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Students Increasingly Using Financial Aid for Purchasing Cryptocurrencies

CryptoCoins News, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Major credit card issuers may have banned bitcoin purchases, but it’s not cramping the style of college students. According to a recent poll by US-based The Student Loan Report, more than one-fifth, or 21.2% of university students are directing financial aid funds to invest in the top cryptocurrencies. It’s a risky bet, one that could

The post Students Increasingly Using Financial Aid for Purchasing Cryptocurrencies appeared first on CCN

Morgan Stanley reportedly kept on a broker it knew was accused of violence against women

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Morgan Stanley

Morgan Stanley kept on a star broker the bank knew faced multiple allegations of violence against former wives and girlfriends, The New York Times reported Wednesday.

The report said the bank didn't put him on leave until the Times reporter Emily Flitter called with questions this week.

Here are the main takeaways from the story:

  • Over 15 years, four women sought police protection from Doug Greenberg, a star broker in a wealthy suburb of Portland, Oregon.
  • "For years, Morgan Stanley executives knew about his alleged conduct, according to seven former Morgan Stanley employees," the report says. "Morgan Stanley received a federal subpoena related to one abuse allegation, according to a lawyer for one of the women. In another instance, a Morgan Stanley manager alerted his superior when Mr. Greenberg was charged with violating a restraining order, according to three former employees."
  • Per The Times, Greenberg is in the top 2% of the bank's brokers by revenue produced.
  • Morgan Stanley put Greenberg on administrative leave this week after Flitter called the bank for comment. In a statement, Morgan Stanley told Business Insider: "Mr. Greenberg has been placed on administrative leave pending further review of this situation. We are committed to maintaining a safe and professional work environment and will take appropriate action based on the facts of the matter."
  • Reached on his phone this week, Greenberg told The Times that he had no comment, saying, "It's interesting that a reporter from New York would somehow have all this information just on her own."

Read the full New York Times story »

SEE ALSO: A discrimination lawsuit casts doubt on what billionaire Steve Cohen's deputies have been saying for years

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Goldman Sachs investment chief: Bitcoin is definitely a bubble, Ethereum even more so

Reddit dumps bitcoin as payment option

Engadget, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Since 2013, you've had the option of paying for Reddit Gold membership with bitcoin in addition to the usual credit card and PayPal choices. However, you now have to do it the old fashioned way: a moderator has confirmed that Reddit has stopped accep...

Ripple Funds All 35,000 DonorsChoose Classroom Projects with $29 Million Donation

CryptoCoins News, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Cryptocurrency startup Ripple has funded all 35,000 classroom projects on educational crowdfunding website DonorsChoose with a $29 million donation, the largest gift the non-profit has ever received. DonorsChoose and Ripple unveiled the San Francisco-based company’s donation on Tuesday in a video announcement, explaining that the $29 million gift was enough to fund all 35,000 projects

The post Ripple Funds All 35,000 DonorsChoose Classroom Projects with $29 Million Donation appeared first on CCN

'I feel like I might have accidentally ruined my life:' Tax season is wrapping up and bitcoin investors are freaking out

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

death tax estate tax

  • Cryptocurrency exchanges generally don't send customers information about potential tax liabilities.
  • That's leaving cryptocurrency investors confused about what they owe the IRS for their holdings. 

The bitcoin boom of 2017 minted countless new millionaires, but not everyone who jumped on the bandwagon last year is currently enjoying their spoils.

With the deadline for filing federal taxes in the US right around the corner, cryptocurrency investors who cashed in last year may face a massive tax bill from the Internal Revenue Service.

Investors are required to pay taxes on their cryptocurrency investments if they sold their digital coin holdings at a higher price than they bought them. However, since many cryptocurrency exchanges don't send customers tax documents, many might not even know they have to pay taxes on their coins — or how much. 

Perry Woodin, the founder of Node40, a blockchain accounting company, told Business Insider this is a problem impacting a significant number of people. 

"Millions of people have a tax liability they don't realize or know how to get the numbers for," Woodin told Business Insider. 

One investor shared his story in a Reddit post that went viral:

"Around December 2017, I got caught up in the altcoins frenzy and sold most of my bitcoins (about $120k worth) to buy a bunch of different coins. I didn't know this back then but it looks like I owe income taxes on those trades, which adds up to about $50k if I add up state (California) and federal."

The problem is, the coins the investor swapped his bitcoin for are now only worth $30,000. And he has only an additional $5,000 in savings. 

