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US Regulators asked not to classify Ethereum as a security

Sat, 04/21/2018 - 04:05

A trade group representing venture capital firms that invest in cryptocurrencies has requested that US securities regulators provide formal assurance that ether, the native currency of the Ethereum platform, is not a security.

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The “Venture Capital Working Group” — comprised primarily of lawyers and representatives from Silicon Valley venture firms Andreessen Horowitz and Union Square Ventures — met with top officials at the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in late March to make a plea for the agency to provide safe harbor to certain cryptoassets.

Initial reports about the meeting implied that the discussions had centered on initial coin offering (ICO) tokens, which have exploded in popularity over the past two years.

However, Nathaniel Popper of the New York Times reports that Ethereum, the second-largest cryptocurrency, was also on the agenda.

As longtime readers will remember, Ethereum was bootstrapped prior to its launch through an ICO-style presale, in which the project’s founders raised approximately $18 million in Bitcoin and contributors received ether once the network — which now distributes new coins through mining — launched in July 2015.

According to the report, the Venture Capital Working Group’s proposal argued that Ethereum “has become so decentralized that it should not be deemed a security,” even though it bears many of the hallmarks of a security under US law.

Indeed, the proposal argued that the SEC should take decentralization into account when determining whether a token is a security, arguing that tokens should not be considered securities if they achieve “full functionality” or “full decentralization,” which occurs “when the token creator no longer has control of the network based on its ability to make unilateral changes to the functionality of the tokens.”

Sources familiar with the meetings have said that the SEC was not overly-amenable to the proposal, which would give tokens a broad exemption from the agency’s purview. However, it remains unclear whether the SEC will distinguish between projects that have launched recently and ones that have been functional for several years, as is the case with Ethereum.

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Brave Partners with the Dow Jones Media Group to Disrupt Online Advertising

Fri, 04/20/2018 - 14:14

A lot of different goals can be achieved through digital currencies, blockchain technology, and innovation. In the case of the Brave browser, a lot of positive changes are happening as we speak. For this team, it is of the utmost importance to get as many partners on board as possible. The latest company to do so is none other than the Dow Jones Media Group.

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While the concept of Brave seemingly makes a lot of sense to consumers, website owners are not necessarily convinced this business model will work out in the long run. Brave allows users to remove all ads from the browser experience, watch ads and be paid for it, or replace traditional ads with whitelisted solutions. It is the latter aspect which will require a fair bit of work.

Without sufficient partners on board, solutions such as Brave will not make much of an impact. However, the company has found a new media partner in the Dow Jones Media Group. This outlet is pretty well known all over the world, and it will generate and disseminate media content to Brave users on a “first-come, first-serve basis”. This feature will only be available to select users, although it is unclear how they will be chosen exactly.

The content being offered to Brave users spans multiple websites, including Barrons.com and the premium MarketWatch newsletter. For anyone interested in financial news and information, this particular offering may very well be worth paying attention to. Even though that will mean installing a brand-new browser for a fair few users, it is still a better option compared to what else is available right now.

Moreover, it seems both Barron’s and MarketWatch will become verified publishers for the Basic Attention Token platform. This will allow consumers and advertisers to pay publishers for the provided content. Whether or not there will be any significant interest in doing so is a different matter altogether. It is an option well worth looking into; that much is rather evident.

There is a bright future ahead for blockchain technology in the media and advertising industries. So far, there has been no major change in the way sites offer advertisements or deal with publishing in general. That situation may come to change in the future, depending on how ventures such as this one play out. Exploring new technologies is of the utmost importance in this regard.

This partnership is a big step forward for Brave and the Dow Jones Media Group. At the same time, this offering does not encompass the Dow Jones organization – including the Wall Street Journal – or any of its other sites. That situation may come to change if this new partnership proves successful. Fighting the growing influx of ad blockers will require a very different mindset, and Brave may be the answer to this problem.

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Venture capital firms urged SEC to exempt digital currencies from regulations

Thu, 04/19/2018 - 14:06

Top venture capital firms reportedly asked the Securities and Exchange Commission to exempt cryptocurrency-based tokens from their regulations.

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Andreessen Horowitz and Union Square Ventures met with SEC officials on March 28, reports The Wall Street Journal.

They argued that government regulation could stifle innovation in cryptocurrency and blockchain.

The firms said that while they wanted exemptions and relaxed regulations, they had no issue with the SEC going after scams and other bad actors committing crimes with cryptocurrency.

But they specifically pushed for formal assurances that their products would be exempt from SEC oversight. They argued that digital tokens don’t function like securities for a company, but instead just give owners access to cryptocurrency projects.

SEC officials have expressed skepticism about giving such an exemption, the paper reported.

The plea comes after SEC Chairman Jay Clayton repeatedly warned that he would take steps to crack down on digital tokens and initial coin offerings (ICOs) — a popular fundraising method for cryptocurrency based projects.

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Peur, a decentralized e-commerce revolutionizing marketplace beyond ordinary

Thu, 04/19/2018 - 14:01

Peur, a decentralized e-commerce platform announces token event in 5 days. Peur is a marketplace which provides a wide-array of products at lower costs with quality assurance.

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16th March 2018. Perth, Australia: In the era of digitalization, none of the forum is prevented from adopting the e-commerce measures and all the sectors are leading towards the virtual marketplaces and payment gateways. But one question raised by users creates hindrance in the path of e-commerce shaping new economic trends. It is the safety and security of the e-commerce platforms. To resolve this issue, Peur, an Ethereum blockchain-enabled decentralized platform that facilitates the trusted marketplaces and payment gateways, came into picture.

What Exactly Is Peur?

Peur is not just a platform which acts as a marketplace but a cryptocurrency which can be paid for various transactions on digital platforms. Peur marketplace provides a wide range of products at lower costs with assured quality. Peur seems to provide benefits to all the market players i.e. customers, merchants, service providers etc. The 100% reliable, trust reputation and keeping performance based on blockchain, transparent and fast processing of transactions is guaranteed by Peur developers.

