Cryptocurrencies finish weekend slightly higher as Monero (XMR) trading fees fall 96% after ‘bulletproofs’ upgrade
Oct 22, 2018
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- Europe’s largest port, the Port of Rotterdam, has partnered with Dutch banking giant, ABN AMRO, and Samsung’s IT subsidiary, Samsung SDS, to test blockchain technology for shipping. Announced in a Samsung SDS press release on Monday morning, the partnership will focus primarily on a trial involving the shipment of containers from an unnamed factory in Asia to the Port of Rotterdam. The announcement also states that the technology and infrastructure behind the project was developed by BlockLab, a Dutch company created by the Port of Rotterdam Authority. Aside from the infrastructure developed by Blocklab, the partnership will involve two other decentralized platforms, including Samsung’s Nexledger and R3’s Corda.
- ING, a Dutch multinational banking and financial services company, confirmed in a Monday press release that it has released its open source blockchain tool, Zero-Knowledge Set Membership (ZKSM). ZKSM essentially functions as a privacy ‘improvement’ to distributed ledger technology by providing validation to certain alphanumeric data without revealing that data’s full characteristics. In its press release, ING detailed, “One of the major challenges in implementing new distributed ledger technology is protecting private information on a public ledger, where changes must be verified by each participant in the network.”
- Masayoshi Amamiya, Deputy Governor of the Bank of Japan, reiterated his stance towards a central bank-issued digital currency while speaking at a meeting in Nagoya, Japan. Amamiya stated that he does not believe central bank-issued digital currencies are likely to improve existing monetary systems while also stating that the Bank of Japan has no plans to issue a digital currency. Financial experts have recently claimed that a central bank-issued digital currency could provide a way for central banks to provide stimulation to their economy when interest rates fall to zero -- Amamiya questioned this theory, saying, “In order for central banks to overcome the zero lower bound on nominal interest rates, they would need to get rid of cash from society.”
- Monero (XMR) transaction fees have fallen more than 96% to an average of USD$0.021 per transaction after the privacy coin enacted the ‘bulletproofs’ software upgrade. Bulletproofs is built to make privacy features on privacy coins like Monero more scalable by changing the way confidential transactions are verified. The bulletproofs update also contained deterrents to prevent the development of specialized mining hardware for Monero.
- Rumors of a delay in Ethereum’s upcoming hardfork, Constantinople, have been confirmed after developers agreed in a meeting on Friday, October 19th, 2018 to delay the hardfork until early 2019. The target launch date was originally aimed for November 2018 until several bugs were discovered in the hardfork’s code that was recently enacted on the Ethereum test network. Ethereum developer, Afri Schoeden, said while the meeting was being live streamed, “I keep getting the feeling that we’re trying to rush this and I would second that we should breathe and see what happens.”
- Swissquote, a Swiss online financial services provider, has reportedly become the “first bank worldwide” to offer purchase and custodial services of initial coin offerings (ICOs) for clients. Announced via press release on Monday, Swissquote explained that it is now no longer necessary for ICO consumers to “understand blockchain”. Swissquote’s new service will allow users to purchase ICO tokens directly from their online account while the bank will hold the tokens in a separately managed wallet. ICO markets have suffered in 2018 as roughly 90% of ICO tokens are now trading below their initial launch price.
- The Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC), China’s highest-level internet regulator, has published a new set of draft regulations for blockchain-based information service providers. Published on October 19th, 2018, the draft is open for public review and consultation until November 2nd, 2018. Containing 23 articles concerning blockchain-based information service regulation, the draft regulations would require all entities to register with the CAC within 10 days before launching their platform. Another effect of the draft regulations would require service providers to request users to register for services using their real names, phone numbers, and national ID card numbers.
- The Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKEX) published a research report on October 18th, 2018 that looked at the potential of blockchain and AI technology in different facets of finance and found that blockchain and cryptocurrency-focused fintech firms are best regulated under pre-existing financial regulations. The report details that emerging technologies like blockchain technology could be, “integrated in the areas of investment, trading, clearing, and settlement,” while adding that regulations should be common to all companies in the finance space. The report went on to add that financial regulations must be looked at and updated continuously in order to keep pace with rapid technological change and to prevent any regulatory loopholes from being exploited.
*Data in Price Return and Updated Real-Time (with a delay), Source: StockDio