"I feel like I might have accidentally ruined my life because I didn't know about the taxes," the investor concluded. 

Woodin told Business Insider he knew a couple that faced a similar situation. 

"In this case, they bought Dash real cheap at $7 and then it went to $1,600," Woodin said. "They cashed out to do $100,000 worth of home-renovations and didn't have enough to pay the tax."

At first glance, it might be easy to chalk up these anecdotes as irresponsible behavior, but there are some good reasons why people are confused.

Cryptocurrency exchanges, for the most part, do not send customers tax forms, such as a 1099-DIV, which inform investors how much they made from selling investments during the year. Coinbase, one of the exchanges that does send tax information to customers, only does so if you have more than $20,000 invested with the company. 

Without a 1099-DIV form, it's up to the investor to figure out how much they made from selling cryptocurrencies during the year, and how much they'll owe in taxes. The tax rate depends on how long the cryptocurrency was held: If it was less than one year, the investment profit is taxed just like a salary is taxed. For investments held longer than one year, capital gains tax rates apply, which are typically lower but can be as high as 20%

So what are you to do if you are a crypto investor in a tax-related bind? The bottom-line, according to Gwen Moore, a partner at Johnson Moore, a tax consultancy, is to reach out to the IRS. 

"If they have a huge tax bill they can't afford, then they can get into a payment plan," she said. "There are certain programs people can get in to settle with the IRS for taxes if they can't pay."

The IRS offers payment plans at much lower interest rates than paying an unaffordable tax bill with a credit card, for example. The current interest rate is 4%, not including any additional penalties

The one thing you don't want to do is ignore the bill.

For folks who have started on their taxes and want to figure out how much they might owe, Coinbase recently launched a tax calculator

"People can take action to find out what their cost basis is, what the potential gain or loss would be," Moore said. 

If you filed without mentioning your cryptocurrency investments, it's okay, Moore says, as long as you notify the IRS and explain your situation. 

"They have a lot of discretion to distinguish between people who made a mistake and someone who is evading taxes," she said. "Obviously, there is a difference between someone who comes forward, explains their mistake, and someone who looks like they heard about the crackdown, and moved their crypto somewhere else."

Lauren Lyons Cole contributed reporting. 

SEE ALSO: Paying taxes on bitcoin isn't nearly as hard as it sounds

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Goldman Sachs investment chief: Bitcoin is definitely a bubble, Ethereum even more so

'I feel like I might have accidentally ruined my life:' Tax season is wrapping up and bitcoin investors are freaking out

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

death tax estate tax

  • Cryptocurrency exchanges generally don't send customers information about potential tax liabilities.
  • That's leaving cryptocurrency investors confused about what they owe the IRS for their holdings. 

The bitcoin boom of 2017 minted countless new millionaires, but not everyone who jumped on the bandwagon last year is currently enjoying their spoils.

With the deadline for filing federal taxes in the US right around the corner, cryptocurrency investors who cashed in last year may face a massive tax bill from the Internal Revenue Service.

Investors are required to pay taxes on their cryptocurrency investments if they sold their digital coin holdings at a higher price than they bought them. However, since many cryptocurrency exchanges don't send customers tax documents, many might not even know they have to pay taxes on their coins — or how much. 

Perry Woodin, the founder of Node40, a blockchain accounting company, told Business Insider this is a problem impacting a significant number of people. 

"Millions of people have a tax liability they don't realize or know how to get the numbers for," Woodin told Business Insider. 

One investor shared his story in a Reddit post that went viral:

"Around December 2017, I got caught up in the altcoins frenzy and sold most of my bitcoins (about $120k worth) to buy a bunch of different coins. I didn't know this back then but it looks like I owe income taxes on those trades, which adds up to about $50k if I add up state (California) and federal."

The problem is, the coins the investor swapped his bitcoin for are now only worth $30,000. And he has only an additional $5,000 in savings. 

"I feel like I might have accidentally ruined my life because I didn't know about the taxes," the investor concluded. 

Woodin told Business Insider he knew a couple that faced a similar situation. 

"In this case, they bought Dash real cheap at $7 and then it went to $1,600," Woodin said. "They cashed out to do $100,000 worth of home-renovations and didn't have enough to pay the tax."

At first glance, it might be easy to chalk up these anecdotes as irresponsible behavior, but there are some good reasons why people are confused.

Cryptocurrency exchanges, for the most part, do not send customers tax forms, such as a 1099-DIV, which inform investors how much they made from selling investments during the year. Coinbase, one of the exchanges that does send tax information to customers, only does so if you have more than $20,000 invested with the company. 

Without a 1099-DIV form, it's up to the investor to figure out how much they made from selling cryptocurrencies during the year, and how much they'll owe in taxes. The tax rate depends on how long the cryptocurrency was held: If it was less than one year, the investment profit is taxed just like a salary is taxed. For investments held longer than one year, capital gains tax rates apply, which are typically lower but can be as high as 20%

So what are you to do if you are a crypto investor in a tax-related bind? The bottom-line, according to Gwen Moore, a partner at Johnson Moore, a tax consultancy, is to reach out to the IRS. 

"If they have a huge tax bill they can't afford, then they can get into a payment plan," she said. "There are certain programs people can get in to settle with the IRS for taxes if they can't pay."

The IRS offers payment plans at much lower interest rates than paying an unaffordable tax bill with a credit card, for example. The current interest rate is 4%, not including any additional penalties

The one thing you don't want to do is ignore the bill.

For folks who have started on their taxes and want to figure out how much they might owe, Coinbase recently launched a tax calculator

"People can take action to find out what their cost basis is, what the potential gain or loss would be," Moore said. 

If you filed without mentioning your cryptocurrency investments, it's okay, Moore says, as long as you notify the IRS and explain your situation. 

"They have a lot of discretion to distinguish between people who made a mistake and someone who is evading taxes," she said. "Obviously, there is a difference between someone who comes forward, explains their mistake, and someone who looks like they heard about the crackdown, and moved their crypto somewhere else."

Lauren Lyons Cole contributed reporting. 

SEE ALSO: Paying taxes on bitcoin isn't nearly as hard as it sounds

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Goldman Sachs investment chief: Bitcoin is definitely a bubble, Ethereum even more so

South Koreans Will Be Able to Pay in Cryptocurrency at Over 6,000 Stores

Bitcoin Magazine, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

South Koreans Will Be Able to Pay in Cryptocurrency at Over 6,000 Stores

Popular South Korean cryptocurrency exchange Bithumb is partnering with digital payment service provider Korea Pay Services (KPS) to pave the way for widespread digital asset adoption in the country. Both companies are working to give over 6,000 of the country’s retail outlets the option of accepting cryptocurrency payments for goods and services.

South Korea has proven both beneficial and important to the cryptocurrency community. Presently, the nation stands as the third-largest market for cryptocurrency trades behind the U.S. and Japan.

At the same time, South Korea has been the subject of several harsh regulatory moves since December 2017. Trouble began when regulators began “clamping down” on foreign individuals looking to open South Korean cryptocurrency exchange accounts. To enjoy the benefits of such accounts, users must be fully nationalized citizens.

In addition, government officials are banned from owning any forms of cryptocurrency, while anonymous trading has been outlawed within the nation’s borders. Transactions can now only occur through fully recognized users.

Still, Bithumb’s latest venture offers evidence that cryptocurrency remains widely popular in South Korea.

“Shoppers will be able to buy products at about 6,000 stores from brands such as Café Drop Top, Yankee Candle and Sulbing, one of Korea’s most popular dessert shops,” quotes regional news outlet Joongang Daily.

An official of Bithumb also stated that executives felt they were making the right decision, and paving the way for what was likely to be a crypto-dominated future:

“We have taken the landmark step … We will try hard to set up an environment in which cryptocurrencies are used extensively.”

The size of Korea Pay Services also illustrates just how influential its partnership with Bithumb could be. Per the Economic Review, KPS “is the first domestic company to provide mobile gift certificates and solutions through more than 400 domestic channels, including Starbucks, Outback and Kakao Talk, based on alliances with major domestic franchises.” The company also boasts over 200 individual franchise partners.

Bithumb says that, for the plans to work, barcodes will be built into mobile apps that allow customers to make payments to participating establishments via cryptocurrencies held at the exchange. Executives say they are seeking to launch these new services by summer of 2018, then increase the number of stores to 8,000 by the year’s end.

Bithumb is among South Korea’s top-performing cryptocurrency exchanges and is second only to Upbit, whose daily trading volume exceeds that of Bithumb by nearly $400 million according to Coinmarketcap.com.

The company previously expanded its customer service center in Gangnam — an affluent and prestigious region of South Korea’s capital of Seoul — and brought its total number of consultation centers from four to eight. The company offers user support in several languages, including English, Chinese and Japanese.

Officials have also joined hands with Innovation Corp, a Korean travel website that lists over 50,000 different hotels and vacation rentals. The partnership allows travelers to pay for their accommodations using over a dozen unique cryptocurrencies.

