Japan’s SBI Holdings Invests in Local Crypto Exchange Applicant FXCoin

Japanese crypto startup FXCoin revealed it has completed a third-party allotment of shares with financial services giant SBI Holdings. The development, which contributes to FXCoin’s aim of launching a crypto exchange business in the country, was reported by Cointelegraph Japan on April 15.

FXCoin, which currently focuses on providing market information for investors, was founded in December 2017 by Tomoo Onishi — the former head of foreign exchange sales at Deutsche Bank. Alongside Onishi, who now serves as FXCoin’s CEO, the startup also reportedly counts Nomura, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial and HSBC veterans in its workforce.

As Cointelegraph Japan further reports, FXCoin sealed second tier membership within the Japan Virtual Currency Exchange Association (JVCEA) this February. The membership tier is designed for businesses who are seeking to apply for an official crypto exchange operating license from the country’s financial watchdog, the Financial Services Association.

As previously reported, JVCEA is a self-regulatory crypto exchange association that formed in March 2018 in a bid to establish industry-wide investor safety standards. The organization was formally granted self-regulatory status by the FSA in October 2018.

An operating license has been mandatory for all crypto exchanges operating within Japan since the amendment of the country’s Payment Services Act back in April 2017. However, the FSA toughened requirements for applicants throughout 2018, in the wake of last January’s industry-record-breaking $532 million hack of crypto exchange Coincheck.

As previously reported, the past couple of years have seen SBI pursue multiple ventures in the crypto sector, including its own exchange — Vctrade — alongside a series of investments in businesses developing crypto infrastructure and services.

In October 2018, SBI and Ripple’s XRP-powered payments app, MoneyTap, went live for account holders at selected Japanese banks. The app has the eventual ambition of including a consortium of 61 institutions, representing over 80 percent of all of Japan’s banking assets, in its service. Thirteen local banks joined as shareholders in the project in late March.

Market Update and Ripple XRP Price Analysis: April 15, 2019

Market Update and Ripple XRP Price Analysis: April 15, 2019

The total crypto market cap increased by $5 billion since April 12 and now stands at $176.6. The top ten cryptocurrencies are all in the green for the 24-hour period with ether (ETH), bitcoin cash (BCH), and litecoin (LTC) up by 9.1 percent and 8.6 percent respectively. At the time of writing, bitcoin (BTC) is trading at $5,197, ether at $169, and Ripple’s XRP remains at $0.33

Bitcoin was trading in the narrow price corridor between $5,160 to $5,050 during the weekend of April 13 to 14.  The most popular cryptocurrency peaked at $5,313 on April 8 and since then has been on a downtrend. Bulls are still able to hold above the psychological level of $5,000 for the time being. The BTC/USD pair was flat for the seven-day period.

Ether is also on its way down since it reached a yearly high of $181 on April 8. It dropped to $165 on April 13 after four consecutive days of losses. The ETH/USD was down 3.4 percent for the last seven days.

XRP/USD

The Ripple company token dropped down to $0.329 on April 11 after losing approximately 2.3 percent of its value.

The entire crypto market was in red on that day, but the XRP/USD pair was hit particularly hard during the session. It moved below the 38.20 percent Fibonacci retracement level and was dangerously close to the important support at $0.32.

On April 12, the coin declined further and formed a second straight red candle on the daily chart at $0.327. XRP continued to trade as low as $0.318 intraday.

Xpring, also known as Ripple’s blockchain incubator, and Bain Capital Ventures announced a new financial partnership on April 10. The two companies reportedly invested in the blockchain fintech venture capital firm Robot Ventures. As per the official blog post by the fund’s manager Robert Leshner, the new entity “provides capital, extensive whiteboarding, and product strategy to founders with a passion to reinvent finance.”

On March 12, Xpring announced a new $100 million fund created in collaboration with gaming blockchain startup Forte.

On the negative side, one of the biggest financial institutions in Japan announced it will stop using the RippleNet-based application MoneyTap. Resona, which is the fifth largest bank in the country, did not provide any clear explanation on why it decided to withdraw from the project.

MoneyTap, which was officially launched in October 2018 by the financial group SBI Holdings, was created in collaboration with Ripple and uses its blockchain solution xCurrent to perform instant money transfers. On March 28, 13 more local banks joined the initiative but Resona is the first to leave the project since its inception.

