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How would you feel about being a patient at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital ? For some patients, having the Facebook founder’s name plastered on the hospital is worrisome—and over the weekend, nurses at the hospital staged a protest to push for Zuck’s name to be removed, ABC 7…
St. Louis Federal Reserve President, James Bullard, was recently interviewed at this year’s Consensus conference in New York City. That a top US economic policy maker was in attendance is victory enough; however, he was asked his opinions on cryptocurrency going forward by CNBC Global Markets Reporter Seema Mody. He explained he found the phenomenon “interesting,” and how more cryptos being issued all time necessitates keeping an “eye” on them. Mr. Bullard also compared the use case for cryptocurrencies with that of the dollar, and whether the former posed a threat to the latter.
Federal Reserve President Attends Crypto Conference
Federal Reserve President, James Bullard, gave a presentation at this year’s giant Consensus conference in New York City. Reread that sentence. A sitting Fed policy maker thought it important enough to attend a crypto soiree. That’s news enough. But more importantly, President Bullard gave a presentation on the government’s current thinking about cryptocurrency.
In his talk, he acknowledged crypto is facilitating trade that might otherwise not occur. He couldn’t help himself by mentioning illegal activity (and we all know fiat currencies are never used in illegal activity), but he did describe decentralized money’s lean toward frictionless transactions (especially with regard to costs/fees) as being an advancement.
The Fed policy maker reserved the bulk of his comments, both in the presentation and during a post-game interview with CNBC, to talk about the problems in crypto as he sees them. One issue is simply the number of currencies being offered. The 12th St. Louis Fed President feels this over complicates matters, especially with regard to exchange rates and volatility.
Asked if cryptocurrencies pose a threat to the dollar, Mr. Bullard, 56, answered he didn’t think so. Global Markets Reporter Seema Mody, who is covering Consensus for CNBC this year, quickly followed up with a “but it could be?” The Fed President was noncommittal, choosing instead to shrug and give the pat answer about no one really knowing what the future holds. He emphasized how since its creation the US dollar has vanquished nearly all currency competition due to its being backed by the world’s strongest economy. It’s abundantly clear, Mr. Bullard suggested, people want the dollar and not crypto … at least at the moment.
Fed Coin on the Horizon?
Ms. Mody pressed Mr. Bullard about his presence at the conference, asking if this was a hint of things to come with regard to a future coin birthed by the Fed, a Fed Coin? Interestingly he didn’t dismiss the idea outwardly, and instead said they’d for sure look at the possibility, as the Fed does with many different types of financial innovations. He also assured there wasn’t any plan being hatched at the moment, no imminent Fed Coin coming. Mr. Bullard also wondered aloud what the gains would be by creating such a coin. He smiled subtly, assuring he’s keeping an “open mind.”
His comments seem to be less strident than statements issued by the St. Louis Fed on the very subject not even one month ago. “The St. Louis Federal Reserve has published an essay critically evaluating the notion of cryptocurrencies that are issued by central banks,” we detailed. “The article is highly dismissive in presenting what it describes as ‘the non-case for central bank cryptocurrencies,’ concluding that ‘a central bank will not issue cryptocurrencies in the sense of a truly decentralized and permissionless asset that allows users to remain anonymous.’”
A rather curious fact about the St. Louis Fed, one of twelve jurisdictions in the Federal Reserve system (the 8th district serves Indiana, Kentucky, Missouri, Illinois, Tennessee, Louisiana, Mississippi, Arkansas), is how it has recently become very chatty about crypto. As these pages reported back at the beginning of this year, “Aleksander Berentsen and Fabian Schär of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis have recently published an article that emphasizes many of the benefits of cryptocurrencies. The article states that ‘cryptoassets are well suited to become an important asset class,’ in addition to offering praise regarding a number of the major applications associated with cryptocurrencies.”
Do you think a Fed president attending a crypto conference is meaningful? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
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A senior North Korean official said Pyongyang isn’t interested in a summit with the U.S. focused solely on denuclearization and accused Washington of trying to “impose on our dignified state the destiny of Libya or Iraq.”
WSJ.com: What’s News Asia
As thousands of passenger vehicles roll off the assembly line this week destined for the U.S. market, each of them will be equipped with backup cameras — the result of a long-awaited federal rule that went into effect Tuesday.
The technology, which has already become standard in many vehicles,…
Sales in the U.S. from Japan’s big three auto maker were down in April, with Nissan suffering a double-digit drop, as U.S. consumers prefer SUVs to sedans and pickups.
WSJ.com: US Business
On Tuesday, reports regarding the notorious Facebook investor and venture capitalist Peter Thiel and his Founders Fund was revealed. According to sources familiar with the matter, Thiel’s fund has made an investment in the startup Tagomi, a firm that plans to execute cryptocurrency buy and sell orders as a brokerage service dealing with institutional investors and family offices.
