The Daily: Revolut to Launch in North America, US Startup Presents Telegram Alternative

The Daily: Revolut to Launch in North America, US Startup Presents Telegram Alternative

The Daily Digital bank Revolut is planning to expand its operations in America and Russia. Also, payment card provider Fuzex signs an agreement with Dash, a US-based startup offers an alternative to Telegram, and crypto firm Smart Valor receives approval as a financial operator in Switzerland. Also read: Robinhood Aiming for IPO, Dodgers to Give Away Crypto Tokens Revolut Enters Markets in America, Canada, Russia UK-based online bank Revolut has some serious plans for expansion this year which include North America and the Russian Federation. Its cofounder and CEO Nikolay Storonsky recently revealed that the waiting list in the US now numbers 60,000 potential customers. Storonsky announced the plans to launch in the United States and Canada during the Techcrunch Disrupt conference noting that his company intends to start issuing its cards no later than December. Besides the debit card, Revolut offers through its app a checking account and the ability to transfer and spend fiat money globally using an exchange rate excluding forex fees. The service also features a crypto wallet and supports buying, holding and selling cryptocurrencies. The company claims the assets are kept offline, in a cold storage. In August, the digital bank launched a contactless card, Revolut Metal, which comes with higher withdrawal limits and offers cryptocurrency cash back on purchases. Earlier this summer, this British startup with Russian roots announced its intentions to enter the Russian market, promising to issue multicurrency cards and offer low-cost, bank-free services by the end of 2018. The company plans to use the platform of the Russian payments processor Qiwi and abide by the local law which requires implementing identity verification procedures (KYC). According to media reports, Revolut’s Russian card will support payments and transfers in 130 currencies and worldwide ATM withdrawals. Fuzex to Add Support for Dash Fuzex, the payment card project which chose bitcoin cash (BCH) as its base currency, has recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Dash Core Group that will lead to the integration of the coin into its platform. The new Fuzex card supporting dash payments is expected in the fourth quarter of this year. Commenting on the agreement, the chief executive of Fuzex Jae-Hun Bae said: Our goal is to grow the Fuzex ecosystem by adding various…

Citigroup to Let Investors Trade Custodian-Held Cryptocurrency, Sources Claim

Citigroup to Let Investors Trade Custodian-Held Cryptocurrency, Sources Claim

U.S. multinational bank Citigroup is developing a cryptocurrency product to give institutional investors access to crypto markets without owning cryptoassets directly, anonymous sources told Business Insider September 9. Citigroup, which had previously taken a centralized approach to cryptocurrency, will reportedly use a revamped version of the American Depositary Receipts (ADR) – a type of security issued since the 1920s that represents securities of a non-U.S. company – to let investors indirectly trade crypto. The end product will be known as a Digital Asset Receipt (DAR), the sources claim. According to the “people with knowledge of the plans,” a DAR “works much like” an ADR, both “giving U.S. investors a way to own foreign stocks that don’t otherwise trade on U.S. exchanges.” “The foreign stock is held by a bank, which then issues the depository receipt. In this case, the cryptocurrency is held by a custodian and the DAR is issued by Citigroup,” Business Insider explains, paraphrasing the sources. While no timeframe was mentioned for a potential rollout and Citigroup declined to comment, the news comes at a pertinent time for cryptocurrency markets. As Cointelegraph reported, September 9 saw U.S. regulator the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issue a surprise temporary ban on the first crypto-related exchange-traded notes (ETNs), citing “confusion” among investors. At the same time, the fate of multiple Bitcoin and Ethereum exchange-traded funds (ETFs) remains a hot topic of conversation, the SEC having rejected a string of Bitcoin ETF applications in August.

