India’s Minister of Finance Says Cryptocurrency Bill is Designed To Protect Investors

India’s Minister of Finance Says Cryptocurrency Bill is Designed To Protect Investors

India’s crypto tale might not end anytime soon. In the latest episode, the country’s Minister of State Finance and Corporate Affairs has commented on the government’s crypto position.

Crypto Bill To Protect Investors

India’s Minister of State Finance and Corporate Affairs Anurag Thakur spoke on the reasonable steps the government may take to regulate crypto in the Asian nation.

According to Thakur, the government only intends to protect crypto investors from the underlying volatility surrounding cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. BTC 0.00% Bitcoin / USD BTCUSD $ 63,358.91
Volume 77.47 b Change $0.00 Open $63,358.91 Circulating 18.68 m Market Cap 1.18 t
3 h India’s Minister of Finance Says Cryptocurrency Bill is Designed To Protect Investors 4 h CBDC’s Unlikely To Threaten Cryptocurrencies, Market Has Evolved: Morgan Stanley Report 6 h Coinbase Is Now Live On Nasdaq, Valuation Soars Past $100 Billion with Shares Trading Above $400

Thakur said the price fluctuations of cryptocurrencies relative to fiat were high and disturbing, which could negatively impact investors.

Accordingly, the government would frame regulations focused on protecting these investors from this volatility. However, he did not state how the government intends to achieve this.

The Indian crypto narrative has been fraught with a lot of counter-intuitive hints from government officials.

With some supporting an outright ban and the creation of a digital rupee to address growing market needs. Others have called for a more temperate regulatory framework to encourage the nascent industry. And as with all things political and diplomatic, much of the masses have been left in the dark.

According to the Finance Minister, the crypto bill was scheduled to be heard by the lower chamber of the Indian parliament on April 8 but was postponed due to the ongoing elections in the country.

This continued suspense is seeing a lot of crypto-facing businesses and enthusiasts getting tensed and agitated.

But some industry experts in the crypto space are pointing to Thakur’s comments as a light in the night. To them, the government may be considering something in the angle of a “circuit breaker,” which will see limits introduced on the number of transactions that could be done in Bitcoin exchanges. They believe this is a sign that the government may be considering a regulation rather than an outright ban of emerging technology.

But others feel this is not the case.

Dark Days Ahead for India’s Crypto Space

Founder of crypto fantasy trading app SuperStox Zakhil Suresh pointed to the ambiguity surrounding the minister’s message. According to Suresh, the minister is interested only in protecting crypto investors from cryptocurrencies and not protecting crypto investors.

“What if that ‘protection’ is actually in the form of … keeping people away from crypto?” Suresh told news outlet Decrypt.

He also said that the minister declined to comment on whether or not the government was considering a ban on cryptocurrencies in its draft bill. To him, this is frustrating and unnecessary.

The growing consternation concerning the crypto bill is understandable given that the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has been a staunch supporter of a crypto ban.

In a 2018 blanket ban on crypto, the Indian government stopped all crypto activities in the country.

Although it was later overruled in a Supreme Court judgment in 2020, the fight has continued with a 2019 anti-crypto bill recommending harsh measures like jailing crypto investors for up to ten years.

For now, the saga continues.

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Author: Jimmy Aki

Kevin O’Leary Calls Bitcoin “Blood Coin,” says, “Institutions Will Not Buy Coin Mined in China”

Shark Tank’s Kevin O’Leary Calls Bitcoin “Blood Coin,” says, “Institutions Will Not Buy Coin Mined in China”

Shark Tank’s Kevin O’Leary says he will only buy Bitcoin that is mined sustainably in countries that use clean energy.

“I see over the next year or two, two kinds of coins. Blood coin from China, (and) clean coin mined sustainably in countries that use hydroelectricity, not coal,” he told CNBC’s “Capital Connection” on Monday.

While his fellow investor on the show Mark Cuban already owns Bitcoin, Ether, and other coins, have been dabbling in DeFi, and is working on NFT projects, O’Leary can’t seem to make up his mind about the leading digital currency which has grown more than 15x from its March lows to become a trillion-dollar asset.

Back in December, he had called Bitcoin ether, saying, “I’m waiting for the day that one of these regulators comes down hard on bitcoin. Grown men are going to weep when that happens,” adding the loss of capital will never be seen before. He then advised people to get ready for it.

Now he is saying, “I’m going on the side of clean coin.”

This time, O’Leary’s rant was solely focused on China, and according to him, institutions won’t buy a coin mined in the country.

“All these issues … have now come to the fore on bitcoin,” he said. “Institutions will not buy coin mined in China, coin mined using coal to burn for electricity, coin mined in countries with sanctions on them.”