Even, users can get the benefit of exchanging either their fiat currency or cryptocurrencies using mobile devices. Peur wallets which are encrypted through Passphrase, Finger Scanners, Google Authenticator, and Barcode are another attribute of it.

The trend of e-commerce platforms is increasing nowadays and people are enthralled to use this for transactions. The long authorization processes, unreliable processing systems, and high operating costs are the major concerns of both the customers and retailers faced commonly on e-commerce platforms. To overcome all the flaws, Peur as a decentralized Ethereum blockchain-based platform is created which address the issues of the clients.

It is marketplace which offers extensive and ample products. In fact, Peur has launched its own currency to enable the payments in a reliable and faster manner. It appears to be the biggest advantage for all the market sections as the platform is facilitated by smart contracts which ensure its transparency and stability.

Peur community is among the best ecosystems for token holders where they can participate in other projects launched by Peur and get engaged in trading of products, voting as well as usage of services offered at the platform.

Pre-Sale Event Launch

Token Generation Event, commonly known as ‘TGE’ is an event which allows participants to acquire cryptocurrency tokens, which can act as a digital asset that enables the selling of equity funds in a public mode. It enables the companies to raise the money for the project and achieve the full potential of the cryptocurrency. Watch it here!

Peur currency is generally denominated as ‘PURC’ tokens. The tokens derive their value from underlying assets or properties. PURC tokens are considered as cryptocurrency which can be traded and used for several kinds of investments, sending or receiving payments, and also as payroll money. PURC tokens can be stored in ERC-20 standards wallets.

The total PURC tokens in circulation will be 200,000,000. The total tokens being held for sale is 130,000,000 i.e. 65% of the total token money. However, at first;

Pre-Sale:

Timeline: – It will start on the April 24th – April 30th

Number of Tokens to be Sold: –    24,000,000

TGE Base Price: – 1ETH=  8,000 PURC

Minimum Investment: – 1 ETH Bonus Whitelist : 5% Tokens, Bonus Pre-Sale : 10% Tokens

Accepted currencies: – BTC, ETH, LTC and DASH

Token Generation Event Disclosures

The token sale is open to general public, it is termed as ‘Crowdsale’. It is performed to get the capital for the firm’s operations and also to facilitate users to transact on digital platforms using tokens.

PURC tokens which are kept for Crowdsale is 106,000,000. The hard cap and soft cap are $25 million and $2.5 million respectively. The crowdsale will be carried out in four phases.

First Phase:

Timeline: – It will start on the 8th day of the day token event presale starts.

Number of Tokens to be Sold: – 26,500,000

TGE Base Price: – 1ETH= 6,400 PURC

Minimum Investment: – 0.1 ETH

Bonus: – 5% Tokens

Second Phase:

Timeline: – It will start on the 16th day of the day token event presale starts.

Number of Tokens to be Sold: – 26,500,000

TGE Base Price: – 1ETH= 5,440 PURC

Minimum Investment: – 0.05 ETH

Bonus: – 3% Tokens

Third Phase:

Timeline: – It will start on the 24th day of the day token event presale starts.

Number of Tokens to be Sold: – 26,500,000

TGE Base Price: – 1ETH= 4,890 PURC

Minimum Investment: – 0.05 ETH

Fourth Phase:

Timeline: – It will start on the 32nd day of the day token event presale starts.

Number of Tokens to be Sold: – 26,500,000

ICO Base Price:1ETH: – 4,650 PURC

Minimum Investment: – 0.01 ETH

As soon as the token event ends in April, the tokens will be listed on exchange platforms within next three months.

Peur is a viable solution to all the e-commerce problems that open the fronts for increasing online retail websites. It has approached all the market players and the team is focused to provide robust as well as a flexible framework for online transactions.

Visit the Website: https://www.peur.io

Chat on Telegram: https://t.me/peurtelegram

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Bitnymex – The Most Advanced Trading Platform

Thu, 04/19/2018 - 13:50

Bitnymex is a cryptocurrency trading platform which was established in 2017, letting its users exchange Bitcoin and other important altcoins, offering a smooth trading experience even for customers that are just starting out in the crypto market.
The exchange is very focused on providing a user-friendly interface to enable ease of use, high-end security features, and immediate customer support.
The founding members of Bitnymex are avid supporters and users of cryptocurrencies and have all graduated IIT. Before establishing this exchange, they have created various products that were used in helping consumers make decisions in commerce.

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About Bitnymex

This trading platform has up to 100x leverage on Bitcoin along with high leverage on other cryptocurrency contracts. The exchange enables users to trade without imposing any expiry dates. It also has the highest Bitcoin/USD liquidity than all the other exchanges out there, with 150%, making it the most liquid in the world.
Bitnymex uses the same technology which investment banks and hedge funds employ in the trading of their funds in a secure and fast manner. Their trading engine audits the balances and history of all accounts 100 times each second.
The exchange is hugely focused on safety, using high-end security policies, with the latest multi-factor authentication measures, so the stored assets remain safe at all times. Thanks to this, Bitnymex never lost any Bitcoins in a hacking attack like other platforms.
Bitnymex is a new crypto exchange that puts great emphasis on security and customer service, being a firm believer that cryptocurrencies should be accessible to everyone.
Website: https://bitnymex.com/
Contact :  support@bitnymex.com

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Crypto Exchange ‘Huobi’ to launch London Offices, expands beyond Asia

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 03:34

Singapore-based crypto exchange Huobi has announced a plan to set up shop in London as it seeks to continue its expansion outside of Asia. Huobi is also in the process of setting up shop in San Francisco.

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Chern Chung, Huobi’s senior business development manager for Europe, told CryptoBriefing that Huobi “wants to have a presence” in the city because “our statistics show that London is the most active trading scene across all of Europe.”

London is only the latest in a series of locations that Huobi has designated for new offices. The company launched operations in South Korea earlier this year, and is in the process of opening operations in San Francisco.

”We Are Not Afraid of Regulation”

The move could also indicate that Huobi is intending to fall in line with the most up-to-date global regulations on cryptocurrency. Many competing firms are choosing to build bases in European states with rather lax legislation on crypto. The UK’s regulatory climate has slowly (but surely) been heating up when it comes to crypto.

