Square’s Bitcoin Integration Turns $37 Million Revenue in Q2 2018

Square’s Bitcoin Integration Turns $37 Million Revenue in Q2 2018

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s payments service Square generated over $70 million in Bitcoin revenues in the first half of 2018, the company revealed in a quarterly report to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) August 1. Square, which began offering users the option to buy, sell, and store Bitcoin in its wallet late last year, saw $37 million in revenue from the cryptocurrency in Q2 2018, compared with $34 million for the previous quarter. Total revenue for the company for Q2 2018 was $814 million, according to the report. Square caused a stir in February when it rolled out Bitcoin buy and sell functionality to almost all users of its Square Cash app, with reactions suggesting clients had been waiting for the option for some time. “We support Bitcoin because we see it as a long-term path towards greater financial access for all. This is a small step,” Dorsey tweeted at the time. Since then, the company has worked on resolving regulatory hurdles in jurisdictions such as New York, acquiring a BitLicense in June to enable residents to transact with Bitcoin via the app. At the same time, Dorsey’s bullish forecasts for Bitcoin have contrasted with the line taken by his flagship Twitter, which together with giants Facebook and Google moved to ban cryptocurrency advertising earlier this year. Facebook and Google have now partially reversed the ban. Actual profits from Bitcoin for Square meanwhile remain low, with costs totalling almost as much as revenue –– a situation which remains unchanged since Cointelegraph reported on it in May.

Shares in Novogratz’s Crypto Bank Galaxy Digital Plunge 20% in Toronto Exchange Debut

Shares in Novogratz’s Crypto Bank Galaxy Digital Plunge 20% in Toronto Exchange Debut

Shares in Mike Novogratz’s crypto-focused merchant bank plunged 20 percent during their trading debut on a major Canadian stock exchange Wednesday, August 1, CNBC reported. After opening at $2.75 Canadian dollars ($2.11 USD) apiece for their first ever listing on Toronto’s TSX Venture Exchange, shares in Galaxy Digital LP fell 20 percent in the first half hour of trading. Shares were down further to $1.98 CAD ($1.52 USD) as of 1:48 p.m. ET August 1, according to CNBC. Galaxy Digital LP is trading as ‘Galaxy Digital Holdings Ltd’ under the stock exchange’s GLXY ticker, slightly renamed after its founder, former Goldman Sachs partner and crypto bull Mike Novogratz, opted to secure the listing via a so-called “reverse takeover” route. Lacking the two years’ of audited financials required for a U.S. initial public offering (IPO), Novogratz instead acquired a Canadian crypto start-up Coin Capital, which he then merged with an already TSX-listed Canadian shell company Bradmer Pharmaceuticals, CNBC reports.   TSX is the largest stock exchange in Canada and the third largest in North America by capitalization, following the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and Nasdaq. As Cointelegraph has previously reported, Galaxy initially sold shares at $5 CAD (about $3.80 USD) each in a private placement this January, weeks after Bitcoin (BTC) had peaked to industry record highs around $20,000 in December 2017. Before approving the listing, Canadian regulators subjected the firm to close scrutiny and pushed back its trading debut from April to August, during which a protracted downtrend in the crypto markets saw Bitcoin dip yet further to below $6,000. In late June, Galaxy Digital released its first quarterly report for 2018, posting $134 million in losses with $85.5 million as an unrealized loss on digital assets.

Philippines’ Proposed ICO Rules Presume All Tokens Are Securities

Philippines’ Proposed ICO Rules Presume All Tokens Are Securities

The Philippines is close to introducing new regulations governing how companies can legally raise funds through initial coin offerings (ICOs). To that end, the country’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) published draft rules governing ICOs on Thursday, and is now seeking public feedback before they can go into effect. The regulations notably assume that tokens issued in all ICOs are securities by default unless the issuers can prove otherwise. The financial watchdog commented in a press release that most ICOs conducted in the Philippines have argued that their tokens were not securities and should not be governed by the SEC. However, the regulator said it would be “dangerous” to let investors make judgments over the matter since they don’t have sufficient resources to identify which ICOs might be scams, continuing: “Therefore, the SEC will put the burden of proving that the tokens issued through an ICO in the hands of the proponents by presuming that the tokens are securities unless proven otherwise.” Under the proposed rules, companies registered in the Philippines and wishing to conduct a token sale would have to submit an initial assessment application to the SEC at least 90 days ahead of the issuance. Apart from details of the project team – including names, ages and resumes – the application will also need to contain a review of the ICO proposal and its credibility, as well as a legal opinion from an independent third party to justify why the token is not a security. After that, the SEC will issue a written report stating its decision on whether the proposed ICO is effectively a securities issuance or not. The draft further states that ICO issuers can continue with their project even if their tokens are deemed by the SEC as securities, as long as they complete a registration process and obtain approval from the regulator before a token sale can commence. If an ICO is only to be issued to a maximum of 20 people, or will be limited to institutional investors such as banks, insurance and investment firms, it could be exempted from the registration requirement. The regulatory move comes as various countries worldwide are either developing legal frameworks to govern ICOs or are issuing guidelines on how to avoid falling foul of…

