Thu, Aug. 18, 9:55 AM
- There's some good news out of the U.K. for Bitcoin (COIN, OTCQB:BTCS) after the Gambling Commission decided to add BTC to its list of accepted payments methods.
- CalvinAyre.com's Rebecca Liggero says online gaming operators could benefit from the development.
- "Its possible to receive a payout in Bitcoin as a player or an affiliate and convert it instantly into the fiat currency of choice, meaning you don’t even need a Bitcoin wallet or knowledge of how Bitcoin works in order to use it," writes Liggero.
Mon, Aug. 15, 7:38 AM
- Bitfinex's plan to impose losses on all its trading clients for the theft by hackers of $72M in Bitcoin (COIN, OTCQB:BTCS) and be granted "BFX tokens" rests on two flawed pillars, according to lawyers.
- Imposing losses on customers who were not hacked appears to go against the company's terms of service, said Ryan Straus, a Fenwick & West lawyer.
- The exchange's tokens could also be problematic, said Zach Zweihorn, a lawyer at DavisPolk.
Mon, Aug. 8, 10:50 AM
- The U.S. government plans to auction over 2,700 bitcoin (COIN, OTCQB:BTCS) that were forfeited during several cases, including the prosecution of the creator of the online black market known as Silk Road.
- The online auction would be held on Aug. 22, and that potential bidders must register by Aug. 18. According to Bitstamp exchange, the bitcoin are worth nearly $16.1M.
Sun, Aug. 7, 11:47 AM
- Widening the group of those affected by last week's hack, Bitfinex said customers will lose just over 36% of the assets they had on its platform but would be compensated for the losses with tokens of credit.
- Hackers took 119,756 Bitcoins (COIN, OTCQB:BTCS) from Hong Kong-based exchange Tuesday night, stealing $72M in the second-biggest breach of a crypto-currency exchange ever.
- The hack accounted for about 0.75% of all Bitcoins in circulation.
Fri, Aug. 5, 6:35 AM
- After suffering a crippling hack earlier this week, Hong Kong-base Bitcoin (COIN, OTCQB:BTCS) exchange Bitfinex said it may spread the $68M loss among its users, including ones not directly impacted by the hack.
- "We are leaning towards a socialized loss scenario," the exchange wrote in a blog post.
- Bitfinex is still "settling positions and balances" and will provide more details soon
Thu, Aug. 4, 4:13 AM
- Bitfinex has temporarily halted trading for a second day following a security breach that led to a massive plunge in the value of Bitcoin (COIN, OTCQB:BTCS).
- The exchange has disabled core functions including trading, deposits and withdrawals as it attempts to make its operations secure and restore limited access.
Wed, Aug. 3, 2:34 AM
- Bitcoin prices fell sharply overnight, sliding as much as 22% to $480, after Hong Kong-based digital currency exchange Bitfinex said hackers stole 119,756 Bitcoins (COIN, OTCQB:BTCS), or about $65M at current prices.
- The attack was reminiscent of a similar breach at Mt. Gox, a Tokyo-based Bitcoin exchange forced to file for bankruptcy in early 2014 after hackers stole an estimated $650M worth of the digital currency.
Thu, Jun. 23, 10:36 AM| Thu, Jun. 23, 10:36 AM | 11 Comments
Tue, Jun. 14, 3:05 AM
- Bitcoin (COIN, OTCQB:BTCS) prices hit a two-year high on Monday, trading above $700 for the first time since 2014, after jumping 21% over the weekend.
- The surge came days before an unusual event called the "halving," an adjustment to Bitcoin's protocol designed to control the creation of new coins.
- Other factors that could have led to the surge: Brexit fears, blockchain rising, inflow/demand and China concerns.
Mon, May 30, 6:11 AM
- Around 16M Australian dollars ($11.5M) worth of confiscated bitcoins (COIN, OTCQB:BTCS) will be auctioned in Sydney next month, marking the first such auction outside the United States.
- Auction organizer Ernst and Young said the bitcoins were "confiscated as proceeds of crime," referring to the now-defunct online dark market Silk Road.
- The price of bitcoin rose to $530 on Friday, as demand for the digital currency surged to its highest level since August 2014.
Mon, May 2, 4:25 AM
- Ending years of speculation, Australian entrepreneur Craig Wright has publicly identified himself as Bitcoin (COIN, OTCQB:BTCS) creator Satoshi Nakamoto.
- "I have not done this because it is what I wanted," he said. "There are lots of stories out there that have been made up and I don't like it hurting those people I care about."
- The crypto currency is now accepted as payment for a vast variety of goods and services. There are about 15.5M Bitcoins in circulation, each currently worth about $449.
Fri, Apr. 29, 3:43 PM
- With the help of "security experts, cryptographers, hardware experts and researchers," IBM (IBM -0.8%) says it has created a slew of cloud services meant to enable secure blockchain networks, along with cloud apps leveraging them. Financial services, healthcare, and government clients are among the firms being targeted.