Kucoin Expands Into Australia After $3M Bitcoin Australia Deal

Kucoin Expands Into Australia After $3M Bitcoin Australia Deal

Exchanges Kucoin is expanding into Australia after it agreed to invest $3 million in Bitcoin Australia. The deal is seen as a win-win for both cryptocurrency exchanges, each seeking to expand into its own direction – Kucoin establishing a niche in the rapidly growing Australian market. Bitcoin Australia is targeting the UK next.   Also read: As Zimbabweans Struggle For Cash, Even The Country’s Only Bitcoin ATM Has Run Dry Kucoin Gets Leg Up In Australia Mr. Gan Kucoin chief executive Michael Gan on Sunday announced the Singapore cryptocurrency exchange had injected $3 million into Bitcoin Australia in a deal that is expected to grow its footprint in Australia. “Now, I would like to inform you about our latest key partnership,” Gan said in an update on Twitter. “I have been told that some users noted that Kucoin has accomplished investing in Bitcoin Australia, a leading Australian cryptocurrency exchange. I want to confirm that this is true,” he said. Earlier, Rupert Hackett, Bitcoin Australia’s chief executive, told the Australian Financial Review that the cash injection will help Bitcoin Australia expand operations into 27 new markets in the next two years. The company currently operates only in Australia, the Netherlands and Canada. UK is Next Target Hackett said the deal will result in increased demand for cryptocurrency from both Australian and international investors. “It will effectively create an exchange for intermediate and advanced traders,” he was quoted as saying. “The UK is our next primary target. We want it to be seamless with the payment infrastructure in the UK and build up the brand,” Hackett said. He added that Bitcoin Australia presently offers the ability to purchase cryptocurrency, and wants to diversify to include a bespoke experience. Kucoin has more than four million users on its books and transacts over half a billion United States dollars per month. In the 24 hours to press time, about $13.1 million worth of bitcoin had changed hands on the exchange. “This (deal) is not only a great strategic decision but will be an excellent long-lasting partnership for us to help cryptocurrency grow,” said Gan, Kucoin chief executive. Threats Of Harm Last week, Australian financial markets regulator, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), said it will tighten control of cryptocurrency exchanges and…

Monero Wallet Provider Releases Web-Based Wallet for Tor Browser

Monero Wallet Provider Releases Web-Based Wallet for Tor Browser

XMRWallet.com, an open-source, client-side Monero wallet provider, has released a new web-based wallet for the Tor web browser, the company announced in a Reddit post on Aug. 28. The post notes that there had been a high demand for such a wallet from XMR users. Now they can send and receive the private and untraceable cryptocurrency through what claims to be the first Monero web wallet for the distributed and anonymous Tor network. Within the Tor network, Monero (XMR) is the cryptocurrency of choice among many users. For the advocates of a truly decentralized future and financial anonymity, the pairing has proven to be extremely favorable among the community. The address for this wallet is xmrwalletdatuxds.onion. The .onion domain host suffix is used specifically for websites on the Tor browser. Explaining the reasoning behind the addresses name, the team said, “After long consideration and hundreds upon hundreds of onion addresses generated to choose from, this was the best pick and easy to remember.” XMR wallets have previously had a tricky past with use and storage over the Tor browser. According to the Monero GitHub, Monero wasn’t made to integrate with Tor and, therefore, several steps should be taken to use XMR over the network. Graphical User Interface (GUI) XMR wallets also suffered from the same problem, requiring users to navigate some rather complicated steps to set up and more so to connect to Tor. XMRWallet.com says that, with Xmrwallet’s .onion web-wallet, darknet marketplace users will have an easier time utilizing the available service. Increasing accessibility to marketplaces and services for XMR holders via the Tor browser could open up many doors for users of XMR and Tor.   Disclaimer. Cointelegraph does not endorse any content or product on this page. While we aim at providing you all important information that we could obtain, readers should do their own research before taking any actions related to the company and carry full responsibility for their decisions, nor this article can be considered as an investment advice.