The XRP remained relatively flat on the first day of the weekend, even though it was trading in the wide are between $0.323 and $0.339. It moved to $0.328 and continued the trend on April 14 by closing the session one step higher, at $0.331. The coin was 8.3 percent down on the weekly corridor.

XRP Price Movement Chart

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Bitmex CEO: ‘You’ll Be Able to Use Bitcoin and Purchase the S&P 500’

Bitmex CEO, Arthur Hayes, revealed that his platform wants to launch Bitcoin-backed short term bonds. He also wants to allow buying S&P 500 and Nasdaq QQQ indices with BTC, particularly by people in emerging markets.


‘You’ll Be Able to Use Bitcoin and Purchase the S&P 500’

Speaking in an interview with Luke Martin on his Venture Coinist podcast, BitMEX CEO Arthur Hayes revealed that he’s looking to launch bitcoin backed short term bonds and other BTC-backed financial products. Hayes said:

I want to create a future where the highest quality exchanges and miners… issue short-term Bitcoin bonds to the ecosystem.

“So, let’s say you want to buy some 30-day paper. Why can’t you buy a BitMEX 30-day zero-coupon bond that yields some rate of interest that reflects the market’s determination of our credit risk?” he added. 

The Bitmex CEO explained that in the next few months, his team will be working out the specificiations for this new type of bond.

What’s more, Hayes says that Bitmex has funded a new startup that will allow people to invest in S&P 500 and popular Nasdaq stocks using bitcoin without ‘Bitcoin-USD risk.” 

…Hopefully, by summer of this year, you’ll be able to use Bitcoin and purchase the S&P 500 and Nasdaq QQQ indices… and essentially, you won’t have Bitcoin-USD risk. You’ll send bitcoin. They’ll FX it into dollars, and allow you to buy a swap. And when you want to leave, you’ll sell the swap, get back dollars, and then you can get back your bitcoin.

According to Hayes, this bitcoin-backed product would open up “the most liquid and notable indices in the world” to emerging markets, in particular.

“So, this is hopefully going to allow people in emerging markets…to use their Bitcoin to access traditional equity indices,” he explained. 

Why Bitcoin is Key for Bitmex

Hayes also discussed why Bitcoin technology is so important to BitMEX and why it’s the main reason for his company’s success

gbtc wall street bitcoin

For one, Bitmex only takes bitcoin as collateral. This allows it to onboard a customer within 10 minutes, says Hayes. This is because Bitmex can process a deposit or withdrawal with no human intervention and without involvement of third-parties such as a bank. 

Bitcoin also allows Bitmex to be more financially flexible, such as being able to offer 100X perpetual swaps. The Hong-Kong based platform launched its ETH-USD perpetual swaps in August 2018.

Hayes says that in just two months, it became the most liquid ETH-USD trading instrument.

“From a speculator’s point of view, this is great,” he said. “I have Bitcoin and I want to speculate on Ether vs. USD price, and I want to get my money back in Bitcoin.”

Given the success of its perpetual swaps, Bitmex is now looking to launch it for other altcoins (vs. the USD) as well in the future, said Hayes.

The CEO also revealed that users can expect a bitcoin options platform that could launch “maybe in 12-18 months.”

Finally, Hayes stated that Bitmex has no plans to get on the  in-house token bandwagon like Binance (BNB) or Huobi as it would create more problems than it would solve.

It’s complicated in terms of what is the legality around that token: is it a security? […] We have more than enough issues to deal with […] than creating a whole set of issues because we issued our own token for money that we don’t need and new problems that we don’t need to have.

Will Bitmex’s Bitcoin-backed products open institutional grade trading to illiquid markets? Share your thoughts below!


Images via Shutterstock, Twitter

PR: Bitcoin Depot Adds 30 Bitcoin ATMs in Chicago With Zero Fees

PR: Bitcoin Depot Adds 30 Bitcoin ATMs in Chicago With Zero Fees

This is a paid press release, which contains forward looking statements, and should be treated as advertising or promotional material. Bitcoin.com is not responsible for or liable for any content, accuracy or quality within the press release.

As cryptocurrencies continue to influence the financial service industry and provide users with endless possibilities, bitcoin ATMs have proven to play a critical role in the cryptocurrency adoption process. Bitcoin ATMs convert fiat currency into digital cash, ensuring a seamless transaction experience.