Bitcoin Bulls Defend $7,450 But Need Progress Soon

Bitcoin Bulls Defend $7,450 But Need Progress Soon

Having defended the key support of $7,455, bitcoin bulls now need a quick move higher in order to neutralize the threat of a short-term bearish reversal. As of writing, the cryptocurrency is trading at $7,560 on Bitfinex – down 11 percent from the recent high of $8,507, as per Bitfinex data, but is still up more than 30 percent compared to the June 24 low of $5,755. So, it is safe to say the bullish trend is still intact. Further, BTC’s solid defense of $7,455 (38.2 percent Fibonacci retracement of the rally from the June low) seen in the last 28 hours has raised hopes of a minor corrective rally. However, the bulls have little margin for error, i.e. the upside needs to gather traction soon as the short-duration technical studies have already adopted a bearish bias, as seen in the chart below. Daily chart The bearish crossover between the 5-day and 10-day moving average (MA) indicates a short-term bearish setup. The relative strength index (RSI) has breached the key ascending trendline in favor of the bears. Hourly chart The 50-hour, 100-hour, and 200-hour MAs are trending south and are located one below the other, indicating the path of least resistance is to the downside. The RSI has dropped below 50.00 (in bearish territory). Clearly, the short-term charts are aligned in favor of the bears. So, there is a real risk of BTC falling below the crucial support of $7,455 in the next 24 hours. Moreover, acceptance below that level would only bolster the already bearish setup discussed above and would confirm a short-term bullish-to-bearish trend change. View BTC’s solid defense of $7,455 (38.2 percent Fibonacci retracement) is encouraging, but a positive follow-through needs to happen soon to invalidate the short-term bearish technical studies. Lack of positive follow-through in the next few hours will likely yield a drop below $7,455. A daily close (as per UTC) below $7,455 would confirm a short-term bullish-to-bearish trend change and would open the doors to $7,000 (psychological support). On the higher side, a close (as per UTC) above $8,000 would put the bulls back into the driver’s seat. Disclosure: The author holds no cryptocurrency assets at the time of writing. Bitcoin image via Shutterstock; Charts by Trading View The leader in blockchain news, CoinDesk…

Coinmarketcap Launches Professional API and Adds Derivatives Markets

Coinmarketcap Launches Professional API and Adds Derivatives Markets

Markets and Prices Coinmarketcap (CMC), the popular cryptocurrency markets tracker portal, has launched a professional-grade API for aggregated market data and added support for derivatives markets as part of a major quarterly overhaul of its operations. Also Read: 90% of Corporate “Blockchain” Pilots Will Never Materialize, Researchers Say CMC Professional API The professional API is meant to offer developers and institutional funds the ability to use CMC aggregated data in product offerings, providing price, market capitalization, conversions, and trading pair data that the site aggregates from hundreds of exchanges. The company explains that it was launched after a month-long feedback and beta process with hundreds of users. This tool is meant for projects and investors that need to run more accurate simulations and backtest trading strategies. The service has a few price tiers from $79 to $699 a month and there is even an option for a custom Enterprise plan with up to five years of historical data. “As part of our mission to continue growing the cryptocurrency sector with our partners, our professional API will ensure that the CoinMarketCap data that users know and trust can be integrated into every application. Our API comes with a best-in-class developer dashboard that will help every developer – from hobbyist to large-scale cryptocurrency product teams – make the most of our data,” said founder Brandon Chez. Additional Features The CMC quarterly update also includes the addition of derivatives markets, new exchange ranking, a newsletter, an events page, an iOS app update, and a glossary of crypto terms. With the addition of derivatives markets, the site now support futures, options and OTC exchanges, and the company promises to add other data comprehensively. The brand new events page will feature coverage of “community-led and fringe events.” The iOS app now includes currency conversions between 32 fiat and five cryptocurrencies. As part of the exchange ranking update, standard fee, no-fee, and transaction mining exchanges are now marked clearly. Two weeks ago we reported that, Coinmarketcap responded to accusations that it is implicit in supporting wash trading after a platform called Crypto Exchange Ranks published detailed allegations of how the popular tracker incentives exchanges to report fake volumes. The company declared its determination to support “transparency and clarity”. “As our new…