Peter Thiel’s Founders Fund Helps Inject $ 15.5 Million in Capital Into the Cryptocurrency Startup Tagomi Systems
The Peter Thiel Founders Fund is betting that institutional investors want to get in on bitcoin and cryptocurrency markets. Thiel’s venture-capital firm maintains the biggest portfolios in Silicon Valley and just recently it made an early-stage investment in Tagomi Systems Inc. The Wall Street Journal reports that Tagomi is a startup that aims to provide electronic-trading guidance to cryptocurrency investors. Tagomi is a startup based out of New York, and the company just filed a Form D notice with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on March 15.
The report on May 1 details that the Founders Fund was involved in a funding round for Tagomi that resulted in $ 15.5Mn USD. The publication did not detail whether or not the Founders Fund led the seed round, and details on Tagomi’s business model is relatively unknown. However, the recently filed Form D with the SEC shows that the Founders Fund managing partner, Napoleon Ta, is named as one of Tagomi’s directors. According to reports Tagomi plans to facilitate high-speed electronic brokerage services with cryptocurrencies to institutional investors and family financial management services alongside over-the-counter (OTC) operations.
Long on Cryptocurrencies: Tagomi Systems is the Founders Fund’s Fourth Cryptocurrency Venture
The Facebook and Paypal investor Thiel is a big believer in bitcoin and cryptocurrencies. Earlier this year the Founders Fund revealed it had allegedly “amassed hundreds of millions of dollars” of bitcoin since mid-2017. Just recently during an interview with the Economic Club of New York, Thiel stated he was ‘long’ on bitcoin and called it the internet’s gold.
I would be long bitcoin, and neutral to skeptical of just about everything else at this point with a few possible exceptions — There will be one online equivalent to gold, and the one you’d bet on would be the biggest.
Tagomi Systems is not the only cryptocurrency project the Founders Fund has dipped its venture capital paws into. Thiel’s fund has also recently invested in the tokenization platform Harbor. Additionally, Thiel’s organization has injected capital into the funds Polychain Capital, and Metastable Capital which are primarily focused on cryptocurrency investment vehicles as well. Tagomi’s Form D filing with the SEC shows the firm has declined to disclose its revenue range, and the securities offered by the startup are disclosed as “equity.”
What do you think about Peter Thiel’s Founders Fund throwing more money at cryptocurrency ventures? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments below.
Images via Pixabay, AP, and CNN.
Do you like to look at cryptocurrency market capitalizations and see how your favorite cryptocurrency is doing? Check out Satoshi Pulse, it aggregates data for the top 500 cryptocurrencies including prices, market valuations, and charts.
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The Japanese financial regulator has confirmed that so far eight companies have expressed the intention to withdraw their applications to operate cryptocurrency exchanges. Meanwhile, about 100 more companies are seeking to enter the market.
FSA Confirms Eight Want Out
The Japanese Financial Services Agency (FSA) held a study group to discuss the state of cryptocurrencies in Japan last week.
Among observers of the meeting were representatives from the Bank of Japan, the Ministry of Justice, the Consumer Affairs Agency, and the Ministry of Finance. In addition, Taizen Okuyama, President of the newly formed self-regulatory organization and of foreign exchange platform provider Money Partners Group, was also present.
The agency confirmed that eight “deemed dealers” intend to withdraw their applications to operate cryptocurrency exchanges. Under the Revised Fund Settlement law, deemed dealers are allowed to operate crypto exchanges while their applications are being reviewed by the agency. The FSA wrote:
Eight deemed virtual currency exchange companies announce the intention to withdraw registration applications…One company confirms that it does not fall under the virtual currency exchange industry as a result of grasping the actual situation in detail.
Seven of them will completely withdraw their applications – Tokyo Gateway, Mr. Exchange, Raimu, Bitexpress, Bit Station, Campfire, and Payward Japan which operates Kraken exchange. In addition, Debit will also withdraw its application as a deemed dealer as it does not fall under this classification, the FSA revealed.
Furthermore, the agency confirmed that approximately 100 companies have declared their intention to enter the crypto space, stating that “Various companies intend to newly enter [the crypto space] (About 100 companies).”
The financial watchdog also detailed the number of administrative penalties that have been issued so far. Five crypto exchanges have received business suspension orders while seven business improvement orders, excluding Coincheck. A total of 14 orders have been issued: one on January 29, seven on March 8, three on April 6, one on April 11, one on April 13, and one on April 25. Coincheck and FSHO received two orders.
Among the 100 companies wanting to enter the space was Cyberagent which operates the Internet TV station “Abema TV” and the Internet advertisement business, which boasts the largest market share in Japan.
