​​​​​​Blockchains
The Crypto Report 31-Aug-2020
Top 3 Company Headlines
Ant Financial plans $200bn IPO (FT 27-Aug)
JP Morgan sells Quorum to Consensys (Business Wire 25-Aug)
LINE launches wallet and DLT platform (CoinDesk 27-Aug)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
POSA tells IRS staking should not be taxed (Cointelegraph 21-Aug)
ETH daily fees at record $7m (Cointelegraph 14-Aug)
Singapore approves crypto code of conduct (PR 13-Aug)
The Crypto's View
LINE’s 164m users and Ant’s record sized IPO show the scale of the threat to incumbent firms from fintech. Ex-JP Morgan Will Martino’s comment that Quorum was unable to scale from 200-1000 trades a second shows that DLT has a long way to go to be part of that threat. POS (Proof of Stake) may help. Lobbyist POSA argues that rewards should not be taxed because dilution can weaken the total return to zero. The Crypto suggests POS economics must be stronger to run networks able to challenge incumbents and their Ant sized e-money competitors. 
Fun Fact: Journalist Leah McGrath Goodman insists that Dorian Nakamoto really is Satoshi (Pomp Podcast 25-Aug)


The Crypto Report 31-Jul-2020
Top 3 Company Headlines
Grayscale AUM hits $5.1bn (PR 29-Jul)
MUFG to launch Yen stablecoin (Mainichi 13-Jul)
Socios gets Estonian licence for sports tokens (PR 30-Jul)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
US banks get OK for crypto custody services (PR 22-Jul)
Ethereum network catches up with Bitcoin (CoinGape 30-Jul)
Report from PwC and CV VC on art and crypto (PR 22-Jul)
The Crypto's View
Buterin poured cold water on boiling hot DeFi projects that offer so-called "yield farming". These remind the Crypto of real estate sales pitches offering a short term "yield". That usually comes out of the scheme organiser’s profit margin. If explained honestly it would be called a customer acquisition cost. A "yield" should be a share of some hoped-for underlying business revenue.
Fun Fact: JM Smucker will be tracking coffee beans using DLT. The Crypto notes that daily global coffee bean production and Bitcoin mining production are nearly the same. On mass adoption and $ total coffee is still ahead (Cointelegraph 15-Jul)


The Crypto Report 30-Jun-2020
Top 3 Company Headlines
Grayscale buys more BTC and ETH (Cointelegraph 26-Jun)
Wirecard files for bankruptcy (FT 18-Jun)
COMP debuts as largest defi token over MKR (defimarket 29-Jun)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Fidelity surveys finds 36% of institutions own crypto (Cointelegraph 27-Jun)
Huge crypto growth in India (bit2buzz 30-Jun)
ETH volatility drops below BTC and both to a 2yr low (Cointelegraph 30-Jun)
The Crypto's View
The “Pink Sheets” premium for the Grayscale Ethereum Trust fell from a high of 10x its NAV and the premium for their Bitcoin Trust was steady. News of its continued buying of a multiple of all BTC mined this month should have an impact on premium one day as lock-ups expire. The halving in BTC and ETH volatility in just a month (reaching comparable levels to gold) and huge interest in income-producing COMP suggests that many in the crypto industry are looking to lock in price levels and/or generate extra income from existing holdings or future mining flows. For this to happen with crypto prices at record low volatility suggests that the Grayscale buying is by arrangement like an offtake agreement or direct from long-term holders. There may also be heavy options writing. These are strategies that will be familiar to many of the 36% of institutions that Fidelity says have become active in the crypto markets.
Fun Fact: Uber and Robinhood angel investor Jason Calacanis says “99% of crypto projects are garbage” (Cointelegraph 29-Jun)


The Crypto Report 31-May-2020
Top 3 Company Headlines
GBTC buys 33% of BTC mined in Q3 (Reddit 18-May)
FINMA authorises Zurich’s InCore Bank (PR 29-May)
Tencent unveils $70bn capex plan (Reuters 26-May)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Bank of France and SocGen test digital euro (PR 14-May)
Lopp says no proof who moved 2009 mined BTC (Twitter 21-May)
$80m pizza’s Haneycz says GPU mining set up early on (Cointelegraph 30-May)
The Crypto's View
TradeBlock’s Feb estimate of $6,851 pre-halving break-even for BTC miners implies most are losing money today. If correct, a16z’s “fourth crypto bull cycle” means more projects will need fiat for rent and staff etc. It is logical that Grayscale is attracting qualified investor (QI) money locked for a few months into crypto if QIs expect to exit at a persistent “pink-sheet” premium (which non-QI buyers must pay) of 20% for the bitcoin trust and a mind-boggling 5x for the ETH trust. Most research available to non-QI investors (even market-leader Messari) does not mention this QI-only arbitrage. The Crypto observes that global macro scene for inflation hedges (which some like Tudor hope BTC will be) has been great yet the BTC price is steady. Perhaps that is due to these cash calls?
Fun Fact: Tyler Winklevoss: “How are you going to pay for things on Mars?” in response to hearing Elon Musk telling JK Rowling he owns only 0.25 BTC  (Twitter 16-May)


The Crypto Report 30-Apr-2020
Top 3 Company Headlines
Libra publishes revised white paper (PR 17-Apr)
a16z raises $515m DLT fund (Fortune 30-Apr)
dForce $25m hack reversed (BBC 21-Apr)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
G20 warns stablecoins pose systemic risk (PR 14-Apr)
26% of crypto users buy drugs or weapons (Visual Objects 20-Apr)
China set to launch national blockchain platform (BSN 25-Apr)
The Crypto's View
The gulf between government or “big tech” permissioned projects and early-stage/decentralised projects was on display again this month. The dForce hack and its reversal reminds the Crypto how many DLT start-ups have suffered losses but even huge firms like Facebook can stumble. The drastic re-write for Libra does not surprise the Crypto but abandoning its focus on the “un-banked” is pathetic. Those 1.7bn souls are more in need of help than ever as they confront the pandemic. Libra has “unfriended” the planet’s most vulnerable as it tries to patch up rich country relationships.
Fun Fact: Italian town issues crypto coin to counter Covid-19 impact (euronews 26-Apr)


The Crypto Report 31-Mar-2020
Top 3 Company Headlines
TON Network launch may defy SEC GRAM injunction (Cointelegraph 26-Mar)
Bakkt raises $300mn (PR 16-Mar)
Steem re-launches as Hive (PR 17-Mar)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
India overturns bank crypto ban (Bloomberg 08-Mar)
IBM and MiPasa launch WHO COVID-19 DLT project (Forbes 28-Mar)
Buterin proposes Bitcoin–Ethereum bridge (Twitter 25-Mar)
The Crypto's View
Polychain (one of the oldest crypto funds) for the year to Nov 2019 gained 56% after a drop of 60% in 2018 while Bitcoin dropped 73% and rose 105%. The portfolio has shifted to half in illiquid tokens said to be in parallel with a VC fund they also manage. This may explain the feeble rebound from a dive that shadowed the 2018 loss. The Crypto observes that while the fund manager talks about the upside potential of crypto assets his actions to switch into VC in effect reduced the exposure to crypto as VCs must spend fiat to “buidl” projects. The Crypto suspects others have been making similar moves into VCs which outflow to fiat while in public talking up asset class.
Fun Fact: Maaaaaaass adoption? Czech sheep fed via crypto gift webcam (Cointelegraph 12-Mar)