Square’s Bitcoin Integration Turns $37 Mln Revenue in Q2 2018

Square’s Bitcoin Integration Turns $37 Mln Revenue in Q2 2018

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s payments service Square generated over $70 mln in Bitcoin revenues in the first half of 2018, the company revealed in a quarterly report to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) August 1. Square, which began offering users the option to buy, sell, and store Bitcoin in its wallet late last year, saw $37 mln in revenue from the cryptocurrency in Q2 2018, compared with $34 mln for the previous quarter. Total revenue for the company for Q2 2018 was $814 mln, according to the report. Square caused a stir in February when it rolled out Bitcoin buy and sell functionality to almost all users of its Square Cash app, with reactions suggesting clients had been waiting for the option for some time. “We support Bitcoin because we see it as a long-term path towards greater financial access for all. This is a small step,” Dorsey tweeted at the time. Since then, the company has worked on resolving regulatory hurdles in jurisdictions such as New York, acquiring a BitLicense in June to enable residents to transact with Bitcoin via the app. At the same time, Dorsey’s bullish forecasts for Bitcoin have contrasted with the line taken by his flagship Twitter, which together with giants Facebook and Google moved to ban cryptocurrency advertising earlier this year. Facebook and Google have now partially reversed the ban. Actual profits from Bitcoin for Square meanwhile remain low, with costs totalling almost as much as revenue –– a situation which remains unchanged since Cointelegraph reported on it in May.

Japanese Bank Mizuho Sued by Mt Gox Customer

Japanese Bank Mizuho Sued by Mt Gox Customer

News According to regional reports the Japanese financial institution, Mizuho Bank, is being accused of creating issues for Mt Gox customers who were hoping to withdraw funds after the exchange collapsed. Allegedly, even though the bank stopped processing Mt Gox withdrawals, it continued to accept deposits right before the exchange went under. Also Read: Bitcoin Cash Fans Celebrate Independence Day One Year Later  Mt Gox and Mizuho Bank Mt Gox customers have a bone to pick with the Japanese financial establishment Mizuho Bank Ltd (TYO:8411; NYSE:MFG), as a few Mt Gox clients claim the bank has been secretive about its relationship with the now-defunct trading platform. Just before the exchange went under as customers were unable to process withdrawals, Mt Gox CEO Mark Karpeles allegedly decided to keep the bank account open. The bank tied to Mt Gox allegedly continued accepting wire deposits, according to an interview with Joseph Lack from California. California Case: Joseph Lack v. Mizuho Bank In January of 2014 Lack sent $40,000 USD to the Mt Gox account held at Mizuho Bank and the financial institution accepted the funds. One month later Mt Gox fizzled into thin air and would never open again. So Lack decided to take Karpeles and Mizuho to court because he believes both parties should have disclosed information to customers concerning the issues with Mt Gox. Lack also says Mizuho Bank committed “fraud” by not processing withdrawals, but still accepted people’s money through wire deposits, charging transaction fees in the process. Mizuho Bank Denies Allegations, But Couldn’t Get the Case Dismissed Mizuho Bank has denied the allegations, and had tried to get the case dismissed in the US. However, the California court decided to side with Lack and the motion to dismiss was denied. Mizuho Bank’s defense details why they continued accepting customer deposits.     “To accept a wire transfer is passive conduct, especially because, by its nature, a wire transfer is not a communication between people, but just a transmission of information electronically from a machine at one bank to a machine at another. Indeed, Lack is not alleged to have had any direct contact with Mizuho,” explains the Japanese financial institution. Lack says the bank should not have stayed silent and it shouldn’t have accepted the deposits. The plaintiff…

Decentralized Payment Network Logos Raises $3 Million in Seed Funding

Decentralized Payment Network Logos Raises $3 Million in Seed Funding

In-development decentralized payments platform Logos Network has successfully raised $3 million in seed funding, the startup announced Thursday. Led by ZhenFund, the round also saw participation from Digital Currency Group, INBlockchain, Blockwater Capital, Global Blockchain Innovative Capital, AlphaBlock Capital and AlphaCoin Fund, according to a press release. Logos is working to build a payments network inspired by the bitcoin blockchain, with a focus on a scalable, rapid network that still maintains high levels of security. The firm’s CEO, Michael Zochowski, said the platform’s advantage comes from its “novel architecture,” adding: “We’re similar to bitcoin [but] a little bit more robust, cheaper and massively more scalable. We’re very much focused on our core payments functionality rather than a general purpose network.” As such, the company is developing a blockchain that combines aspects of various other existing protocols, including delegated proof-of-stake and sharding, to build a network capable of “hundreds of thousands of transactions per second on the first layer,” he said. Currently, the project has an internal test network, or testnet, running with the core consensus and architecture implemented, and plans to roll out a public testnet later in stages this autumn. “We’ll start engaging the community at that point. In terms of the mainnet, that’ll be early 2019,” said Zochowski. The seed funding will go towards not only helping develop the network, but also to grow an ecosystem for the platform, he continued. This includes creating blockchain explorers and peer-to-peer transaction apps. “We’re really going to build out the user experience, and also build out the business side of things,” Zochowski said, though the immediate focus will be building and testing the network. Zochowski compared the process he hoped Logos would undergo to NASA, noting that the space agency undergoes a strict development process when building any project. “We’re really trying to adopt that development process,” he said, concluding: “It’s one thing to have a white paper and it’s quite another thing to prove that everything works. Right now what we’re trying to achieve is some rigorous benchmarking and then taking a step back and making sure that what we bring to market is truly high integrity code that people can build upon.” Money and seedling image via Shutterstock The leader in blockchain news, CoinDesk is…

