Crypto Weekly – January 25, 2018

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The top 6 cryptocurrencies have maintained their position over the week. From the top 10 by market cap, EOS and Stellar were the major movers for the week. Bitcoin has been hovering around the $10-11K mark possibly due to South Korean regulatory actions and CME’s first monthly futures contract expiration on Jan 26.

Data source: www.coinmarketcap.com as of January 24, 2018 (UTC, EOD)

Blockchain Adoption:
  • Bermuda is reportedly looking to migrate its land registry system on to the blockchain.
  • NTT Data Corporation and blockchain startup Skuchain have partnered to integrate blockchain with IoT in supply chain. It will combine NTT Data’s  iQuattro platform and Skuchain’s EC3 blockchain platform. It will help resolve data unavailability, issues in manual processes, increased costs due to lack of coordination, and market failure.
  • BlockCypher partnered with the U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory to test the P2P energy transactions involving distributed energy resources over the dash cryptocurrency network.
  • IDT, a telecom provider and Mercury, an international payments company will also pilot Ripple’s xRapid for money transfers.
  • India’s Andhra Pradesh state government signed an MoU with Covalent Fund to start a blockchain ecosystem. It will include a blockchain university with an initial investment of $10 million and also look to provide blockchain startups with access to capital.
  • Microsoft and Hyperledger have joined the ID2020, a digital blockchain based identity initiative. This was confirmed at Davos.
Regulation:
  • The Indian Income Tax Department has sent tax notices to cryptocurrency traders and investors based on a nationwide survey which found that citizens traded and transacted ~$3.5 billion over the last 17 months.
  • South Korea:
    • In line with the ban on anonymous cryptocurrency trading, the government is looking to ban underage investors and foreigners from opening accounts in Korea beginning Jan 30. This is an effort to reduce speculative trading and illegal activity.
      • Korbit has stopped non-citizens from depositing Korean won on its platform.
    • The government will reportedly look to collect taxes in the up to 24.2% on corporate income tax from cryptocurrency exchanges. The government had hinted at this in early December of 2017.
    • The South Korean government fined 8 out of the 10 exchanges surveyed for insufficient consumer data protection as per the Information and Communication Network Act. The exchanges included – Upbit, Ripple4y, Coinpia, Youbit, Korbit, Coinone, and Coinplug. Fines reportedly ranged between $9,000-$14,000 and totaled $130,000.
  • The Malta government is still confirming the regulation around cryptocurrencies. The government is reportedly looking to allow investments in cryptocurrencies and tokens through ICOs, but potentially allow only sophisticated investors to invest in crypto based funds.
Crypto business decisions:
  • Stripe will end support of bitcoin payment processing in April as the transaction time is lengthy, failure rate is increasing, and fees are growing. The company is still optimistic about cryptocurrencies and might look to support another one in the future.
  • bitFlyer, Japan-based bitcoin exchange received a payment institution license from the Luxembourg regulator and the Luxembourg House of Financial Technology Foundation. The exchange can now operate services in the EU.
  • Blockchain, a U.K. based  cryptocurrency wallet has launched services in the U.S.. Clients will initially be able to sell bitcoins and in the near term be able to also buy bitcoins through the wallet.
Caution:
  • Commodities Futures Exchange Commission charged My Big Coin Pay, Randall Crater, and Mark Gillespie for taking funds under a cryptocurrency scheme which were then transferred to their personal accounts and spent on luxury items. Claims are that the scam involved $6 million.
Last 12 months Charts:

Data source: www.coinmarketcap.com

 

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