Last year, the company established a subsidiary called Cyberagent Bitcoin and planned to open a crypto exchange in the spring. However, president and CEO Susumu Fujita said last week that in light of the Coincheck hack, “There are risks that we should not undertake when compared with other projects,” Itmedia quoted him. He elaborated:
Entry [into the crypto space] is slow in the first place. The examination by the Financial Services Agency is becoming severe.
The CEO added that the company will develop its own system to reduce risks so its entry into the crypto space will be delayed. According to the news outlet, Cyberagent is, however, considering issuing its own cryptocurrency.
What do you think of the turnover of crypto exchanges in Japan? Let us know in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Nikkei, and Cyberagent.
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Some Brits may be humming a tune this summer that President Trump isn’t too crazy about, the Evening Standard reports. A campaign to make Green Day’s song “American Idiot” top the UK charts before Trump’s July 13 visit is gaining traction, with its Facebook page surging past 12,000 followers…
Vanilla Ice’s ex wants to prevent a fire sale in the wake of their impending divorce — which apparently has already gotten underway with him unloading their jet skis. VI’s estranged wifey, Laura Van Winkle, filed legal docs asking a judge to stop…
Many people often wonder if there are any development APIs and toolkits created for the bitcoin cash network so they can help develop some neat platforms on the BCH chain. Right now there are three useful resources for developers who want to build with the bitcoin cash blockchain. The bitcoin cash community is a very open atmosphere with more than six development teams working on the protocol, and in just a few short months there has been a slew of neat apps released using the BCH chain. One particular project created by the former Bitcoin Classic developer, Tom Zander, wants to progress the growth of BCH development in an accelerated fashion.
Flowee the Easy to Use Development Hub and API for Bitcoin Cash
Flowee is a hub that can talk to the BCH network by utilizing an easy to understand application programming interface (API). Basically, Zander is building an axis that allows for communication between bitcoin cash data and applications.
“In the hub, we process all those bitcoin data structures and as such, this is the lowest level of the stack where end-user bitcoin applications make the top-level of the stack,” explains the introduction to Flowee concepts. “In the hub, a network-based API is made available which is made to enable fast processing of huge amounts of data in a bi-directional manner. A quick example is that a tool can connect to the Hub and subscribe to a specific bitcoin address — The connection stays open and when a payment comes in for that address the hub will send a notification to the user.”
Flowee components can also connect to each other, one of the future products is a “data warehouse”. This is typically a big SQL server that hosts an index of the block-data. For instance it can store all the transaction IDs linked to which block-height and index they were stored in. This actual transaction data can still be fetched from the Hub.
In addition to the data warehouse concept, Flowee could be used for a configuration app, API-As-A-Service (AaaS), a statistics module, transaction creation, and specialized transactions.
Bitbox a BCH-Centric Toolkit
Another interesting set of building blocks for bitcoin cash is, ‘Bitbox,’ a protocol that allows programmers to build new BCH app in react, angular, nexjs and nodejs with single commands. Bitbox claims there are dozens of utility methods that can be used to create bitcoin cash applications. Developers can deploy any number of addresses, toggle them between cashaddr/base58 and public/privateWIF, and even create a custom mnemonic or HD derivation path in eight languages. Bitbox has become pretty popular since its release because the GUI lets anyone develop their own BCH blockchain where they can execute commands, and experiment with certain features of the chain’s operation. Since launching, the platform has been downloaded 10,000 times across 48 countries.
“The command line utility lets you quickly stub out an application with web bindings and tests as well as a console with the entire BCH RPC available,” explains the Bitbox creator.
Your own Bitcoin Cash blockchain to configure however you choose. This blockchain is created from scratch each time you start Bitbox. It doesn’t connect to the real network and only consists of transactions and blocks which you create locally so it’s quick and responsive. Execute commands from the command line and client/server.
“This project implements Bitcoin Cash signature algorithm. It is based on bitcoinj and forked from PR-1422,” explains library’s readme text.
Alongside this, it allows maintaining a wallet that can send and receive without the need for a full node implementation. Those who want to follow the bitcoin.j.cash development can join the mailing list and anyone can contribute or build applications with the BCH Java library.
Developing on Bitcoin Cash Without the Need for Closed Software
All of these protocols and toolkits are meant to accelerate the development and overall adoption of the Bitcoin Cash network worldwide. With the three resources mentioned above, BCH programmers won’t have to rely upon proprietary APIs or deal with closed software to create ‘killer apps.’ Flowee, bitcoin.j.cash, and Bitbox allow anyone with computer programming skills to build platforms that are compatible with different languages, codebases, and servers all while having the ability to communicate with the Bitcoin Cash network.
What do you think about these three bitcoin cash-based development tools and APIs? What types of programming toolkits do you use? Let us know what you think of this subject in the comments below.
Images via Shutterstock, Github, Flowee, and Bitbox.
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