Ripple CTO Bullish on Bitcoin But Has Been Selling His Stash for Years

David Schwartz, chief technology officer at Ripple, recently shared that he is still bullish on bitcoin but is currently selling his BTC stash.

On being asked by Adam Back, co-founder and chief executive officer of the blockchain technology company, Blockstream, “aren’t you pro-BTC and converting XRP into Bitcoin?” Schwartz shared,

“Nope. I’ve been slowly selling bitcoin for the past several years.”

And the reason behind selling bitcoin is the risk. “I’m still bullish on bitcoin, it’s just the level of risk that has me selling,” he said.

This snippet is from the discussion about who is the pseudo-anonymous bitcoin creator Satoshi Nakamoto.

Stop Searching for Satoshi; We are all Satoshi

A Twitter user declared Adam Back as Satoshi Nakamoto to which the cryptographer replied with a simple “not me.”

Some also see Hal Finney, a cypherpunk and early Bitcoin contributor and Nick Szabo, a cryptographer who designed BitGold, as the pseudo-anonymous creator. Both are among the top runners for being Satoshi.

“FWIW they both said it wasn’t them also. We’ll never know – many cypherpunks had no social media footprint, and anon posts. Probably a digital ghost, who burned the nym to be safe,” said Back about Finney and Szabo being Nakamoto.

“Bitcoin is better as a decentralized digital commodity without a founder. We are all Satoshi,” he added.

This is where software engineer and Director at Ripple, Nik Bougalis, came who agreed with Back about Bitcoin being better without a founder.

“Abandoning the Satoshi Nakamoto persona and leaving Bitcoin to the world was a brilliant move,” he said.

A Ripple enthusiast also feels Ripple CTO Schwartz could be Satoshi Nakamoto. Still, Bougalis dismissed this, stating Schwartz has publicly denied it and that “his code & writing style simply don’t match Satoshi’s.”

And, “unfortunately” for Schwartz, he “didn’t find out about bitcoin until 2011.”

Schwartz chimed in to say that he thinks it’s plausible that instead of just an individual, Satoshi was a small group of people.

And that’s where Schwartz shared that he doesn’t have millions of Bitcoins, but he hasn’t lost the keys to his BTC holdings either, which he has been slowly selling for the past some years now.

“Bullish on X but Selling the X? Charlie is that you?,” a user commented on this statement.

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Author: AnTy

Bitcoin Breaking Out of Re-Accumulation Phase Likely to Ignite “Another Parabolic Rally”

Since June 2019, Bitcoin has been in a re-accumulation phase, shared Tuur Demeester. He explained on Twitter how a year back bitcoin broke out of its accumulation phase that lasted about nine months only to start the re-accumulation.

As such, “a break out of this band will likely ignite another parabolic rally,” he said.

Bitcoin can Rally to $50k -$100k in Next Bull Cycle

Involved with Bitcoin since 2013, Demeester has been here when the world’s leading digital asset went through its first “crazy bubble” that took BTC from $1 to $30.

This time, he believes the bottom is in and the next bull market is here. This cycle according to him could easily take us to $50,000-$100,000. Demeester said in a conversation with Messari,

“Now we’re back in a bull market. I think for sure $3,000 was the bottom and I don’t think we’ll go below $6,000 again. I think a price target of like $50,000 is not insane at all especially given just how crazy the money printing is. I would even say like between fifty and a hundred thousand.”

However, it all depends on the buying power of the USD, for instance, if inflation takes the cost of a bicycle from $200 to $2,000, bitcoin would have to discount that.

Institutions are here, Retail is to come

Currently, bitcoin is trading around $9,800, up 157% from the March lows, and recording nearly 34% gains YTD. But, “retail is still not paying attention,” said Demeester.

According to him, they have been shaken out and there’s lots of despondencies. Whoever stayed invested probably got burned between 2018 and now and that’s gonna keep people away for a while still, he said.

