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The Bitcoin Price Just Shattered a New All-Time High – Just Not the One You Think


  • Bitcoin’s spot price briefly surpassed $10,000 early this week.
  • Its one-year average price just crossed $9,500, a new all-time high.
  • The largest cryptocurrency is up 37% year-to-date.

As bitcoin’s price grinds toward $10,000, its performance over a much longer timescale reached a significant milestone this month.

BTC’s One-Year Average Price

While most traders focus on bitcoin’s spot price, zooming out on a more extended timeframe reveals a bullish trend for the cryptocurrency. As Twitter user The Moon points out, bitcoin’s one-year average price just reached an all-time high.

Bitcoin’s price continues to impress over more extended time frames. | Source: Twitter

Based on The Moon’s analysis, bitcoin’s 365-day moving average has crossed $9,531.

Now, granted, The Moon doesn’t offer the most objective take on bitcoin (the tweet before this one was simply, “I love bitcoin”). But that doesn’t make the milestone any less significant.

This time last year, BTC was in the middle of a parabolic move that would eventually take the price to a high near $14,000 in late June.

Then, just a few months ago, BTC crashed below $4,000 in a mass coronavirus-driven liquidation event. Neither the upper end or lower band of the yearly price range has been reached since.

Bitcoin’s one-year price chart. | Chart: TradingVIew

BTC’s Post-Halving Performance

Bitcoin’s quadrennial halving came and went on May 11, producing the third “quantitative hardening” for the blockchain network. Post-halving, bitcoin miners now receive 6.25 BTC per block rather than the 12.5 BTC they’ve grown accustomed to over the past four years.

Galaxy Digital’s CEO Mike Novogratz talks about bitcoin post-halving:

With bitcoin’s inflation rate cut in half, proponents believe the digital asset will become scarcer and thus more valuable. If history is any indication, they’re probably right.

Although bitcoin’s price tends to fall after the halving, the supply cut is a significant tailwind over the next six-to-twelve months. Bullish expectations are magnified by the number of new users joining the network and the percentage holders who are simply accumulating and not moving their BTC.

Data from Glassnode suggest bitcoin holders are taking matters into their own hands by moving BTC out of exchanges and, possibly, into hardware wallets. Bitcoin’s daily active addresses and new addresses are also on the rise.

Bitcoin’s proponents believe the quadrennial halving is one of several major catalysts that will boost prices over the long term. | Source: Mc_Cloud/

The bitcoin price has rallied more than 12% since the halving took place on Monday. Year-to-date, the price is up roughly 37%, making BTC the best-performing major asset of 2020. By comparison, spot gold is up 14.2% over the same period.

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of Sam Bourgi is long bitcoin.

This article was edited by Josiah Wilmoth.


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#Crypto101: First State-Owned Entity Joins Libra Association

First State-Owned Entity Joins Libra Association

Temasek, one of Singapore’s two government-owned investment vehicles, is among the latest companies to join the Libra Association, the consortium Facebook set up to create a global digital currency.

The addition may help explain why the Singapore dollar has figured prominently in Libra’s plans from the early days. In the initial vision of a new currency backed by a basket of different sovereign currencies, the “sing” was included alongside the U.S. dollar, the euro and the British pound. And when Libra pivoted last month to focusing on stablecoins pegged to existing fiat currencies, it mentioned the same four currencies as examples.

“Our participation in the Libra Association as a member will allow us to contribute towards a regulated global network for cost-effective retail payments,” Chia Song Hwee, deputy CEO of Temasek, said through a spokesperson. “Many developments in the space excite us. We look forward to further exploring the potential of the technology.”

Libra also announced Thursday two cryptocurrency-focused investment firms in San Francisco had joined the association: Paradigm, co-founded by Coinbase veteran Fred Ehrsam, and Slow Ventures. (Coinbase has been a Libra member from the start.) The three additions bring the total number of organizations on Libra’s governing council to 27.

Read more: Libra’s Long Road From a Facebook Lab to the Global Stage: A Timeline

Temasek manages $216 billion in assets for Singapore’s government and has previously shown a penchant for blockchain ventures

“Blockchain technology can play a transformative role in payments networks by enhancing cost efficiencies, creating new business opportunities and accelerating financial inclusion,” Chia said. “As part of our journey to better understand its impact across different fronts, we are collaborating with government agencies and companies to explore and advance its use.”

