SEC delays VanEck SolidX ETF decision

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Yesterday December 7, The SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission) yet again delayed the decision of VanEck and SolidX proposed Bitcoin ETF (Exchange traded fund). The review period is extended until next year, February 27. 

This time is different because the SEC can no longer delay this decision. The end of February will be the time and date when we finally find out the outcome of the SEC decision. Meaning, that they will either approve or disapprove the ETF.

Previous denials

The SEC is famous for denying Bitcoin ETFs. First they denied the Winklevoss twins Bitcoin ETF. Then they denied nine Bitcoin ETF proposals by ProShares, Direxion and GraniteShares. It was all due to a reason that these products do not comply with he requirements by the “Exchange Act Section 6(b)(5), in particular, the requirement that a national securities exchange’s rules be designed to prevent fraudulent and manipulative acts and practices.

SEC Commissioner comes into play

Later on, the SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce tweeted that it was not the SEC commissioners who actually denied the ETF proposals, instead, they delegated that responsibility to SEC staff, namely, the Division of Trading and Markets. She wrote: “The Commission (Chairman and Commissioners) delegates some tasks to its staff. When the staff acts in such cases, it acts on behalf of the Commission. The Commission may review the staff’s action, as will now happen here.”

And this was the decision which put the proposal into its next phase – comment phase. The SEC was waiting for the public to comment on this issue until November 5. To this day, the SEC has recieved more than 1,600 comments, reports CoinDesk.

VanEck optimistic about the outcome

VanEck from the beginning has expressed much optimism about the products potential despite the regulatory “rocks” in the way. Their director of digital asset strategy, Gabor Gurbacs said that the ETF approval is just around the corner.

“We are the closest that we can be. It is very clear to me that America wants a bitcoin ETF and we are here to build it. I say bitcoin is digital gold, and we should not dismiss a potential opportunity for the next financial system” he expressed during an interview on Fox Business.

Is such optimism healthy for you? I guess we will just have to sit back and wait the 27th of February to see for ourselves. 

Source:

https://goo.gl/jmiofd
https://goo.gl/qr27TA

Photo by Essow Kedelina from Pexels

NASDAQ will launch Bitcoin futures in 2019

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By recent reports, NASDAQ, in partnership with an investment firm VanEck, is about to launch their first Bitcoin futures contracts. An exact date hasn’t yet been set, but NASDAQ has announced that it’s going to be the first quarter of 2019. 

These are not the first active Bitcoin futures. The CFTC (Commodity Futures Trading Commision) which regulates Bitcoin as a commodity, has already approved two crypto futures products before: one is CBOE (Chicago Board Options Exchange) bitcoin futures and the second is CME (Chicago Mercantile Exchange) bitcoin futures. Interestingly enough, both are from Chicago. CBOE bitcoin futures launched exactly one year ago. So it is safe to say that New York will be the second Bitcoin futures city.

The quarter of Bitcoin Futures

2019 Q1 is going to be filled with new Bitcoin derivatives as NASDAQ is not the only exchange which plans to launch a bitcoin futures contract. The ICE (Intercontinental Exchange) is planning to launch a bitcoin futures contract as well during Q1 2019. Besides, Bakkt which is a cryptocurrency exchange built by ICE also plans to start their Bitcoin Futures market on January 24. Originally it was scheduled on December 12, but got delayed.

It looks like the first quarter will bring much good news to institutional investors.

VanEck takes charge

VanEck is planning to launch multiple bitcoin derivatives including the already mentioned “bitcoin futures 2.0”. These products are going to be “transparent, regulated and surveilled digital” assets according to Gabor Gubracs, the director of digital asset strategy of VanEck. The company also has applied to the SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission) for approval for a Bitcoin ETF. The SEC has already turned down multiple applications because the application didn’t adequately demonstrate how they are going to fight fraud and manipulation.

“We are the closest that we can be. It is very clear to me that America wants a bitcoin ETF and we are here to build it.” Gabor Gurbacs optimistically told Fox Business.