But they will only come back once when we are close to 20,000 or beyond that. What’s driving the current market is institutions.

“Right now it’s institutions that are interested and it’s kind of like a land grab phase where this is gonna get big.”

Bitcoin is not correlated with the traditional financial system which is in all kinds of trouble. Moreover, it’s really scarce so these institutions are just kind of staking their claim and then see what’s gonna be built on top of it later.

So, the price right now is driven mostly by institutions — billionaires, family offices, and large institutions such as Paul Tudor Jones.

As such, the bitcoin market is still in the infrastructure phase despite JP Morgan becoming the bank for Coinbase and Gemini. It’s all about building the rails, both legal rails and financial bridges between the financial industry and Bitcoin.

He expects 2020 and 2022 to be the deployment phase where we really go mainstream and people can start using it for many different purposes.

You can watch the full interview here:

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Author: AnTy

Brazil’s PIER Data Sharing Platform Runs on JPM’s Quorum Blockchain; At A Cost of $250K

Brazil’s financial watchdogs will start using a shared blockchain platform dubbed ‘PIER’ to enhance the transfer of information amongst the institutions. This initiative was launched in April with the major stakeholders being Banco Central do Brasil (BCB), insurance regulator (SUSEP) and the securities authority, CVM. Notably, the country’s social security oversight body (PREVIC) is also set to join this ecosystem eventually.

This blockchain network was initially developed by Brazil’s central bank, BCB, which credited the new tech for its horizontal layout in information sharing. The bank had begun experimenting on blockchain projects as early as 2017 and revealed its ongoing work on PIER network a year later.

BCB’s press officer, Ivone Portes, has since told media outlet Coindesk that the project cost R$1,300,000 which translates to $252,700 as per the current exchange rates. She went on to note that the bank is, however, confident in getting value from PIER blockchain.

The Value Proposition

PIER is run on JP Morgan’s open-source network, Quorum; this Ethereum based innovation has been hailed by the BCB for its ‘private IT infrastructure’. BNamericas further highlighted that the platform leverages cloud computing services from Microsoft Azure. Marcelo Barbosa, the president of CVM, said that PIER will change Brazil’s markets scene towards a more profitable outlook,

“Our objective is that this system promotes gains to the market, given the more efficient, safe and adequate supervision and enforcement to the new technological scenario that we are experiencing”

With PIER’s online bridge, the BCB is also optimistic about streamlining its oversight on Brazil’s financial institutions. One of the functions that have been mentioned by this central bank is vetting elected officials of its regulated entities. The bank’s deputy head, Daniel Bichuette, added that PIER would effectively reduce the processing time of assessing requirements.

This development will probably push Brazil’s blockchain space to newer practicalities. Currently, the South American country is among those that have embraced blockchain tech on a larger scale across the world.

As a result, some private banks within its jurisdiction have already pioneered digital currency tokens on Tezos blockchain. The BCB together with its peer regulators also formed a blockchain sandbox back in June 2019 as a means to spur growth within this industry.

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Author: Edwin Munyui

After The Crypto Price Crash During COVID-19, BTC Mining Hash Rate Has Regained 34%

A North American Bitcoin mining operator Bitfarms shared that they continued to mine BTC despite the violent sell-off triggered by investors’ fear over the COVID-19. Interim CEO and Chief Strategy Officer, Emiliano Grodzki said,

“We are pleased to see that, despite the challenges to traditional markets, our scale and quality of operations has allowed us to continue to generate positive cash flow in these difficult times.”

From the price drop to the recovery of the price to $6,000, the company maintained an average daily hashrate of approximately 630 petahash per second which again increased to about 750 PH.

By reducing the staff temporarily in line with government guidance and implementing permanent measures to reduce overhead costs, they are looking to cut down their expenses by 20 to 25%.

According to John Rim, the CFO, they will be “best positioned” to withstand the short-term volatility and remain profitable come halving.

Significant Percentage of Bitcoin Miners can still Exit

In the past few weeks, the bitcoin price has recovered from the low of $3,850 hit during the crypto carnage to surging above $7,400 on Tuesday.

As we reported, not just price but network fundamentals have also been showing recovery signs. Bitcoin miners have turned profitable yet again and more than 34% more hash has been added in just over two weeks, meaning new rigs have been added to mine BTC.

Recently, on-chain analyst Willy Woo shared bullish miner charts, with the Hash Ribbon and Miners Energy ratio recovering. According to him, the 45% drop in hash rate in March saw some miner capitulation and now he isn’t expecting any more sell pressure from miners.

However, according to Matt D’Souza, Hedge Fund Manager and CEO of Blockware Solutions, a crypto mining service, it is likely that a meaningful percentage of inefficient miners will still be removed from the bitcoin network. However, he advised keeping the demand side in mind as,

“price is made up of supply & demand. Inefficient miners can remain if the funds & hodlers (demand side economics) counter-balance sell pressure by raising new fiat into the system. Bitcoins fundamentals are better than ever.”

Overall, it all depends on the if price and if Bitcoin price continues to move higher, all the miners will be operating at healthy margins, that is until either difficulty pulls back or price corrects. D’Souza said,

“Sustaining margins for the long term determines inefficient vs efficient miners.”

Come halving next month, the miner flow will cut down in half from 1800 BTC per day to 900 BTC per day. In order for the miners to remain profitable, the BTC price needs to rise as the cost of mining one BTC will surge between $12,000 to $15,000.

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Author: AnTy

After Being Voted ‘CEO’ of Dogecoin Last Year, Elon Musk Tweets His Love For DOGE

Tesla CEO and famous billionaire Elon Musk has shared his thoughts on crypto again, tweeting that DOGE is his favorite coin.

So many tweets about crypto reveal Elon Musk is interested in the industry. Here’s what he said earlier in 2019 about DOGE, in a response to an April Fool’s poll that had him voted as a potential DOGE CEO:

Podcast Talk and Another Tweet on BTC

Musk seems to have a rather interesting attitude when it comes to crypto, seeing he makes comments on the subject sometimes, while when asked to dig deeper into the matter, he prefers to remain silent. He also recently said in a podcast that cryptocurrencies are a possible replacement for cash, yet without seeming to enthusiastic. Before that, he tweeted that Bitcoin (BTC) is not his safeword as a joke. However, the crypto community concluded he may have a special interest in BTC.

DOGE Pulling the TSLA Stunt?

DOGE is not known to aim for rapid appreciation and currently trades at $0.002, which means it occupies the 33th position according to market capitalization. There are over 123 billion DOGE circulating and above 31,000 DOGE transactions every day. The coin has had a stable presence in the crypto space, especially after it has adopted the famous doge meme.

With the stablecoins’ arrival, it was displaced as a base pair coin. More than this, it’s not being used very often for arbitraging trades and moving coins from one exchange to another. While the crypto community was very happy to see Musk endorsing DOGE, it’s still too early to determine if the coin will pull the Tesla (TSLA) stock stunt.

DOGE Daily Trading Volumes at Over $150 Million

Reawakening ever since the beginning of 2020, DOGE had the amazing daily trading volumes of over $150 million this month, which is a record since 2017. Since it hasn’t seen a pump in some time, its volumes are mostly concentrated on the BKEX exchange. It has even signaled an increased altcoin sentiment. While its price is currently low, this can change, especially since there’s the potential for it to very quickly add Satoshis.

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Author: Oana Ularu

KPMG Rankings Show a Drop in Bitcoin Yet a Reinforced Cryptocurrency Innovations

KPMG, the big four auditing firm shared its 2019 companies list, Fintech100 rankings. This list contains the 100 top Fintech entities globally. According to these rankings, Bitcoin-based Company has dropped. On the other hand, payment industries have a strong showing on the rankings.

