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Regulations Roundup: Chinese Mining Farms Undergo Tax Inspection, Michigan Bans Campaign Donations in Cryptocurrency

November 13, 2018 |

Regulations Roundup: Chinese Mining Farms Undergo Tax Inspection, Michigan Bans Campaign Donations in Cryptocurrency

In recent regulatory news, we report on an authorized mining company in China that has had its operations temporarily halted for tax inspection and implementation of real-name registration processes. We also look at the Michigan Secretary of State’s ban on crypto-based political donations, as well as the recent certification of X8’s stablecoin for Shariah compliance. In addition, we focus on the operator of a fraudulent cryptocurrency scheme who has been punished for misappropriating $ 601,000 in BTC and LTC from his employer.

Also Read: President of Marshall Islands Challenged Over Cryptocurrency Plan

Chinese Mining Farms Suspended

Regulations Roundup: Chinese Mining Farms Undergo Tax Inspection, Michigan Bans Campaign Donations in CryptocurrencyAccording to a statement published by an unidentified cryptocurrency mining company, Chinese state agencies have ordered the suspension of its mining farms in southwestern Guizhou Province and the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region for tax inspections and to implement real-name registration processes.

“According to the needs of the public security department’s network information security work, in the future, our company will implement higher standards for the company’s business real-name system according to the work needs of the public security department,” the anonymous company said. “For customers with the latest standard real-name systems, the data center will have to suspend reloading, restarting, moving in and out, etc.”

Michigan Secretary of State Says ‘No’ to Crypto

Regulations Roundup: Chinese Mining Farms Undergo Tax Inspection, Michigan Bans Campaign Donations in CryptocurrencyIn a letter addressed to William Baker, a recent candidate for the Michigan state legislature, the office of the Michigan Secretary of State has formally barred cryptocurrency donations to political campaigns.

Baker, who lost his bid in the state’s Nov. 6 election, had previously sought clarification on how the value of donations in the form of cryptocurrencies should be recorded. He also asked whether virtual currency exchanges would qualify as valid secondary depositories for the storage of crypto assets.

Baker asserted that “it is self-evident that digital currency is a valid way to receive political contributions.” However, the state secretary’s office responded by stating that “the law does not authorize such a vehicle, and the department has never determined that digital currencies are a valid way to receive political contributions.”

The letter also highlighted concerns pertaining to the price volatility of cryptocurrencies. “As with stocks and commodities, bitcoin’s worth fluctuates daily,” the office said. “There is no way to ascertain the precise monetary value of one bitcoin on any particular day.”

The Michigan Secretary of State raised additional objections to the use of cryptocurrencies as donations. In the letter, the office added that state legislation also “requires that committees deposit funds in an account in a financial institution, which is not an option for cryptocurrency.”

X8 Stablecoin Certified as Shariah Compliant

Regulations Roundup: Chinese Mining Farms Undergo Tax Inspection, Michigan Bans Campaign Donations in CryptocurrencyX8C, the stablecoin issued by Swiss fintech company X8 AG, has obtained a certificate showing that its stablecoin is compliant with Shariah law. It received the certification from the Shariyah Review Bureau, an Islamic advisory firm licensed by the Central Bank of Bahrain.

Francesca Greco, director and co-founder of X8, announced that the company will soon establish a regional office in the Middle East. Greco also indicated that X8 plans to launch a Shariah-compliant virtual currency exchange, adding that the company has already met with representatives of exchanges based in Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Bahrain.

“The Gulf region is a really good place for financial technology companies, because they all want to become hubs for fintech,” Greco said.

CFTC Fines Crypto Scheme Operator Over $ 1.14M

Regulations Roundup: Chinese Mining Farms Undergo Tax Inspection, Michigan Bans Campaign Donations in CryptocurrencyThe U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) has ordered Joseph Kim, a resident of Phoenix, to pay more than $ 1.14 million for operating a fraudulent cryptocurrency scheme. Kim was also sentenced to 15 months in prison on “related criminal charges” filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. According to the court order, Kim pleaded guilty to “orchestrating a fraudulent Bitcoin and Litecoin scheme that led to more than $ 1 million in losses.”

Kim was found to have misappropriated $ 601,000 worth of BTC and LTC from his employer — described as “a Chicago-based proprietary trading firm” — before attempting to fabricate security-related issues to obfuscate the misappropriation of funds. Despite this, the company fired Kim in November 2017 after the theft of the cryptocurrency was discovered.