“Not Malta, not Switzerland. Absolutely London, more precisely Britain, is the entry point for the European market for us,” said Peng Hu, Vice President of the Huobi Group. Chung added that “shows Huobi’s commitment and determination to go mainstream”, and that “we are not afraid of regulation nor are we escaping regulation.”

A base in London could allow the exchange to begin building and launching products and services for a European customer base. Huobi could also see a London office as an opportunity to build strategic relationships with the global banks who have offices in the city.

Indeed, despite uncertainty in the future of London’s political and business connections because of Brexit, Bloomberg reported in September of 2017 that the city still ranks as the world’s “top financial center.”

Huobi’s continued expansion seems a rather positive response to the tribulations the exchange faced when China forced all domestic cryptocurrency exchanges to close up shop in Q4 of 2017 (Huobi was formerly based in Beijing.) You know what they say–when life gives you lemons, make several new branches of your cryptocurrency exchange.

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Market.space ICO

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 03:00

Market.space, a service dedicated to safely storing and transferring data based on blockchain technology, will start its initial coin offering on April 16th, in which they will issue their MASP token.

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The project’s objective is to come with a solution to the current problems cloud storage faces. Currently, the most popular services on the market have a higher risk of losing their stored data or worse, being stolen.

Because of this, many blockchain-based storage projects including Sia, Storj, MaidSafe, have seen an increase in use. Such services use complex encryption algorithms and distributed storage to significantly increase the security of the stored data.

Market.space intends on supporting the developing data storage industry, and to offer a new solution to the existing decentralized data storage systems.

“We want to support the entire decentralized data storage market and give those who are already familiar with this technology the chance to appreciate Market.space’s innovative approach,” 

says the service’s founder Rakhmanov.

But unlike its competitors, Market.space intends to use major hosting providers to ensure that they use the best resources and equipment, to eradicate the problem with system vulnerability.

In addition to storing and transmitting data, the blockchain-based platform also allows customers to look for offers from hosting providers, and enable major developers as well as individual creators to distribute their digital content. Being based on distributed ledger technology, this marketplace eliminates the need for a middleman to mediate the transactions, allowing sellers to lower the prices of their products. When the files having the content are uploaded, a timestamp is instantly created, which will help establish authorship.

The information is kept on secure equipment.Suppliers can lease out unused space, while the customers benefit from a stable data storing framework at reasonable prices. The payment depends on how much amount of disk space will be used.

The data is encrypted and kept in a decentralized way, the files that are being transferred on the platform being split into multiple parts and secured by a top-notch encryption. Access to these files requires a certain key. All users on the platform are anonymous and have the same rights. Also, they are not required to create an account because they can use their wallet address to sign in. Clients can also use proxies, as well as create data backups by picking a few contractual workers.

Token Sale Details

Market.space has its token sale soft cap set at 15 million dollars and their hard cap at 50 million dollars. The raised funds will be invested in the development, testing, and launching the platform. To use the platform, a web application will be created, along with other software versions for mobiles. Market.space also established a compulsory security deposit in MASP tokens. Hosts deposit the tokens each time they enter the system, and when they leave it, the deposit is returned.

The MASP token is largely based on the Ethereum blockchain, their issuing being handled by a smart contract. MASP is a functional token that will be used for sending the security deposit once suppliers come into the system. 1 MASP token will be sold at a price of US $0.35. Payment methods include Visa or MasterCard, and with cryptocurrencies such as BTC, BCH, LTC, ETH, ETC and Dash. The minimum transaction sum is US $35, with no maximum limit.

In addition to the aforementioned list of digital coins, two other blockchain- based tokens, Sia (SC) and Storj (STORJ), are also accepted as payments. The tokens will be exchanged at the current market prices.

There is no limit to how many MASP tokens you can purchase during the ICO, but their emission will end after the sale. The MASP ICO will start on April 16th, and it will last until May 27th, 2018

Early buyers will be rewarded if they purchase tokens in the first two weeks of the ICO. The bonus will be 25% in the first 24 hours, 15% from the second to the eleventh day of the ICO, and 10% in the 12-14 days of the ICO.

Contact:

Website: https://market.space/en/

Telegram: https://t.me/Market_space

Email: info@market.space

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Market.space.system

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Samsung Electronics turns to Blockchain to track its Global Supply Chains

Tue, 04/17/2018 - 06:10

Electronics manufacturing giant Samsung is considering a blockchain platform to manage and keep track of shipments of its vast global supply chain network.

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In a significant endorsement of blockchain technology, Samsung Electronics – the world’s biggest chipmaker and smartphones manufacturer – is considering a broad implementation of a blockchain ledger platform to track its global shipments.

Speaking to Bloomberg, Song Kwang-woo, blockchain chief at Samsung SDS – the IT subsidiary of the Samsung – revealed that a blockchain system could slash shipping costs by 20 percent.

Notably, the executive also confirmed that SDS is working on developing the blockchain platform for Samsung Electronics, placing it among the earliest global manufacturers to seriously explore the applicability of blockchain technology at such a scale.

SDS has proven experience in implementing blockchain technology for the logistics and shipping industry, successfully concluding a 7-month pilot project to record and track shipping logistics of imports and exports in Korea’s massive shipping industry in December 2017.

Samsung SDS’ Song added:

It will have an enormous impact on the supply chains of manufacturing industries. Blockchain is a core platform to fuel our digital transformation.

The report suggests SDS ‘expects to handle 488,000 tons of air cargo and 1 million 20-foot-equivalent (TEU) shipping units” in 2018. The shipments include everything from flagship Samsung devices like the Galaxy S9 and the upcoming Note 9, as well as OLED displays used by Apple’s iPhoneX, to home electronics and more.

Beyond tracking shipments, a blockchain platform could even reduce the time and ramp up efficiency between product launches and their shipments to end users.

Delivering Blockchain Tech

While details of Samsung Electronics’ foray into using the decentralised technology remain slim for now, Samsung SDS developed and deployed ‘Nexledger’, its own blockchain platform for enterprises and businesses over a year ago.