The additions also increase the influence of financiers on Libra’s governing council. With eight members, they’re now the single largest group by industry and together wield nearly 30% of members’ control over the project.

The three newcomers join investment firms Andressen Horowitz, Breakthrough Initiatives, Ribbit Capital, Thrive Capital and Union Square Ventures, all founding members of Libra. By comparison, the association’s nonprofit contingent numbered five after last month’s onboarding of Heifer International

Ehrsam said Libra’s power to take crypto mainstream appealed to his venture capital firm. 

“Bridging the gap to a larger mainstream user base is the next step in the evolution of the space,” he said. “Any network which has the potential to normalize crypto societally and offer distribution at this scale is valuable.”

Slow Ventures Principal Jill Carlson did not immediately respond to a request for comment. 

Read more: FireBlocks CEO Pours Cold Water on Libra Excitement

In a press statement, Libra Vice Chairman Dante Disparte said the three additions “show our commitment to building a diverse group of organizations that will contribute to the governance, technological roadmap and launch readiness of the Libra payment system.”

Libra did not respond to questions concerning the weight of investment firms on its council. 

The consortium initially hoped to onboard 100 members by the first half of 2020, its original target launch date. Those plans were derailed by regulators whose criticism set off a hemorrhage of founding members and delayed the launch. 

In response, Libra pared back its vision and has slowly begun to replenish its ranks. Last week, it added a CEO with a background in institutional banking and government finance.

UPDATE (May 14, 00:45 UTC): An earlier version of this article referred to Temasek as a sovereign wealth fund (SWF), as it is frequently described in the financial media. However, a spokesperson for Temasek said it operates independently and owns its assets, and hence does not meet the definition. An editing error was to blame. The article was also updated to add a quote from a Temasek executive.

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The leader in blockchain news, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups.


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Trust No Dapp: Chainlink Launches Oracle for Provable Randomness – CoinDesk


Chainlink may be solving part of the problem that first drove Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin’s interest in decentralized applications.

“One day [‘World of Warcraft’ game maker] Blizzard removed the damage component from my beloved warlock’s Siphon Life spell. I cried myself to sleep, and on that day I realized what horrors centralized services can bring. I soon decided to quit,” Buterin wrote.

Similarly, Chainlink is rolling out its Verifiable Random Function (VRF) service, where subscribers can gain access to provably random values needed for demonstrating the integrity of smart-contract-based projects such as online games. With Chainlink VRF, you know an application hasn’t been tampered with – all via the blockchain.

Chainlink co-founder Sergey Nazarov announced the new product Monday at Consensus: Distributed.

“A lot of applications can’t exist in a trustless way without randomness,” Nazarov said in an interview.

In short, smart contracts will send a seed to a Chainlink oracle which will generate a random number using Chainlink’s VRF. The resulting number, broadcast back to the application, can be verified as random based on the oracle’s public key and application’s seed, Chainlink said in a blog post.

Oracles partaking in the system will be paid in user fees, Nazarov said, in an attempt to create an internal token economy for data information and security.

Verifiably randomness is novel service because of the difficulties of getting it right, Nazarov said. Many applications – particularly for gaming – need sources of randomness to create fair systems of play. Proving that the vehicle for selecting randomness has not been manipulated by the originator or an outside adversary is no easy task, however.

Decentralized finance (DeFi) lottery PoolTogether is the first subscriber to Chainlink’s VRF. The savings tool pools interest accrued on dai stablecoin holdings into one pot, and picks a lucky winner every week.

PoolTogether will now switch from its centralized randomness selection method to Chainlink’s VRF for decentralized randomness.

“Even seemingly random values, such as a blockhash, can be manipulated by malicious miners attempting to extract value from applications like PoolTogether,” the project’s co-founder, Leighton Cusack, said in a blog post. “This is why we’re excited about a verifiable form of randomness that can be verified using a blockchain’s highly trustworthy signature verification capabilities.”