Japanese Bank Mizuho is Being Sued by Mt Gox Customer

Japanese Bank Mizuho is Being Sued by Mt Gox Customer

News According to regional reports the Japanese financial institution, Mizuho Bank, is being accused of creating issues for Mt Gox customers who were hoping to withdraw funds after the exchange collapsed. Allegedly, even though the bank stopped processing Mt Gox withdrawals, it continued to accept deposits right before the exchange went under. Also Read: Bitcoin Cash Fans Celebrate Independence Day One Year Later  Mt Gox and Mizuho Bank Mt Gox customers have a bone to pick with the Japanese financial establishment Mizuho Bank Ltd (TYO:8411; NYSE:MFG), as a few Mt Gox clients claim the bank has been secretive about its relationship with the now-defunct trading platform. Just before the exchange went under as customers were unable to process withdrawals, Mt Gox CEO Mark Karpeles allegedly decided to keep the bank account open. The bank tied to Mt Gox allegedly continued accepting wire deposits, according to an interview with Joseph Lack from California. California Case: Joseph Lack v. Mizuho Bank In January of 2014 Lack sent $40,000 USD to the Mt Gox account held at Mizuho Bank and the financial institution accepted the funds. One month later Mt Gox fizzled into thin air and would never open again. So Lack decided to take Karpeles and Mizuho to court because he believes both parties should have disclosed information to customers concerning the issues with Mt Gox. Lack also says Mizuho Bank committed “fraud” by not processing withdrawals, but still accepted people’s money through wire deposits, charging transaction fees in the process. Mizuho Bank Denies Allegations, But Couldn’t Get the Case Dismissed Mizuho Bank has denied the allegations, and had tried to get the case dismissed in the US. However, the California court decided to side with Lack and the motion to dismiss was denied. Mizuho Bank’s defense details why they continued accepting customer deposits.     “To accept a wire transfer is passive conduct, especially because, by its nature, a wire transfer is not a communication between people, but just a transmission of information electronically from a machine at one bank to a machine at another. Indeed, Lack is not alleged to have had any direct contact with Mizuho,” explains the Japanese financial institution. Lack says the bank should not have stayed silent and it shouldn’t have accepted the deposits. The plaintiff…

‘Keep NEO One!’ Investors Protest a Proposal to Make Crypto Coins Divisible

‘Keep NEO One!’ Investors Protest a Proposal to Make Crypto Coins Divisible

Tokens on the blockchain protocol neo may be indivisible – but it’s becoming apparent that its community is not. Perhaps ironically, it’s the very notion of indivisibility that has proved contentious to the coin’s investors and users in recent weeks. More specifically, a Github proposal to change the structure of the NEO token – one of two tokens native to the network (GAS is the second) – has the project’s token holders up in arms. Authored by neo co-founder Erik Zhang, the post ideates a new economic model for the upcoming version (3.0) of the neo software, one the developer team hopes will better incentivize active participation in the network, but that will also see the NEO token become divisible. It’s the latter change that has many network stakeholders in a frenzy. One Discord user described the idea of making NEO divisible as “just plain dumb,” while others worried about its potential impact on NEO and GAS prices, saying: “Divisible NEO is big BS, I would never vote for that. Price will go to trash if they do that.” But Da Hongfei, another co-founder of neo, said the proposal illustrates a system that can overcome the “technical constraints” of the blockchain, like slow transaction speeds, while setting the stage for loftier goals, like the decentralization of the network’s governance process. Previously called Antshares, neo was founded in 2014 with the goal of creating an enterprise-grade blockchain designed for digital assets, identity and smart contracts. After raising more than $3.7 million during an initial coin offering (ICO) and launching its live blockchain, or mainnet, in 2016, the project has scored significant interest, even being referred to as “China’s ethereum” at points. As of today, however, it’s established a name for itself, and its tokens are valued at over $2 billion. Nonetheless, the co-founders believe the architecture of the network needs to be reworked. According to Hongfei, the NEO token is currently indivisible for technical reasons that relate to its twin token model. “NEO is kind of like the stake of the network; GAS is designed as a utility,” he told CoinDesk. In practice, this means token holders use NEO to do things like voting for the network nodes that produce blocks and validate transactions as part of the…