The Crypto Report 29-Feb-2020
Top 3 Company Headlines
JP Morgan may merge Consensys and Quorum (Reuters 11-Feb)
Nexus insurance payout following bZx attacks (Blog 20-Feb)
40 German banks apply to offer crypto services  (Trustnodes 08-Feb)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Japan lawmakers ask for G7 talks on digital yen (Reuters 07-Feb)
France pushes EU to remove obstacles on crypto (Trustnodes 12-Feb)
Trump adds crypto to Secret Service role (Coinrivet 11-Feb)
The Crypto's View
Consolidation by regulated firms continues as ConsenSys buys into the trillion-$ muni market  with a broker-dealer and mulls a merger, Bank von der Heydt prepares to offer STOs competing in the crypto arena with 40 other German banks and iSTOX gets MAS approval for capital markets business. Among smaller firms the bZx arbitrage attack using its own “smart-contracts” reminds the Crypto of the astonishing proportion of hacks that crypto projects have endured. Criminals are unlikely to “HODL” so the outflow to fiat could at times exceed that needed to fund mining or start-ups unless (like below) they just lose the keys or delay the risk of cashing out and getting caught.
Fun Fact: Drug dealer's paper keys to $56m burned with fishing kit (Irish Times 21-Feb)


The Crypto Report 31-Jan-2020
Top 3 Company Headlines
Vodafone quits Libra to focus on M-Pesa (CoinDesk 21-Jan)
Binance partners with Japan’s Z-Holdings (PR 20-Jan)
Gold-backed stablecoin issued by Tether (PR 23-Jan)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
SEC says GRAMs are not commodities like donuts (Cointelegraph 29-Jan)
Six central banks to collaborate on DLT research (PR 21-Jan)
BSV volatile as Satoshi case progresses (Cointelegraph 20-Jan)
The Crypto's View
Central banks researching digital currency or Saudi Aramco trading oil on-chain show the scale of DLT projects, yet even the behemoth Facebook has been unable to hold Libra together. Vodafone will use its Kenyan e-money success M-Pesa as its solution for the 1.7bn unbanked. Stablecoins like Libra, CBDCs, or now Tether’s gold-backed token, are becoming a dominant topic. The Crypto thinks these are a natural way for institutions to adopt DLT since assets like fiat, the oil price or gold are risks they have to live with already. New ways of managing those risks will be welcomed. Unless they introduce new risks (e.g. Tether’s legal case) stablecoin issuers have a serious chance of becoming the “killer app” for DLT like email was for corporate use of the internet. 
Fun Fact: Rapper given land in Senegal for crypto-only AKON City (Union Journal 14-Jan)

The Crypto Report 31-Dec-2019
Top 3 Company Headlines
Libra updates white paper (Fintech Policy 10-Dec)
Ripple Raises $200m from VCs (Elevenews 21-Dec)
Great North Data files for bankruptcy (CBC 05-Dec)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
YouTube cracks down on crypto (Bitcoinist 24-Dec)
China’s BTC miners control 66% of hash rate (Asia Times 12-Dec)
Less VC funding for crypto (Cointelegraph 31- Dec)
The Crypto's View
Ethereum co-founder Jeff Wilcke was observed moving $11m worth of his tokens to an exchange which was said to be to fund his next venture. The Crypto does not know if he bought them or was given them but notes that a recovery to VC from 2019 levels or other inflows to crypto will be needed to balance these kind of sales to fund projects.
Fun Fact: Nike patents a system for tokenising shoes on Ethereum (USPTO 10-Dec)


The Crypto Report 30-Nov-2019
Top 3 Company Headlines
Bakkt offers Bitcoin custody (PR 12-Nov)
Google plans checking accounts with Citi (WSJ 13-Nov)
Franklin Templeton to use CURV wallet for tokenised stocks (PR 21-Nov)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
FCA to ban mini-bonds sales to small investors (Guardian 26-Nov)
BRICS nations propose cryptocurrency for payments (The Block 15-Nov)
Swiss plan to remove legal hurdles for DLT (PR 27-Nov)
The Crypto's View
Bitcoin based IRAs are set to break $1bn soon which makes the 60% premium to NAV the Grayscale Digital Large Cap Fund traded at last week baffling as it contains over 80% BTC. Its sister GBTC holds only BTC and its premium has ranged between an equally baffling 100% and zero.
This may reflect US retail investor optimism about mass adoption of crypto assets but the Crypto observes that eMoney competitors like Google continue to emerge as do government backed DLT projects such as the BRICS settlement project. Twitter CEO Dorsey’s comment that “Africa will define the future of Bitcoin” could mean that its use-case as a payments solution is overshadowed by more appropriate local solutions like mPesa.

Fun Fact: US man arrested for visiting DPRK to give crypto lecture (PR 29 Nov)


The Crypto Report 31-Oct-2019
Top 3 Company Headlines
Booking Holdings follows 6 others out from Libra (Bloomberg 14-Oct)
SEC halts $1.7 billion Telegram offering (PR 11-Oct)
Nomura invests in Line project (PR 4-Oct)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Bitcoin surges after Xi Jinping supports DLT (Reuters 26-Oct)
CFTC deems ETH a commodity (Yahoo 10-Oct)
Bermuda to accept tax payments in USDC (Circle 16-Oct)
The Crypto's View
Xi Jinping’s support for DLT, legal clarity and a new list of projects contrasts with Zuckerberg's DC reception, EU resistance, and much of Libra deserting before battle began.
Libra’s white paper target of 1.7bn unbanked would be badly served by a currency basket and that already appears to be history. MZ testified Libra could stand up for the US against China yet it already has access to most of those 1.7bn through the BRI and deployment of its telco materiel in their homes. 
The Crypto is reminded of Operation Barbarossa which ignored advisers. China won’t stop, however, and the Crypto bets Satoshi would be sad if immutability were used to control rather than emancipate users and reduce corruption in countries where the unbanked scrape out their existence.
Fun Fact: Cryptocurrency political donations are deemed legal in Japan (Cointelegraph 08-Oct)