Chainlink’s Nazarov said the randomness question for protocols is truly a computer science conundrum, one that is most easily addressed through a third-party solution such as Chainlink. 

“What we are trying to address is people building applications, not just tokens,” Nazarov said.

Disclosure Read More

The leader in blockchain news, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups.


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#Crypto101: Canadian Exchange VirgoCX Taps Ledger Vault for Custody, Insurance Support

Canadian Exchange VirgoCX Taps Ledger Vault for Custody, Insurance Support

Canadian crypto exchange VirgoCX has tapped enterprise infrastructure technology platform Ledger Vault to provide custody solutions for retail and institutional clients.

Ledger Vault will provide the security infrastructure to safeguard VirgoCX’s digital assets for retail and institutional clients while enabling the “the overflow of funds in and out, allowing users to access funds promptly,” the exchange said in a Monday announcement.

The partnership comes amid heightened awareness around the industry’s vulnerability to exchange hacks and theft, especially for startups as seen with Altsbit, which was forced to close shop months after it opened after being hit by a hack that it couldn’t afford to cover.

“Ledger Vault’s solution allows us to maintain full visibility and audibility over users’ activity, while providing an unparalleled level of security for the assets in motion,” said Adam Cai, CEO of VirgoCX, in a statement.

In addition, cryptocurrency assets are secured with Ledger Vault are covered by its $150 million pooled crime insurance, meaning clients are covered in the event a hacker does succeed in stealing exchange funds.

“The integration of Ledger Vault will help VirgoCX adjust its business operations to address the increased concern for the safekeeping of cryptocurrency assets from within the industry,” Ledger and Virgo noted in a press release.

New guidance by the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA), released this year, subjects crypto exchanges seeking to provide custody for clients to securities law.

The CSA previously said transactions without immediate delivery constitute derivatives sales, even if the custodied asset is generally recognized as a commodity such as bitcoin.

With the partnership, Ledger has been able to expand its operations into Canada, under the new CSA guidance, coming hot on the heels of its recent expansion into Asia at the beginning of the year. Ledger Vault now claims to have more than 50 institutional clients and partners including Legacy Trust, Uphold, Voyager and

Disclosure Read More

The leader in blockchain news, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups.


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Twitter’s Jack Dorsey Is Dangerously Wrong About Bitcoin’s Role as World Currency


  • Jack Dorsey’s love letter to bitcoin fans isn’t the ‘poetry’ that everyone thinks it is.
  • The Twitter CEO’s Square Cash app stands to benefit more than the average cryptocurrency user.
  • Bitcoin’s ridiculously high transaction fees make it an implausible candidate for an everyday global currency.

According to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, bitcoin is poised to become the native currency in a new global internet-based economy.

But Dorsey’s latest love letter to bitcoin on a recent episode of the Lex Fridman podcast suggests he only has his own best interests at heart. And specifically, those of his Square Cash app.

Twitter CEO’s Love Letter to Bitcoin

Jack Dorsey recently described the bitcoin whitepaper as “poetry.” The Twitter CEO joined AI researcher Lex Fridman’s podcast on April 24 to discuss cryptocurrency, and his company, Square Inc.

When asked how his Square Cash app could help plug people into the global economy as consumers and merchants, Dorsey said the currency used would be key.

I believe the currency we use is a huge part of the answer. And I believe that the internet deserves and requires a native currency, and that’s why I’m such a huge believer in bitcoin.

Facebook’s Libra venture failed to get off the ground when it ran into the roadblocks of many national financial regulations. Dorsey appears to have learned from Libra’s failure and sees bitcoin as a way of circumventing those same national regulatory hurdles.

Our biggest problem as a company right now is that we cannot act like an internet company. To open a new market we have to have a partnership with a local bank. We have to pay attention to different regulatory onboarding requirements.

Dorsey suggests dodging those requirements with bitcoin can expose Square to hundreds of new markets across the world.

By using bitcoin in conjunction with the Cash app, Dorsey can effectively pick up the Libra baton and help construct a global internet currency.

A digital currency like bitcoin takes a bunch of that away, where we can potentially launch a product in every single market around the world – because they’re all using the same currency.