As we have been seeing ever since last year, institutions have been coming in increasing numbers, from corporations like Tesla and Square to big banks like Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, and BNY Mellon, along with family endowments funds, high net worth individuals, pension funds, and insurance firms.

As for China mining Bitcoin, the hash rate of the leading cryptocurrency coming from the country has taken a big drop from above 75% in 3Q19 to 65% in 2Q20.

Personally, O’Leary’s reason for not buying Bitcoin is, “No blood coin for me,” as he puts it.

“I’m not buying coin unless I know where it was mined, when it was mined, the provenance of it,” he said.

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Author: AnTy

Paris Hilton Reveals She is a Bitcoiner, says “It’s Definitely the Future”

Paris Hilton Reveals She is a Bitcoiner, says “It’s Definitely the Future”

“Original influencer” Paris Hilton is a Bitcoiner and has been for a while, revealed the socialite and entrepreneur in an interview with CNBC this week.

While Hilton has been busy with the non-fungible tokens (NFT) recently, she is very excited about the leading digital currency and has invested in it.

“I’m very, very excited about (Bitcoin)… It’s definitely the future.”

Hilton is definitely not new in the cryptocurrency industry, and the crypto community was quick to point out that “she’s more OG than all the hedge fund managers who entered in 2020.”

Early on Saturday, Hilton also changed her profile picture with laser eyes.

Currently, Hilton’s interest is in NFTs, in which she got involved last year. “I did my first NFT in March of 2020, and it won the NFT Charity Award, the best one of the year.”

In 2021, NFTs exploded in the scene as artists started to make a fortune out of them.

“To see it just blow up in the past couple months has been so exciting, and I’ve been working together with some incredible artists and doing my first drop in a few weeks.”

Her upcoming NFT is about art, and after that, she will be launching one about music and memorabilia. What’s amazing to her is the endless possibilities with this, and she said she is “learning so much.”

According to her, “it’s amazing that artists can really take back their power,” and all of this has her “fascinated” with it.

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Author: AnTy

Shopify CEO Is “Spiritually Aligned With Decentralizing Opportunity;” ‘Dabbles’ In Ethereum & DeFi

Shopify Is “Spiritually Aligned With Decentralizing Opportunity,” Says CEO As He “Dabbles” Into Ethereum & DeFi

The latest person to get an interest in decentralized finance (DeFi) is the chief executive officer of the e-commerce company Shopify, which has more than 1 million users.

“Hey DeFi Twitter. What are the commerce-related opportunities that you are most excited about? What role do you want Shopify to play?” tweeted Tobi Lutke on Saturday.

Nadav Hollander, Co-Founder & CEO of Ethereum wallet Dharma recommended Shopify to facilitate the tokenization of a seller’s revenue stream, which he said would be “a massive new primitive for DeFi services.”

While some may feel off about a centralized organization getting into the DeFi scene, which has over $47.5 billion in total value locked (TVL), according to Lutke, “Shopify is a product of pre-crypto times and spiritually aligned with decentralizing opportunity.”

With its mission to have retail participate, “in spirit (not by your definition) we are helping push against centralization,” he added.

Before he asked about DeFi, Lutke shared that he has been exploring the second-largest network, Ethereum, which has been primarily used for building DeFi protocols.

“Speaking of crypto though- I spent the morning dabbling with ETH Smart Contracts. Mainly to understand how ERC20 works better. Fascinating world,” Lutke said just the day before sharing his interest in DeFi.

Interestingly, the e-commerce site already supports cryptocurrency, and that too for a long time now; as shared by the Vice President of the company, Kaz Nejatian, “Shopify stores have been accepting crypto since at 2014 I think.”

Not only Shopify accepts the stablecoins USDC and PAX, and others, but they are also members of Facebook’s upcoming fiat-backed digital currency Diem.

“All of our merchants can accept a bunch of different cryptos through our payment integrations.”

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Author: AnTy

Square CFO says ‘There’s Absolutely A Case For Every Balance Sheet To Have Bitcoin On It’

Square CFO says ‘There’s Absolutely A Case For Every Balance Sheet To Have Bitcoin On It’

The company’s $220 million investment in Bitcoin, representing 5% of their cash, is a long-term hold.

“There’s absolutely a case for every balance sheet to have Bitcoin on it,” says Square Chief Financial Officer Amrita Ahuja.

In an interview with Fortune, published today, Ahuja, who joined the payments company in January 2019, talked about the trillion-dollar asset. Square invested $50 million in October 2020 with an additional $170 million just last month.