In May 2017, SDS launched a blockchain pilot for Korea’s shipping industry to track imports and exports of cargo shipments in real-time by leading a consortium that included Korea’s Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries, the Korea Customs Service, technology giant IBM and major freight operator Hyundai Merchant Marine, among others.

Samsung SDS, which is also a member of the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance (EEA), successfully completed its first trial run of a shipment that saw the entire process of a shipment, including booking and delivery, from Korea to China. As mentioned above, SDS concluded its pilot in late 2017 that ultimately aims to process “all exports and imports” in Korea using blockchain.

In November 2017, the metropolitan government of Seoul, South Korea’s capital city, chose Samsung SDS to develop a roadmap and deploy blockchain technology to the city’s entire administration as a means to improve transparency and enhance citizen convenience. Seoul city’s government has previously announced its intention to apply blockchain technology across “the entire municipal administration’ by 2022.

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What If You Could Crowdfund Any Project?

Mon, 04/16/2018 - 13:28

Up until a decade ago, for most people these ideas remained just that — a pipe dream.
In theory, crowdfunding changed this. It made the funding of anyone’s idea a real possibility (at least in the developed world). If you wanted to get your life’s dream funded, all you had to do was create a decent campaign, apply for a platform, and then share with your audience.
In practice, it’s a little more complicated than that.

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Barriers
Despite being a $35 billion+ industry, getting listed on a crowdfunding platform isn’t as simple as it seems.
Barriers to entry are high, with many platforms shutting out developing countries and due to being equity backed, only accepting projects that are likely to reach their goal (and make a return through the 5%+ fees charged.)
Once on the platform, it doesn’t get any easier — in a competitive market, your campaign has to be strong. An average spend by a crowdfunding campaign will be between $1,000 and $5,000 before it even makes any money.
Currently only 17% of Keep it All campaigns (KIA) reach their funding goal, and 34% of All or Nothing campaigns (AON), which effectively means that the ‘failed’ campaigns don’t make any money at all, despite potentially investing thousands in promoting themselves.

How are we different?
We’re using blockchain to change this. Our platform will use the powerful idea of crowdfunding, but remove all the access barriers currently in place on other leading platforms.
We’re not equity backed meaning that we can accept any legal and ethical project without considering its immediate commercial potential — this gives more scope for social enterprise and humanitarian projects, alongside technological innovation and creative ventures.
The Acorn platform will have inbuilt support services to give projects the best chance of reaching their funding goal, and will give founders the option of Keep it All or All or Nothing funding structures.

We have had over 230 project submissions so far. Here’s just a few of the projects that our platform will help bring to life:
1. A Polar Expedition
A polar expert/author and record-breaking adventurer from the Netherlands, want to become the first souls to attempt the coldest journey in the Northern Hemisphere.
The ambitious pair want to be the first to trek between Oymyakon and Verkhoyansk, two small villages in sub-arctic Siberia, which both claim they are the coldest inhabited place on earth. The villages are 650 kilometres apart, and the temperatures range from -60 to -90. The epic journey will be filmed and a book will be made about the adventure.

2. A Film Maker’s First Horror Film
An indie filmmaker from Argentina who has spent a long career so far working on VFX for Hollywood — including Game of Thrones — wants to make his first horror/fantasy feature film.
Part of the funds have been raised already, but he requires the remaining funding to meet the quality standards needed to make it into the international circuits.

3. Sustainable Food Source Using Mealworms
A scientist in Canada is creating a sustainable, nutritious food source through the mass production of mealworms fed off waste food. This project hopes to ultimately create a sustainable food source with little to no carbon footprint.

4. Filters for Safe Drinking Water
Using Nano technology developed by NASA in 2008, one entrepreneur wants to develop a water filter for wells in regions such as India, Pakistan and Africa where many people don’t have access to clean drinking water.

5. Bakery Training School
A bakery and bread training school in Nigeria requires extra funds to expand its training projects to target those who face job insecurity and economic hardship.
We have been overwhelmed by the variety of project submissions we’ve received so far, in a huge range of sectors, from all over the world. The sheer volume of innovative ideas reinforces our belief that crowdfunding should be for everyone.

We all have our own ideas about projects or inventions we believe will change the world. Whether it’s a theme park in your back garden, a donkey sanctuary, or some spring loaded trainers…
We’d love to know — what would you crowdfund if you had the chance?

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CNBC Fast Money’s Brian Kelly: Bitcoin is like the ‘Internet in the 1980s’

Mon, 04/16/2018 - 04:00

Brian Kelly of CNBC’s Fast Money compared cryptocurrency to the “Internet in the 1980s,” emphasizing that Bitcoin (BTC) is still in its early stages in an April 13 interview on CNBC’s Trading Block.

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When asked about Bitcoin’s potential, Kelly answered that while he used to see crypto as comparable to the Internet in 1995, he now understands that a better comparison is further back:

“I think this technology is going to work, it’s going to be game changing, but it’s very early days, so we can have this massive volatility.”

Kelly compares Bitcoin to early Internet companies Cisco and Microsoft, equating Bitcoin with Cisco’s router and Internet protocols. However, Kelly underlines that it is incorrect to think of Bitcoin as a company or a stock:

“This is an open source software, you can’t think of it as a company, and that’s where people make their mistake […] This is not a stock, this is not a company.”

Bitcoin’s price slump since the new year has been attributed by Fundstrat’s Tom Lee to a taxpayer sell off in the US before the tax day, April 17. According to the interview, Kelly agrees with Lee’s analysis, adding that “we’ll know presumably after April 17 if we can hold these gains.”

Kelly also mentions the recent report by analysts at Barclays that referred to cryptocurrency as a “virus” and an infectious disease that would “never hit another high again.” Kelly notes that the moment right after such negative articles are published is when he “wants to buy any asset, whether it’s Bitcoin or not.”

On Friday, Kelly said in a another interview that he supports investment tycoon Tim Draper’s assessment that Bitcoin could hit $250,000 by 2022.