Bitcoin ATMs, which are also called BTMs or bitcoin kiosks, are among the fastest growing industries around the world due to the increased demand for physical cryptocurrency transactions. In the past year, the numbers of bitcoin ATMs have more than doubled from 2,000 to over 4,000 bitcoin ATMs. The expansions of bitcoin ATMs around the world has been attributed to the increasing acceptance and use of bitcoin for financial transactions. Bitcoin ATMs have made cryptocurrency become a popular form of payment in certain parts of the United States.

Although several companies own and operate bitcoin ATMs, Bitcoin Depot is currently the largest multi-cryptocurrency ATM operator in the world by leaping from third place to number one in less than a year. Bitcoin Depot contributed to the growth of cyrptocurrency ATMs by installing over forty percent of all bitcoin ATMs in the United States and accounted for one-third of all Bitcoin ATM installations around the world in the month of January alone. The previous year experienced an increase in the number of Bitcoin ATMs around the country and further growth has been predicted by market experts, despite fluctuating bitcoin prices.

Bitcoin Depot kicked off 2019 by expanding to seven new states; Illinois, Arizona, Nevada, Virginia, Georgia, Florida and California. The company installed a total of fifty bitcoin ATMs since January, increasing the total number of Bitcoin DepotATMs installed from 155 to over 200 in about a month according to CoinATMradar competitor chart.

As Bitcoin Depot saw the increased demand for bitcoin ATMs in Chicago, the company decided to expand by installing over thirty Bitcoin ATMs in Chicago, Illinois. This is the largest expansion for Bitcoin Depot and the bitcoin ATM industry up to date. Bitcoin Depot also leads this campaign by providing ZERO transactions fees for using bitcoin ATMs located in this region to increase bitcoin adoption, making it the cheapest way to acquire bitcoin in the world.

However, questions still remain. Will the installation of new bitcoin ATMs in Chicago drive a higher bitcoin adoption rate in the state than elsewhere? Will the access to bitcoin ATMs increase the acceptance to the new cryptocurrencies? The CEO of Bitcoin Depot, Brandon Mintz, says his company is “serving a very niche customer base” and believes this will increase bitcoin adoption. The strategic placement of the Bitcoin Depot ATMs displays the effort of the company to integrate cryptocurrencies into mainstream locations, positively impacting the adoption of bitcoin.

Bitcoin Depot believes bitcoin ATMs are crucial for the acceptance and adoption of bitcoin as it is the vital connection between the underbanked communities to the crypto world. The company believes the new installations of bitcoin ATMs and zero transaction fees will continue to increase bitcoin adoption in the near future and thereby create a larger market for expansion. Bitcoin Depot wants to continue to be at the forefront of the bitcoin ATM industry, providing more people with access to bitcoin ATMs to convert fiat currencies into cryptocurrencies in the future.

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This is a paid press release. Readers should do their own due diligence before taking any actions related to the promoted company or any of its affiliates or services. Bitcoin.com is not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in the press release.

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Crypto Roundup – CryptoKitties/Pokémon Go Combination Is China’s Most Popular Mobile Game & Kin Partners With Social Entertainment App MadLipz

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Crypto Roundup – CryptoKitties/Pokémon Go Combination Is China’s Most Popular Mobile Game & Kin Partners With Social Entertainment App MadLipz

crypto-roundup-15-april-2019

MVIS CryptoCompare Top 100 IndexThe MVIS CryptoCompare Top 100 Index has raised 0.36% in the last 24 hours to 1,731.77

Eight coins from the top 10 coins by 24-hour volume posted positive changes, ranging from 0.86% to 7.64%. CryptoKitties, Pokémon Go combination becomes China’s most popular mobile gameKin partners with social entertainment app MadLipz, bring crypto to 40 million users.

Top 10

CryptoCompare Top 10 Coins

Eight coins from the top 10 coins by 24-hour volume posted positive changes, ranging from 0.86% to 7.64%. Bitcoin Cash ($299.2) represented a gain of 7.64%. Ethereum Classic ($6.48) price raised 3.85, followed by ZCash ($70.37) that showed a positive change of 2.90%. XRP ($0.32) revealed a gain of 0.86% and 2.90%, while Binance Coin ($19.58) price has dropped 0.94%.