- BNY Mellon is an initial user of the service - the bank plans to create "a unique application for securities lending, using a blockchain network to trade and transfer assets." IBM promises its cloud platform will "allow production blockchain networks to be deployed in minutes," while supporting Docker containers (alternatives to server virtual machines that run on Linux and feature little overhead), data dashboards, and analytics tools.
- While the hype surrounding Bitcoin (COIN, OTCQB:BTCS) has cooled some, corporate interest in the blockchain - the distributed/encrypted ledger technology that powers Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies - for enabling cheap and secure transactions remains high. JPMorgan, Goldman, and other i-banks unveiled plans last year to create standards for using blockchain in the financial industry. In March 2015, Reuters reported IBM has held informal talks with central banks about creating a system for enabling blockchain-based transactions that don't require a bank or payment processor.
- IBM exec Jerry Cuomo: "We love blockchain technology because it holds the promise of supporting a very wide variety of industries ... But if you are building a blockhchain that deals with health records or shipping logistics, financial data, or any reference data about products, there are rules regulatory rules and security you have to address." He asserts IBM's solution was designed with those security/compliance issues in mind.
- Online retailer Overstock (OSTK -2.1%) has also been making big blockchain investments; it's eight months removed from buying financial order-routing firm SpeedRoute to provide an infrastructure for its t0 blockchain software.
- Now read IBM's Next Big Thing
Wed, Apr. 6, 5:14 AM
- Britain's Financial Conduct Authority has granted an electronic money license to Circle, a firm that uses the virtual currency to enable P2P payments using a mobile app, or what the business calls "social payments."
- The authorization makes it possible for Circle to establish a banking relationship with Barclays (NYSE:BCS), marking the first time a large global bank has agreed to work directly with a Bitcoin (COIN, OTCQB:BTCS) company.
Wed, Jan. 13, 5:15 PM
- Wences Casares, the founder/CEO of Bitcoin (COIN, OTCQB:BTCS) wallet and debit card startup Xapo, has joined PayPal's (NASDAQ:PYPL) board. His addition brings the board's size to 9 members. (PayPal's board bio page)
- CEO Dan Schulman: "Wences' unique line of sight into the future of commerce is ideally aligned with PayPal's vision of transforming the management and movement of money for people around the globe." To date, PayPal has taken a cautious approach to embracing Bitcoin, which enables transactions with much lower fees than what PayPal (or credit-card processors, for that matter) typically charges. In 2014, the company announced its Payments Hub will support Bitcoin payments, but didn't extent support to its core online wallet.
- Separately, Mizuho has reinstated coverage on PayPal with a Buy rating and $40 target. Mizuho's Neil Doshi: "PayPal is a leading online payment firm with 173m active accounts that we believe will generate more than $280b in total payment volume (TPV) in 2015. We believe that PayPal is in a unique position to continue to gain share in eCommerce transactions and post solid [forex-neutral transaction volume] growth north of 25% in 2016, while having several option value businesses such as Venmo."
- PayPal's Q4 report arrives on the afternoon of Jan. 27.
Nov. 5, 2015, 2:23 AM
- Back from the dead? The price of a Bitcoin (COIN, OTCQB:BTCS) climbed as much as 50% this week to above $500, and over 100% over the past month, re-creating scenes from a manic 2013 run that took it from $13 to a high of $1,100 before it crashed.
- The burst of buying follows a spate of positive publicity and a move by the EU to define bitcoin as a currency and not a commodity (meaning it won't be subject to value-added taxes).
- The stance is at odds with a ruling by the IRS that bitcoin is property, but in line with an approach taken by the U.K.
Sep. 21, 2015, 4:07 PM
- Though Bitcoin (COIN, OTCQB:BTCS) remains well off its 4-digit late-2013 highs - Coinbase currently shows Bitcoin selling for less than $229 - major enterprises continue throwing their weight behind the blockchain - the secure public ledger technology that underpins Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
- IBM has been working on its own version of the blockchain, with plans to open-source the software when it's finished. Big Blue suggests its solution could be used to secure digital contracts, as well as drive transactions by allowing banks and others to share the same system of record.
- In March, Reuters reported IBM has held informal talks with central banks about a cash/payment system that uses the blockchain to drive transactions involving existing currencies, and doesn't require a bank or payment processor (thus lowering transaction fees).
- Meanwhile, JPMorgan, Goldman Sachs, UBS, RBS, and 5 other i-banks have announced plans to work with startup R3CEV to create standards for using the blockchain within the financial industry. RBS exec Kevin Hanley: "Right now, you’re seeing significant money and time being spent on exploration of these technologies in a fractured way that lacks the strategic, coordinated vision so critical to timely success. The R3 [blockchain] model is changing the game,"
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