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Crypto Hedge Fund Pantera Capital: BTC Will ‘Highly Likely’ Break $20,000 This Year

Sun, 04/15/2018 - 05:02

Pantera Capital Management, a hedge fund with a focus on cryptocurrencies, said in their April newsletter that Bitcoin’s (BTC) price of $6,500 was probably the low for the cryptocurrency, and that it was “highly likely” BTC’s price will reach above $20,000 this year, the Wall Street Journal(WSJ) reported Friday, April 13.

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In December of last year, CEO of Pantera Capital Dan Morehead predicted that Bitcoin’s price could drop 50 percent before it reached new highs, a prediction whose first part has come true, as BTC dropped below $7000 in February – a 65 percent drop.

BTC’s price has since risen – most notably by $1,000 in 30 minutes on April 12 – currently trading at around $7,916 and down about three percent over a 24 hour period to press time.

In the April newsletter, Morehead wrote that he “rarely [has] such a strong conviction on timing. A wall of institutional money will drive the markets much higher.” Earlier this week, several Wall Street players made steps into cryptocurrency as the Rockefeller’s venture capital arm Venrock partnered with crypto investment firm Coinfund.

Additionally, a Goldman Sachs executive reportedly left to join Michael Novogratz’s crypto merchant bank, and reports circulated that Soros Management Fund would begin crypto trading.

Morehead added that his “professional opinion is that we’re in the first innings of a multi-decade trade,” as Bitcoin recently fell below its 200-day moving average, a “rare buy signal:”

“If you can buy something at $7,000 which was $20,000, it’s probably a good trade.”

According to Morehead, he has only made four other crypto trade recommendations in the past.

A possible reason for BTC’s recent price upswing is a slowing down of the selloff of crypto holdings in preparation for tax day in the US on April 17, which was an explanation put forwardby Fundstrat’s Tom Lee for the crypto market’s general downturn since the new year.

Morehead agrees with this analysis of the crypto market’s post-new year sinking, writing that he could “imagine that a portion of the selling pressure on the market in general has been unintended tax positions.”

Investment tycoon Tim Draper said earlier this week that he now sees Bitcoin as reaching $250,000 by 2022. Draper’s 2014 prediction – when BTC was around $320 – that BTC would pass $10,000 in 2017 turned out to be correct.

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Bermuda Outlines Cryptocurrency Regulations to Attract Entrepreneurs

Sat, 04/14/2018 - 06:40

Bermuda is moving forward on virtual currency legislation as it seeks to attract fintech entrepreneurs, the country’s Minister of National Security noted during an overview of its proposed fintech regulatory framework at the Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute, according to the Royal Gazette.

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The minister, Wayne Caines, gave the presentation to a standing-room-only audience. Next month, the Virtual Currency Business Act is scheduled for discussion.

Virtual Currency Law Proposed

The Virtual Currency Business Act has been proposed despite the fact that there are no examples to follow, said Kevin Anderson of the Bermuda Monetary Authority, the financial-services regulator.

The act will be a “shining example” for what Bermuda can accomplish, he said. A 150-page paper on the Virtual Currency Business Act was posted on the BMA’s website. Feedback must be submitted by May 2.

The VCBA defines “virtual currency business” as the provision of the following activities: issuing, selling or redeeming virtual coins, tokens or any other form of virtual currency. This would include an ICO business on behalf of customers. The act would also cover payment service providers, defined as: “a person whose business includes the provision of services for the transfer of funds.”

It would also cover virtual currency exchanges, virtual currency wallets, and virtual currency services vendors, defined as any business providing specific virtual currency-related services to the public. The legislation will address the intersection of cryptocurrency and fiat, preventing fraud and market manipulation, the integrity of cryptocurrency owners, clear descriptions of the risks for prospective investors, BMA enforcement powers, Caines said.

Entrepreneurs Flock To Bermuda

The government is finding it hard to keep up with the number of people who want to come to Bermuda as it plans to regulate virtual currency, Caines said. He said it is “phenomenal” that the government is going to London this weekend where it will meet with 20 interested companies.

Cryptocurrency entrepreneurs want to see rules in what is a mostly unregulated part of the global finance industry, said Lydia Dickens, manager of government’s business development unit. She said the entrepreneurs are looking for legal certainty. John Narraway, a tech entrepreneur and member of the Government’s Blockchain Business Development Working Group, agreed, noting that foreigners are more interested in regulatory certainty than tax advantages.

ICO Legislation Tabled

Meanwhile, ICO legislation, scheduled for discussion tomorrow, has been tabled.
The ICO legislation will require the Minister of Finance’s consent for ICOs. ICO issuers will have to collect, verify and retain customer identity information.

Last year, Bermuda’s Premier and Finance Minister, David Burt, launched the Blockchain Task Force. It included a legal and regulatory working group to ensure that the country creates a blockchain-friendly environment for interested organizations and startups.

Whether an ICO falls within BMA’s regulatory boundaries can only be decided on a case-by-case basis, the agency noted in a January press release. It noted there are no requirements ICOs must comply with at the present time. It further noted that existing financial regulations do not apply to unregulated ICOs. The BMA encourages the investing public to be prudent and mindful of their accountability for their actions in this increasingly fast-moving and complex landscape.

The government will also attempt to establish a Bermuda E-ID scheme this year. This will be a national digital identification program for businesses and residents that will strengthen the country’s fintech credentials. It will include rules for cryptocurrency exchanges.

The Caribbean Financial Action Task Force will assess Bermuda’s anti-money laundering and anti-terrorist financing measures. Anderson said the BMA would hire more staff.

The national ID scheme will eliminate the need for multiple hard copies of documents and to give individuals control over their data. A single aggregation platform will allow people to comply with Know Your Customer and Anti Money Laundering rules.

The scheme will speed up customer verification for banks and financial services and enable fast-track immigration. Caines said fintech-related legislation could be released every other month.

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Fundstrat’s Lee Predicts $25,000 Bitcoin Price by 2018’s End

Fri, 04/13/2018 - 06:52

Bitcoin is trading in the green again, and the bullish forecasts are rolling in. Thomas Lee, Fundstrat’s co-founder and head of research, predicts that the crypto rally will continue and the bitcoin price could trade as high as $25,000 by year-end, according to an interview with CNBC.