Between December 2017 and March 2018, Kim then sought to repay his former employer through profits that he had generated through the operation of a cryptocurrency trading scheme. According to the CFTC, he “falsely told customers that he would invest their funds in a low-risk virtual currency arbitrage strategy, when, in fact, Kim made high-risk, directional bets on the movement of virtual currencies that resulted in Kim losing all $ 545,000 of his customers’ funds.”

Do you think Chinese miners will report the temporary suspension of their operations for tax inspection and real-name registration? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock


At Bitcoin.com there’s a bunch of free helpful services. For instance, have you seen our Tools page? You can even lookup the exchange rate for a transaction in the past. Or calculate the value of your current holdings. Or create a paper wallet. And much more.

The post Regulations Roundup: Chinese Mining Farms Undergo Tax Inspection, Michigan Bans Campaign Donations in Cryptocurrency appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Exchanges Roundup: Revolut CEO Discusses Investment, Etoro Starts Rollout of Wallets

November 12, 2018 |

Exchanges Roundup: Revolut CEO Discusses Investment, Binance Launches Research Unit

In recent exchange news, the chief executive officer of Revolut has expressed doubt regarding the institutional appetite for cryptocurrency exposure, Binance has launched a new research division, and Etoro has begun the gradual rollout of its wallet for Android and iOS users.

Also Read: Korea’s Upbit to Launch Crypto Exchanges in Thailand and Indonesia

Revolut CEO Skeptical on Institutional Investment

Exchanges Roundup: Revolut CEO Discusses Investment, Etoro Starts Rollout of New WalletsNikolay Storonsky, the chief executive officer of fintech unicorn Revolut, recently expressed skepticism regarding the rhetoric circulating throughout the cryptosphere that suggests institutional investors are eager to gain exposure to bitcoin.

“There is no interest from big institutional investors so far,” Storonsky said at the recent Web Summit 2018 in Lisbon. “Unless these big institutional investors and hedge funds move heavily into the crypto world I just don’t think banks will move because they simply try to make money from their clients.”

Despite his statements, Storonsky concluded that “fintech will be very big in crypto for the foreseeable future.” He added: “I just don’t think banks will catch up.”

Binance Announces Research Division

Exchanges Roundup: Revolut CEO Discusses Investment, Etoro Starts Rollout of New WalletsBinance, the leading cryptocurrency exchange by trade volume, has announced the launch of a new in-house analysis division, Binance Research. The company said that the new division will “increase transparency and (the) accuracy of information in the cryptocurrency and blockchain space.” It added that it aims to “shine a spotlight on quality blockchain projects.”

As of this writing, Binance Research has published a report providing analysis on Loom Network, as well as another one on Gochain. According to the company’s website, a report looking at Pundi X will also be published “soon.”

Etoro Starts Rollout of Android and iOS Wallets

Exchanges Roundup: Revolut CEO Discusses Investment, Etoro Starts Rollout of New WalletsSocial trading platform Etoro has started launching its cryptocurrency wallet for Android and iOS users. According to a press release, the wallet is being rolled out in different countries in phases in order to “ensure the best customer experience for clients.”

The wallet is currently available for download via Google Play and Apple’s App Store. It will only support BCH, ETH, LTC and BTC. Etoro plans to eventually add support for other cryptocurrencies in the future.

“The eToro wallet today is just the beginning and we will be adding a whole host of additional functionality which will include supporting additional crypto and fiat tokens, crypto to crypto conversion, the ability to deposit fiat, payment in-store and more,” said Yoni Assia, the chief executive officer of Etoro.

Do you think that the hype regarding the institutional appetite for crypto is real? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Wikipedia, Etoro


At Bitcoin.com there’s a bunch of free helpful services. For instance, have you seen our Tools page? You can even lookup the exchange rate for a transaction in the past. Or calculate the value of your current holdings. Or create a paper wallet. And much more.

The post Exchanges Roundup: Revolut CEO Discusses Investment, Etoro Starts Rollout of Wallets appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Exchanges Roundup: Binance ‘Very Healthy’ Despite Volume Drop, Gate.io Breached

November 11, 2018 |

In cryptocurrency exchange news, Binance’s CEO has described the exchange as “very healthy” despite the dramatic reduction in trade volume compared with early 2018, and Gate.io was recently breached via a malicious script added to web analytics provider Statcounter. Also, a South Korean ICO raising money for a crypto exchange desk appears to have pulled a $ 2.73 million exit scam.