Bitcoin Retains Bear Bias Despite Recovery From 25-Day Low

Bitcoin Retains Bear Bias Despite Recovery From 25-Day Low

Bitcoin’s (BTC) recovery from 25-day lows seen over the weekend has done little to alleviate the near-term bearish bias, technical studies indicate. The leading cryptocurrency fell to $6,119 on Bitfinex on Saturday – the lowest level since Aug. 14 – bolstering the bearish setup established by a sudden $1,000 drop witnessed during a 24-hour period in the middle of the last week. However, the drop to 3.5-week lows also pushed the intraday relative strength index (RSI) into oversold territory below 30.00. As a result, the sell-off has stalled in the last 36 hours, although corrective rallies have been shallow. Notably, the cryptocurrency’s failure to scale $6,400 in a convincing manner despite signs of bullish reversal on intraday charts indicates the bearish sentiment is still quite strong. Hence, the next big move is more likely to be on the downside. At press time, BTC is changing hands at $6,290, representing a 0.6 percent rise in a 24-hour basis. Daily candlestick chart The rising wedge breakdown and the downward sloping 5-day and 10-day moving averages (MAs), as seen in the chart above, indicate the path of least resistance is to the downside. The RSI of 39.14 is also biased toward the bears. Daily line chart As can be seen, BTC suffered a pennant breakdown on the daily line chart on Saturday, signaling a revival of the long-term bear market. Hence, prices could re-test the June lows below $5,800 in the next few days. 4-hour chart The bullish divergence of the RSI has set the stage for a stronger corrective rally, however, it is likely to happen only above the trendline hurdle, currently located at $6,420. View BTC risks falling to $6,000 (February low) and could suffer deeper losses in the near-term. A stronger corrective rally toward 10-day MA of $6,746 cannot be ruled out if the cryptocurrency convincingly scales the immediate hurdle at $6,420, but the gains will likely be short-lived as the short-term MAs are trending south. Disclosure: The author holds no cryptocurrency assets at the time of writing. Bitcoin image via Shutterstock; Charts by Trading View Join 10,000+ traders who come to us to be their eyes on the charts and sign up for Markets Daily, sent Monday-Friday. By signing up, you agree to our terms & conditions and privacy policy The…

Interstellar Arrives: Visa, Citi-Backed Chain Acquired By Stellar Startup

Interstellar Arrives: Visa, Citi-Backed Chain Acquired By Stellar Startup

Interstellar: Visa, Citi-Backed Chain Acquired By Stellar Startup9-10-18 A long-rumored acquisition that finds two of the crypto industry’s leading entrepreneurs teaming to back the world’s sixth-largest blockchain has been confirmed. Announced Monday, Chain, which raised more than $40 million from financial institutions including Visa and Nasdaq, in the process helping define the narrative for business interest in the technology through its partnerships and stage appearances, has been acquired in an undisclosed deal by Lightyear.io, a startup building on the Stellar protocol. Closed last Thursday, the deal will find both brands combining to form a new entity called Interstellar to be helmed by former RRE Ventures partner Adam Ludwin, who will serve as CEO, and Jed McCaleb, the creator of the XRP and Stellar protocols, who will be CTO. The combined company will retain “100 percent” of Chain’s employees, according to Ludwin, including co-founder Devon Gundry, who will remain on as chief product officer. All told, about 60 employees are now employed by Interstellar, Ludwin said. While terms of the deal were not disclosed, Ludwin affirmed in interview that shareholders were bought out and that it was “a good deal for investors.” Early estimates had pegged the deal as valued at nearly $200 million, which if true, would make it one of the year’s largest. However, while interest will likely remain high on the deal’s lingering details, Ludwin and McCaleb were keen in interviews and statements to place their emphasis on the future. In fact, Ludwin went so far as to suggest that the acquisition by Lightyear shouldn’t be viewed as a change in direction, even though Chain’s work focused on private blockchains. Ludwin told CoinDesk: “If you look at our work with Visa, Citi, in every case, we made huge progress, but we would also find ourselves at an impasse when it was the partners who had to instantiate a blockchain. We needed a chain that anyone could access.” In Ludwin’s words, Chain got “Stellar envy,” when it realized the open-source project was succeeding on its goal of creating a platform for asset issuance, albeit largely with startups. At the time, McCaleb, Ludwin said, encountered a reciprocal problem. Created in 2015 and gaining a network of users through its non-profit, its developers and entrepreneurs were…