Market insight

Could these be the news the cryptocurrency cult is waiting for? Could we see a bullish Bitcoin at the end of January 2019? Those are just speculative questions, as the real outcome, we’ll see only when it happens. Today Bitcoin continues to drop another -4% along with other altcoins. Very few coins in the top 100 are performing green. Binance coin performed well today as of new DEX UX announcements but now has leveled out. During the first half of the day it quickly jumped +10% to $6,48, but now has leveled out to $6,02. Bitcoin Cash is probably the worst performer in the past days as it has lost more than -25%. 

Source:

https://goo.gl/wQc2Sv
https://goo.gl/L6pnnY

Photo by David McBee from Pexels

Happy Birthday, Bitcoin!

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Ten years ago the Bitcoin white-paper, also called as “Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System” was first published. It was posted by an anonymous pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto on October 31st, 2008. To this day people are still exchanging opinions on what, who or they are. Some speculate that he could be British because of the Japanese-like pseudonym. That is because of his perfect English in his posts. Also, people believe that that might be a group of people rather than just one. Nevertheless, there have been multiple people claiming that they are the real Satoshi Nakamoto. Also, many journalists have tried to find out who the mysterious creator of Bitcoin is, but all evidence is circumstantial. 

What is Bitcoin?

Bitcoin along with Satoshi Nakamoto presented an entirely new alternative to the traditionally centralized currency transactions. A system built by the people for the people. So the primary intent is that people are the ones, who control it. Because of blockchain technology, Bitcoin can offer a completely transparent way to transact payments. This system can entirely question the need or importance of Banks and other similar money transfer institutions. It ultimately allows sending money from one peer to another (peer-to-peer). Thus getting rid of the third-party instances such as Banks.

How Bitcoin has performed over the years.

The first data on Bitcoins’ (BTC) price goes back to July 7th, 2010, when the price was $0.05. So the first bull-run took it to $18.89 in May 29th, 2011. Then it went in a bear market for almost a year, cutting the price back to around $5. After that, a year of a slow bull market sent the price to $14, and at the beginning of 2013, it exploded to $142. Not long after, it surged its way to the first four-digit price – $1,205 in 2013 November. Then BTC went in on a two-year-long bear market lowering the rate to $228.50 in August 2015.

The biggest bull-run in Bitcoin history

After that, a three-year-long bull market began. The price completely exploded and reached unbelievable heights. The cost of one BTC was $19,000! In some exchanges, it reached even $20,000! Thanks to this bull market, lots and lots of people found out about Bitcoin. Media was covering it every day. CNBC was talking about how to buy Bitcoin and encouraging everyone on it. Everyone wanted to own a Bitcoin, which, preferably, he or she had purchased in 2013. During December 2017, it almost felt like Bitcoin is the only thing what interests people. The market was booming, new projects were coming out every two hours, and it felt like – this is it! Bitcoin has gained the needed attention – now we have to start using it.

The problems

Along with massive popularity, came the networks’ usage problems. Bitcoin transaction fees skyrocketed and reached a shocking $37 per transaction in December 21st. That meant that small payments via BTC couldn’t be transacted. Since then the hype around Bitcoin has settled. Small payments now can be made through LightningNetwork – Bitcoins’ off-chain solution for micro-transactions. However now, the transaction fees are as low as $0,01.

The Future

Today Bitcoin is accepted in a total of 13,435 venues across the world. The most active areas being Europe and North America. The multiple payment cards and apps give us the possibility to spend our cryptocurrency as we want. You can buy cars, houses, boats, coffee, pay for rent, mobile services, and mainly use it as money, which it is. Just recently, during the Baltic HoneyBadger Bitcoin conference, The B Foundation was announced, which is an organization through which people will have the opportunity to finance Bitcoin.

Also, Bitcoin soon could enter the traditional equity markets. Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) has launched a company called Bakkt, which will present Bitcoin Futures markets on December 12th, 2018. Also, the SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission) soon will review the multiple Bitcoin ETF (Exchange Traded Fund) applications. These two milestones are rumored to bring huge funds coming into Bitcoin, which could eventually increase the price.