Also Read: Korean Exchange Terminating After Regulator Crackdown

Binance Unphased by Dwindling Volume

Exchanges Roundup: Binance 'Very Healthy' Despite Volume Drop, Gate.io BreachedSpeaking to CNBC, CZ, the chief executive officer of the largest exchange by volume, Binance, recently discussed the declining trade volume posted throughout the current cryptocurrency bear market.

Despite volume dropping by roughly 50 percent month-over-month, CZ emphasized that although volume had reduced by “90 percent” since January, “we are trading huge volume … compared to one year or two years ago,” adding: “Business is still ok .. we are still profitable … we are still a very healthy business.”

Regarding the onboarding of new traders, CZ stated: “To be honest … it’s not as fast as in January or February when it was … a very crazy period … We are still signing up a steady amount of new users every day, from what we are seeing it’s very healthy.”

Gate.io Breached via Analytics Site

Exchanges Roundup: Binance 'Very Healthy' Despite Volume Drop, Gate.io BreachedCryptocurrency exchange Gate.io was recently breached via web analytics platform Statcounter. According to Alexa, Gatecoin.io is ranked as the 26,251st most popular website globally, and is ranked 8,308 in China. In the last 24 hours, Gate.io has a total trade volume of approximately 3,484 BTC.

Attackers modified a script hosted by Statcounter, adding a piece of malicious code in the middle of the script to decrease the likelihood of detection. The code appears to have been designed to target Gate.io specifically, as it contains “myaccount/withdraw/BTC”, with reports asserting that Gate.io was the only cryptocurrency exchange live at the time of the attack that hosted a valid page containing ‘myaccount/withdraw/BTC’ in its URL.

Statcounter removed the malicious script once it was notified of the breach. Several hours beforehand, Gate.io ceased using Statcounter’s analytics services. The number of BTC stolen from Gate.io users is not known.

Pure Bit Pulls Exit Scam

Exchanges Roundup: Binance 'Very Healthy' Despite Volume Drop, Gate.io BreachedSouth Korean cryptocurrency company Pure Bit appears to have conducted an exit scam which has seen it walk away with $ 2.73 million in customer funds.

The company recently raised 13,000 ETH through an initial coin offering to create a ‘mining coin’ and a cryptocurrency exchange desk. All of the funds raised have since been transferred from the company’s wallet, with reports asserting that the company also took down its website and social media platforms several hours after emptying its wallet. Pure Bit’s website now shows a blank page.

Do you think that the current trade volume can sustain the operations of the hundreds of active cryptocurrency exchanges? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock


At Bitcoin.com there’s a bunch of free helpful services. For instance, have you seen our Tools page? You can even lookup the exchange rate for a transaction in the past. Or calculate the value of your current holdings. Or create a paper wallet. And much more.

The post Exchanges Roundup: Binance ‘Very Healthy’ Despite Volume Drop, Gate.io Breached appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Regulations Roundup: CFTC to Embrace DLT, SIM Swapping Task Force

November 11, 2018 |

In recent regulatory news, the chairman of the United States Commodity Futures Trading Commission has predicted that distributed ledger technology will soon be adopted by the CFTC to monitor the financial markets, and a supervisor of the REACT Task Force has emphasized the priority placed on policing SIM swapping in Northern California. In addition, Germany’s financial watchdog has ordered a cessation of UK-based Finatex’s unauthorized cross-border proprietary trading via its Crypto-Capitals trading platform.

Also Read: Bitmain Files ‘John Doe’ Lawsuit in the State of Washington 

CFTC Chairman Seeks AI-Monitoring of Cryptocurrency Markets

Regulations Roundup: CFTC to Embrace DLT, SIM Swapping Task ForceThe chairman of the United States CFTC, Christopher Giancarlo, recently discussed his expectation that emerging technological innovations, especially distributed ledger technology (DLT) and artificial intelligence (AI), will redefine the financial markets and the processes adopted by the regulators seeking to monitor such.

During his speech, titled “Quantitative Regulation: Effective Market Regulation in a Digital Era,” Giancarlo asserted that “we begin to see a world where the majority of standard tasks are managed by machines,” emphasizing the need for regulators to keeps pace with technological innovation in order to effectively oversee the sector.