Just like it was in 2018, the Ant financial company founded by the owner of Alibaba, Jack Ma led the list. This Ant financial company controls one of China’s payment systems known as Alipay which has a value of 83 billion dollars.

JD Finance took the third position among the entities that are in both blockchain and cryptocurrency. Grab, an application for a ride company (like Uber) led the list. In Singapore, Grab is used as a payment system.

Robinhood failed to maintain its 2018’s 8th position and dropped to 14th this year. KPMG rankings have shown reinforced cryptocurrency innovations. Other blockchain-based companies that featured in the list were One Connect at 18th position, Coinbase at 34th, Banketa at 42, Liquid at 38th, and Revolut on 26th. According to Chris Wang, Partner of KPMG china,

“As fintech development continues to go strong in China, we are seeing some changes in China’s fintech landscape. Aligned with trends we observe globally, we see an increasing number of wealth, insurance and multi-sector companies in China on the list, which indicates that technologies and innovations have spread into more financial services sectors.”

Companies that appeared in the list for the first include Tokeny, Silot, Binance, Moin, and MemaPay among others.

The companies in the Fintech 100 list raised 70 billion dollars in their lifetime and 18 billion dollars in the last financial year. These companies serve customers over 2.5 billion around the world. According to KPMG, the companies in the Fintech 100 ranking have enjoyed the benefit of open banking.

Here is a snapshot of the top 50 rankings from the KPMG list:

kpmg-crypto-rankings

kpmg-crypto-rankings

kpmg-crypto-rankings

These companies have been able to improve customer banking as a result which has greatly improved their services and experience.

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Author: Daniel W

Tim Draper: More Fluctuations on BTC’s Road to $250K Plus, BTC Over Libra Hands Down

In a recent crypto content covered by the ‘Cryptocurrency’ channel, Tim Draper shared his viewpoints on Bitcoin [BTC] from all aspects, including price predictions, banks and others’ negative standpoints as well as a comparison between Facebook’s Libra and BTC.

BTC Anticipated to Reach 200K+ by 2022

Draper trusts that BTC is, “going to be 250,000 by 2022 or 2023,” adding that the process will witness an array of fluctuations before actually getting there. He trusts that said moves may be impacted by naysayers, primarily the banks, who are finding ways to prevent BTC from taking over.

He noted that BTC’s use of blockchain and how it is transparent are some among other factors that are surely to leave “banks threatened”, forcing them to find ways to “try to change it”. But, at the end of the day, Draper argues that “technology wins all wars.”

Draper Overturns Claims that Cryptos Lack Security

When Draper was asked about economist, Nouriel Roubini’s viewpoint on cryptocurrencies, especially in relation to the lack of security, the former argued that the economist was wrong.

While it is true that if traders lose their keys, there really isn’t a way to retrieve funds, Draper argued that we cannot expect banks to help retrieve large funds. More specifically, he said:

“For one thing, [Roubini]’s wrong because if you have more than $250,000, no bank is responsible for refunding your money. […] The bitcoin blockchain has never been hacked, but the banks are being hacked all the time and they are playing whack-a-mole with hackers trying to keep them away while their technology gets older and older.”

He seems to have emphasized on technology, as the bitcoin blockchain is constantly getting worked on to one day house the best security it possibly can, while banks still stick to their traditional and outdated means of practice.

“Between Bitcoin and Libra, I want Bitcoin”

Finally, with all talks surrounding Libra in recent times it was bound to be question directed towards Draper.

The latter has since shared that he’s more comfortable with crypto assets that have been rigorously tested, which is something Libra lacks.

“I always welcome innovation […] I think that you have a tried, and true and tested currency in Bitcoin and Libra is new so there is some risk to it and they haven’t been tested, […] but the other thing I’m concerned about is that Libra is centralized […] You just have trust Facebook to be a good operator, and I think I would under Zuckerberg, but if he ever moves out and if there is another CEO, I wouldn’t trust them.”