“The investment that we made on our balance sheet for Bitcoin represents about 5% of our cash; we intend to hold for the long term here,” Ahuja said. The company will further evaluate its strategy “on an ongoing basis based on how the Bitcoin ecosystem evolves.”

What MicroStrategy started by putting Bitcoin on its balance sheet was taken forward by Square and then solidified by Tesla’s $1.5 billion investment, accelerating the institutional trend.

These big names induced a never seen before FOMO among institutions, making BTC part of the investment portfolios and treasuries. Last week, we saw TIME magazine hiring a CFO who has “comfort with Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies.”

Square has also made a $10 million investment initiative to accelerate the adoption of clean energy in Bitcoin mining. According to Dorsey, Bitcoin “will eventually be powered completely by clean power, eliminating its carbon footprint and driving adoption of renewables globally.”

Company CEO Jack Dorsey, also the co-founder and CEO of Twitter, is a Bitcoin proponent who believes the cryptocurrency could one day become the currency of the Internet.

“We see Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies as expanding access to financial services, especially when you think more globally.”

Square first got involved in Bitcoin in 2018 when it allowed users to buy Bitcoin on its Cash App. This month, the company announced a new feature allowing users to send or receive Bitcoin for free and instantly.

Ahuja also reiterated that last year they had 3 million customers buying and selling Bitcoin (BTC) on Cash App, and in January, they had 1 million new customers to the cryptocurrency alone.

She further said Square would continue to support the broader adoption and awareness of the leading cryptocurrency.

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Author: AnTy

“We are Believers in Bitcoin,” says Oakland A’s President on Accepting BTC & HODLing it

“We are Believers in Bitcoin,” says Oakland A’s President on Accepting BTC & HODLing it

The MLB team is currently focused on Bitcoin only, but open to other cryptos like Ether and DOGE as well, “if it catches on.”

American professional baseball team Oakland Athletics is now accepting Bitcoin as payment for the tickets.

Talking about this development, Dave Kaval, president of the Oakland A’s, revealed that it has been on the back of the fans’ demand.

“We had heard from our fans that they are interested in paying with crypto, and we have heard it for six or eight months.”

And they decided to put one of their products or suits on sale for Bitcoin, but Kaval said so far, “we have not had a transaction yet.” However, they have had more than 100 inbound inquiries.

“We have until next Thursday to get people on board. I am hopeful we get two or three. There are 10 suites we set aside for this. Hopefully, we get two or three by opening days. We are right at that moment where hopefully it comes through.”

What’s more interesting is that Oakland A’s plans to hold any BTC that they receive; as Kaval said, “we are believers in it.”

This week, Elon Musk also announced that Tesla now accepts Bitcoin, and any BTC received will be held instead of converting into fiat currency.

“Hopefully continues to go up. Maybe we can sign some big free agents with some of the proceeds. Who knows.”

Trading around $54,800, BTC/USD is up 86.5% YTD and has rallied 13.5x from March lows.

So far, the focus is on accepting only Bitcoin BTC 2.47% Bitcoin / USD BTCUSD $ 55,974.94
Volume 47.26 b Change $1,382.58 Open $55,974.94 Circulating 18.67 m Market Cap 1.04 t
11 h “We are Believers in Bitcoin,” says Oakland A’s President on Accepting BTC & HODLing it 1 d ‘Too Much’ Bitcoin Supply Is In Search of Yield Reveals True Inherent Yield on Crypto Assets 1 d ‘Nothing has Really Changed’ in the Crypto Market, Despite the Weak Price Action
and no other crypto like Ethereum ETH 1.68% Ethereum / USD ETHUSD $ 1,716.41
Volume 18.1 b Change $28.84 Open $1,716.41 Circulating 115.23 m Market Cap 197.78 b
11 h “We are Believers in Bitcoin,” says Oakland A’s President on Accepting BTC & HODLing it 1 d Alonzo Hard Fork to Bring Smart Contract Compatibility to Cardano (ADA) In April 1 d SushiSwap Launches A ‘Game-Changer;’ BentoBox’s 1st DApp Is Kashi Lending & Margin Trading
and Dogecoin DOGE 1.44% Dogecoin / USD DOGEUSD $ 0.05
Volume 753.84 m Change $0.00 Open $0.05 Circulating 128.93 b Market Cap 7.01 b
11 h “We are Believers in Bitcoin,” says Oakland A’s President on Accepting BTC & HODLing it 2 d Tesla CEO Now Sets His Eyes on DeFi, But The Elon Effect on Price Is Absent 3 d Free Crypto Trading App Robinhood Files S-1 Paperwork With SEC to Go Public
. “But if it catches on, we are open,” he added.