The CFTC discussed the impact that the greater role of technology will have upon the way that regulators harness human labor, stating that becoming a “quantitative regulator” will “not mean replacing human judgment and market intelligence; it means reinforcing it,” adding that agency staff will be freed from “repetitive and low-value tasks” and will instead “focus on high-value activities that require their expert judgment and domain knowledge.”

Giancarlo also shared his future expectation that “rulebooks are digitized, compliance is increasingly automated or built into business operations through smart contracts, and regulatory reporting is satisfied through true-time DLT networks.”

US Police to Crack Down on SIM Swapping

Regulations Roundup: CFTC to Embrace DLT, SIM Swapping Task ForceSamy Tarazi, sergeant of the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office and supervisor of the REACT Task Force, recently discussed the increased priority placed on cracking down on ‘SIM swapping’ by US police.

Tarazi stated that although the REACT Task Force was initially formed to police a variety of cyber crimes, cracking down on SIM swapping has become the primary of the group, adding that many of the individuals targeted by SIM swappers are based in Northern California.

“It’s probably REACT’s highest priority at the moment, Tazari said, adding that “SIM swapping is actively happening to someone probably even as we speak right now.”

Emphasizing the challenges associated with policing SIM swapping, Tarazi stated: “We’re talking about kids aged mainly between 19 and 22 being able to steal millions of dollars in cryptocurrencies. I mean, if someone gets robbed of $ 100,000 that’s a huge case, but we’re now dealing with someone who buys a 99 cent SIM card off eBay, plugs it into a cheap burner phone, makes a call and steals millions of dollars. That’s pretty remarkable.”

German Financial Watchdog Flags Unauthorized Operations of Finatex

Regulations Roundup: CFTC to Embrace DLT, SIM Swapping Task ForceGermany’s independent federal financial regulator, the Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (Bafin), has ordered the partial cessation of the operations of United Kingdom-based crypto company Finatex Ltd.

According to Bafin’s website, the regulator ordered Finatex to cease cross-border proprietary trading – which was facilitated through Finatex’s trading platform crypto-capitals.com.

Bafin asserted that the company was “conducting proprietary trading within the meaning of section 1 (1a) sentence 2 no. 4 (c) of the German Banking Act (Kreditwesengesetz – KWG) as a service for others in the Federal Republic of Germany,” but “does not hold the authorization required under section 32 (1) of the KWG.”

Do you think that DLT will soon be utilized by regulators to monitor the cryptocurrency and financial markets? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock


At Bitcoin.com there’s a bunch of free helpful services. For instance, have you seen our Tools page? You can even lookup the exchange rate for a transaction in the past. Or calculate the value of your current holdings. Or create a paper wallet. And much more.

The post Regulations Roundup: CFTC to Embrace DLT, SIM Swapping Task Force appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Deep Web Roundup: Market Vendors Monitored, Darknet Benefits Revealed

November 10, 2018 |

Deep Web Roundup: Monitoring Market Vendors, Darknet Benefits Revealed

The internet layer that’s accessible via the Tor browser was instrumental in the growth of Bitcoin in its early years. Since then, darknet marketplaces have proliferated, but have come to play a lesser role in the development of cryptocurrencies. In this roundup we consider two recent research papers that provide an insight into features, benefits, and hazards of the deep web.

Also read: Growing Number of Crypto Companies Operating From Belarus

Monitoring Vendor Migration to Dream Market

In the wake of Operation Bayonet, a law enforcement exercise that shut down the Hansa and Alphabay markets, many vendors flocked to Dream instead. Dream is the longest standing darknet market (DNM), and saw an influx of new vendors and buyers in the wake of 2017’s Operation Bayonet. A recent research paper has tracked the movement of sellers to Dream, and monitored subsequent changes in their behavior.

Deep Web Roundup: Market Vendors Monitored, Darknet Benefits Revealed
The origin of new Dream Market vendors

The researchers from the Delft University of Technology tracked vendors who used the same PGP key to verify their Dream accounts as they had on Alphabay and Hansa. They found that Alphabay brought in 50 percent of new vendors, while just 2 percent of Dream signups arrived from Hansa and 8 percent joined from both DNMs.

As Deep Dot Web reports, “66% of the users migrating to Dream Market did not take any noticeable evasive measures. However, 20% of users changed their PGP-keys, 8% changed their usernames, and 6% did both.” For now, Dream Market appears to be thriving: the platform, which accepts BTC and BCH, boasts 98.35 percent uptime and has been active since late 2013.

