August 13 – 19, 2019 | Trade War and Cryptocurrencies, Intercontinental Exchange & More Crypto News
3iQ Research Group consolidates the top five cryptoasset stories of interest
to investment advisors and our investors.
The Trade War and a Weak Yuan are Driving Cryptocurrency Demand in China
August 14 – The ongoing trade war between the United States and China is reportedly boosting the appetite for cryptocurrencies among Chinese investors. According to market players from Asia and New York, the weakening of the yuan has spurred an uptick of cryptocurrency trading activities on trading platforms accessible by Chinese investors. Last week, China allowed its yuan to break through the $7 level for the first time since 2008, causing Washington to label Chinese monetary policy makers as manipulative – causing turmoil in financial markets. The yuan dropping through the $7 level back on August 5th also coincided with a 7% increase in the price of bitcoin against US dollars. Some analysts are speculating that Chinese investors are selling the yuan and buying cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin. Over-the-counter (OTC) brokers in China have reportedly seen much of the trading activity over the last several weeks. “People worry about not just the yuan but the overall economy in China. We see a lot of internet companies freezing hiring, and they are actually laying off people already because of the trade war,” said Andy Chung, the head of operations at OKEx, a popular trading platform among Chinese investors.
Which Countries are Furthest Ahead in Digital Currencies?
August 13 – A new article on CoinTelegraph has outlined four countries which are appear the most favorable to pivot away from cash and towards digital currencies over the next decade. The article outlined that Canada, Australia, Sweden, and Germany are looking the most favorable, in terms of current regulatory and legal landscapes, existing payments technologies, and other factors. In Canada, it is expected that by 2030, only 10% of all the money spent in Canada will be conducted using cash. Back in July 2018, the Bank of Canada (BoC) released a study called “Central Bank Digital Currency and Monetary Policy,” which showed that a cryptocurrency issued by a country’s central bank could create an economic benefit by increasing consumption. The study had noted that the issuance of a central bank digital currency “can lead to an increase of up to 0.64% in consumption for Canada and up to 1.6% for the US, compared with their respective economies if only cash is used.”
Major Crypto Exchange Binance Is Planning a Facebook Libra Rival
August 19 – One of the world’s biggest crypto exchanges is planning a rival to Facebook’s Libra cryptocurrency. Binance, the malta-based crypto exchange, is reportedly exploring partnerships with governments and other companies to develop new cryptocurrencies to compete with Libra. The new project is called “Venus”, and aims to “empower developed and developing countries to spur new currencies.’’ These new cryptocurrencies are expected to be stablecoins, which are cryptocurrencies pegged 1:1 to an underlying fiat currency. Facebook previously announced that its Libra project had received partnerships with 27 companies, from Visa to Uber Technologies. Binance has not announced any partnerships for their Venus project yet, but did say that it “welcomes additional government partners, companies and organizations with a strong interest and influence on a global scale to collaborate with us to build a new open alliance and sustainable community.’’
Intercontinental Exchange Will Offer First Physically-Settled Bitcoin Contracts on
September 23, 2019
August 16 – Bakkt, a subsidiary of the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), has recently been given the green light by regulators to allow investors to buy financial derivatives which are settled in bitcoin. The first derivatives settled in bitcoin will be offered on September 23, 2019. Last Friday, the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) granted a charter to Bakkt Trust Co., which will custody the investors tokens. Previously, the derivatives were approved by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) through a self-certification process. “With approval by the New York State Department of Financial Services to create Bakkt Trust Company, a qualified custodian, the Bakkt Warehouse will custody bitcoin for physically delivered futures,” said Kelly Loeffler, the CEO of Bakkt. “We believe that the availability of a benchmark that can be referenced globally will create confidence in the true price of Bitcoin… It’s an important step in creating more trust.”
Mark Cuban’s Dallas Mavericks Will Accept Bitcoin as a Means of Payment
August 14 – The famed Shark Tank investor Mark Cuban has recently opened-up to cryptocurrencies as his NBA team, the Dallas Mavericks, are now accepting bitcoin as a means of payment. Using BitPay, the Dallas Mavericks will now be able to accept bitcoin for game tickets and other merchandise starting next season. However, the Mavericks aren’t the first sports team to accept cryptocurrencies as a means of payment. The Cleveland Cavaliers have partnered with UnitedCoin as their cryptocurrency payment rail, and the Miami Dolphins have partnered with Litecoin to be the team’s official cryptocurrency. On Twitter, a user asked Cuban if the Dallas Mavericks would accept other cryptocurrencies for tickets and merchandise, but Cuban responded “[That’s] to be determined.”
3iQ Corp. (“3iQ”) is the first Canadian investment fund manager to agree to terms and conditions with the Canadian securities regulatory authorities which permit 3iQ to manage a multi-cryptoasset investment fund available to Canadian accredited investors. 3iQ provides accredited investors with exposure to bitcoin, ether, and litecoin through its 3iQ Global Cryptoasset Fund.
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