explained how the company intends to ease those customers’ pain.
In a blog post published on Thursday, Blockchain CEO Peter Smith announced that the startup raised $40 million in its most recent round of funding. That Series B total is significantly higher than the company’s 2014 Series A result of $30.5 million, and was described by Smith as “the most substantial investment in the fintech space since Brexit” and “the largest Series B raised by any digital currency company to date.”
A flash crash on the Coinbase-owned GDAX cryptocurrency exchange caused the price of Ethereum to plummet Wednesday afternoon, temporarily erasing almost all of the coin’s value. The digital currency’s price fell to about 10 cents before it began to recover, during a wild bout of automated trading that resulted in substantial losses for many investors. GDAX VP Adam White addressed the trading activity in a blog post yesterday:
As Cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology continue to experience increased consumer and investor interest, mainstream media outlets have focused their attention on the industry as well. News giant Reuters has apparently also taken note of that increased attention, and will now report on stories about the blockchain and digital currency in one of two new coverage sections launched by the company on Monday.
If you’ve ever wondered how digital currency can ever really hope to achieve its promise of providing real financial empowerment to the people of the world through true democratization of money, you’re not alone. Most crypto-skeptics and even some enthusiasts have long wondered how decentralized currencies can ever manage to meet that goal. In a recent interview with CEOCFO Magazine published on Monday, DNotes Founder Alan Yong offers his take on the problems confronting Bitcoin and most other digital currencies, as well as his ideas about how DNotes can meet those challenges.
Yesterday, Bitcoin set a new all-time price high, passing the $3,000 mark. Today, the world’s most well-known digital currency sharply retreated from that record high, as trading volumes on the major cryptocurrency exchanges surged. Amid that heavy traffic, global Bitcoin exchange Coinbase experienced yet another major outage that temporarily left its customers without access to exchange services.
San-Francisco based cryptocurrency exchange Kraken has announced that it is lowering its withdrawal fee from the roughly $7 flat fee (.0025 XBT) proposed several days ago to a flat fee of about $3 per withdrawal (.0001 XBT). The company cited customer preference in its decision, and has suggested that it will conduct batch withdrawals to help control costs.
More than a month ago, the New Hampshire legislature passed House Bill 436 and sent it to Governor Chris Sununu for his signature. The Governor signed the bill into law late last week, effectively ensuring that those who use cryptocurrency in New Hampshire will no longer be subject to the state’s money transmitter regulations. That exemption will become effective on August 1, 2017.
When mainstream news outlets talk about digital currency these days, much of the emphasis is on the cryptocurrency markets and the surging values of digital currencies like Bitcoin. According to Reuters, however, what’s good for digital currency investors has apparently also been good for computer graphic card maker Advanced Micro Devices (AMD). In fact, increased activity in the cryptocurrency markets has contributed to rising stock prices and increased demand for the company’s chips as AMD shares rose by more than 7 percent in Tuesday’s trading.
Recent reports suggest that the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) may be considering a move to enact a regulatory framework for Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs). Chinese cryptocurrency news source cnLedger posted the news on Friday, noting that Chinese central bank Digital Currency Research Institute head Yao Quian addressed the issue while discussing digital currencies and related technologies. As cnLedger reported,
With demand for Bitcoin and other digital currencies continuing to increase, it seems as though each day brings news of some new milestone in the cryptocurrency universe. Bitcoin exchange Coinbase could soon achieve its own milestone in the coming weeks, as the company is reportedly in negotiations with investors to raise capital that could result in the exchange eventually being valued at a billion dollars or more.
In remarks delivered at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum recently, Russian Central Bank Deputy Governor Olga Skorobogatova suggested that the world will eventually see nations create their own digital currencies. She also seemed to confirm that the tests required to prove the viability of such currencies had already been completed using platforms like the Hyperledger and Masterchain.