Bitcoin and its peers had a strong week after some poor showing in the recent past amid improvement in market volumes.
Market sentiment improved mainly on bullish predictions regarding the price of Bitcoin and on hopes that the US regulator may eventually approve a Bitcoin exchange-traded-fund.
The top cryptocurrency climbed back above $7,000 early on Tuesday, for the first time since early August. However, Bitcoin lost ground on Thursday and was trading below $7,000 Friday morning.
As of 10.47 am ET, overall cryptocurrency market capitalization was $224.47 billion and the Bitcoin dominance rate was 53.3 percent on CoinMarketCap.
Here is a collection of the main stories from the cryptocurrency and blockchain space from this week.
Bitcoin Bull Still Thinks BTC Could Hit $25K; Chinese Internet Giants Block Cryptos
Fundstrat’s Tom Lee, a prominent Bitcoin bull, still believes the price of the top cryptocurrency could hit $25,000 this year. In an interview on CNBC, he based his prediction on a correlation between the Bitcoin price and the trends in emerging markets. In a set back for cryptocurrencies and Bitcoin, the Chinese internet giants Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent blocked cryptocurrency-related activities on their platforms as the government intensified its crackdwon. Elsewhere, digital asset management firm Morgan Creek Digital announced its partnership with cryptocurrency company Bitwise Asset Management to launch the Digital Asset Index Fund.
Fujitsu Calls IOTA New Protocol Standard; Desktop Wallet Released
IOTA, which is reputed to be the next generation distributed ledger or blockchain, received some boost over the past few days that caused a spike in the price of native token MIOTA on Monday. The price of MIOTA climbed to over $0.62 on Monday from around $0.50 on Friday, as per data from CoinMarketCap. The second boost came from the public beta release of the Trinity Desktop wallet app from the IOTA Foundation on August 25.
Iran To Lift Cryptocurrency Ban In September; Plans Own Digital Coin
The government of Iran is planning to lift the blanket ban on cryptocurrency and launch its own national cryptocurrency backed by Iranian rials, according to reports by state-controlled media. The country is expected to deliver new digital currency regulations in September. The proposed launch is expected to help the country overcome the heavy financial sanctions imposed by the US.
CBOE May Launch Ethereum Futures Soon
CBOE Global Markets, which operates the Chicago Board Options Exchange, is planning to launch Ethereum futures by the end of 2018, the Business Insider reported citing sources. CBOE is likely to base its Ethereum futures on the underlying market of the Winklevoss twins’ crypto exchange, Gemini.
Japan’s Rakuten Acquires Crypto Exchange; Blockfi Approved In 44th US State
Japanese online retail giant Rakuten bought a 100 percent stake in the local crypto exchange “Everybody’s Bitcoin” for $2.4 million. The company acquired the exchange through its subsidiary Rakuten Card. Meanwhile, the cryptocurrency-backed money lending platform Blockfi announced that they have received approval to operate in California. And, shares of Italian football club Rimini F.C., which plays in the Serie C division, were sold in exchange for cryptocurrency.
Deutsche Boerse, Standard Chartered Explore Blockchain Options
Germany’s Deutsche Boerse purchased a minority stake in its blockchain solutions partner HQLAx, a financial technology firm, for an undisclosed amount. However, Deutsche Börse said it is an initial investment of a “single-digit euro million.” British financial services company Standard Chartered is carrying out a client pilot to create end-to-end self-executing blockchain-based bank guarantees using smart contracts, a first in the trade finance industry.
MAS, SGX, Tech Firms To Develop Blockchain-based Settlement System
The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and Singapore Exchange (SGX) are developing a Delivery versus Payment (DvP) system for settlement of tokenized assets across different blockchain platforms. In South Korea, tech conglomerate Samsung’s IT arm Samsung SDS partnered with the Korea Federation of Banks to develop a co-verification service dubbed “BankSign” for banks which is powered by blockchain technology.
China To Overtake US As Leading Blockchain Developer: Survey
A new PwC survey on blockchain technology indicated that 84 percent of participated organizations have at least some involvement with the distributed, tamperproof ledger technology. But despite the potential that blockchain holds, regulatory uncertainty and trust remain the biggest barriers to wider its adoption.
US, Canada Probe ICOs, Crypto Projects; FTC Warns On Bitcoin Blackmail Scam
The North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) announced that more than 200 active investigations into Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) and cryptocurrency-related investment products have been initiated by state and provincial securities regulators in the United States and Canada. And, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has warned about scammers who are targeting men with blackmail letters that demand payments in Bitcoin in exchange for keeping quiet about alleged affairs.
As of 10.48 am ET, Bitcoin was up 3.07 percent for the week at $6,928.93, while Ethereum was lower by 1.58 percent at $277.63 on Coinbase.
by Jyotsna V