BTC

Bitcoin BTC/USD CryptoCompare Chart

At the time of writing, the Bitcoin price is sitting at $5,167 representing a loss of 2.02% in the last 24 hours. More than 1.7 Bln worth of BTC were exchanged in the BTC/USD market representing a 8.05% share of the global daily volume. The BTC/USDT pair represents a 80.06% share.

EOS

EOS EOS/USD CryptoCompare Chart

The EOS price is sitting at $5.57 representing a positive change of 4.11% in the last 24 hours. More than $15 Mln worth of EOS were exchanged in the EOS/USD market, which represents a 1.21% share. The EOS/USDT pair represents a 32.18% share.

ETH

Ethereum ETH/USD CryptoCompare Chart

The Ethereum price posted a positive change of 2.61% over the past 24 hours and is currently sitting at $168, with over $50 Mln worth of Ether exchanged in the past 24 hours on the ETH/USD pair, which has a 4.50% market share of the daily trading volume. The ETH/USDT pair represents a 52.15% share.

LTC

Litecoin LTC/USD CryptoCompare Chart

The LTC price has raised 7.12% over the past 24 hours and is currently sitting at $83, with more than $30 Mln worth of LTC exchanged in the past 24 hours on the LTC/USD pair, which has a 3.54% market share of the global daily trading volume. The biggest LTC pair is the LTC/BTC pair, that represents a 52.93% share.

Tether (USDT) Pumps Out Over 400M Coins from Treasury

Third party services may advertise Spread bets and CFDs on Cryptovest, which are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 81% of retail investor accounts lose money when spread betting or trading CFDs. You should consider whether you understand how spread bets or CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

IMF and World Bank Launch Educational Blockchain Token

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank have launched a crypto token called “Learning Coin” to better understand how blockchain technology works.

The two institutions said that the coin would have no monetary value and would not be made openly available, the Financial Times reported Saturday. To support the token, the IMF and the World Bank have also launched a private blockchain network.

The project is aimed to build “a strong knowledge base” around blockchain technology among staff at the organizations.

The IMF said in the report:

“The development of crypto-assets and distributed ledger technology is evolving rapidly, as is the amount of information (both neutral and vested) surrounding it. This is forcing central banks, regulators and financial institutions to recognize a growing knowledge gap between the legislators, policymakers, economists and the technology.”

Also launched as part of the token project is a Learning Coin app, allowing users to share content like blogs, research, videos and presentations. Staff at the organizations will also be able to “earn” coins for achieving certain educational milestones.

While the token has no real-world value, the developers are reportedly testing how staff can redeem it for rewards.

The news comes five months after IMF chief Christine Lagarde encouraged the exploration of central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) in the light of decreasing demand for cash and rising preference for digital money. And, in 2017, the then-president of the World Bank, Jim Yong Kim, said that the technology is “something everyone is excited about,” while he was more cautious about cryptocurrencies.

Last summer, the World Bank moved to use blockchain for a bond settlement that raised $81 million. The bond’s investors included CommBank, QBE Insurance, NSW Treasury Corporation and Northern Trust, among others.

IMF image via Shutterstock 

South Korea: Bithumb Exchange Operator Gains $200 Million From Japanese Investment Fund

The parent company of major South Korean cryptocurrency exchange Bithumb has received $200 million in funding from Japan’s ST Blockchain Fund, the latter confirmed in a press release shared with Cointelegraph Japan on April 15.

The cash, which forms part of a Series A funding round, will allow Blockchain Exchange Alliance (BXA) to expand the international side of Bithumb, which is already one of South Korea’s largest exchanges. New trading pairs will also appear, the press release notes.

ST Blockchain Fund is based in Japan, but features participation from investors throughout the world, including Europe and the United States.

“The fund shared our vision of creating a global digital exchange platform that can efficiently transfer value across borders with lower costs, which was the key rationale behind this investment decision,” BXA stated in the press release.

The move comes in the wake of upheaval at Bithumb, which suffered losses of around $13 million late last month in what executives suggested was an insider operation to defraud the company.

The company subsequently released results of a third-party public audit, reassuring investors their funds were in suitably secure storage.

Prior to that, in 2018, a much larger hack had seen Bithumb lose what initially appeared to be around $30 million, the figure subsequently being reduced to $17 million.

