BitMEX Adds Native SegWit Support to Bitcoin Withdrawals, Non-Native Support Coming to Wallets

  • BitMEX adds native segwit address support, Bech32 to reduce transactions fees
  • The exchange will add Segwit non-native support to its wallet that will help them save 65% of block weight

Popular crypto derivatives exchange BitMEX is now supporting native SegWit address format, Bech32 to withdraw Bitcoin, announced the exchange on Dec. 12. This upgrade is effective immediately.

Starting now, BitMEX customers can withdraw to all three address formats, Bitcoin’s original address format Pay to Public Key Hash (P2PKH) whose address starts with number 1, Pay to Script Hash (P2SH) whose address starts with number 3, and the native SegWit address format Bech32 whose address starts with bc1.

However, it’s just for withdrawals, when depositing to BitMEX, you must still send the exchange’s Pay to Script Hash (P2SH) format addresses due to their multi-signature wallet solution.

This upgrade will reduce the usage of the exchange’s blockweight, allowing its customers to enjoy lower transaction fees.

“The key advantage of Bech32 addresses is that transaction fees can be saved when spending Bitcoin, which was already sent to a Bech32 address. Therefore this upgrade will not directly result in fee savings when customers withdraw from BitMEX, however in the next transaction, when the bitcoin already withdrawn from BitMEX is spent again, our customers may benefit from lower transaction fees.”

Last month Bitfinex exchange also added native SegWit support for Bitcoin withdrawals.

Segregated Witness or SegWit is an optional protocol upgrade first implemented in 2017 that increases block capacity and thereby help lower costs per transaction.

From 36.6% on Sept. 1st 2019, SegWit adoption hit its peak in early October at 56.8% only to drop. Currently, we are at a 51.9% adoption rate, as per Woobull Charts.

BitMEX further shared its future plan to enable Segwit non-native support to its wallet. This will help them save 65% of blockweight, more than the usual 25% to 40%, the exchange said.

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Author: AnTy

South Korea Seeks to Tax Transactions Involving CryptoCurrencies In 2020

Capital gains from transactions involving virtual currencies such as bitcoin may soon be taxed in South Korea, according to a report by the Korea Times.

The publication refers to government sources, and confirmation received from the Ministry of Economy and Finance. According to the report, a ministry official stated that related discussions have been occurring, and that there is a revised bill that will be “drawn up” by the first half of next year.

In addition, at the subcommittee level, there is a bill that will enhance transparency of virtual asset trading. If the bill were to pass, it will go into effect a year after the regulation is established.

The wrinkle, according to the report, is that there is still a less-than-clear definition of virtual assets. That is, the government has still not clarified if gains from virtual asset trading are considered gains from stock trading or real estate transactions.

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Author: Silvia A

Thanksgiving Brings New ATH Record for XRP Transactions

  • The increase in transactions has led to substantial speculation that the volume is based on market manipulation.
  • XRP has lost over 2% of its value in the last 24 hours.

The XRP community has a lot to be thankful for at this time of year. Recent reports from AMB Crypto indicate that XRP transactions are increasing, following a surge that just was recorded last week. Now, XRPL transactions have reached yet another all-time high, reaching 4.52 billion on Thursday.

Nik Bougalis, the Software Engineer at Ripple, stated, “That works out to an average sustained rate of 55 tps for 24 hours. Pretty cool.”

The XRP Chart website revealed that the most recent ATH, recorded on November 23rd, came just a day after the whole market fell below $200 billion by market cap. XRP was the most transacted cryptocurrency recorded that day, as Bitcoin and Ethereum followed. Based on this data, Ethereum stood at 631,000 transactions, while Bitcoin only recorded 306,000.

At the start of the year, the XRP transactions were still less than 600,000, prior to the major traction that the crypto asset gained in October. However, considering that the creation of new XRPL accounts didn’t follow this pattern, investors are left with nothing more than confusion and guessing.

Through the month, there’s been a lot of speculations. While some say that much of this volume came from the network’s BTC IOU testing, others are suspicious that market manipulation is taking place. Thomas Silkjær recently tweeted about the surge in transactions, stating that XRPL was capable of handling about 90 transactions each section, even though it was “under attack” by payments that were just burning fees.

GreenEggsnHam, another big member in the crypto community for XRP, posted to Twitter as well, stating that he thought this activity was nothing more than “another manipulation attempt.”

Based on the most recent discoveries by Elliptic, there’s been $400 million in XRP that have been connected with illegal transactions. Overall, those transactions account for under 0.2% of all XRP transactions, which suggests that the transactions are real, rather than padding for the volumes. Elliptic is a blockchain forensics provider from London.

At the time of writing, XRP is the #3 cryptocurrency by market cap, valued at $0.225201. It has lost 2.58% of its value in the last 24 hours.

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Author: Krystle M

Binance Is Surpassing Huobi Exchange Volume in China: New TokenAnalyst Report

  • Token Analyst recently reported on BTC transactions between exchanges this year.
  • The data revealed that more transactions exist from Binance to Huobi than vice versa.

One of the most popular and well-known cryptocurrency exchanges is Binance, and they’ve remained highly active this year with their volume and work on the expansion. The exchange, based in Malta, has been looking into potentially trading on other trading markets, coinciding with the efforts of the exchange to create a solid place in the industry.

China has seen a lot of activity in the cryptocurrency industry recently, and it seemingly has increased demand for cryptocurrency, based on reports from Token Analyst. In the report, the researchers found that a major portion of the cryptocurrency volumes had moved from Huobi wallets to Binance. Of those exchanges, 259,000 BTC was moved through 48,000 transactions. On average, a transaction was worth approximately 5.4 BTC.

The Huobi exchange was founded in China, and it predominantly serves the Asian market. With the massive outflow to Binance, it is possible that the exchange is losing a lot of their outflow in the Chinese market, which is instead moving to Binance.

Despite this movement, the second-largest “interflow” involved transactions from Binance to Huobi. With over 44,000 transactions, 137,000 BTC was transferred. Since there is an apparent reverse movement of Bitcoin, the report implies that Huobi is still maintaining some kind of hold on the Asian market. Huobi has announced recently that their exchange has major expansion plans to involve smartphones, hoping to secure some of the OTC markets.

Binance has a clear advantage over the Singapore-based exchange, based on the data shown in the report. With more BTC leaving Binance and reaching OTC exchanges and institutional platforms, there could be more movement to come, and Binance’s stronghold in the global cryptocurrency market isn’t likely to loosen anytime soon. Still, domestic exchanges have been banned in China for quite some time, and investors have been limited in their global exchange options for trading.

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Author: Krystle M

Keiser: Bitcoin Doesn’t Require Settlement Time, Giving It an Advantage Over Fiat Currency and Gold

  • Bitcoin’s transactions post directly to a ledger, connecting the settlement and the transaction directly.
  • Max Keiser criticized Brad Sherman for his negative stance on Bitcoin.

Max Keiser is the host of the Keiser Report, and he is a well-known bull of Bitcoin. Considering his stance, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that he sees Bitcoin as a superior option to fiat currency and gold. However, breaking down the cryptocurrency asset on November 7th, Keiser explained that Bitcoin manages to beat out both gold and fiat currency for its lack of required settlement.

Bitcoin inherently weaves together the transaction and settlement of any transaction, since moving Bitcoin between wallets is as simple as updating a ledger. The update means that miners confirm the transactions in real time, instantly settling and posting to the blockchain.

Keiser noted,

“There’s a lot of friction, both in paper and in gold. Bitcoin, uniquely, is self-settling – the transaction is the settlement. When the transaction hits, it settles.”

The episode featuring this topic coincided with the support from governments for paper fiat, while digital currencies from any country have been a major point of discussion. China appears to be interested in issuing a digital yuan. However, other central banks are looking to do the same, like the European Central Bank.

The use of digital transactions would make for a positive change in the cost and settlement times, but the connection with the fiat system makes these changes more of a political move. Keiser believes that the US dollar would ultimately be weaponized for sanctions, though the fact that they’d be controlled by central banks leaves them prone to censorship and other centralization issues.

Keiser took the time to criticize Brad Sherman, a US congressman and long-time Bitcoin critic who has pushed for cryptocurrency to be banned.

Keiser commented,

“Brad Sherman is going to a gunfight with a knife, he has failed to take on board exactly what the dimension of this battle is going to be.” He added that Sherman fails to see that “he’s already lost.”

As international sanctions plague Russia, the country has been rumored to be purchasing substantial amounts of Bitcoin to circumvent the policies.

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Author: Krystle M

SegWit Transactions Are On The Rise; Bitcoiner Makes A Deal With Binance’s CZ To Increase Adoption

Segregated Witness (SegWit) transactions on the Bitcoin network have recently increased. According to data taken from the network, the use of SegWit has spiked to 55% in September.

This is an optional protocol that helps the blockchain transactions to lower costs because it can accommodate more transactions in a single block. The SegWit protocol creates transactions which are around 25% smaller than non-SegWit ones.

Binance To Support SegWit

The CEO of Binance, Changpeng Zhao, has also indicated that the most important crypto exchange of the world could add support for SegWit transactions soon. As the exchange has a huge volume, it could help the network a lot.

In related news, Udi Wertheimer, a prominent Bitcoin developer, has affirmed that he would change the logo of his Twitter profile if the exchange added SegWit transactions. Despite signaling interest to do it, the exchange has been postponing the change for a long time now.

One of the main reasons why the upgrade has not happened yet is because SegWit is a “low priority” for the company. Zhao affirmed that current transactions “do work”, so upgrading them is not something that needs to be done as soon as possible.

Zhao has, however, hinted that the exchange could adopt SegWit transactions by 2020. Time will tell how this story will end, but the pressure for the world’s largest exchange to use this solution is growing a lot recently.

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Author: Gabriel Machado

Tether Whale Watchers Find Unsuccessful Attempt to Move $46 Billion Worth of USDT

Massive transactions are not something new to crypto traders. This is why nobody is surprised when the so-called whales, who are investors with huge amounts of cryptos, are active. A profile specialized in finding big transactions, Whale Alert, has recently affirmed that a huge Tether (USDT) transaction was spotted.

Initially, the profile reported that someone moved 46,140,337,592 USDT tokens (around $46,16 billion USD) to another wallet. However, it was soon discovered that the transaction did not actually go through. The profile lacked the funds to make such a transfer.

A Whale Or A Mistake?

The presence of whales is so prominent in the market that nobody is actually surprised when insanely high transactions happen. This time, however, it seems that people might have been too eager to affirm that it was actually a whale behind the trade.

For instance, there is simply not 46 billion USDT tokens in existence. In fact, their actual number is much more close to 4 billion USDT. This means that it is not possible that a person would actually hold that much money.

This prompted some people to affirm that the transaction was fake, while another affirmed that the block explorer could not lie or argued that a country was actually buying USDT.

Whale Alert ended the discussion by affirming that the invalid transaction only appeared on the profile because the system took some time to recognize that it was fake.

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Author: Gabriel Machado

PIVX And 200 Other Proof of Stake Blockchains May Be Vulnerable, Lunar Digital Assets Affirms

It seems that PIVX, a popular private transactions crypto, may be vulnerable to attacks together with 200 other chains. According to a recent report made by Lunar Digital Assets, there is a vulnerability of the system that can be currently exploited. Every chain using PIVX or its variants is possible to be attacked this way.

Basically, the attacker could exploit this specific vulnerability in order to get impossibly high staking rewards using the proof of stake system of the network.

This is not the first that this vulnerability is exploited. As soon as the PIVX devs found out about it, they rushed to fix the issue. However, another developer, BitGreen, has noticed that the problem was being exploited once more. Someone has probably figured how to undo the progress made by the team and started to use the exploit.

As soon as the developers discovered it, they notified all related companies of the bug and now PIVX is working once more to solve it and stop the attacks.

People Are Accusing the PIVX Team

The situation got heated recently after some people started to claim that the PIVX team might be behind the attacks. According to critics, the team knew of the bug and did nothing about it or failed to fix it properly.

Some others criticized the team for not having a timely response for the problem and simply standing still while the problem was still out there. This led some critics to theorize whether people from the company were exploiting the bug for money and used this inside source in a malicious way.

At the moment, the PIVX team has not explained publicly why the problem was not fixed months ago.

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Author: Bitcoin Exchange Guide News Team

Tokenized Securities Can Be Settled on tZERO’s Public Blockchain, Following Patent Win

  • tZERO can now settle transactions involving tokenized securities on a public blockchain ledger.
  • The tech platform is a subsidiary of Overstock.

Overstock’s tZERO platform makes it possible to participate in security token trading, and they’ve been making progress in their presence in the cryptocurrency industry lately. According to The Block, the subsidiary has just been granted a new patent that allows tokenized securities to be settled on the public blockchain directly.

tZERO announced the news on Tuesday, saying that the new technology will record trade data, along with the on-chain settlement data. The tech, which is being called Time Ordered Merkle Epoch (TOME), will post these details to the public blockchain ledgers. The use of TOME will also create a record of transactions that is fully immutable and auditable.

CEO Saum Noursalehi stated,

“It can be used in our suite of products, as well as licensed to companies across various industries that are seeking to maintain a tamper-proof and auditable record of time-series-based data.” Noursalehi added that the announcement shows the company’s “technological leadership in blockchain innovation.”

This is not the first patent that tZERO has gotten this year. Earlier in 2019, the platform secured a patent to create a “Crypto Integration Platform,” which makes it possible to merge cryptocurrencies with the legacy trading systems.

tZERO was founded in 2014, aiming to use blockchain technology as a way to change up Wall Street and the traditional financial market.

[Author Alert] The author’s opinions above are solely based on their own self-conducted research. Assume any and all authors are using, holding, trading and/or buying cryptoassets mentioned as a portion of his or her financial portfolio. Use information at your own risk, do you own research, never invest more than you are willing to lose.

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Author: Hank Klinger

LocalBitcoins Witnesses Surge in Trading Volumes in RUB Amid Cash-Trade Ban


LocalBitcoins will no longer accept transactions involving Finnish currency, according to the latest news in the crypto industry. The famous Peer-to-Peer cryptocurrency exchange based in Finland, announced this latest development early in the month, a decision which many local crypto enthusiasts believe will dent the country’s image.

Finland isn’t among the largest countries embracing digital assets in Europe. But with LocalBitcoins discontinuing use of the national fiat, many believe that this will hurt its reputation in the crypto world.

Yet, barely a month is gone, but a particular pattern is starting to form. According to CoinDance, the crypto exchange’s weekly chart has started to show the effect of the ban, with the Russian Ruble (RUB) showing growing volumes. The exodus started in June 1st, though it is still likely that the volume will drop.

Many leading companies are already seeing the pattern describing the fast plummet, although Russia’s capital is the most conspicuous. During the first week of the month alone, trades registered a record high of RUB 1,174 million in volume, before it fell to RUB 1,104 million by the end of the second week.

But the surge resumed soon after, with the volumes going back to the May 2019 highs. The fourth week of June finally recorded an incredible RUB 1,188 million in volume. The graph detailing the change effectively painted Russia as a hot market for LocalBitcoins.

For a while now, LocalBitcoins has been maintaining impressive records in South America. The exchange’s weekly volumes across Columbia, Peru, Venezuela, Chile, and Argentina have always remained high. But the announcement also had an impact in the trading volumes.

In Buenos Aries, its weekly volumes from the start of the month to mid-June reduced from $13.71 million to $10.53 million. The cash-removal directive also affected the exchange’s performance in Columbia where the volume traded reduced from May’s $9.98 billion to $7.16 billion recorded, during the first week of June. The amount has, however, stabilized at $9.2 billion.

It should be remembered that the decision to ban fiat trades wasn’t arrived at overnight. It is something which LocalBitcoins had been pondering about ever since the local financial watchdog, the Financial Supervisory Authority [FSA] was introduced.

The body came into existence in March 2019, but even with its existence, the law is expected to fully come into effect later in November 2019. The law will classify cryptos as legal assets, identified by the Finnish law. Other changes to the law include amendments on the Anti-Money Laundering laws as well as the Countering Financial Terrorism Act.

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Author: Lillian Peter