The Crypto Report 30-Sep-2019
Top 3 Company Headlines
Square to pivot away from payments (AFR 05-Sep)
DB joins JPM’s 334 member iiNetwork (FT 15-Sep)
Kik Messenger shut to fight SEC (Blog 24-Sep)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
IMF’s IFRIC views cryptos as ”intangible assets” (Korea Times 23-Sep)
DPRK building crypto based economy (Vice 19-Sep)
Ethereum clogged by Tether (Trustnode.com 11-Sep)
The Crypto's View
Mastercard and Bank of America joining Marco Polo Network, DB joining JPM, and IBM snagging 6 of 11 Hyperledger posts show the weight of resources competing with decentralised projects. Bitcoin bull Yusko pointed at this month’s all-time high hash rate but due to “Moore’s Law” type gains in CPU performance that’s less $ of CPU deployed than in 2017. ETH suffered delays and the Lightning Network crawls along. The Crypto sees why Dorsey is steering Square into services and why FB CEO back-pedalled from the 2H 2020 LIBRA launch. FB has the inverse plan to Square i.e. a high margin/low regulation business to enter a high regulation/low margin one. For a realistic (and heartening) view on DLT serving the unbanked look at the Oxfam project in Vanuatu or the DPRK efforts enabling the private sector and skip over the repressive Iranian criminalisation of crypto.
Fun Fact: Catalonia’s DLT based citizens ID project aims to thwart Govt. access to data (VilaWeb 07-Sep)


The Crypto Report 31-Aug-2019
Top 3 Company Headlines
Binance reveals Venus project (PR 18-Aug)
Elwood on a mission for $1bn crypto fund (FT 30-Aug)
African Mega Bank Standard joins ICBC’s Marco Polo (PR 22-Aug)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
ETH’s Vitalik says "we’re full" (Bloomberg 27-Aug)
MIT AI finds “just” 2% of BTC trades illicit with “only” 77% unknown (PR 02-Aug)
ING finds Austrians sceptical vs non G7 citizens (Der Standard 14-Aug)
The Crypto's View
Venus, ICBC led Marco Polo, and talk of a CBDC shows how China dominates. Western focus on STOs was knocked a tad by Overstock news and of ETH at capacity, but the Crypto finds the INX raise and Alan Howard’s ambitions encouraging: they focus on pro-investors/VC. The Hockney print STO in Korea and $75m Dominican Estancia STO show what appeals to retail rather than UHNW or institutions. Congruent with that, ING data shows the further an economy is away from G7 quality the more citizens fear their fiat. The Crypto prays that Bannon's "Global Populist Revolt" turns out to be just tinfoil-hat (at least in the US) and that BoE Governor Carney's proposed pivot from the $ to a (SDR type?) currency he may one day manage at the IMF is the probable outcome.
Fun Fact: Steve Bannon: cryptocurrencies are part of the ‘global populist revolt’ (CNBC 02-Aug)


The Crypto Report 31-Jul-2019
Top 3 Company Headlines
Libra testimony (Forbes 15-Jul)
Germany approves $280m Fundament STO (Securities.io  23-Jul)
CFTC investigating Bitmex (CCN.com 19-Jul)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Trump “not a fan”  (newsbtc 12-Jul)
UK issues crypto guidelines (CoinDesk 31-Jul)
Japan backs SWIFT replacement (ZDnet 19-Jul)
The Crypto's View
Libra is the inevitable focus from June yet nothing but a yawn emerged from Senate hearings or other responses. The CoinDesk report suggesting that 58% of Americans have “awareness of Bitcoin” is congruent with indifference of the mass market rather than a wave of new adoptees. Crypto projects are yet to reveal a “killer app” that will capture the imagination and use of the mass market in the way that email did for the internet. Note the remarks by the Huawei President pondering whether China might launch a central bank backed crypto coin. There are already 300m users of eMoney Alipay in China alone which dwarfs the number of active bitcoin users never mind the millions of mPESA users in Africa, Suica users in Japan etc. Crypto projects got a wake-up call this month about what the mass market finds interesting and (as far as mass market eMoney use is concerned) are way behind.
Fun Fact:  Crypto posterboy John McAfee announced he will also run to be UK Prime Minister at same time as US president since his birth at a US  airbase in the UK gives him unique qualifications to occupy both roles at same time (CCN.com 26-Jul)


The Crypto Report 30-Jun-2019
Top 3 Company Headlines
Facebook reveals Libra (CoinDesk 18-Jun)
Gram Asia selling GRAM via Liquid (PR 11-Jun)
Binance geoblocks 21 nations (Cointelegraph 02-Jun)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Switzerland and EU cannot agree (Reuters 24-Jun)
IMF predicts central banks will start cryptocurrencies (IMF Blog 27-Jun)
US, Japan top crypto traffic (Cointelegraph 01-Jun)
The Crypto's View
Libra shows that mass market bankers are right to fear Bezos and Brin rather than BTC or Buterin. The Crypto’s editor was published on top news site CoinDesk spotlighting the canard that is FB’s focus on the unbanked. Regulators and many important players around the world saw it the same way. Mass market projects should fear both the entrance of a muscular competitor and regulators concerns. Niche projects should take heart that crypto is acknowledged as an important technology.
Fun Fact: Libra Foundation member Breakthrough Initiatives’ main focus is on the search for extra-terrestrial life (Breakthrough Initiatives 30-Jun)


The Crypto Report 31-May-2019
Top 3 Company Headlines
Binance $40m hack re-org considered (Twitter 07-May)
FINRA approves Ethereum Trust listing (PR 23-May)
Galaxy $71m Block.one exit (PR 21-May)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Token capital raises rebound (Cointelegraph 25-May)
51% attack in Bitcoin Cash (Twitter 24-May)
Europol takes down BestMixer.io  (PR 22-May)
The Crypto's View
Approval for Grayscale to list ETHE draws attention to the premium on their older Bitcoin Trust GBTC that has doubled to nearly 40% and the astonishing 450% on the Ethereum Classic trust ETCG. In 2018 fiat inflows to crypto surged to participate in the ICO boom with a “crypto winter” reversal as projects converted back to fiat to fund projects. Since the weak debut of “unicorns” Uber and Lyft there’s anticipation of PE stakes being securitised to be floated into nascent STO markets. It may be that the booming IEO market has led to similar inflows and price impact in the past few weeks as well as hopes of further easy gains from early STOs. The Grayscale premiums are evidence that crypto investors are extremely optimistic. The Crypto expects stakeholders will try to reap valuations for their unicorns that traditional markets are cynical about.
Fun Fact:  Chinese developer Wei Liu files Bitcoin copyright counterclaim to Craig Wright (CoinDesk 30-May)


The Crypto Report 30-Apr-2019
Top 3 Company Headlines
Bitfinex accused of $850m Tether loss by NY AG (Bloomberg 26-Apr)
NYT’s Popper says Facebook seeks $1bn crypto funding (Twitter 8-Apr)
KT unveils blockchain-ready 5G platform (Korea Times 16-Apr)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
SEC posts Digital Asset Investment Contract Framework (SEC Apr-03)
France asks EU to adopt its crypto regs (Reuters 16-Apr)
Switzerland to draft security token trading regs (PwC 05-Apr)
The Crypto's View
The April Fool’s Day (Hawaii time) bitcoin rally lasted until the Tether shock added to the list of crypto firms that have lost control of vast customer assets. Community rows about the bitcoin creator and forks won’t embolden mass adoption either. Explaining bitcoin to his mom, the Crypto used the “digital gold” analogy. So are forked tokens “digital isotopes”? Gold only has radio-isotopes that decay but blockchains are immutable so the Crypto suggests “digital molybdenum” is a better analogy. It’s very useful for making tools and has mass adoption by bacteria in a vital role for daily life by “fixing” nitrogen. It’s not convenient for buying pizza and maybe not for my mom’s savings either. She is OK with keeping some cash on her contactless card to pay for the train or a newspaper though. Soon it will be built into her and billions of other user’s mobile phones.
Fun Fact:  Primitive Ventures launches alternate reality game “Satoshi’s Treasure” aimed at teens with $1m of hidden prizes (CoinDesk 15-Apr)


The Crypto Report 31-Mar-2019
Top 3 Company Headlines
Circle rumoured raising $250m (The Information 02-Mar)
GOX liquidator holds large amounts of illiquid crypto (PR 19-Mar)
Non-Reg exchanges inflate volume 95% (Crypto Potato 23-Mar)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
IDC forecasts 89% rise in DLT spend (PR Mar-04)
UN says DPRK made $670m from hacking (Nikkei 08-Mar)
SEC warns some “stablecoins” may be securities (Decrypt 16-Mar)
The Crypto's View
For any math-based science more data is welcome but sadly analysis of huge misreporting of trading volume (almost all by non-reg exchanges) is not. This may help explain why “stablecoins” tracking error is poor (not to mention Tether rewording its backing pledge) and why the SEC delayed a decision on ETFs. Numbers suggest crypto markets are only just about able to absorb the daily sell needs of miners and ICOs which kept too much in crypto. Challenges await if tokenisation is really going to “disrupt” established asset markets. Repackaging those assets but with higher trading impact/costs is not a good way forward.
Fun Fact: The Lightning Torch too big at $150 as too few channels have staked enough for it to be passed along (CoinDesk 13-Mar)


The Crypto Report 28-Feb-2019
Top 3 Company Headlines
QuadrigaCX files for creditor protection (PR 01-Feb)
JPM Coin launched (CNBC 13-Feb)
Kraken buys CME index provider Crypto Facilities (PR 04-Feb)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Crypto projects boost hedge-selling of derivatives  (Bloomberg Feb-13)
Luxembourg extends law to crypto assets (PR 14-Feb)
World Gold Council: crypto is no substitute (CoinDesk 20-Feb)
The Crypto's View
The drama of QuadrigaCX losing access to almost $200m in customer funds after the CEO died adds to the plethora of crypto-exchange security disasters. Coinlab’s suit for $16bn against MtGox reminded us of that huge event so Coinbin’s mere $26m bankruptcy failed to affect prices. It could be that the $500m Q4 loss estimated for Bitmain’s mining activity encouraged hopes that supply would soon drop, even if dreams of BTC ETFs receded further into the future. Mizuho, MUFG, and JP Morgan all announced stablecoins. This validation of DLT does not indicate any fresh demand for non-fiat risk while crypto projects continue to sell derivatives to reduce short term exposure.
Fun Fact: Echoing the legend of two pizzas bought in 2010 for 10,000 BTC ($38m at today’s price), Lightning Network fans bought 150 pizzas for an average price of $25 demonstrating the network improvement over the cost and transaction speed of BTC. (CoinDesk 15-Feb)


The Crypto Report 31-Jan-2019
Top 3 Company Headlines
Kik contesting SEC enforcement action (WSJ 27-Jan)
Nomura JV with Line (PR 30-Jan)
Galaxy raising $250m crypto loan fund (Business Insider 24-Jan)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
BIS Raphael Auer report on PoW economics (PR 23-Jan)
UK FSC issues guidance on crypto (PR 23-Jan)
Hamas’ Abu Obeida appeal for BTC (Telegram 29-Jan)
The Crypto's View
The BIS economist’s report looks far into the future at the risks of a 51% attack but subtly highlights the more pressing worry of bitcoin miners running at below break-even in most places except those with cheap electricity like China and Georgia. Thanks to the baked-in reduction of bitcoin mining rewards about every 3-4 years break even must double in just over a year and again and again. This is will coincide with the end of the useful life of many mining rigs on top of those taken out of use where electricity is too expensive. Validating BTC transactions has never been a big part of mining revenue so unless BTC prices double from here transaction settlement capacity will drop even more than the peak of around 300,000 a day a year ago. If fees for that tiny volume rose to cover the estimated $6m a day in mining costs it would rule out the use of the current version of BTC for mass market use never mind what happens when the reward rate halves in a year and thereafter.
Fun Fact: CoinDesk writers voted on top influencers and launched a set of collectable trading cards with their images. At time of writing Nouriel Roubini is the highest priced card (CoinDesk 31-Jan)


The Crypto Report 31-Dec-2018
Top 3 Company Headlines
25% of Pantera portfolio may be securities (Bloomberg 14-Dec)
GMO axes mining rig production (PR 25-Dec)
Kraken PE offered at $4bn valuation (Finance Magnates 11-Dec)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
LinkedIn sees 33x jump in jobs for blockchain coders (PR 13-Dec)
US Congress bill to block Iranian sovereign token (PR 17-Dec)
G20 pledges crypto regulations (PR 01-Dec)
The Crypto's View
Basis chose to refund its $133m ICO in case it is judged a securities issue but other projects’ treasury (especially if too much kept in crypto) may no longer be enough for refunds. The huge jump in demand for coders shows that projects continue to build. The Kraken valuation is a monster. If it is more real than its Nordic namesake then it appears that VCs are stepping in to fill the gap left by ICO funding. Status ended the year with more ETH in its account than its ICO raised, cut staff 25% and asked for pay cuts to be made up for with more tokens. Staff may be praying crypto prices don’t repeat 2018 but at least for coders there are other places to earn the rent. The Crypto wonders how many other firms have been trading crypto rather than focusing on their projects?
Fun Fact: Smart Valor CEO makes ambiguous V sign in Christmas greeting (Twitter 25-Dec)


The Crypto Report 30-Nov-2018
Top 3 Company Headlines
Amazon launches QLDB products (PR 28-Nov)
Revolut to open in Japan with Rakuten and Sompo (CNBC 29-Nov)
Galaxy Digital reports $136m YTD loss (Bloomberg 28-Nov)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
SEC guidance on crypto securities (PR 16-Nov)
HK SFC crypto regulation update (PR 01-Nov)
Paraguay backs huge Golden Goose mine and exchange (PR 18-Nov)
The Crypto's View
Bitmex reported that a dozen large ICOs have delayed launching. The Eurekahedge crypto currency hedge fund index reports dismal YTD losses with the 17 venerable funds it tracks more or less tracking bitcoin. The Crypto is not surprised that fresh money is reluctant to allocate to crypto “hedge funds” that don’t hedge much but not that big money continues to arrive from incumbents deploying DLT and with huge customer bases.
Fun Fact: Star Trek’s Shatner Tweets defending Buterin (CoinDesk 08-Nov)


The Mogul Report 31-Oct-2018
Top 3 Company Headlines
Fidelity plans crypto launch (Forbes 15-Oct)
Coinbase Revenue forecast $1.3bn (Bloomberg 30-Oct)
BitStamp bought by Korbit owner NXM  (Fortune 29-Oct)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Stablecoins pressured by Tether wobble (Bloomberg 15-Oct)
Only 63 of 155 September ICOs raise assets (CoinTelegraph 24-Oct)
Japan's FSA grants SRO status to JVCEA  (CoinTelegraph 24-Oct)
The Crypto's View
Rumours of NXMs price for Bitstamp are not far from the $352m a surgeon led firm paid for Korean rival Bithumb a week before. The Crypto notes that volatility and sentiment in crypto assets has been crushed. NY OTC listed GBTX closed yesterday on just an 8% premium and CBOE notes low BTC futures volatility. This suggests to The Crypto a breakout as it did when he saw this happen to the Nikkei in February 1995. Going long a strangle is the logical trade to profit but The Crypto does not give investment advice. He observes that NXM, the surgeon and FIDO will be pleased if it is the upside leg. Since so many are positive The Crypto fears the surprise will not be a nice one.​
Fun Fact: DJ Khaled and boxer Floyd Mayweather in crypto fraud suit (Independent 22-Oct)


The Crypto Report 30-Sep-2018
Top 3 Company Headlines
Google to allow ads for regulated crypto exchanges (CNBC 26 -Sep)
Huobi buys Japan regulated BitTrade exchange (CoinTelegraph 13-Sep)
SEBA raises $104m for Zug crypto bank and exchange (Bloomberg 26-Sep)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
NY AG report faults crypto exchanges’ risk controls (PR 18-Sep)
Swiss Bank SRO guidelines encouraging crypto services (Reuters 21-Sep)
Philippines to publish ICO regulation (CoinTelegraph 04-Sep)
The Crypto's View
Positive regulated crypto news this month was accompanied by expansion plans such as Ribbit ($420m fintech fund), NASDAQ (Cinnober TOB), Coinbase (100 Wall St hires, more listings, Caspian jv), Line (5 DAPPs, Japan coin), Softbank (mobile payments), JP Morgan (Quorum IIM test with 75 banks) and EF Hutton (new crypto services). One of the Crypto’s favourite sentiment indicators is the premium on the $1.5bn NY listed bitcoin trust GBTC which sagged to just 19%. It’s spent most of its life between 50-100%  on hallucinations of a flood of institutional money arriving that would push up prices despite than the inevitable premium collapse that more alternative vehicles would bring. This indicator tells the Crypto that either traders have capitulated on there being no wave of institutions or that they have arrived but are not pushing prices. 
Fun Fact: The MW Scrabble dictionary added Bitcoin so some have reported it’s officially worth 11points (CNN 24-Sep)


The Crypto Report 31-Aug-2018
Top 3 Company Headlines
Mt.Gox creditors near $1.4bn settlement (mtgox-creditors.com 01-Aug)
Bitmain mulling $18bn IPO (CoinDesk 10-Aug)
Huobi reverses into Pantronics (HKEX 22-Aug)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
SEC turns down ETF requests again (SEC 22-Aug)
More than 200 ICOs being investigated in US (NASAA.org 28-Aug)
Lloyd's of London enters Crypto Market (CoinDesk 28-Aug)
The Crypto's View
Ironically for a math based technology, popular valuation of crypto assets is usually light on the numbers based methods of CFA or equivalently educated analysts. The Crypto applauds the efforts of Satis Group building on earlier work by pioneers like Bogart, Selkis, and Burniske whose report from 30-Aug has value estimates for dozens of crypto assets. Many are rated at zero but the survivors are tagged with high upside. Time will tell but it is refreshing to see some math being used intelligently rather than more common faith-based assertions or chartist voodoo.
Fun Fact: Canaan is offering a crypto mining TV in pre IPO PR (SCMP 02-Aug)


The Crypto Report 31-July-2018
Top 3 Company Headlines
Coinbase launches crypto asset custody service (CoinDesk 02-Jul)
Palladium $150m warrant bond to build Malta Fintech with Bittrex (PR 10-Jul)
Galaxy Q1 loss $134m disclosed ahead of TSXV listing (Bloomberg 26-Jul)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
SIX to launch crypto exchange in 2019 (PR 06-Jul)
Gallup poll shows just 2% of US citizens own crypto (PR 27-Jul)
Iran preparing sanctions evading crypto Rial (PressTV 25-Jul)
The Crypto's View
There is much chat among crypto traders hoping for a boost from the arrival of “institutions” but some are already involved and hurting. The Q1 loss at Galaxy and the YTD losses reported by the Eurekahedge Crypto Hedge fund index show strong correlation with the overall level of Bitcoin and the other majors and that very little was done to hedge exposures. VCs and presale ICO buyers may have done better as a Boston College study shows excess returns for ICOs in month 1. That assumes they avoided enough of the 56% of ICOs that are moribund by month 4.
Fun Fact: 12 Russians indicted with US election meddling were traced via the Bitcoin they mined and used to buy the Guccifer domain and other services. (NY Times 13-Jul)


The Crypto Report 30-June-2018
Top 3 Company Headlines
Alibaba's Ant Pay raising $14bn for DLT expansion (PR 08-Jun)
Coinbase buys registered broker-dealer Keystone Capital (CNBC 08-Jun)
Ebang miner may raise $1bn in HKEX IPO (PR 29-Jun)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
PWC Crypto Valley reports ICO issuance YTD exceeded 2017 already (PR 30-Jun)
Liechtenstein PM promotes Crypto Laws due early 2019 (PR 21-Jun)
Japan FSA mandates AML improvement at 6 exchanges (PR 22-Jun)
The Crypto's View
Record YTD numbers for crypto capital raises, new regulations, regulated exchange launches and mega company entrants validate DLT but bring a big rise in (mostly fiat) outflows needed to execute. 2016 crypto outflows to fiat were dominated only by miners’ hardware and LX spend. ICO and crypto account openings surged in 2017 but only the former YTD. Crypto conversion to fiat is the air leaking from the 2017 bubble. El Erian’s “gut feeling” that bitcoin is a buy at 5000 (last year it was 3000) lacks math. We all know what exits from the gut.
Fun Fact: Potcoin sponsored Denis Rodman Singapore appearance to support his friends POTUS and Kim Jong Un (CoinTelegraph 08-Jun)


The Crypto Report 31-May-2018
Top 3 Company Headlines
NVIDIA warns of 2/3 drop in mining chip sales (Market Watch 12-May)
Circle raises $110mn Series E funding  (Press Release 15-May)
Coinshares launches Koimanu JV with Nomura (Press Release 15-May)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
DoJ opens crypto manipulation probe (Bloomberg 24-May)
Shrimp and frogs clog ETH network (EWN 20-May)
New Japan FSA guidelines for crypto exchanges (CoinTelegraph 06-May)
The Crypto's View
Regulation enforcement stepping up a notch (DoJ and Upbit probes and MAS warnings) co-incided this month with Gemini adopting NASDAQ’s SMARTS manipulation detector and Coinbase announcing more tools for professionals. Japanese tax experts estimate more than 300 people declared profits over $1m last year and the FSA issued guidelines similar to existing securities rules. As institutional involvement grows and tax claims rise more news like this is inevitable and welcome. It’s a testament to the maturing of crypto that in the context of a 20% drop on the month for Bitcoin many small or dubious tokens were hit much harder.
Fun Fact: Stormy Daniels chose Vice Industry Token (VIT) contributing to Verge (XVT) crashing over 60% down (a loss of over $800m) from its Mindgeek deal (CoinDesk 25-May)


The Crypto Report 30-Apr-2018
Top 3 Company Headlines
Yahoo Japan buys 40% of BitARG (Reuters 13-Apr)
tZERO unveils token trading platform (Press Release 09-Apr)
SBI to launch own exchange (Business Insider 27-Apr)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Australia extends KYC/AML laws to crypto & licenses exchanges (newsBTC 11-Apr)
FSA exchange survey finds 3.5m crypto users in Japan (FSA 30-Apr)
NY AG Schneiderman questions multiple out-of-state exchanges (Press Release 17-Apr)
The Crypto's View
Even more regulation is coming to cryptoland. The Crypto observes this has coincided with an upswing in values vs fiat and a downswing in assets like Verge with its over-hyped deal (an advert campaign) with MindGeek.
Fun Fact: John McAfee charges $105,000 per tweet for promoting cryptocurrency projects (CoinTelegraph 03-Apr)


The Crypto Report 31-Mar-2018
Top 3 Company Headlines
Google to ban crypto adverts (PR 13-Mar)
Yahoo! Japan to add crypto to its online FX business (Nikkei Asian Review 23-Mar)
Telegram raises $1.7bn in ICO so far (SEC 30-Mar)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
JFSA warns Binance and 7 others (Reuters 23-Mar)
Gox whale offloads $400m of BTC with $1.9bn to go (Bloomberg 07-Mar)
CBOE writes to SEC to permit bitcoin ETFs (CoinTelegraph 27-Mar)
The Crypto's View
Though 2018 ICO issuance flows have exceeded 2017, many deals have been open to large fiat contributions in the premarket phase. Telegram is the biggest so far, has registered with the SEC, and its large subscribers have almost certainly been offered that choice. The deal sizes mean larger outflows to fiat adding to incomplete Gox liquidation which may partly explain weak market YTD.
Binance has moved to Malta rather than comply with JFSA rules yet big ticket investors clearly like some regulatory oversight. Jurisdictions which get the balance right (soon to be joined by Liechtenstein) have gained much market share and appear set to grow.
Fun Fact: Ex-Liverpool football star Michael Owen launches OWN coin via GCOX in Singapore (Bloomberg 21-Mar)


The Crypto Report 28-Feb-2018
Top 3 Company Headlines
Rakuten to launch its own cryptocurrency (Mobile World Live 27-Feb)
Circle buys Poloniex for $400m (Press Release 26-Feb)
Digital Currency Group $114m stake Silvergate Bank (Press Release 26-Feb)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
SEC asks for info (CNBC 28-Feb)
GS misquoted: really saying crypto is much less than 1% of global GDP (CoinTelegraph 28-Feb)
Coinbase disclosing only 13000 accounts to IRS (Fast Company 27-Feb)
The Crypto's View
Some huge positives from heavyweight commitments like DCG, Rakuten, and Circle have balanced negatives like IRS disclosures (for a surprising small number of people) and SEC investigations. These have resulted in not much net movement in the total crypto market cap.
Except for the persistent premium on GBTC the Crypto would posit that equilibrium is close.  
Fun Fact: Russia’s security services have arrested a nuclear scientist for allegedly using military supercomputers to mine Bitcoin (BBC 09-Feb)


The Crypto Report 31-Jan-2018
Top 3 Company Headlines
Line applies for cryptocurrency exchange licence (CCN 31-Jan)
Telegram plans $500m pre-ICO (CoinTelegraph 08-Jan)
UCL fights degree fraud with Bitcoin (Bitcoin Magazine 25-Jan)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Facebook incl crypt in ban of non-regulated asset adverts (CoinTelegraph 30-Jan)
Venezuela announces “Petro” token presale (CoinDesk 31-Jan)
World Gold Council strikes back (CoinTelegraph 30-Jan)
The Crypto's View
Line is big and MUFG, DMM, SBER, Kodak and Facebook also engaged this month. Crypto fans are celebrating the arrival of "institutionals" but they can be competitors too.
The Gold Council knocked back that they have a 5,000 year track record and 250x the traded volume of Bitcoin. Even humble orange juice futures (possibly "soft gold"?) trade bigger volume. Ranting remarks in crypto chat rooms about hedge funds going short are missing the obvious point that CME crypto futures compared to their "whales" are minnows.
Fun Fact: Arsenal Football Club signs crypto-currency deal with gaming firm CashBet (BBC 24-Jan)


The Crypto Report 31-Dec-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines
Cryptokitties becomes the largest dapp on Ethereum (CoinTelegraph 04-Dec)
DMM Group plans cryptocurrency exchange (Bitcoin.com 21-Dec)
QUOINE partnership with Gibraltar Blockchain Exchange (PR 22-Dec)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
CBOE to begin bitcoin futures on 10-Dec (Business Insider 04-Dec)
SEC Chairman Jay Clayton statement on cryptocurrencies & ICOs (SEC 12-Dec)
Coinbase announces insider trading probe (Fortune 20-Dec)
The Crypto's View
Regulators became more active in the crypto world this month. In the US the SEC warned to observe existing laws and further ICO legal actions started. More positively Japan approved 5 more exchanges and major companies like SBI (a QUOINE investor) and DMM announced expansion plans.
Governance will be an important topic in 2018.  Firms in jurisdictions with regulation have a chance to take advantage of those that do not as the rush of China based business to partner elsewhere shows.
Fun Fact: A Tesla S owner has set up his vehicle to mine bitcoin (CoinTelegraph 04-Dec)


The Crypto Report 30-Nov-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines
Gibraltar Blockchain Exchange & Rock Token launch (PR 6-Nov)
World’s first bitcoin mutual fund launched by Tobam (FT 21-Nov)
Tezos sued for securities fraud by ICO investor (Coindesk 3-Nov)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
SEC statement on celebrity ICO endorsements (SEC 01-Nov)
SegWit2x called off (Linux Foundation 08-Nov)
BTC avg transaction fee double all time high (bitinfo 12-Nov)
The Crypto's View
All-time highs for prices make headlines but BTC avg trade costs hitting $18 and size spiking over $100,000 show it is migrating further from mass-market. That is negative for some crypto-economic models. Institutional interest grows with the launch of the Gibraltar Stock Exchange’s “Gibraltar Blockchain Exchange” and a French mutual fund which signed CACEIS in the key custodian role. Ironically this and the news that futures markets (a zero sum game that make short sales easier) are a step closer has been accompanied by US listed GBTC premium over underlying assets soaring to 68%, close the high of its range. Market maturity should be driving the premium lower. 
Fun Fact: "From seed to sale" is the IBM pitch to BC government for regulating the cannabis industry to protect consumers (CoinDesk 6-Nov)


The Crypto Report 31-Oct-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines
Overstock (OSTK:NASDAQ) ICO for tZERO regulated market (PR 24-Oct)
AMD (AMD:NASDAQ) shares down, Morgan Stanley say mining chip boost temporary (FT 30-Oct)
Tezos struggles with infighting (Reuters 18-Oct)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
CME to launch bitcoin futures (Reuters 31-Oct)
Dubai emCash, 1st state issued cryptocurrency (CoinTelegraph 01-Oct)
Jeff Garzik Metronome cross-chain cryptocurrency (Bloomberg 24-Oct)
The Crypto's View
The Crypto wonders if all these hard forks are an attempt by worried miners and mining hardware sellers to stay in business. Proof of stake (PoS) is coming to Ethereum. It uses much less energy and eliminates conventional mining. Litecoin tested segwit first. If PoS is successful it may come to Bitcoin.
Fun Fact: The Arkansas Sheriff’s Office in the USA is mining bitcoin to help it with dark web investigations (CoinDesk 30-Oct)


The Crypto Report 30-Sep-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines
GBTC & Van Eck withdraw SEC fund listing applications (Reuters 28-Sep)
Ripple & R3 file law suits against each other (Reuters 08-Sep)
Nexon (TSE:3659) KRW91.3bn, 65% Korbit stake (Hankyung 26-Sep)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
China bans ICOs (PBoC 04-Sep)
Top browsers implement Bitcoin API (CoinDesk 16-Sep)
Japan issues licences to 11 crypto exchanges (CoinDesk 29-Sep)
The Crypto's View
China led a wave of regulatory news. The SEC charge 2 ICOs with fraud. Risk is high but business continues e.g. Nexon/Korbit or the CBC bancassurance app. Japan stands out as permissive.
Ethereum made ERC20 official, Geth released new node software, the Raiden scaling project will ICO. The Buterin & Teutsch interactive ICO protocol and the Zt-Snark/Zt-Stark privacy discussion are early stage but positive. This is all increasingly complicated but it will improve Etheruem.
Fun Fact: Rock star Gene Simmons is open minded about launching “KISScoin” (TheStreet 15-Sep)


The Crypto Report 31-Aug-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines
Blockstream launch Bitcoin transaction satellite broadcast (PR 15-Aug)
Fisco (3807:TSE) test bitcoin bond (Bloomberg 16-Aug)
Filecoin ICO raises $200m in 1 hour despite tech issues (CoinDesk 10-Aug)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Chinese regulator considers shutting down all ICOs (CoinDesk 29-Aug)
Estonia planning national “estcoin” (BBC 25-Aug)
IRS using Chainalysis to find Bitcoin tax cheats (CoinTelegraph 23-Aug)
The Crypto's View
Blockstream’s satellite broadcast is momentous. It’s like GPS for Bitcoin and it is likely the first of many. The Crypto sees a future where even if the entire internet was shut down, every satellite would also have to be destroyed. Bravo!
ICOs are drawing increasing attention. Many raise much more money than they need from investors, keep the excess, and spend it very questionably. Regulators in the USA, Canada, China, and Singapore have all recently signalled they will take action. The Crypto is aware of around 200 ICOs scheduled over the next few months. How long until something serious goes wrong?
Fun Fact: An aide to Putin wants $100m for bitcoin mining so that Russia can rival China (Bloomberg 08-Aug)


The Crypto Report 31-Jul-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines
Tezos ICO raises approx $232m or 65k BTC & 360k ETH (CoinDesk 13-Jul)
Coinbase exchange adds 1m users last month (CoinTelegraph 03-Jul)
LedgerX to be 1st regulated Bitcoin options exchange (Bloomberg 24-Jul)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
SEC confirms tokens are securities (Press Release 25-Jul)
Chinese firms create ICO guidelines (ETHNews 26-Jul)
Hiring freezing in the blockchain industry (CoinDesk 16-Jul)
The Crypto's View
SegWit is now a certainty. There is some chatter of a hard fork but The Crypto is completely unconcerned. The Crypto thinks that people will use it as a way to dump so-called “Bitcoin Cash” for other currencies and reinvest in real BTC.
The Crypto has been reflecting on the risks around ICOs. For example, Bancor raised more money than they needed. To deal with the excess they set up a contract to repurchase tokens at the rate they sold them at the ICO. The intention was to create a floor below which the price wouldn’t fall. It turned out to be a duff plan when the market price of ETH fell and the ETH set aside for the contract was depleted.
Fun Fact: Floyd Mayweather is apparently very excited for the Stox ICO (Instagram 27-Jul)


The Crypto Report 30-Jun-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines
Daimler (DAI:GR) €100m bond via blockchain (Automotive World 28-Jun
DigitalX sell 40% stake to BGL for Bitcoin via Australian Securities Exchange (PR 07-Jun)
Pantera Capital files with SEC for ICO hedge fund (SEC 27-Jun)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Putin endorses Ethereum (Vanity Fair 12-Jun)
Singapore trials tokenised form of S$ (MAS 12-Jun)
Bitcoin helps cannabis industry solve its banking problem (Bloomberg 13-Jun)
The Crypto's View
The Initial Coin Offering (ICO) craze is only the beginning. The Crypto expects that tokens with the legal recognition of conventional equity, debt etc. will come soon. The Crypto suspects the supply of capable blockchain coders is already in high demand. They will command a high hiring price.
Bitcoin is booming in Japan. The Crypto sees regular announcements of new, large, retail companies accepting it as payment at their outlets. After Putin’s endorsement, the Crypto wonders if Russia will be the next big adopter. Burger King will apparently begin accepting bitcoin in Russia this summer (Uznay Vse 28-Jun).
Fun Fact: The Unicode Consortium added a Bitcoin symbol; you’ll be able to type it and computers everywhere will soon uniformly recognise and display it properly (Unicode 20-Jun)


The Crypto Report 31-May-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines
Fidelity include cryptocurrency prices in client accounts (Reuters 23-May)
Kik chat app ICO (Press Release 25-May)
Walmart plans blockchain delivery drones (Fortune 30-May)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Ethereum to move toward “proof-of-stake” Casper system (CoinDesk 05-May)
Ripple locks $14bn XRP, 87.5% total market cap (Coin Telegraph 18-May)
Ex-FBI Chief says cryptocurrencies impede criminal investigations (CoinDesk 11-May)
The Crypto's View
Debate is heating up around BIP 148, a proposal to increase the transactional capacity of Bitcoin. The key date is 01-Aug. There is some risk of a hard fork. If that happens, long term holders will have bitcoins on both chains. If BIP 148 is successful then most users have little to worry about or do. The Crypto recommends vigilance when receiving bitcoins around 01-Aug.
Consensus 2017, the blockchains conference, saw an extraordinary number of bigger-than-ever announcements. The Crypto expects a very interesting year ahead!
Fun Fact: Polish start-up Userfeeds hopes to combat fake news with a reputation-based platform built using Ethereum (CoinDesk 16-May)


The Crypto Report 30-Apr-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines
SEC to review Winklevoss ETF application (SEC 25-Apr)
USD wire transfer problems worsen for Bitfinex (CoinDesk 20-Apr
Stampery blockchain add-in for Microsoft Office (Microsoft 10-Apr)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Japan legalises cryptocurrencies (RT 01-Apr)
Bitmain mining hardware vulnerable (Antbleed 27-Apr)
Litecoin SegWit scaling agreed (CoinDesk 21-Apr)
The Crypto's View
The Crypto correctly predicted a Bitcoin price increase (see last month’s report). The Crypto suspects 3 more reasons for the increase: 1) the SEC said it will review its Winklevoss ETF decision; 2) purchase of Bitcoin to move funds off the Bitfinex exchange and; 3) Japanese legalisation.
The Bitcoin Core/Unlimited debate is done. Methods to control Bitcoin by Unlimited supporters at Bitmain (e.g. ASICboost, Antbleed, isAuthToRun) have been uncovered and neutralised. If SegWit is successful on the Litecoin blockchain this will boost support to do it for Bitcoin.
Fun Fact: Porsche announces its first innovation contest for blockchain start-ups (Porsche 03-Apr)


The Crypto Report 31-Mar-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines
SEC rejects Winklevoss Bitcoin ETF (SEC 10-Mar)
Alibaba (BABA:NYSE) consider blockchain to fight food fraud (CoinDesk 24-Mar)
Stratis’ Breeze Wallet to facilitate coin tumbling (Nasdaq 10-Mar)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Bug sends 70% Bitcoin Unlimited nodes offline (CoinDesk 14-Mar)
European Commission proposes RegTech pilot (EC 27-Mar)
Group of 47 Japanese banks to use Ripple (CNBC 02-Mar)
The Crypto's View
The large majority of users, nodes, exchanges, wallet providers, and others, seem to support Bitcoin Core. The only group which favours Bitcoin Unlimited is large miners. Risk of a hard fork is decreasing. The Crypto expects to see the price of Bitcoin increase again.
The Crypto observes an increase in the number of trading systems (Stock Exchange of Thailand, IBM/Trafigura) and tracking projects (Foxconn, Maersk, UN, Alibaba, Sweden’s land registry). Hyperledger’s bond trading platform has gone open source (CoinDesk 24-Mar). The Crypto expects many more trading platforms to emerge.
Fun Fact: The UN World Food Programme explores using Ethereum for tracking food (WFP 06-Mar)


​The Crypto Report 28-Feb-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines
Northern Trust (NTRS:NASDAQ) IBM (IBM:LSE) blockchain PE admin (PR 21-Feb)
bitFlyer share issue; Sumitomo (8316:T) MHFG (8411:T) Dai Ichi (8750:T) (PR 14-Feb)
Ripple to do National Bank of Abu Dhabi x-border payments (NBAD 01-Feb)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Bitcoin hits record $1206 per coin (UPI 24-Feb)
PBOC holds closed-door meetings with exchanges (Bloomberg 08-Feb)
New Ethereum Enterprise Alliance (Reuters 27-Feb)
The Crypto's View
The Bitcoin price increase may be related to rumours that the SEC will approve the Winklevoss ETF (COIN:NASDAQ). The SEC hosted a large meeting with the twins, their counsel, and service providers. The approval/denial decision is due 10-Mar. At this stage a large meeting with key people could be a sign of congratulation or that more work is needed. Will the SEC approve an ETF with an underlying asset which trades mostly in China, with questionable AML/CFT regulations, with poor liquidity? The Crypto will not be surprised either way.
The new Ethereum Enterprise Alliance (EEA) has 30 participating members including banks, IT firms, and two blockchain start-ups. The use of blockchains for smart contracts is vastly more interesting than just currency. The Crypto encourages the EEA but is pessimistic. Hopefully it will not turn out like the useless R3CEV project.
Fun Fact: Georgia is the 1st country to do blockchain land registry (Forbes 07-Feb)


The Crypto Report 31-Jan-2017
Top 3 Company Headlines
Credit China Fintech (8207:HK) $30m BitFury deal (PR 26-Jan)
Daimler acquires PayCash (Automotive World 16-Jan)
GMO (TSE:9449) launches wallet service (Finance Magnates 18-Jan)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
DTCC to use blockchain for $11tn credit derivatives post-trading (Euro Money 11-Jan)
China exchanges introduce fees, volumes normalise (Bloomberg 25-Jan)
Trump threatens remittances to Mexico (CNN 25-Jan)
The Crypto's View
GBTC has wisely ended its offering. Investors can no longer create units at NAV to sell at a premium when the 12 month restriction lapses. Existing holders cannot sell at a huge premium in the market now and then re-invest at NAV. It was plainly disclosed that this could happen but typical “pink sheets” investors probably were not aware. If it turns out that insiders and/or early investors were swapping their units like this by selling to general (non-professional) investors at a massive premium to NAV, extracting a lot of cash while superficially retaining their overall percentage holding, this could be very embarrassing and potentially legally explosive.
The Crypto suspects that a lot of the “net new investment” was from this kind of activity. Their own NAV and GBTC performance numbers show a premium erosion over a 1M, 1Q, and 1Y basis.
Fun Fact: A Federal Reserve employee received 12-month probation and $5,000 fine for mining Bitcoin at work on Fed computers (Federal Reserve 30-Jan)

The Crypto Report 31-Dec-2016
Top 3 Company Headlines
Overstock starts trading shares on Bitcoin blockchain (Wired 15-Dec)
IBM&Credit Mutuel Arkea plan client ID blockchain tech (Computer Weekly 30-Dec)
BNP Paribas makes 1st real time blockchain payment (Reuters 21-Dec)
Top 3 Macro and Risk Headlines
Bitcoin about to hit $1000 (CNBC 29-Dec)
OCC plans special bank charter for fintech companies (OCC 02-Dec)
Ukrainian Exchange launch Bitcoin futures contract (PR 19-Dec)
The Crypto's View
The price of Bitcoin rapidly increased. The Crypto is only partly sure why – Chinese demand. The BTC China exchange in Shanghai has the world’s largest volume. Daily volume increased approx. 28 times from 01-Sep to 22-Dec.
The Crypto remains unsure of the basis for any fiat valuation of Bitcoin. Good data seems impossible to find for Bitcoin spending (obscurity is of course part of Bitcoin’s appeal) except at exchanges, where currency is valued in terms of other currency. There is a philosophical point about how a currency has value because it’s in demand...but it seems today that Bitcoin is in demand mostly because of its fiat value. Tomorrow may be different. Until then, The Crypto will puzzle at how to value Bitcoin accurately.
Fun Fact: Medicinal Genomics is using the Bitcoin blockchain to register all known cannabis genomes. The goal is to reduce confusion over which strain you purchase (NewsBTC 05-Dec)