Bitcoin Markets Volatile After US SEC Suspends Trading in Two Crypto-Based Securities

Bitcoin Markets Volatile After US SEC Suspends Trading in Two Crypto-Based Securities

US regulators banned trading of XBT Provider’s Bitcoin and Ether Tracker One securities Sunday, September 9, briefly sending cryptocurrency markets tumbling. Citing “confusion” among investors, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued a notice that two exchange-traded notes (ETNs) –  Bitcoin Tracker One (“CXBTF”) and Ether Tracker One (“CETHF”) –  would cease trading until September 20. “The Commission temporarily suspended trading in the securities CXBTF and CETHF because of confusion amongst market participants regarding these instruments,” the SEC’s statement reads, continuing: “[T]he Commission cautions broker-dealers, shareholders, and prospective purchasers that they should carefully consider the foregoing information along with all other currently available information and any information subsequently issued by the company.” XBT Provider has operated Bitcoin Tracker One since May 2015 when it became the first bitcoin-based ETN available on a regulated exchange, debuting on Sweden’s NASDAQ. Ether Tracker One joined in October 2017, reaching the same milestone, while XBT has since also released Bitcoin and Ether Tracker Euro options. The SEC meanwhile warned brokers over strict compliance requirements in enforcing its latest temporary ban. “If any broker or dealer enters any quotation which is in violation of the rule, the Commission will consider the need for prompt enforcement action,” the statement adds. The SEC’s move comes amid a testing time for cryptocurrency investors versus the U.S. regulatory establishment, the regulator having recently rejected a slew applications for a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF). The SEC’s most recent rejection in late August barely impacted markets, commentators since arguing that the appearance of a crypto ETF is likely guaranteed at some point in the future and is in itself a mixed blessing for Bitcoin. Bitcoin is currently at $6,300, up 1.59 percent on the day to press time. Ethereum is still trading just below $200, a level it slipped under this weekend for the first time since November, 2017.

WeChat Now Censoring Bitmain and Crypto Price Prediction Accounts

WeChat Now Censoring Bitmain and Crypto Price Prediction Accounts

The WeChat messaging app is continuing its efforts to block official accounts that involve cryptocurrencies, now targeting those that distribute content for sales of bitcoin miners and cryptocurrency market analysis. The official sales channel of bitcoin mining giant Bitmain, which has the WeChat ID “antminersale,” appears to be blocked on Monday. As of press time, searching for content previously distributed by the account leads to a page that says it has violated relevant rules. The notice states: “Following users’ complaints, the platform [WeChat] has reviewed and discovered that this account – without having acquired authorized credentials or licenses – has been publishing and distributing information of relevant businesses it is involved in.” A company representative has not responded to a CoinDesk request for details on what could have led to the move to censor the channel. However, another Bitmain official account that provides product information for mining equipment – “antminer_official” – still remains active as of press time. In recent days, WeChat – owned by internet giant Tencent and now the most popular messaging tool in China – has also moved to block accounts that are involved in offering content related to cryptocurrency market prediction and analysis. For instance, over the weekend, one user who operates an official account called “Goldcoins” that had been publishing crypto market analysis for the past nine months confirmed on Zhihu, China’s equivalent to Quora, that the feed has been shut down on WeChat. Further, the official account of a blockchain project called Delphy – an ethereum-based application similar to the Augur prediction protocol – also became unavailable on Monday. In both cases, the reason provided by WeChat for the censorship is the same as stated on Bitmain’s sales channel. The move comes soon after Tencent recently targeted several major cryptocurrency media sources in China, some of which were allegedly involved in distributing information for initial coin offerings on WeChat. So far, more than 30 official accounts relating to blockchain and cryptocurrency have been blocked by the messaging giant, according to account information verified by CoinDesk. WeChat image via Shutterstock The leader in blockchain news, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent…

Can Bitcoin Save Argentina?

