Binance Exchange to Acquire Major Stake In Crypto Payments Provider, Swipe.io: Report

A report from TheBlock reveals that top crypto exchange, Binance is in talks to acquire a majority of the stake in Swipe.io – a crypto payments startup.

While the agreement has yet to be made official, the exchange looks to push through the deal, intending to launch the main version of its Binance Card, a crypto payments debit card.

Back in April, Binance announced the launch of a Beta version of the Binance Card, which allowed users to spend crypto with over 46 million VISA accepted merchants across the world. The card costs $15 for pre-orders with no hidden or additional costs attached.

To begin, the card will start with support for Bitcoin (BTC) and Binance Coin (BNB), but the acquisition of Swipe.io, which allows multiple currencies, could open up the card to allowing more digital assets to be used.

Swipe.io, on its part, will produce the Binance Cards as a white-label product allowing Binance users to spend crypto instantly, with enhanced security features such as a card tracking feature. The official announcement on the acquisition may come later in the week.

The crypto payments platform recently announced a partnership with Samsung Pay to add its Visa debit card option. The addition of Samsung Pay saw the company become the inaugural company to provide this service to both Samsung Pay and Google Pay.

We have reached out to Binance, but as of press time, we have not heard back. We will update this article when they respond.

Read Original/a>
Author: Lujan Odera

BIS Latest Report Discusses How Payment Are Evolving With Tokenization and CBDC’s

Bank of International Settlements (BIS) researchers focusing on the payments’ future, reveals their latest quarterly report released on Sunday.

The paper has 138 pages and looks at what’s on the horizon in the financial sector, especially since tokenization, central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) and cross-border payments are starting to be more and more in trend.

Conclusions on Tokenization

According to BIS, the tokenization of securities on distributed ledgers can streamline the settlement cycle and become too efficient for some investors to bear with it, seeing traders are used with slow settlement cycles, liquidity management concerns and intermediaries. The report also says DLT and smart contracts are still to be proven when it comes to settlement and clearing, reading further that:

“The ability of tokenized systems to interoperate with account-based systems will be key to their success.”

What About CBDCs?

Another one of the big stories circulating in the world of banking is that of CBDCs, so BIS didn’t hesitate to address it too. It clarifies that there’s no use to develop digital money if it wouldn’t bring any advantages and while the existing payment systems work, saying retailers wouldn’t want to use a system that’s not in demand, whereas most consumers find cash or credit cards much more convenient.

Trying to answer the question of how decentralized a CBDC system would be, the research says decentralization indeed eliminates the risk of the entire system’s failure, but it brings about new vulnerabilities. Here’s what the report reads exactly:

“The key vulnerability of a conventional architecture is the failure of the top node, for example via a targeted hacking attack. The key vulnerability of DLT is the consensus mechanism, which may be put under pressure, for example, by a denial-of-service type of attack.”

Meanwhile, some banks have publicly stated they don’t see DLT as the salvation that’s rumored to be, whereas others are pushing forward with trials on DLT-based CBDCs.

BIS Report on Payments

Agustin Carstens, the General Manager at BIS, said the impact of a completely different and brand-new backend payment infrastructure needs to be considered. Central banks have been put into working mode by Facebook’s Libra, so it’s not yet clear if stablecoins are going to bring the financial doom foreseen by some or not. BIS deemed the matter as unanswered and enduring, saying there’s a need for an international response. It brought its Innovation Hub into discussion, saying it may provide the looked-for global response.

The Innovation Hub will collaborate with monetary policy makers and bankers at developing frameworks on digital innovations. According to BIS, it has spokes in Hong Kong, Switzerland and Singapore, not to mention a good position for developing policies across different networks.

Read Original/a>
Author: Oana Ularu

New Data Indicates That Europeans Are The Most Active Traders For Bitcoin Futures On BitMEX

Fresh data reveals that for the last one month, European business hours have recorded high levels of activities on Bitcoin futures trades within the BitMEX platform. High volumes of BitMEX XBT/USD futures contracts were witnessed during European business hours, Bitcoinist reports.

The data shows that Europe is slowly becoming a hot crypto market especially in the last one year. The region has adopted crypto-friendly banking services and wealth levels are growing coupled with a superb tech sector, which have enhanced interest for crypto trading.

This year, trading BTC positions increased steadily before hodling behaviors were witnessed leading to a wave of buyers who want to take advantage of the situation. BitMEX ranks high among the highly active Bitcoin markets, increasing to the popularity of Bitcoin futures.