Dorsey has previously stated he has no intention of adding any other cryptocurrencies to Square’s Cash app. It’s bitcoin all the way.

Now, that might be a problem for around 99% of the world’s population, given that bitcoin’s fees make it utterly useless as an everyday currency.

Bitcoin Can’t Function as the World Currency Dorsey Imagines

As recently as April 30, the average transaction fee on the Bitcoin network was as high as $2.94. Data from Bitinfocharts show the steep increase in bitcoin’s fees towards the end of April. Following a slight decrease, the average fee at the time of writing is $2.84.

Average transaction fees on the Bitcoin blockchain hit a ten-month high of $2.94 on April 30. | Source: Bitinfocharts

That fee applies whether you’re sending $100,000 or $10. Yes, fees can be set lower in bitcoin wallet apps, but then users run the risk of not having their transactions included in the next block.

Or even the next one! The data below from show the massive backlog in Bitcoin’s mempool on April 30. The mempool is a measure of the data (transactions) waiting to be processed by the blockchain’s miners.

Bitcoin’s mempool was backlogged up to 80MB on April 30, with users potentially waiting several hours for confirmations. | Source:

As Bitcoin’s 1MB blocks get filled up, more and more users compete to get their transactions included in the next block. That means setting higher fees to entice miners to pick up their transactions.

This results in a desperate race to the top, which ends up massively inflating transaction fees on the network.

Bitcoin’s developers make no secret of their intention to keep the 1MB block size in place. On April 30, there was 80MB worth of transactions waiting to be processed. Two days later, at the time of writing, that number still stands at 33MB.

$1,000 Fees?

This most recent spike brought about bitcoin’s highest average fees since July 2019. Yet as far back as December 2017, average fees reached as high as $55.

Some users, including executive chairman Roger Ver, claimed to have paid over $1,000 for the privilege of transferring money on bitcoin.

Ver even provided the following video proof, showing examples from publicly available blockchain data after bitcoin developer, Adam Back, denied that fees were ever so high.

If bitcoin’s fees make it unusable for everyday purchases, then how exactly is it going to become a global, shared currency?

At this point, what can bitcoin offer that Visa, Moneygram, Western Union, and PayPal cannot? Besides–as Dorsey reminds us–the ability to circumvent financial regulators?

A Square Peg in a Round Hole

Perhaps Dorsey was merely talking about a global currency for his rich Silicon Valley friends. After all, for them, $2.94 is less than pocket change. But for others, that pocket change is dinner.

Ultimately, Jack Dorsey is right when he suggests bitcoin can push Square Inc. to the forefront of a new global digital economy.

It’s us who are wrong if we think the average person stands any chance of being a part of that economy.

Dorsey went on to tell listeners of Fridman’s podcast:

The internet continuing to be accessible to people is number one. And then I think currency is number two.

Accessibility is indeed where it’s at, Jack. And if internet service providers charged $2.94 for every web page we visited, it would quickly stop seeming so accessible.

Perhaps Dorsey should keep that in mind when masterminding Square’s global takeover.

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of

This article was edited by Sam Bourgi.

Last modified: May 2, 2020 9:21 PM UTC


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#Crypto101: How the World’s Largest Mining Pool Is Helping Miners ‘De-Risk’

How the World’s Largest Mining Pool Is Helping Miners ‘De-Risk’

“There have been days that F2Pool has lost 100 BTC in terms of having to pay miners without mining blocks themselves, but over a long period of time and with a significant amount of network hashrate those ups and downs even out,” said Thomas Heller, the mining pool’s global business director.

F2Pool is the largest bitcoin mining pool in the world, controlling 20% of the collective computational energy, also called hashrate, on the Bitcoin network. On the fifth and final episode of Bitcoin Halving 2020: Miner Perspectives, Heller discusses the economic incentives driving cryptocurrency mining and mining pool operations.

Though miner revenue has decreased sharply over the last two years from around $0.60 per terahash to $0.10, Heller explained that bitcoin mining continues to be profitable due to the release of more efficient hardware and the discovery of cheaper sources of electricity. Positive movement in bitcoin’s price is also a major factor, albeit a frustratingly unpredictable one. 