Can Bitcoin Save Argentina?

Michael J. Casey is the chairman of CoinDesk’s advisory board and a senior advisor for blockchain research at MIT’s Digital Currency Initiative. The following article originally appeared in CoinDesk Weekly, a custom-curated newsletter delivered every Sunday exclusively to our subscribers. When people ask me what got me into bitcoin, I often answer with one word: “Argentina. ” Amid the sad news that the South American country is again gripped by a currency crisis, I’m getting a strong reminder of that connection. Below, I explain it and explore one crypto team’s proposal for the Argentine government to overcome this latest meltdown with a stability-seeking strategy that partly includes bitcoin. Over the past 30 years, Argentina has tried a diverse toolkit of mainstream economic solutions to its persistent drift into chaos, and each has failed. Perhaps a new, outside-the-box, crypto-friendly approach is needed. And with other emerging-market countries now suffering “contagion” from Argentina’s, Turkey’s and other developing countries’ woes, maybe there’s a lesson for the wider world too. Love-hate My Argentina-bitcoin connection stems from six years spent in Buenos Aires during the previous decade. While my family and I adored living there, we had a tortured, love-hate relationship with the country. On the plus side, in addition to its great food, wine and culture, we made some of the best, most loving, loyal friends we’ve ever made in our adult lives in Argentina. On the negative side: broken civil institutions and a history of corrupt governments ensured that a dysfunctional economy would repeatedly, almost inevitably, drift toward monetary crises. This stoked inflation and bred uncertainty, making it increasingly difficult to make economic plans. Eventually, the latter problem forced us to leave. We wanted our kids to grow up in a society that offered greater long-term opportunities. Even after we’d made the decision to go, Argentina’s dysfunction almost destroyed us financially, when we struggled to get our life savings out of the country — as readers of Paul Vigna’s and my first book, The Age of Cryptocurrency, will know. What does all this have to do with bitcoin? Well, it starts with the core social problem of trust, which, in essence, cryptocurrencies and blockchains strive to resolve with their unique, decentralized approach to recordkeeping and value exchange. Both the…

Australian State Pilot Puts Driver’s Licenses on a Blockchain

Australian State Pilot Puts Driver’s Licenses on a Blockchain

Australia’s New South Wales (NSW) government is turning to blockchain for a state-wide test of its driver license digitization program scheduled for November. In an announcement on Aug. 20, the NSW government said it will conduct the pilot for 140,000 license holders in the state prior to a formal roll-out in 2019. Secure Logic, an Australian IT firm and technological partner on the project, said on Monday its blockchain platform will underpin the initiative to secure data in a distributed fashion. Called TrustGrid, the blockchain network has already been trialed in a preliminary pilot of the scheme conducted in the state’s Dubbo city last year, as ZDNet reported on Monday. The goal of the new program is to use a distributed network to authenticate and store driver license data, so that users can present their digital credentials via a mobile application. In this way, they will no longer need to carry physical licenses to prove their ages and identities when checked by police or entering pubs and clubs. The initiative follows a bill passed in May that granted the legality of government projects that seek to let residents present license data digitally, for instance, via a blockchain network, the report said. The scheme is in line with the country’s overall goal of adopting blockchain and distributed ledger technology as part of its Digital Economy initiative, as CoinDesk reported last year. Currently, an Australian federal agency focused on scientific research is also working with IBM to develop a national blockchain aimed to let businesses carry out transactions based on smart legal contracts. Sydney landscape image via Shutterstock The leader in blockchain news, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups.