Cryptocurrencies trade broadly higher for week as CBOE announces halt of listing Bitcoin (BTC) future contracts
Mar 15, 2019
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Developments in Financial Services
- Nasdaq will officially license its trading, clearing, and market surveillance technology to US-based cryptocurrency startup Bcause LLC, according to an official press release from the former on Wednesday. As per the press release, Bcause will launch using Nasdaq’s Financial Framework platform some time in the first half of 2019. Bcause CEO Fred Grede believes that the integration of Nasdaq’s Financial Framework will attract a wide range of new users, including experienced traditional investors and cryptocurrency enthusiasts alike.
- Coinflex, a physically delivered crypto futures exchange, has received backing from high profile crypto industry investors Digital Currency Group and Polychain Capital. The two new aforementioned investors will join other notable names to previously invest in Coinflex, including Dragonfly Capital Partners, Trading Technologies, and Roger Ver. Coinflex also announced that it will soon launch FLEX Coin, a digital asset built to encourage liquidity and reward early traders that join Coinflex.
- The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) announced that it will not add a new Bitcoin (BTC) futures market in March as the exchange reconsiders how it approaches digital asset trading. In its official statement on Thursday, CBOE said, “CFE is not adding a Cboe Bitcoin (USD) (“XBT”) futures contract for trading in March 2019. CFE is assessing how its approach with respect to how it plans to continue to offer digital asset derivatives for trading. While it considers its next steps, CFE does not currently intend to list additional XBT futures contracts for trading.” Currently listed BTC futures contract, XBTM19, are set to expire in June and all listed futures are still available for trading.
- Jesse Lund, the Head of Blockchain Solutions at IBM, hinted in an interview with financial news channel Cheddar that the global tech giant may be developing a cross-border stablecoin payment solution for financial institutions. “More than a few banks around the world see tremendous business benefit to issue stablecoins in their native fiat currency,” Lund said in the interview with Cheddar. When asked how IBM’s prospective stablecoin compares to JPMorgan’s recently announced JPM Coin, Lund responded, “It’s not a proprietary coin like JPMorgan’s solution, although I think what they’re doing makes a lot of sense for them. What JPM’s doing also adds tremendous validation to what we’re doing. But our view for stablecoins is really that they should be more broadly accessible and what World Wire seeks to do is provide fungibility of digital assets across financial institutions.”
- The US Attorney Office of the Southern District has charged the founders of OneCoin, an international cryptocurrency pyramid scheme, with accounts of wire fraud, securities fraud, and money laundering offenses. OneCoin was initially founded in 2014 in the capital city of Bulgaria and involved participants marketing an allegedly fraudulent cryptocurrency. The founders allegedly lured investors to contribute, “billions of dollars in the fraudulent cryptocurrency,” according to an announcement published by the US Attorney Office of the Southern District.
- According to a statement published by the Basel Committee on Banking Supervisions (BCBS), crypto assets threaten the financial stability of banks. The BCBS is an organization of banking supervisory authorities that is supported by the Bank for International Settlement (BIS), a group made up of 60 central banks. In its statement published on Wednesday, the BCBS warned that cryptocurrencies could, “raise financial stability concerns and increase risks faced by banks.”
- The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced that its Strategic Hub for Innovation and Financial Technology (Finhub) will host a public forum dedicated to distributed ledger technology (DLT) and digital assets in May 2019. According to an official press release from the SEC, the forum includes a suite of industry experts and is, “designed to foster greater communication and understanding around issues involving DLT and digital assets.” The forum will take place at the SEC’s headquarters in Washington, D.C.
- Key price indicators show that Bitcoin (BTC) could be headed for another move downward, that is, according to a report published by Bloomberg on Tuesday. “Technical gauges signaling long-term buying demand for Bitcoin are deteriorating,” the report reads, specifically referring to the benchmark crypto’s Moving Average Convergence Divergence (MACD) indicator. The report by Bloomberg comes after BTC has unsuccessfully tested the USD$4,000 psychological resistance several times over the past few weeks.
- The New York Times may be in delving into blockchain technology after it published a job posting for blockchain talent on job site Glassdoor before promptly removing the post. The job posting called for a, “Lead, Blockchain Exploration,” position and detailed a search for, “a forward-looking leader who will help envision and design a blockchain-based proof of concept for a new publisher.” As of the time of this writing, the New York Times did not respond for comment on the reports.
- Daily trading volume for Bitcoin (BTC) exceeded USD$11 billion today for the first time since April 25th, 2018. While BTC trading volume historically shared high correlation with the price of the benchmark cryptocurrency, that relationship ended in November 2018 when prices crashed despite trading volumes remaining elevated. On April 25th, 2018 when BTC trading volume was last above USD$11bn, the price of a BTC was USD$8,845.
- Bitcoin (BTC) is set to resume a bull market within the next 6 months, that is, according to Fundstrat Global Advisors co-founder Tom Lee. While speaking in an interview with CNBC, the prominent crypto industry pundit explained, “I think the key number to watch is the 200-day moving average. If Bitcoin holds above USD$4,000, it’ll cross its 200-day moving average by August, so I think the outside window is five to six months before Bitcoin starts to look technically like it’s back in a bull market.” Lee also discussed that he believes the most damage to BTC was done when it dropped from USD$6,000 to USD$3,100, which began in mid-November 2018.
- Mark Karpeles, the former CEO of defunct Bitcoin (BTC) exchange Mt. Gox, received a suspended jail sentence after he was found guilty of tampering with financial records, according to a Bloomberg report. Karpeles was found guilty of mixing his personal finances in with the exchange’s finances in order to conceal losses from hackers. Karples will not be required to serve the 2 and a half year suspended jail sentence unless he commits an additional offense over the next 4 years. Karples was acquitted of the alleged embezzlement charges with the court stating, “The charge of electronic record tampering is true and deserves punishment, but there’s no criminal evidence of embezzlement.”
*Data in Price Return and Updated Real-Time (with a delay), Source: StockDio