Why Use the Deep Web?

Deep Web Roundup: Market Vendors Monitored, Darknet Benefits RevealedIn a week in which Craig Wright has attracted criticism for, among other things, asserting that Bitcoin is not anarchist, anti-state, or permissionless, it’s worth considering why people use tools such as the deep web. Many bitcoiners believe darknet marketplaces to be a legitimate use for cryptocurrency, and strongly defend the right of individuals to transact on DNMs.

A new paper from an Indian researcher has outlined some of the pros and cons of using the deep web. In addition to highlighting the darker side of the deep web, the paper identifies benefits it provides that include anonymity and identity concealment, freedom of expression, bypassing blocked sites, knowledge and awareness.

It concludes: “The deep web will continue to perplex and fascinate everyone who uses the internet … the dark web is a vast portion of cyberspace, and offers invaluable resources that should not be overlooked by serious searchers. [It] provides an easy way to connect with people of parallel interests, and to facilitate further interaction.”

What other benefits do you think the deep web provides? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.


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The post Deep Web Roundup: Market Vendors Monitored, Darknet Benefits Revealed appeared first on Bitcoin News.

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Exchanges Roundup: First UAE-Based Exchange, LXDX to Launch Security Token Offering

November 7, 2018 |

Exchanges Roundup: First UAE-Based Exchange, Lxdx to Conduct Security Token Offering

A partnership between Al Zarooni Group, Crypto Bulls and Gulf Coin Gold has fostered the launch of the first cryptocurrency exchange registered in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). In other news, LXDX has announced that it plans to conduct a $ 5.7 million fundraising round via a security token offering (STO), and BTCC has announced indefinite cessation of its mining pool.

Also Read: Venezuelan Banks Start Using the Petro to Denominate Customer Balances

Crypto Bulls Exchange Launches First Registered Cryptocurrency Platform in UAE

Exchanges Roundup: First UAE-Based Exchange, LXDX to Launch Security Token OfferingA partnership between Al Zarooni Group, Crypto Bulls, and Gulf Coin Gold has yielded the launch of the first cryptocurrency exchange to be registered in the United Arab Emirates, Crypto Bulls Exchange.

Suhail Al Zarooni, the Chairman of Al Zarooni Foundation described the launch of the exchange as a “milestone for getting global investments opportunity from all over the Globe in UAE.”

Shasha Gupta, the chief executive officer and founder of Crypto Bulls Exchange, stated that “Crypto Bulls will be the first exchange providing AED trading pairs and traders would be able to convert their crypto assets into AED.”

LXDX Plans $ 5.7 Million Security Token Offering

Exchanges Roundup: First UAE-Based Exchange, LXDX to Launch Security Token OfferingLXDX, a cryptocurrency exchange co-founded by former Spacex engineer Joshua Greenwald, has announced that it will issue tokenized securities representing ownership in the exchange.

The company plans to issue five million tokens priced at 1 EUR each that will collectively represent an ownership share in the platform. The tokens will also entitle holders to 10 percent of the exchange’s quarterly adjusted gross revenue.

Will Roman, the chief operating officer and co-founder of LXDX, stated that the STO would be the only token offering that the firm plans to conduct in the “foreseeable future.”

Joshua Greenwald, LXDX’s chief executive officer stated his expectation that “The million token future is just around the corner,” adding: “As blockchain technology proliferates, we expect to see increased tokenization of tangible assets like real estate, commodities, and even art.”

BTCC to Cease Mining Pool Operations Indefinitely From Nov. 30

Exchanges Roundup: First UAE-Based Exchange, LXDX to Launch Security Token OfferingBTCC has announced that after more than four years of operating a mining pool, it will shut down all of its mining servers on Nov. 15 and “cease operations indefinitely” from Nov. 30.

BTCC requests that miners direct their hashing power elsewhere by Nov. 15 and “bind [their] mining revenue address” before Nov. 20, adding that the pool “will release the profits of all miners in time.”

Do you think more companies in the cryptocurrency sector will seek to issue stock via security token offerings? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!