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With the bitcoin price hovering at about $7,839 at press time, that means the No. 1 cryptocurrency could more than triple its value in the coming months, turning one of the most closely watched market downturns into a victory lap. Volume in the past 24-hour period has surpassed USD 8.8 billion, which based on Coin Market Cap data hasn’t happened since early March.

“We still feel pretty confident bitcoin is a great risk/reward, and we think it can reach $25,000 by the end of the year,” Lee told CNBC.

Fundstrat’s Lee is a known bull on bitcoin, having been able to see the forest for the trees throughout the first quarter bear market. So he’s not surprised to see the rally, saying that it’s actually “overdue” and that bitcoin has been “incredibly oversold.”

Indeed, Lee, a market strategist, has blamed the downturn in the cryptocurrency markets on tax selling, as investors looked to take profits to offset their capital gains tax. He said tax selling has “accelerated in the past couple of weeks because tax day is coming up.”

Lee also pointed to Fundstrat’s Bitcoin Misery Index (BMI), which is comprised of a “win-ratio and upside less downside volatility.” He said it’s reminiscent of where the index stood at the end of the 2014 bear market in bitcoin (that bear market resulted from the demise of Japan’s Mt. Gox exchange.) A recent Fundstrat report said: “With the BMI at 18 (lowest since 2011), future returns for BTC are quite strong.”

Lee said back on March 28 that investors should be “patient buyers of bitcoin here.” He pointed out then that it wasn’t a good idea to try and time the markets, noting that “annual gains are driven by an average of nine days each year.”

Having said that, Lee was right on target with his prediction that the selling pressure would ease right about the time of tax day, which is April 17 this year. Naysayers have questioned the theory because of the global trading that occurs in the bitcoin market; it’s not just a US-phenomenon. But the theory appears to have been substantiated.

Fast and Furious

The bullish calls on bitcoin are coming fast and furious, which only intensifies the expectation that cryptocurrencies have in fact turned a corner in the second quarter and that the bulls are out in full force.

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Australia’s Digitalx Launches Crypto Investment Fund

Thu, 04/12/2018 - 09:43

Australian blockchain and digital advisory company DigitalX Ltd. has launched a new investment fund called DigitalX Investments, which will focus its investments primarily on major cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and ether.

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The cryptocurrency investment fund will also allow diversification into regulated Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs), crypto derivatives, fiat money, and managed investment schemes.

“We believe cryptocurrencies are under-researched by mainstream asset managers and there is an opportunity to leverage our expertise in Blockchain technology and crypto-asset investment to create value for our clients,” said Leigh Travers, Managing Director of DigitalX.

The new fund is created with $750,000 of DigitalX’s existing Bitcoin and Ethereum holdings. DigitalX will hold a 73 percent interest.

DigitalX is a Blockchain technology consultancy company providing ICO advisory services, Blockchain consulting services, and Blockchain related software development services.

DigitalX has partnered with digital media provider Multiplier to educate new investors from around the world about the opportunities and risks of crypto-assets.

It will create two websites, Multipliercrypto.com and Coin.org, which will have small educational video tutorials about cryptocurrencies and ICOs as well as a resource for updated regulatory information.

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22 countries sign declaration for European Blockchain Partnership

Wed, 04/11/2018 - 09:27

The European Commission’s (EC) Digital Day 2018 has led to the signing of a Declaration to create a European Blockchain Partnership made of up 22 countries, according to an April 10 European Commission press release.

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During yesterday’s speech, the EC Vice President called on Europe to become a leader in digital technologies by working on Blockchain innovation as well as artificial intelligence (AI) development.

The press release reads that the Partnership will be a “vehicle for cooperation amongst Member States to exchange experience and expertise in technical and regulatory fields and prepare for the launch of EU-wide [Blockchain] applications across the Digital Single Market for the benefit of the public and private sectors”

Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society Mariya Gabriel spoke of the potential for Blockchain technology to be integrated into existing industry:

“In the future, all public services will use [Blockchain] technology. Blockchain is a great opportunity for Europe and Member States to rethink their information systems, to promote user trust and the protection of personal data, to help create new business opportunities and to establish new areas of leadership, benefiting citizens, public services and companies.”

The topic of regulation for Blockchain technology was also addressed in the press release, which stated that the Partnership will “contribute to the creation of an enabling environment, in full compliance with EU laws and with clear governance models that will help services using [Blockchain] flourish across Europe.” The EC reported in early March that they would be releasing a EU-wide fintech and Blockchain framework.

The participating states that have signed the Declaration for the Blockchain Partnership are as follows: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and the UK. The press release adds that other members of the EU and the European Economic Area are also invited to join.

In early February, the EC launched the EU Blockchain Observatory and Forum, which Gabriel called “one of the world’s most comprehensive repositories of [Blockchain] experience and expertise.”

The press release notes that the EC has invested more than 80 mln euros (around $98 mln) in Blockchain-related projects, with around 300 mln euros (around $371 mln) to be alloted for Blockchain development by 2020.

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New crypto exchange opens in India, despite new RBI regulations

Tue, 04/10/2018 - 05:20

CoinDCX is a new digital cryptocurrency exchange that lets you trade between all major altcoins and cryptocurrencies. Find out how it works today in our review.

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CoinDCX is an India-based cryptocurrency exchange. The exchange promises to be an exchange “like India has never witnessed”, giving the country the first exchange “built with cutting edge technology and a customer centric approach.”

The exchange launched online on April 9, 2018.

CoinDCX is a purely crypto-to-crypto exchange. The exchange does not handle fiat currencies. This allows it to operate with minimal regulations.

Last Thursday, the Reserve Bank of India made headlines for “banning cryptocurrencies”. In reality, the RBI barred entities regulated by the bank from providing services to entities dealing in cryptocurrencies. That means Indian banks cannot allow customers to acquire bitcoin in exchange for INR. Fortunately, because CoinDCX is a crypto-to-crypto exchange, the platform is unaffected by these regulations.