Bitcoin’s price is $10,480.85 BTC/USD exchange rate today. The real-time BTC market cap of $186.88 Billion currently ranks #1 with a chart dominance at 65.07%, daily trading volume of $6.48 Billion and live coin value change of BTC -3.94 in the last 24 hours.

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Author: Nirmala Velupillai

Bitcoin Mining to Help Reduce Wastage and Costs Associated with Oil Companies

Bitcoin Mining to Help Reduce Wastage and Costs Associated with Oil Companies

In a recent post shared by Bitcoin.com, arguments have been made in relation to how crypto mining activities can help oil companies reduce both their costs and excess oil, where the latter typically goes to waste.

According to the claims made, flare gas is deemed a liability for oil companies and for this reason, shale oil wells are being established all over North America. In particular, if a well is near oil companies, then it is believed that producers can pipe it to end consumers, notes the news outlet.

Another solution to this is either flaring or venting it into the atmosphere, but there is a limit to such activities, and anything that is done beyond a certain threshold will lead to increased costs. This is where crypto mining could get oil companies out of a rather sticky situation.

More specifically, setting up bitcoin mining equipment at oil production sites will reduce wastage of excess oil, while creating revenue-generating opportunities for oil companies. Furthermore, the mining rewards garnered are reasoned as having more value than the prices charged to get rid of this excess. Most importantly, this ensures that the environment is not exposed to harmful greenhouse gases such as methane gas.

Firms Currently Working on Services that Convert Gas into Electricity

Bitcoin.com has since provided examples of firms providing such services. First, we have Upstream Data. It turns out that the firm carries an array of mining datacenters of different configurations that oil companies can either rent or buy. The average cost of an all-in-one Ohmm Combo with up to 125kW costs roughly USD$21,400.

The CEO of Upstream Data, Stephan Barbour has since seen his business rise, noting that this validates the fact that crypto mining can resolve this current issue.

In particular, he said:

“I believe the future of bitcoin mining is in the oil and gas industry due to the enormity of the energy produced and wasted.”

Another company involved in this business sector that has been provided as an example is called EZ Blockchain.

Here’s what the Founder of EZ, Sergii Gerasymovych shared to the news outlet:

“Our primary area of operation and target market is the Bakken region in North Dakota, which has very rich gas being flared, with over 1,500 BTU/ft3. Raw gas is dirty, it consists of methane, butane, hexane, pentane, ethane and other gases. NGL companies are required by law to clean it before it can be burned, and producers spend money on that.”

EZ Blockchain has designed a flare mitigation system, which can be implanted on oil wells and used for mining digital coins. They also carry something called EZ Smartbox, which converts gas into electricity to be used in processing data as well as in mining cryptocurrencies.

At the moment, EZ Blockchain is working alongside an oil producer in Bakken, with plans to establish a partnership with another.

Gerasymovych believes that,

“There is enough wasted gas in North Dakota alone to power a third of Bitcoin’s whole network. Bitcoin mining can be done completely off-grid, solving an environmental problem.”

US-based Crusoe Energy Systems is currently in the works of entering said market and so far, the startup has raised $5.1 million altogether in a seed fund raising led by Bain Capital Ventures and Founders Fund Pathfinder reports Bitcoin.com.

Possible Obstacles Preventing Oil Companies from Considering Crypto Mining

Given the potential benefits that arise from allowing crypto miners to use excess gas, there still remains some obstacles. Gerasymovych does expect an increase in mining equipment installation moving forward, but this will be done over the course of time.

He reasons that the gas industry is quite conservative and that small to midsize businesses will not consider the likes of crypto mining immediately. Another possible concern that may arise for oil products is the cost associated with installing said equipment. This is especially a problem because the flaring gas concern requires “very big mining operations to be built”.

Other possible concerns that may come up in terms of the datacenters include maintenance, rigs, pipes and strong internet connection among others.

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Author: Nirmala Velupillai