For the processing, they are using BitPay, a bitcoin payment service provider, which also supports Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Ethereum (ETH), Dogecoin (DOGE), and four USD-pegged stablecoins viz. GUSD, USDC, PAX, and BUSD.

As BitPay supports other cryptos too, Oakland A’s is open to accepting altcoins as well.

Besides Bitcoin, Oakland A’s also like blockchain and are looking into non-fungible tokens (NFTs). They are also ready to start housing fans going into the full season, starting with a 20% capacity.

“It will be great to have the energy and excitement. Hopefully, we can build on that and end up with a full stadium by halfway or partially through the year.”

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Author: AnTy

Soros Fund Investing in Crypto Infrastructure Says CEO; Bitcoin Is Taking Gold’s ‘Firebase Away’

Soros Fund Investing in Crypto Infrastructure Says CEO; Bitcoin Is Taking Gold’s ‘Firebase Away’

In her “mysterious response,” Dawn Fitzpatrick refused to answer if she owns any BTC.

Soros Fund Management Chief Investment Officer Dawn Fitzpatrick revealed that the fund is making investments in the cryptocurrency industry as it sees an “inflection point” for Bitcoin and other crypto-assets.

In an interview with Bloomberg, when asked if she owns any Bitcoin, Fitzpatrick replied with a “mysterious” – “I’m not gonna answer that.”

While she didn’t reveal her personal Bitcoin holdings, she talked about her views on the cryptocurrency industry.

“We think the whole infrastructure around crypto is really interesting. We’ve been making some investments into that infrastructure, and we think that is at an inflection point. I’d say it’s everything from kind of exchange asset managers custodians to the mundane like tax reporting on your crypto gains and everything in between. We think that’s interesting.”

She further discussed how the Federal Reserve’s money printing is the factor behind Bitcoin’s success.

“We’re at a really important moment in time in that something like Bitcoin might have stayed a fringe asset. But for the fact that over the last twelve months, we’ve increased money supply in the US by 25 percent. So there is a real fear of debasing of fiat currencies.”

According to her, Bitcoin is not a currency but a commodity that’s easily storable and transferable. The IRS also classifies it as a physical asset that has a finite amount of supply. The fact that Bitcoin’s limited supply halves every four years is “interesting” to her.

“By the way when you look at gold price action in the context of a fairly robust inflation narrative of late, it’s struggled getting traction. I think that’s because Bitcoin is taking some of its firebase away.”

Regarding the central bank launching their own digital currencies (CBDC), Fitzpatrick said they are going to be here and even “quicker than people expect.” China is currently leading the race for CBDC as it has already run several digital yuan trials for a while now.

“There are some strategic reasons why they are going to be a first mover. And I do think from a geopolitical perspective; they want to use that digital currency too. They want that to be used around the world. And it is a potential threat to other bitcoin and crypto.”

While she thinks CBDCs are a “real threat” to crypto, it will only be “temporary,” as they won’t be successful in “permanently destabilizing Bitcoin,” she said.

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Author: AnTy

CBOE Now Wants Back In, CEO says ‘Haven’t Given Up’ on Bitcoin Futures & We ‘Need’ to be Here

CBOE Now Wants Back In, CEO says ‘Haven’t Given Up’ on Bitcoin Futures & We ‘Need’ to be Here

There has been a “lot of demand from retail and institutions” that the crypto space has been seeing lately

CBOE Global Markets is now looking to get back into the crypto space.

Back in March of 2019, the Chicago-based exchange holding company delisted Bitcoin futures when the price of BTC was about $4,000. It was the first US exchange to list Bitcoin futures in late 2017 and was followed closely by CME Group, which gained wider acceptance.

Now that Bitcoin has risen to a new all-time high of $62k, Chief Executive Officer Ed Tilly says, “We’re still interested in the space, we haven’t given up on” bitcoin futures, reported Bloomberg.

“We’re keen on building out the entire platform. There’s a lot of demand from retail and institutions, and we need to be there,” he added.

In December 2020, CBOE partnered with CoinRoutes to launch a suite of tools, including crypto indexes, real-time ticks, and historical data. At the time, it was said to be launched by the end of the first quarter of this year.

They are now eyeing new efforts as the demand for the product increases and the market matures.

Earlier this month, as we reported, CBOE also filed with the SEC to list and trade shares of the VanEck SolidX Bitcoin Trust.

“We’re very keen to move along approval for the VanEck ETF,” said Tilly.