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Exchanges Roundup: Devere Launches Crypto Fund, Binance Uganda Claims 40,000 Users

November 4, 2018 |

Exchanges Roundup: Devere Crypto Funds, Binance Uganda Claims 40,000 Users

Devere Group has announced the launch of a digital asset fund and Binance Uganda claims to have onboarded 40,000 users during its first week of operating. In other news, Grayscale’s quarterly report has estimated that 70 percent of the investments it received during Q3 came from institutions.

Also Read: Regulations Roundup: Ebang IPO Challenged by Probe, Plattsburgh Passes Mining Guidelines

Devere Launches Digital Asset Hedge Funds

Exchanges Roundup: Devere Launches Crypto Fund, Binance Uganda Claims 40,000 UsersUK-based financial consultancy Devere Group recently launched Devere Digital Asset Funds in partnership with Dubai-based Dalma Capital Management Ltd.

Nigel Green, the founder and chief executive officer of Devere Group, described cryptocurrencies as “now undeniably” comprising a “part of mainstream finance,” adding that mass adoption is “on the horizon.”

Green stated that the Devere fund will invest in a “diversified portfolio of digital assets via algorithmic trading” on cryptocurrency exchange and over-the-counter markets, adding that Devere will seek to take advantage of arbitrage opportunities present across multiple cryptocurrency trading platforms.

Zachary Cefaratti, the chief executive officer of Dalma Capital, stated: “Crypto Asset Markets abound with durable inefficiencies – creating opportunities … that we have not seen in conventional markets for decades.” Cefaratti added: “Arbitrage opportunities abound – the prices of the top 25 crypto assets vary across over 400 liquidity venues.”

Binance Uganda Claims to Have Signed Up 40,000 Users in First Week

Exchanges Roundup: Devere Launches Crypto Fund, Binance Uganda Claims 40,000 UsersBinance has claimed that its Ugandan subsidiary has signed up 40,000 users since launching one week ago, Coindesk reports. Recent estimates suggest that only 26 percent of Ugandan households have access to basic financial services.

Wei Zhou, the chief financial officer of Binance, indicated that the company will soon expand into Kenya, Nigeria, or South Africa next, stating: “Uganda is our pivot to reach out to other African markets.”

Grayscale Reports 70% of Investments Came From Institutions

Exchanges Roundup: Devere Launches Crypto Fund, Binance Uganda Claims 40,000 UsersAccording to Grayscale Investments’ report for the third quarter of 2018, the company saw a total of $ 329.5 million invested into its products during the year, 59 percent of which came from “institutional investors.” It is estimated that Grayscale takes in an average of $ 8.4 million each week, $ 5.5 million of which is invested into the Bitcoin Investment Trust.

The report states that 70 percent of funds invested into the company came from institutional investors, with Grayscale receiving an average of $ 6.2 million each week during Q3, $ 4.5 million of which went into the Bitcoin Investment Trust. Grayscale saw a total of $ 81.1 million invested in its products during Q3.

Despite the increased share of institutional investment seen during the third quarter, the report notes that “the dollar-value invested [by institutions] was lower than in the two previous quarters.”

Do you think that more mainstream financial institutions will soon launch cryptocurrency funds? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Devere Group.


At Bitcoin.com there’s a bunch of free helpful services. For instance, have you seen our Tools page? You can even lookup the exchange rate for a transaction in the past. Or calculate the value of your current holdings. Or create a paper wallet. And much more.

The post Exchanges Roundup: Devere Launches Crypto Fund, Binance Uganda Claims 40,000 Users appeared first on Bitcoin News.

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ICO Roundup: SEC Annual Report, Israeli Offerings Raise $600 Million, Rapper Sued

November 3, 2018 |

The annual report of the SEC’s Division of Enforcement has detailed the actions taken against initial coin offerings during the preceding financial year. Also, a report published by One Alpha estimates that Israeli ICOs have raised more than $ 600 million during 2018, and 25 investors have filed a lawsuit accusing rapper T.I. and his business partner for allegedly operating a “pump and dump” through their Flik ICO.

Also Read: Brazil’s Tax Authority Goes After Cryptocurrency Profits

SEC Details Action Taken Against ICOs During Financial Year

ICO Roundup: SEC Annual Report, Israeli Offerings Raise $  600 Million, Rapper SuedThe U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Division of Enforcement has published its annual report, which includes a summary of the action taking by the regulator against ICOs over the course of the last financial year.

The SEC states that “Given the explosion of ICOs over the last year,” it has sought to pursue “cases that deliver broad messages and have market impact beyond their own four corners.” In 2018, the SEC “brought 20 standalone cases, including those cases involving ICOs and digital assets.”