However, are we all in this just for the money? Alternatively, are we in for the technological and financial revolution? How long will it take for Bitcoin to reach mass adoption, and, in general – will it be Bitcoin?

You can read the original .pdf file of the Bitcoin White-Paper HERE.

Source:

https://goo.gl/dNx2Np
https://goo.gl/WsvvCY
https://goo.gl/hAV6Pi
https://bitcoinfees.info
https://coinmap.org

Photo by Canva.com

United States SEC rejected 9 Bitcoin ETFs

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On Wednesday, August 23, nine inquires from three companies – ProShares, Direxion and GraniteShares, were all denied because of the same reason. The decision is still under review, but the main reason is that the products offered by these companies, does not comply with the requirements by the “Exchange Act Section 6(b)(5), in particular, the requirement that a national securities exchange’s rules be designed to prevent fraudulent and manipulative acts and practices.”

Later on, the SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce tweeted that it was not the SEC commissioners who actually denied the ETF proposals, instead, they delegated that responsibility to SEC staff, namely, the Division of Trading and Markets. She wrote: “The Commission (Chairman and Commissioners) delegates some tasks to its staff. When the staff acts in such cases, it acts on behalf of the Commission. The Commission may review the staff’s action, as will now happen here.”

ETFs are marketable securities that track an index, commodity, or basket of assets, that are proportionately represented in the fund’s shares. ETFs experience price changes throughout the day as they are purchased or sold on a stock exchange. If the SEC allows a BTC ETF, a fund would purchase an underlying amount of actual BTC and distribute those funds into shares, which further are distributed to shareholders.

The rejection of these nine ETFs comes only weeks after the Winklevoss bitcoin ETF was denied – a decision SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce strongly disagreed with. Which might be the reason she is receiving good words from the crypto community in her twitter: “Hester we “heart” you! This is needed now more then ever. It’s a stepping stone toward the legitimacy needed for this technology to continue to grow, not just financially. Hopefully moving forward more will become correctly educated, because there seems to be quite lacking in DC”, says tweeter with a username @seanyg73. But on the other hand the conversation shifts towards a different opinion: “5 votes are against her. Review don’t mean anything.. Lets get over it and move on… This will again stall the market and at the end we will get a “dissent” note…”

I could agree on both sides of the argument. If she has 5 against 1 votes by default, then the logical action would be to drop it and work on a new proposal. Otherwise, it would just take too much time. And that time would be needed for making a new proposal.

Another thing what tweeters are writing about is: “An ETF that doesn’t buy actual BTC is not good for crypto” where the response was – “True. But approving any of these gives a good direction as to what will happen with CBOE+Van ETF. I think that is the main course. These are appetizers in crypto world,” which is true. We need mass adoption for Bitcoin and crypto related issues, and this is the way we are slowly moving towards it. Already the daily plan for SEC has been disrupted because of these continuous BTC ETF proposals. It’s coming sooner or later.

Do you think we need a BTC ETF, where the amount of BTC is distributed into shares and shareholders? Do we need a BTC ETF in general? What are your thoughts?

Source:

https://goo.gl/q17fgK

https://goo.gl/MskWpE

https://goo.gl/hegko6

https://goo.gl/QaBY1V – the original SEC document

Photo by Wikimedia Commons

Revolut to become a commissionless stock exchange

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Today Revolut, a digital banking alternative that includes a pre-paid card, currency exchange, cryptocurrency exchange and peer to peer payments, announced their plans on making a stock trading platform without any fees, just like Robinhood in the U.S.. The app will offer stocks from public companies from U.S. And the U.K., as well as various ETFs and options. 

When it comes to traditional stock trading, it’s slow, costly and if you are using your existing bank you have to pay a commission to a broker. In other words it’s slow and expensive, which is the worst combination.

Revolut promises that you won’t pay any commission when you buy or sell shares. The company plans to make money on margin trading, securities lending and interest on cash. Unfortunately, Revolut didn’t say when the feature would launch.

Congrats to Revolut on such a big step, the Europeans have been waiting for this.

Source:

https://goo.gl/c574Qp

https://goo.gl/QwVtPi

Photo by Revolut