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Author: AnTy

The First Ever Bitcoin ETF (BTCC) Surpasses $1 Billion in AUM in Just One Month

The US has yet to approve one, but issuers are rushing in. SEC Commissioner says “we’ve dug ourselves into a little bit of a hole” by not approving a Bitcoin ETF and is “hopeful” Gensler will help the agency think “in a more sophisticated way.”

The world’s first Bitcoin exchange-traded fund, Purpose Bitcoin ETF (BTCC), has exceeded $1 billion in assets under management (AUM) in just a month, announced Purpose Investments on its one-month anniversary.

In the US ETF market terms, this means hitting $27 billion within a month as the Canada ETF market is 1/27th the size of the US, noted Eric Balchunas, Senior ETF Analyst for Bloomberg.

So much interest in the first-ever Bitcoin ETF backed by physically settled BTC shows investor’s confidence in and demand for this burgeoning asset class.

“Hitting this milestone so quickly proves that investors are seeking convenient, safe access to cryptocurrencies,” said Som Seif, founder, and CEO of Purpose.

The ETF invests directly in BTC, and not derivatives, without the risk of self custody. Purpose is the manager of the ETF, and Ether Capital Corporation acts as a special consultant.

“Cryptocurrency ETFs have the potential to be truly revolutionary and are an important investor conduit into the space as the ecosystem continues to mature,” said Brian Mosoff, CEO of Ether Capital.

Currently, there are three Bitcoin ETFs available in Canada, while Latin America’s first was approved in Brazil this week.

SEC has Dug itself into a Hole

Several companies have been rushing in to file for a Bitcoin ETF in the US, including SkyBridge, WisdomTree, NYDIG, and Valkyrie. Grayscale is also working on converting the fund into an ETF as it hires several ETF executives. In the meantime, the GBTC premium remains negative for the 17th day in a row.

But the US is yet to approve one.

The US Securities and Exchange Commission has actually “dug ourselves into a little bit of a hole,” said commissioner Hester Pierce, also known as ‘Crypto Mom’ about the agency not approving a bitcoin ETF.

During her interview with Blockchain Policy Matters, she urged her fellow regulators at the Fed to “really look” for the positives instead of reacting to the negatives.

She further encouraged more partnerships between the public and private sectors, which she said can help the regulators “sharpen our thinking.”

“A lot of the real innovation happens in the private sector. Don’t try to squelch that out. And don’t view this as a competition between the private and the public sector,” Pierce said. “There tends to be a conservatism which I think is reflected in a lot of comments from regulators.”

The commissioner also said she looks forward to working with SEC chairman nominee Gary Gensler, who once taught about digital currency at MIT. Pierce said she is “hopeful” Gensler will help SEC think “in a more sophisticated way.”

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Author: AnTy

“Very Significant Demand for Digital Assets,” says BNY Mellon Investing in Fireblocks

“Very Significant Demand for Digital Assets,” says BNY Mellon Investing in Crypto Custody Startup, Fireblocks

Bank of New York Mellon Corp. is investing in cryptocurrency startup Fireblocks that builds tools for the transfer and storage of cryptocurrencies, reported the Wall Street Journal — yet another move by a traditional Wall Street player to embrace crypto assets.

This latest one came just after last month, the bank announced that it plans to serve as a custodian for crypto assets on behalf of institutional investors.

“There is very significant demand for digital assets in general,” said Roman Regelman, chief executive of BNY Mellon’s asset-servicing and digital businesses. “They’re becoming part of the mainstream.”

One of the world’s largest custody banks, BNY Mellon has $2 trillion in assets under management (AUM), as of 2020.

Earlier this month, PayPal also acquired Curv, a Fireblocks rival. Another major custody bank State Street Corp. is working on a digital asset custody service as well.

BNY Mellon’s strategic investment in Fireblocks is part of the New York-based startup’s larger funding round of $133 million from investors that include venture-capital firms Ribbit Capital and Stripes and hedge-fund firm Coatue Management.

“Eventually, the major cloud providers will either have to buy these infrastructure companies or build them in-house. Lacking the domain expertise alone of custody or scaling public chains will put them at a massive disadvantage longer term,” said trader Joe McCann, founder of NodeSource.

Amidst the ongoing bull market that has Bitcoin becoming a trillion-dollar crypto asset and the total cryptocurrency market cap surpassing $1.8 trillion, the companies in the industry are using this as an opportunity aggressively to raise funds, with Coinbase in the lead.

Founded in 2018, Fireblocks has raised $179 million, including the new round, to date. The Series C round gives the firm a valuation of over $900 million.

The startup moved over $100 billion in crypto assets last month, which was more than double the amount done three months earlier.

With over 200 clients, Fireblocks is working with some of the larger crypto-focused trading firms and several multinational banks as well.

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Author: AnTy