How Does CoinDCX Work?

CoinDCX is a cryptocurrency-to-cryptocurrency exchange that includes approximately 30 different crypto pairs. Because users are only trading cryptocurrencies for cryptocurrencies, CoinDCX can avoid regulations from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). These regulations would typically be required when launching a cryptocurrency exchange using fiat currencies like the India Rupee (INR).

Although CoinDCX doesn’t support fiat currency trading, the exchange does allow customers to view their cryptocurrency holdings in terms of INR. You can check coin prices in INR, place buy and sell orders in INR, and track your portfolio in INR. You just can’t actually buy, sell, or use INR on the platform.

Customers can also access unique education programs, including training programs catered to beginner cryptocurrency investors.

CoinDCX Fees

CoinDCX charges a fee of 0.10% for buy orders and 0.10% for sell orders.

The company does not charge anything to deposit cryptocurrency into the platform. However, you’ll pay a fee when you withdraw cryptocurrencies. There are also minimum withdrawal limits. You’ll pay a fee of 0.0005 BTC when withdrawing BTC, for example, and you’ll need to have a minimum of 0.001 BTC.

CoinDCX’s full fee structure can be viewed here.

CoinDCX Features

CoinDCX emphasizes all of the following features:

Trusted and Secured: CoinDCX uses multi-signature authentication and “best in-class security” to keep your funds secure 24 hours a day. Funds are kept in secure offline cold storage wallets to prevent hacking.

30+ Pairs: Traders can trade 30+ cryptocurrency-to-cryptocurrency pairs over the CoinDCX platform.

Fast Customer Service: CoinDCX puts a big emphasis on customer service, claiming they offer 24 hour response times and fast resolutions to your requests.

Low Trading Fees: CoinDCX charges a flat trading fee of 0.10% to makers and takers. That’s relatively low compared to other cryptocurrency exchanges.

Referral Program: CoinDCX has a referral program that allows you to invite friends to CoinDCX and get a flat 50% cut of their trading fees instantly.

Fast KYC Verification: CoinDCX claims to offer fast KYC verification that allows traders to get started today. No more waiting several days for your KYC verification to be complete.

Who’s Behind CoinDCX?

CoinDCX was founded by Sumit Gupta and Neeraj Khandelwal.

Sumit Gupta is a 27 year old serial entrepreneur and supporter of blockchain and cryptocurrencies. He completed his bachelors and masters degree from IIT Bombay in 2014 before joining Sony headquarters in Tokyo as a software engineer. Sumit also founded a multi-million dollar company called ListUp, leading a team of 30+ people with more than a million active users. Sumit is the CEO of CoinDCX.

Neeraj Khandelwal, meanwhile, is the CTO of CoinDCX. Neeraj has attained key positions at multi-million dollar startups like VP Engineering at Holachef and CTO at Doormint.

The company describes itself as a team of passionate blockchain enthusiasts based in India. CoinDCX was founded with the goal of creating “the most transparent, secured and trusted exchange so that our users can trade peacefully while we do the work.”

CoinDCX is based in Mumbai, India.

CoinDCX Conclusion

CoinDCX is a new cryptocurrency exchange serving the Indian marketplace. The goal of the exchange is to offer cheap (0.10% trading fee), fast, and secure crypto-to-crypto tradingacross 30 popular pairs. The exchange was launched in April 2018 and is ready to accept traders.

To learn more about CoinDCX or to signup today, visit online at CoinDCX.com.

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Rockefellers now have cryptocurrency ambitions

Mon, 04/09/2018 - 08:17

Venrock, a venture capital firm controlled by the Rockefeller family, is making investments in ICOs and startups working in the blockchain and cryptocurrency spaces.

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Many people recall the legacy of John Rockefeller as one that has taken a backseat in American history since the role it played in what is known as the “roaring 20s.”

However, it appears that his family is still alive and kicking through a venture capital firm—Venrock—that is now confirmed to have ambitions in the cryptocurrency and blockchain spaces.

Partnering with CoinFund, a cryptocurrency investment firm, the company plans to provide funding to promising entrepreneurs who wish to develop blockchain-based projects.

“We wanted to partner with this team that has been making investments and actually helping to architect a number of different crypto economies and crypto token-based projects,” said David Pakman, a partner at Venrock.

Venrock and CoinFund got acquainted with each other when they first invested jointly in YouNow, a live-streaming platform that was one of the first ventures to begin using cryptocurrencies.

Usually, companies that finance any project that has to do with cryptocurrency or blockchain want a fast-paced road to profit. This isn’t necessarily the case for Venrock, according to Pakman.

“There are a lot of crypto traders in the market. There are a lot of cryptocurrency hedge funds. This is different. In fact, to us, it looks a little bit more like venture capital,” he said.

CoinFund seems to have a similar mentality, with cofounder Jake Brukhman telling Fortune magazine that he wants a partnership that helps “mentor, advise, and support teams in the space.”

It’s important to note that the company doesn’t plan to put any money into Bitcoin or other similar cryptocurrencies, but it might help finance the creation of tokens through its investment in some ICOs.

This is in contrast to George Soros’ hedge fund, which has just recently received approval to begin trading cryptocurrencies.

This is a complete 180-degree turn, as the man himself stated that cryptocurrencies cannot be considered actual currencies because of their volatile nature.

This move, coupled with Venrock’s, might give the space a more pronounced sense of legitimacy.

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CANADA KEEPING THEIR EYE ON UNAUTHORIZED EXCHANGES

Sun, 04/08/2018 - 01:41

Due to complaints received, the Ontario Securities Commission in Canada is in the process of investigating crypto exchanges in a bid to ensure that they are adhering to the country’s securities laws.

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The amount of different digital currencies available to trade has increased exponentially since Bitcoin was developed in 2009. In fact, the latter went from being the dominant crypto to being responsible for less than 50% of the total market cap.

This variety of virtual currencies, and their drastic price increases in 2017, has opened up the market to anyone who can afford to invest, novice or not.