Despite the high popularity of Bitcoin futures and cryptos in general, traders and users in Europe are still facing some challenges. Crypto users and traders are forced to comply with highly stringent KYC guidelines and it is expected that tight monitoring will be implemented in the near future. Such aspects have led to some crypto-based companies to close shop such as BottlePay which is a crypto payment platform which cited restrictive AML regulations as the reason for their closure.

From Jan. 10, 2020, firms located in Europe will be required to adhere to the newly established AML guidelines which will be a burden to the still growing small companies. Some companies in the crypto industry have started to comply with the new guidelines like LocalBitcoins.

At the moment, it is hard to know exactly what led to high interest among the Europeans to trade in Bitcoin futures. However, polls show that European crypto traders is made up of a small click of investors but have surpassed the cash usage in fintech as well as crypto assets.

Interest in crypto trading and assets is likely to increase in Europe after the appointment of Christine Lagarde as the head of European Central Bank who is in favor of cryptos and digital currencies. She has indicated that the ECB could develop their own stablecoin.

Read Original/a>
Author: Joseph Kibe

MoneyGram to Open New Corridors for Ripple’s XRP-using ODL Before the Year Ends

  • New corridors coming – MoneyGram reveals in its Q3 2019 earnings call
  • Ripple partnership makes MoneyGram the first company to utilize blockchain capabilities at scale
  • Ripple Partnership will be a competitive differentiator in the months and years ahead

Ripple’s latest partner MoneyGram in its Q3 2019 financial results revealed its expansion plan regarding Ripple.

As the report stated, it was the first company to utilize blockchain capabilities at scale through its strategic partnership with Ripple.

“Our third-quarter results reflect the continued transformation of our business as we increasingly focus on customer experience improvements, cross-border digital growth and industry-leading innovation through our strategic partnership with Ripple,”

said Alex Holmes Chairman and CEO.

The company reported a loss of $0.03 per share in Q3 of 2019 and its revenues fell 6% to $325 million, less than the expected $334 million. The company earned $285 million in revenue in money transfer while total digital transactions represented 20% of money transfer transactions.

Not just in its the US but non-US businesses of the company also recorded growth, shared Holmes.

He added:

“While the US market, which continues to be our primary challenge, showed signs of improvement on a sequential basis, we are very pleased that our non-US business achieved year-over-year growth for the quarter.”

Ripple Partnership will be a “Competitive Differentiator in the Months and Years Ahead”

Now, the company is planning to expand its partnership with Ripple, for which it utilizes its product On-Demand Liquidity (ODL), formerly known as xRapid that leverages digital assets XRP for transactions.

Asheesh Birla, SVP of Product Ripple shard this news on Twitter and what adds to this good news is these new corridors will be coming before 2019 ends which is in less than two months.

However, it came as no surprise, as last week during the 3rd annual DC Fintech Week, as we reported, Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse shared that MoneyGram CEO Holmes is actually upset with Ripple because they are “not moving fast enough.”

“He wants us to launch ODL, formerly knowns as Xrapid on more markets, more quickly because they’re having such a good experience with Mexico,”

he added.

As we have seen in Q4, XRP/MXN volume has been making new records, driven by MoneyGram which has been expecting to see the result and “influence in Q4.”

XRP meanwhile is trading at $0.289 with 24 hours loss of 1.24%, a per Coincodex.

Read Original/a>
Author: AnTy

China’s Crypto Stance to Soften as Bank of China Outlines Bitcoin Qualities

Chinas-Crypto-Stance-to-Soften-as-Bank-of-China-Outlines-Bitcoin-Qualities

Bank of China recently posted an infographic entailing cryptocurrencies on its official website reveals news outlet Decrypt. As per the claims made, it seems to be an attempt to educate residents on the overall functioning of cryptocurrencies, followed by its real use cases and the value it could potentially conquer.

This is definitely caught off guard considering the fact that the country has dismissed the likes of cryptocurrencies ever since countries began to scrutinize it. It is important to stress that both the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) and Bank of China are two different entities, where the former constitutes regulatory frameworks and the latter exists in different branches.

Even the CEO of Tron, Justin Sun makes an appearance on this infographic, who supposedly was quoted saying (closest translation):

“The biggest problem is too much money!”

As for how the informative visualization was put together, Crypto Potato highlighted that it starts with Bitcoin’s history and Satoshi Nakamoto, followed by the notion of a decentralized peer-to-peer system, Bitcoin mining and issues such as Mt. Gox and an investor’s attempted suicide was reported.

Moreover, accomplishments have also been shared in this part, such as the first ever time pizzas were purchased with BTC, as well as Facebook’s most recent endeavor, Libra.

The second part explores more of what’s been happening for some time now, which includes the volatility in prices, stressing that investing in the giant is equivalent to a roller coaster ride.

As for the final part, it is more relatable to present time trading and successes including crypto ATMs, crypto-related payment options and ways cross-border payments can be achieved.

Is this a sign that China may reconsider its outlook on cryptocurrencies? Will countries like India follow suit?

Read Original/a>
Author: Nirmala Velupillai

Ethereum 0x0 Wallet Currently Has More than $2M ETH and $15M Worth of Lost Other Cryptos

Ethereum 0x0 Wallet Currently Has More than $2M ETH and $15M Worth of Lost Other Cryptos

There are over $2m of Ether and more than $15m of tokens in Ethereum’s 0x0 address reveals Bitstamp. The largest amount of the cryptocurrencies were sent through a mistake and there is a possibility that the digital assets have been lost forever.

The Ethereum 0x0 address is among the most famous lost addresses which is at times used to burn tokens.

In the last couple of years, the address has been used in sending Ethereum (ETH) although mistakenly. Now, the address holds more that $2m of Ether and the cryptos will never be recovered.

The address is simple to cram as it has only zeros making it easy for people to send funds to it by mistake.

During the normative years of Ethereum, it was a common occurrence for miners to send funds to the address, albeit mistakenly, after failing to specify an address. This made the address more popular as a black hole and its popularity seems to be increasing among crypto worshippers.

Despite holding the high amount of cryptocurrencies, there are still high traffic of transactions coming in. Currently, the 0x0 address also attracts crypto based startups who want to burn tokens and has been labeled as a burner address.

The address has been linked to the genesis block which no one mines its making it inaccessible. This means that the funds in the address will never be recovered, therefore, approximately 7,672 ETH have permanently gone in thin air and the address is still receiving more funds.

A Pinata Address

At the moment, the 0x0 address can be referred to as a pinata. This means that the person who will succeed in developing computational power to open an encrypted personal key on the Ethereum blockchain will have all the funds in the address.

However, at the moment, this is impossible. It will take lots of time and resources before this can be done or it might never happen at all. For now, there is a heightened campaign to ensure that crypto enthusiasts are aware of the address to avoid making the mistakes.

Do you believe the 0x0 will ever be cracked? Share your views with us in the comments section below.

Read Original/a>
Author: Joseph Kibe

Jameson Lopp: “Prevalent Improvements” Made to the Bitcoin Network Result in Positive Impact

Prevalent-Improvements-Made-to-the-Bitcoin-Network-Result-in-Positive-Impact-Reveals-Jameson-Lopp

“Prevalent Improvements” Made To The Bitcoin Network Result In Positive Impact Reveals Jameson Lopp

It has been recently revealed that the Bitcoin network has attained a new update, which makes it far more efficient, while allowing one to save up to 75 percent of overall bandwidth reports AMB Crypto. Speaking on this matter is the Chief Technology Officer at CasaHODL, Jameson Lopp.

The said improvement is called Erlay, which was supposedly developed by the likes of Gleb Naumenko, Gregory Maxwell and Pieter Wuille. According to Lopp, Erlay has helped the Bitcoin Network like nothing else that has ever existed, calling the effects of Erlay, “prevalent improvements.”

Interestingly, it has been noted that the changes are not so apparent and will not be to users. Furthermore, the reduced usage of bandwidth has led to “more positive impact” shares Lopp on a Cryptocast Network, a YouTube channel devoted to sharing bitcoin and crypto related news.

In Every Good Exists Some Bad

There has to be some flaw associated with said improvement, right? Turns out there might be, but Lopp argues it’s so minor that it may not even count as a concern. In particular, he revealed the downfall as being “slower propagation across the network,” reports AMB Crypto. All this being said the CTO trusts that together, high efficiency and saved bandwidth can easily outweigh the downfall.

Here’s as per his quotes:

“The protocol was massively redundant and robust, and you are very likely to get [your] message out to the entire network very quickly, but you would also be sending a lot of it back and forth.”

What are your thoughts on this recent improvement? Do you think this will help the Bitcoin Network attract more consumers given known flaws with its network, i.e. scalability issues? Let us know in the comments below?

Read Original/a>
Author: Nirmala Velupillai