Heller, who operates a slew of his own mining machines, said that without “significant price action” over the next two weeks leading up to Bitcoin’s mining reward reduction, also called the halving, both he and other miners would have no choice but to turn off “older machines.”

For more information about the halving event, download the free CoinDesk Research explainer report, which features over 30 different charts and additional commentary from bitcoin mining industry experts.


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What the Bitcoin Halving Means for Miners and Prices – CoinDesk


Predictions and price models proliferate ahead of Bitcoin’s programmatic halving, expected in less than two weeks.

While some are turning to esoteric economic models to make the claim that the occasion will be bullish for the largest cryptocurrency by market cap, others believe it’ll be a non-event. Still, the halving is already showing real-world effects, with major mining manufacturers slashing prices and small-time investors… investing. (To be fair, these trends could also be attributed to COVID-19-led market distortions.) Here’s the story:

You’re reading Blockchain Bites, the daily roundup of the most pivotal stories in blockchain and crypto news, and why they’re significant. You can subscribe to this and all of CoinDesk’s newsletters here. 

Top Shelf


Halving Predictions: Mining & Price

  • Hut 8, one of the largest publicly listed mining companies, is likely to be affected by the incoming bitcoin halving event. The firm’s profitability has declined over several quarters, its mining rigs are struggling to compete and it carries a heavy load of fixed interest debt. CoinDesk Research takes an in-depth look into Hut 8’s financials and risks in a free report, available for download here. 
  • Meanwhile, mining manufacturer Bitmain is said to have booked over $300 million in revenue for the year to date. (The Block) Still, the firm has already begun marking down the prices of its machines ahead of the halving event.
  • Bitcoin’s third halving, less than two weeks away, is often touted as a catalyst for a price surge. It’s certainly led to a surge in interest and speculation around the cryptocurrency. Yet, some traders think the halving will be negligible compared with other macro-level events like unprecedented central bank monetary policies as well as the everyday trading levels on exchanges. 
  • However, believers in Bitcoin’s stock-to-flow model are predicting a bullish run after the halving. This esoteric economic model tracks a commodity’s existing supply against how quickly new stock enters the market. “This hypothesis … is that scarcity, as measured by S2F, directly drives value,” PlanB reportedly said. Decrypt’s Colin Harper takes a look at the theory.
  • Forbes also weighs in on the debate, with contributor Luke Fitzpatrick predicting “a new class of crypto millionaires may emerge.” (Forbes)

Messagin’ Mnuchin 
In a letter addressed to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, 11 members of Congress, suggest blockchain and other distributed technologies could boost liquidity and help distribute federal stimuli during the COVID-19 crisis. “Such steps will ensure both that America retains its technological advantage and that relief is delivered quickly to the small businesses and individuals who need it most,” the letter reads. 

See also: Bitcoin Halving, Explained

Silver Linings?
Silvergate Bank added 46 crypto customers in the first quarter and saw fee income and deposits increase from its existing client base. COVID-19-led market volatility is cited by the bank as cause for an increase in deposits, according to the company’s earnings report.

Nasdaq Taps Corda
The Nasdaq stock exchange has partnered with R3 to offer a platform for digital asset marketplaces on the Corda blockchain. As of today, capital markets participants can use Corda to support the issuance, trading, settlement and custody of digital assets.

Skew’s founding team, Emmanuel Goh and Tim Noat. (Credit: Skew)

Skew & Kyte
Skew, a crypto derivatives data aggregator, has launched a trade execution platform and raised $5 million to help build out its new brokerage services. Partnering with UK-based Kyte Broking, skewTrading is focused on attracting institutional investors.

Stop, Stop. Stuttgart To Be Kidding Me
The bitcoin exchange arm of Boerse Stuttgart has added a “stop order” trading function to help customers deal with volatile market conditions. Stop orders help people automate aspects of their trading strategy and, rather than having to watch the market 24/7, let them establish points at which they want to buy or sell. 

Lnurl Something New Everyday
A new standard known as Lnurl is attempting to improve the user experience of Lightning, Bitcoin’s scaling layer. Lnurl aims to simplify Lightning transactions to just a click or a QR scan. Zap, Phoenix, Breez, Blue Wallet and Wallet of Satoshi, as well as dozens of other apps, have quietly integrated the standard.

Surveilling Drones
The U.S. Department of Transportation has issued a report advocating for blockchain to track the use of commercial drones. The distributed technology can be “used by stakeholders in the commercial drone industry, as it can ensure security and provide for identity management as well as providing a supporting role in aircraft traffic management, [drones] conflict management and flight authorization,” according to the report.

  • The New York Department of Financial Services has appointed Richard Weber, former chief of the Criminal Investigation Division of the Internal Revenue Service, as its new general counsel. Weber led the IRS division during the agency’s investigation into the Silk Road darkweb marketplace.
  • Brian Quintenz, commissioner of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, will not seek renomination and plans to stay on until his successor is appointed, following a five-year term. A long-time crypto advocate, Quintenz is noted for sponsoring the Technology Advisory Committee (TAC) and advocating for self regulation in the crypto industry. 

Taking Flight
Alexander Pack, managing partner of Dragonfly Capital Partners, has stepped down from the crypto investment firm, citing “a difference in vision on the direction of the firm.” Dragonfly launched in 2018 with $100 million under management and the mission to bridge investments between the U.S. and Asia. 

Riding on Bison
Decentralized finance protocol Keep Network has tapped Bison Trails, a Libra Association member, to provide non-custodial staking services for tBTC, an ERC-20 representation of bitcoin deposits. “Infrastructure is important because if your node is being asked to sign a message or it’s holding onto BTC as one of the shards, you ideally don’t ever want to be offline,” Bison Trails protocol specialist Viktor Bunin told CoinDesk in an interview.

Staking Ahead
There are now at least 61,980 addresses with a balance in Kyber Network Crystal, an Ethereum token that fuels operations on the currency’s native exchange. This all-time-high comes ahead of a planned upgrade that would allow token holders to earn staking income on the decentralized Kyber Network.

Series A
Taurus Group secured over €10 million in a Series A funding round led by Arab Bank. The firm now looks to expand its digital asset business and open offices in London, Paris and Frankfurt.


Ripple Exec Deplatformed
YouTube has suspended Ripple CTO David Schwartz’s channel. This follows quickly on Ripple’s lawsuit, which claims the streaming giant failed to redress XRP scams and Ripple impersonators in videos. “Weirdly, YouTube just decided to suspend my channel (SJoelKatz) for impersonation. I wonder who they think I was impersonating,” Schwartz tweeted.

Little Guys Go Big
The number of network addresses holding at least 0.1 BTC (~$770) has continued to hit all-time highs, climbing to 3,010,784 on Monday, according to data from Glassnode. Beginning in February, exchanges have seen an increase in small purchases of bitcoin. 

Coinbase of DAOs
The OpenLaw LAO, or “Limited Liability Autonomous Organization,” opened Tuesday for investors looking to compliantly earn returns on the next wave of Ethereum-based projects. Initially capped at 100 accredited investors, the LAO will pursue venture capital deals via a smart contract that automatically pays out returns. If Coinbase legitimized the model first put forth by Mt. Gox, Wright said, the LAO could do the same for DAOs, said OpenLaw CEO Aaron Wright.

Crunchbase for Crypto
Everest, an Ethereum-based social registry for tracking crypto projects, launched yesterday with an index of 100 decentralized projects. The service is predicted to become a “crypto Crunchbase,” according to Coinfund founder Jake Brukhman. (Decrypt)

CoinDesk Live: Lockdown Edition

CoinDesk Live: Lockdown Edition continues its popular twice-weekly virtual chats with Consensus speakers via Zoom and Twitter, giving you a preview of what’s to come at Consensus: Distributed, our first fully virtual – and fully free – big-tent conference May 11-15.

Register to join our fifth session Thursday, April 30, with speaker Hudson Jameson from the Ethereum Foundation to discuss private transactions, client improvements and dealing with FUD, hosted by Consensus organizer Nolan Bauerle. Zoom participants can ask questions directly to our guests.

CoinDesk Live: Lockdown Edition continues its popular twice-weekly virtual chats with Consensus speakers via Zoom and Twitter, giving you a preview of what’s to come at Consensus: Distributed, our first fully virtual – and fully free – big-tent conference May 11-15.

Register to join our fifth session Thursday, April 30, with speaker Hudson Jameson from the Ethereum Foundation to discuss private transactions, client improvements and dealing with FUD, hosted by Consensus organizer Nolan Bauerle. Zoom participants can ask questions directly to our guests. 

Market Intel

Bitcoin’s price jumped above $8,100 on Wednesday, making an April gain for the fifth consecutive year all but certain, predicts CoinDesk’s Omkar Godbole. The cryptocurrency is now up 26% on a month-to-date basis. “While a price pullback in the next 24 hours cannot be ruled out, a drop all the way back to levels under $6,428 looks unlikely, as technical studies are biased bullish and the speculative buzz surrounding the upcoming mining reward halving is likely to limit any losses,” he said. 

Cambridge Survey
CoinDesk is working with the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance (CCAF), an independent academic research institute at the University of Cambridge, on its 3rd Global Crypto Asset Benchmarking Study. To gather up-to-date information, the CCAF invites crypto companies to participate by completing one of the following surveys by May 1:

The resulting report will help us all get a better idea of where growth is happening, what it looks like, what barriers are in the way and what the short-term outlook holds. If you have any questions or feedback, you can contact the CCAF directly at  [email protected].

CoinDesk Podcast Network

Geopolitical Crisis
Blockchain consultant Maya Zehavi joins The Breakdown to discuss how the COVID-19 health crisis is also a geopolitical event. On the docket is a review of how contact tracing apps are a battleground for mass surveillance, the mechanics of government intervention and the rise of localism. 

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#Crypto101: OpenLaw Launches First ‘Legal DAO’ for Distributed VC Investments

OpenLaw Launches First ‘Legal DAO’ for Distributed VC Investments

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, OpenLaw CEO Aaron Wright said in an interview. 

“People can begin to explore what it’s like to band together online and collect capital and make investments and operate purely digital,” Wright said.

While the project is open to international participation, only accredited investors in the U.S. can join in.

First announced in September at ETHBerlin, the LAO starts with an LLC wrapper registered in the U.S. state of Delaware. 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. For Wright and OpenLaw, the takeaway lies in how the market moves money out of investors’ hands and into promising cryptocurrency projects.

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.

Technically speaking, the LAO will host multiple projects, which will sign over tokenized shares of stocks in exchange for investors’ ETH. Only accredited investors in the U.S. can take part in the LAO. The original DAO – which was drained 3.6 million ETH in an infamous 2016 hack – faced legal scrutiny due to concerns it constituted an unregulated securities offering.

Shares can be purchased in what Wright called “blocks” of 1 percent of 120 ETH. Up to 9 percent of shares can be purchased worth 1,080 ETH, according to U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regulations. 

Wright said the firm will spin up many LAOs depending on demand with each one eyeing $2.5 million in funding.

Compliance with regulation is one way to fix perception issues with DAOs. The capital pooling method soured after the 2016 hack, which then spurred a major fork in the Ethereum ecosystem, leading to the creation of both ethereum and ethereum classic (ETC).

One interesting variation in these capital projects versus traditional finance is the ability to “Rage Quit,” or pull out funds whenever an investor chooses. Wright said the governance tool (first pioneered by MolochDAO) gives users a chance to control their investments from beginning to end.

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The leader in blockchain news, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups.


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Bitcoin Price Soars as Jerome Powell Confirms Crypto’s Threat To U.S. Dollar


  • The price of bitcoin jumped on Tuesday after Jerome Powell stressed that the Fed is investing a significant amount into digital currency developments.
  • Adding fuel to the fire, Powell also acknowledged how quickly crypto could become a systemic risk to the USD.
  • China’s “Belt and Road” initiative is expected to roll out a digital currency very soon, and the Fed Char was clear that the U.S. was doing its best to keep pace.

An otherwise dull testimony from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell got very interesting for bitcoin, as BTC/USD spiked 4% to $10,200.