The SEC notes that while many of said cases “have involved allegations of fraud,” the Division of Enforcement also has also taken action “to ensure compliance with the registration requirements of the federal securities laws.” In the past year, the SEC has opened “dozens” of investigations involving ICOs and cryptocurrency, many of which are ongoing as of this writing.

The report adds that the joint statement published by the SEC Division of Enforcement and the SEC Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations urging caution with regard to the celebrity promotion of ICOs “brought an almost immediate end to such promotions.”

Israeli ICOs Raise $ 600 Million During 2018

ICO Roundup: SEC Annual Report, Israeli Offerings Raise $  600 Million, Rapper Suedreport conducted by cryptocurrency research firm One Alpha has found that cryptocurrency startups based in Israel have generated more than $ 600 million through ICOs during the first three quarters of 2018. Israeli ICOs also raised $ 586 million throughout the entirety of 2017 from less than 20 offerings.

One Alpha’s research was informed by surveying 140 active companies from Israel’s distributed ledger technology section. The report estimates that said companies have generated a combined $ 1.3 billion in investments since 2017, of which “More than … 88% of the funds are ICO-related.”

The chief executive officer of One Alpha, Yaniv Feldman, highlighted that “Israelis are less than 0.1 percent of [the] global population while making 3 to 5 percent of [the] global ICO fundraising” total.

Two Dozen Investors Sue Rapper T.I. Over Flik ICO “Pump and Dump”

ICO Roundup: SEC Annual Report, Israeli Offerings Raise $  600 Million, Rapper SuedThe Blast and TMZ claim to have accessed documents evidencing that rapper T.I. and his business partner are facing a lawsuit accusing them of operating a pump and dump scheme through their ICO. Reports state that the lawsuit has been launched by 25 individuals who collectively invested more than $ 1.3 million in exchange for “now worthless securities called Flik Tokens.”

The plaintiffs assert that T.I. and Ryan Felton used “social media, celebrity endorsements, and well-known industry experts to create the false impression that Flik Tokens were a valuable liquid investment.” The investors also allege that Felton “created fake online posts on behalf of Mark Cuban in order to manipulate the value of Flik Tokens,” and that the pair fraudulently announced that Kevin Hart was going to become the face of the company.

The group accuses T.I. and Felton of then dumping on the markets, and are seeking $ 5 million in damages for securities fraud.

Do you think the peak of celebrity ICO endorsements is behind us? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Wikipedia


At Bitcoin.com there’s a bunch of free helpful services. For instance, have you seen our Tools page? You can even lookup the exchange rate for a transaction in the past. Or calculate the value of your current holdings. Or create a paper wallet. And much more.

The post ICO Roundup: SEC Annual Report, Israeli Offerings Raise $ 600 Million, Rapper Sued appeared first on Bitcoin News.

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Regulations Roundup: Ebang IPO Challenged by Probe, Plattsburgh Passes Mining Guidelines

November 3, 2018 |

Regulations Roundup: Ebang IPO Challenged by Criminal Probe, Plattsburgh Passes New Mining Guidelines

In recent regulatory news, a criminal investigation may prevent Ebang from conducting an initial public offering, Plattsburgh has passed new regulations governing commercial mining operations, and Ron Paul has endorsed precious metals and cryptocurrencies as a viable alternative to fiat currency.

Also Read: Another Token Project Launches on the Bitcoin Cash Network

Criminal Accusations Pose Hurdle to Ebang IPO

Regulations Roundup: Ebang IPO Challenged by Probe, Plattsburgh Passes Mining GuidelinesReports are alleging that major mining manufacturer Ebang Communications has become embroiled in a criminal investigation that may pose a challenge to the company’s initial public offering intentions.

The investigation pertains to a transaction valued at 524.9 million Chinese yuan (approximately $ 76.18 million) between Ebang and wealth management company Yindou.com. Between March and April, it is alleged that Ebang transferred 380 million yuan (roughly $ 55.15 million) back to Yindou, leaving 144.9 million yuan (approximately $ 21 million).

According to Sina Finance, Ebang is accused of receiving the remaining funds in exchange for potentially laundering money, inflating sales revenue, or collecting a fictitious sales contract in order to bolster the company’s chances at securing its attempted public listing on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange (Hkex).

According to a rough translation, Sina asserts that investors “submitted questioning material to Hkex to prevent Ebang International from listing in Hong Kong” on Oct. 12.

Plattsburgh Council Passes New Regulations for Commercial Miners

Regulations Roundup: Ebang IPO Challenged by Probe, Plattsburgh Passes Mining GuidelinesThe Plattsburgh Common Council has passed regulations mandating new noise and fire safety requirements for commercial mining facilities. The legislation was unanimously passed last week.

According to Sun Community News, the new guidelines state that “no mining facility can produce noise above 90 decibels that can be heard further than 25 feet from the exterior of the building,” and mandate that miners apply for special use permits.

The new rules will apply to miners operating in the City of Plattsburgh, New York in 11 months time – once the current 18-month moratorium on commercial mining in Plattsburgh has been lifted.

Ron Paul Advocates Adoption of Precious Metals and Cryptocurrencies

Regulations Roundup: Ebang IPO Challenged by Probe, Plattsburgh Passes Mining GuidelinesRetired American politician Ron Paul recently published an article describing the Federal Reserve as “crazy.”

The article asserts that “government-created fiat currency” is “anything but stable,” arguing that “Central banks constantly increase and decrease the money supply in an attempt to control the economy by controlling the interest rates.” Paul argues that such policies “create an illusion of prosperity,” however when “reality catches up… there is a recession or worse, leading the Fed to start the whole boom-and-bust cycle over again.”

Paul asserts that “market money” is a viable alternative to fiat money, advocating for the passing of the “Audit the Fed bill,” which would allow “people to use alternative currencies, and exempting all transactions in precious metals and cryptocurrencies from capital gains taxes and other taxes.”

Do you think Ebang’s initial public offering will be halted? Share your thoughts in the comments section below! 


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, ebang.cn


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Exchanges Roundup: Ironx Raises $22.3M in Private Sale, IDCM to Target STOs

October 29, 2018 |

In this edition of Exchanges Roundup, we focus on Ironx, which has just wrapped up a $ 22.3 million private sale. We also look at International Digital Currency Markets’ plans to provide solutions for security token offerings, as well as some of the new exchanges opening in Estonia.

Also Read: The Daily: Outcry Over Censoring of Gab, Chinese State Media Plugs Bitcoin Book

UK Minister Reaps Windfall
After Ironx Resignation

Exchanges Roundup: Ironx Raises $  22.3M in Private Sale, IDCM to Target STOsIronx, a cryptocurrency exchange that Cyprus-based Ironfx plans to launch in December, sold 67.6 million IRX tokens after raising $ 22.3 million during its recent private sale. The tokens were sold for just shy of $ 0.33 each.

Stephen Hammond, a former vice chairman of the U.K. Conservative Party and current member of the U.K. Treasury Committee, recently resigned from Ironx after working for the company for just four days. Based on the pricing for the planned exchange’s private sale, the 50,000 IRX tokens that Hammond received as remuneration would be valued at approximately $ 16,500.

Ironfx will open the Ironx exchange in partnership with Emurgohk Group, the Hong Kong-based company behind Cardano. ADA will be the base currency on Ironx.

IDCM Reveals Plan to Become
‘Cryptocurrency Investment Bank’

Exchanges Roundup: Ironx Raises $  22.3M in Private Sale, IDCM to Target STOsAndrew Wong, a managing partner at International Digital Currency Markets, recently spoke to the South China Morning Post about the company’s long-term plans, which include becoming a full-fledged crypto investment bank.

“Part of that process would be to provide a solution for a security token offering, where a pool of investors is screened and cleared to invest,” Wong said.

Estonian Licenses Attract Exchanges

Exchanges Roundup: Ironx Raises $  22.3M in Private Sale, IDCM to Target STOsEstonia’s licenses for exchange and wallet service providers are continuing to attract virtual currency companies, with cryptocurrency exchange XRP United launching operations in the country last week. The exchange uses XRP as its base currency and presently supports BCH/XRP, ETH/XRP, and BTC/XRP. It also intends to support XMR/XRP once a Monero wallet has been implemented on its platform.

Crowdwiz is another company that has recently secured a license to provide wallet and exchange services in Estonia. It currently aims to launch a beta product for its Wizexchange before 2019.

Do you think more and more exchanges will use cryptocurrencies other than BTC as a base currency? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, stephenhammond.net


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