However, because of the decentralized nature of cryptocurrencies, there exists a bit of a Wild West scenario, something that regulators are pushing to change, with most new regulations applying to both ICOs and cryptocurrency exchanges.

INVESTIGATING EXCHANGES

Based on this, Canada’s Ontario Securities Commission has said that unauthorized cryptocurrency exchanges in the country could be facing the might of the law. According to The Star, Kristen Rose, who is the spokesperson for the commission, elaborated:

“We are aware of several cryptocurrency trading platforms operating in Ontario and are gathering information about their activities. To date, none have been recognized as an exchange, or exempted from recognition.”

Rose went on to explain that because these exchanges are acting as marketplaces, they should be subjected to the same regulations as traditional exchanges and trading platforms.

She said:

“If an exchange is doing business in a jurisdiction of Canada, it must apply to that jurisdiction’s securities regulatory authority for recognition or an exemption from recognition.”

REGULATION IS THE NAME OF THE GAME

Canada is by far not the only country developing regulation solutions. The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has been active in their pursuit of regulating exchanges, with February this year seeing the commission charge BitFunder with fraud. This is because the exchange was not registered and therefore operating illegally.

Registering is non-negotiable for national securities exchanges, irrespective of whether trade is linked to traditional digital assets or virtual currencies.

Australia, which has also been in the spotlight recently for the amount of Bitcoin scams their crypto investors have experienced, has announced new legislation with regard to exchanges. In addition to registering, each platform has to adhere to anti-money laundering regulations. Failure to do so will result in legal repercussions.

Even though regulating decentralized virtual currencies seems to go against one of the main benefits of crypto, which is that it is not answerable to any authority, regulators have stated that they are going ahead with legislation in an apparent bid to protect investors from scams and fraud.

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In India, Ethereum’s the New King of Cryptocurrency, not Bitcoin

Sat, 04/07/2018 - 02:44

According to reports, in the past five months, Indian crypto enthusiasts have gained more interest in Vitalik Buterin’s ether than Satoshi Nakamoto’s bitcoin.

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Ethereum attracted a whopping 34.4 percent of the total currency searches in India while bitcoin got 29.9 percent, which is quite meager compared to the pent-up interest it generated in September. People’s interest in ether was unusually high during the last week of February as searches for the coin doubled that of bitcoin.

India’s free internet service provider, Jana also found that as much as 21.2 percent of the searches were looking to buy NEM from India’s favorite exchange BuyUCoin and the other altcoins managed a five percent search result.

Indian Searches Indicate Greater Interest in Ethereum

As expected, when the price of bitcoin almost hit $20,000 in December 2017, cryptocurrency searches accounted for 30 percent of all search results during the five-month period of the study.

Ethereum’s ether hit an all-time high of near $1,500 in early 2018 when the regulatory pressure on bitcoin was trying to gain momentum.

Since the altcoin is second in command, with a market cap of over $37 billion at press time, it was normal for people to get interested in ETH as many must have been thinking it was heading to the moon.

Eagle’s summation may not entirely be right because it could as well had been that a lot of people were buying ethereum then due to ‘fear of missing out.’  The meteoric rise of bitcoin has thought a lot of crypto enthusiasts that any coin can hit the moon at any time. Therefore once an altcoin starts showing even the slightest signs of skyrocketing, people tend to jump in as quickly as possible.

FUD Killed It

In January 2018 the Indian Finance minister, Arun Jaitley, made it clear once more that bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies will not be treated as legal tenders. This news drastically made a lot of investors lose interest in the market.

“The government is recommending shutting down exchanges and limiting currencies altogether, coupled with the decline in prices has lead to the feverish pitch waning away dramatically. There are still quite a lot of searches, but maybe we’re getting closer to what a true steady state should look like,” said Eagle.

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14% of Young Japanese Male Professionals Own Cryptocurrency

Fri, 04/06/2018 - 08:30

On April 3, 2018, the New R25 Research Institute, an initiative of R25 Co., Ltd., published findings of its recent investigation of the “real currency holding” among businessmen ages 25-30, revealing 14% of young professionals owned cryptocurrency.

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The nationwide survey used Macromill internet research from this past January through March. Of the 4,734  interviewees, 206 were drawn from 640 who hold virtual currencies. Roughly 25% of the men who participated in the crypto holdings research are beginners at investing, experiencing purchasing cryptocurrencies as a first investment. Just over 72% have previously invested in something other than virtual currencies. Among those surveyed, those who hold virtual currencies weigh in at about 14%.

Rather than purchasing for settlement or remittance purposes, over 90% made the move as an investment objective. Still, for some, cryptocurrency investing is a trend to follow, 37.4% buying in for just that reason. Nearly one fifth invested in tokens based upon recommendations from those they know and/or media information thereof.

Nearly one-fourth of those making first-time virtual investments did so during October, November, and December of 2017, during which time the price of currencies was increasing. And though cryptocurrency has been in existence for ten years, 79% of study participants took the financial leap into the crypto world “since 2017,” as media coverage overflowed with news of virtual currencies. Somewhat ironically, only 15% reported investing beginning in 2018, as prices plummeted.

Unfortunately, with market fluctuation, many bought high and have experienced the decreasing value of their currencies; not many have made substantial profits to date.

When asked about the amount held in their virtual currencies, 34.5% reported investments less than 50,000 yen, roughly $467 USD. Few people reported investing heavily, showing an overall cautious approach regarding virtual currencies.

What is the hope for virtual currencies?

With nearly half of the men maintaining interest in active virtual currency investment in the future,  a little over 35% of the interviewees don’t intend to continue with the trend. Still, 80% maintain hope in cryptocurrencies as an investment.

Even after this survey, questions remain. Since motivation is high for those who own virtual currencies, will the market grow and encourage gen R25 to continue investing? And, will it continue its societal reach beyond investment objectives?

A subsidiary of the media company CyberAgent Inc., headquartered in Tokyo, New R25, also “R25 generation,” is a web presence for young businessmen. Aiming to bring clarity about life, business, and advancement for men between 20 and 30, the Research Institute analyzes men’s lifestyles, including their purchasing habits.

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