Cryptocurrency markets soared after Congressman Bill Foster raised concerns about the need to keep pace with China’s digital currency ambitions to which Powell responded that the Fed has a “lot of projects” underway.

Bitcoin Surges After Powell Acknowledges Fed Is Working Hard On Crypto

It is well documented that China has tremendous ambitions in the realm of digital currency. Congressman Foster’s concerns about Beijing’s ambitions centers on the risks posed to the U.S. dollar’s status as global reserve currency.

Bitcoin went vertical midday after the Jerome Powell indicated the Fed was making a serious effort to keep up with China’s digital currency development. Source- Yahoo Finance

Bitcoin investors took this as a positive development, as BTC/USD soared on Powell’s acknowledgment that the Fed would “keep the fire lit” regarding blockchain development.

Despite the impressive response from cryptocurrency markets, the Fed chair was still guarded about the implementation of a digital dollar due to privacy concerns:

The idea of having a ledger where you record everyone’s payments isn’t particularly attractive in the U.S.; it’s not a problem in China.

Fed Chair: Dollar Could Face Systemic Risk From Digital Currency

Despite this, Powell was clear that the theoretical implementation of Facebook’s Libra had been a game-changer, and that his institution now understands the importance of making “quick progress in this area.”

It’s quite obvious why bitcoin would rally so aggressively in this instance, as the most powerful man in finance acknowledged the speed and scale in which digital currency could disrupt the dollar. This is a definite change of tone from the FOMC’s historical opinion on this issue.

China’s Belt and Road Initiative Expected To Utilize Crypto

An additional positive from this exchange is the stark reminder that crypto is about to become a mainstream technology for the world’s second-largest economy. China is planning to use blockchain in its “belt and road” initiative.

Powell has been quite open about bitcoin in the past, even acknowledging that it is a store of value like gold. Today he further demonstrated the high level of intellectual investment that the Federal Reserve is making into cryptocurrency.

Bitcoin To Benefit From Better Institutional Understanding

It’s probably good news for bitcoin that the world’s largest central bank has a better understanding of blockchain technology.


Bitcoin has been on a tremendous run since December and looks to have firmly retaken the $10,000 handle this week. With the upcoming halving in the spring, things are looking increasingly stable, particularly after Powell’s comments today.

This article was edited by Sam Bourgi.


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#Crypto101: Bitcoin Halving 2020: The ‘Arms Race’ for Miner Efficiency Intensifies

Bitcoin Halving 2020: The ‘Arms Race’ for Miner Efficiency Intensifies

In lead-up to the next bitcoin halving event in May, some bitcoin miners are looking at leveraging what Moore and Carlson describe as “surplus energy” to make operations even more cost-effective.

In this episode of the Bitcoin Halving 2020: Miner Perspective podcast series, we take a trip down memory lane back to the early days of bitcoin when miners first began competing for network rewards. 

“I think the introduction of [Application Specific Integrated Circuits] was a watershed moment in terms of changing the way bitcoin was mined and secured,” said Galen Moore, senior research analyst for CoinDesk. “If you know that a more powerful machine will get you more reward, make your business more profitable, you’ll be looking for the next more powerful machine all the time, knowing that your competitors are doing the same.”

Dave Carlson, who participated as a bitcoin miner in the arms race for more advanced cryptocurrency mining machinery back in 2012 and 2013, admitted that at the time “the Chinese engineering firms and Chinese producers of this technology far surpassed our ability and speed to get something to market.” 

However, there was a turning point in 2015 and 2016 when mining operations in China started to subside and coalesce in other regions parts of the world such as North America. More efficient power production, Carlson said, was the primary motivation for this shift. 

Leading up to the next bitcoin halving event in May, some bitcoin miners are looking at leveraging what Moore and Carlson describe as “surplus energy” to make operations even more cost-effective. Surplus energy is the run-off, or waste fuel, released by natural gas and hydro power plants that can be repurposed to mine bitcoin for zero cost. This could be a major technological breakthrough for mining if proven to work at a large scale, Carlson said. 

For more information about the bitcoin halving, download the free CoinDesk Research explainer report, which features over 30 different charts and additional commentary from mining industry experts.


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