As Cointelegraph reported last week, the company’s annual losses for 2018 totalled almost $180 million.

ST thus removes any doubt about its faith in the local market with the investment, as increasing Bitcoin (BTC) prices spark fresh interest from South Korea consumers.

Last week, the so-called “Kimchi Premium” — a surcharge for Bitcoin in fiat terms on South Korean exchanges — reportedly reappeared after an extended absence.

BitMEX CEO Arthur Hayes Reveals Plans to Open Crypto Options Platform

Arthur Hayes, co-founder and CEO of major crypto derivatives exchange BitMEX, has revealed that the firm is hoping to open a cryptocurrency options platform in the medium term. Hayes made his remarks during an interview on the Venture Coinist podcast on April 12.

Hayes — a former equities trader for Citigroup — indicated a rough timeline for the prospective launch, stating that:

“We hope to possibly have our own options platform in maybe 12 to 18 months.”

Hayes hinted at aspirations to innovate options listing, saying “we have somebody working with some university professors on a complicated new way of doing this.”

Options are a type of financial derivative that give a buyer the right — but not the obligation — to buy or sell an asset at an agreed price in future. They are designed to serve as strategies for hedging, protection or speculation in different market conditions.

BitMEX was founded in 2014 and currently sees close to $1.1 billion in daily traded volume, making it one of the world’s largest crypto exchanges by reported volume. As a derivatives-only platform it is, however, not included in CoinMarketCap’s price and volume averages for Bitcoin (BTC).

As previously reported, Hayes has recently predicted that Bitcoin will get back to the $10,000 price point this year, anticipating the market recovery will begin in early Q4 2019.

Alongside its trading platform, BitMEX also conducts research into the crypto industry, in January releasing a report on the impact of the 2018 bear market on ICO projects’ token holding valuations.

That same month, the exchange refuted media reports that had alleged it was closing United States and Québec residents’ accounts due to a regulatory crackdown, claiming they were inaccurate and sensationalist.

Is Bitcoin About to Move Again as Crypto Markets Awaken?

Weekends are usually pretty quiet for crypto markets. Unlike forex, digital assets can be traded around the clock and at weekends but old habits appear to die hard for traders. As we enter a new week there are big expectations for Bitcoin which could well make a move.

Mixed Outlook from Analysts

There has been virtually no movement on crypto markets for the past three days. Total market capitalization has hovered just above $170 billion which is $15 billion down from its 2019 highs last week. A push back to those highs could see markets reaching $200 billion again before the month is over however if Bitcoin fails to break key resistance levels, the consolidation could continue.

Analysts are generally mixed on short term price direction and some foresee a movement this week as technical indicators align again;

Others are not so optimistic and expect another big dump, as ‘The Crypto Dog’ tweeted yesterday;

“I could be completely wrong and get stuck sitting by myself on the sidelines, but it’s my opinion we see another wipe out on $ALTS and $BTC before we start trending onto new highs. Sitting mostly in fiat going into this week, waiting for opportunities to present themselves.”

A ‘broken price floor’ is what one trader described Bitcoin as having reached with heavy resistance at $5,800. There is expectation here for BTC to consolidate between $4,700 and $5,500 for a several weeks or even months before a larger breakout occurs.

Daily RSI is sitting right on 70 which is just on the edge of overbought territory. The ‘golden cross’ could also come into play as the two daily moving averages converge and are still on a path to intersect later this month.

Bitcoin prices had started to wake up again at the time of writing with a move from yesterday’s low of $5,060 up to touch $5,200 again for the first time since Thursday. Volume, which had dropped to single figures, is now back over $10 billion as Asian traders kick start the markets this Monday morning.

On the week BTC has fallen back almost 2 percent but since last week’s big dump back below $5,000 it has recovered around 4.5% to current levels indicating that the bulls are still in control for the time being.

Bitcoin prices 7 days. Coinmarketcap.com

The crypto twitter sphere has been preoccupied with the ‘guess who Satoshi is’ saga that has unfolded in recent days which has served as a temporary distraction for lack of market movement. This week has started with positive momentum but the leading assets at the moment are altcoins, primarily Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin. Each has added 8 to 9 percent on the day and are the top performing high cap coins at the time of writing.

Image from Shutterstock