This article originally appeared on Bitcoin Magazine.

Volkswagen just revealed a smaller version of the SUV that tried to solve its biggest problem in the US

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

vw atlas cross sport

  • Volkswagen unveiled the Atlas Cross Sport SUV concept on Tuesday.
  • The Atlas Cross Sport is a smaller, five-seat version of the seven-seat Atlas, which was introduced in 2017.
  • Volkswagen said it will begin producing a five-seat Atlas based on the Cross Sport concept in 2019.


Over the past year, Volkswagen has increased and revamped its SUV offerings for an American market that can't get enough of them.

In 2017, the automaker launched the Atlas as its flagship SUV, revamped its Tiguan compact SUV, and nixed the Touareg mid-size SUV for the 2018 model year. 

On Tuesday, Volkswagen unveiled the Atlas Cross Sport concept ahead of the New York International Auto Show. The Atlas Cross Sport is a smaller, five-seat version of the seven-seat Atlas, which was one of our favorite cars last year. Volkswagen will begin producing a five-seat Atlas based on the Cross Sport concept in 2019.

vw atlas cross sport

The Atlas Cross Sport has a more streamlined profile than the Atlas, is 7.5 inches shorter, and features a plug-in hybrid drivetrain that can produce 355 horsepower and 266 pound-feet of torque. With the plug-in hybrid drivetrain, Volkswagen estimates the Atlas Cross Sport would be able to accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 6.5 seconds and reach a top speed of 130 mph.

While the Atlas Cross Sport has the same, 3.6-liter V6 FSI engine as the original Atlas, the Cross Sport adds two electric motors powered by a 18 kWh lithium-ion battery. Volkswagen said the vehicle defaults to an all-electric mode that has 26 miles of range. As the battery is exhausted, the V6 gasoline engine gradually takes over.

vw cross sport

Many of the vehicle's interior features are controlled via a 10.1-inch touchscreen, and the driver can monitor the vehicle's stats on a digital, 12.3-inch instrument panel.

Volkswagen said it could also apply the Atlas Cross Sport concept to a mild hybrid powertrain that would feature a 2.0 kWh battery, produce 310 horsepower, accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 6.5 seconds, and match the plug-in hybrid's top speed of 130 mph.

Before revamping its SUV lineup, Volkswagen had struggled to make headway in the US market due to its reliance on smaller passenger cars, a strategy that was successful in Europe, Asia, and South America, but didn't align with American preferences for larger vehicles.

On Wednesday, VW revealed its Atlas Tanoak pickup-truck concept.

vw atlas cross sport

SEE ALSO: These are the 20 cool cars we can't wait to see at the 2018 New York Auto Show

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Goldman Sachs investment chief: Bitcoin is definitely a bubble, Ethereum even more so

Retail Giant Newegg Expands Bitcoin Payments to Canada

CryptoCoins News, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Computer hardware retailer Newegg has begun accepting Bitcoin payments in Canada. Newegg — which has approximately 36 million customers and was one of the first well-known companies to accept cryptocurrency payments — made the announcement on Tuesday, explaining that Bitcoin payments have represented a “small but growing stream of purchase transactions” in the US and

The post Retail Giant Newegg Expands Bitcoin Payments to Canada appeared first on CCN

CRYPTO INSIDER: Only bitcoin is in the green

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

race finish line runners winner

Welcome to Crypto Insider, Business Insider’s roundup of all the bitcoin and cryptocurrency news you need to know today. Sign up here to get this email delivered direct to your inbox.

Bitcoin was the only major cryptocurrency in the green Wednesday afternoon, while most others had declined.

Here are the current prices:

crypto prices

What's happening:

New to Crypto Insider? Business Insider has a ton of articles to get you caught up to speed, including:

What other questions do you have about crypto? Ask them in Business Insider's Crypto Insider Facebook group today to discuss with readers from all over the world, as well as BI editorial staff. 

SEE ALSO: Google is banning all bitcoin, ICO, and cryptocurrency ads starting in June

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Why 555 is always used for phone numbers on TV and in movies

CRYPTO INSIDER: Only bitcoin is in the green

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

race finish line runners winner

Welcome to Crypto Insider, Business Insider’s roundup of all the bitcoin and cryptocurrency news you need to know today. Sign up here to get this email delivered direct to your inbox.

Bitcoin was the only major cryptocurrency in the green Wednesday afternoon, while most others had declined.

Here are the current prices:

crypto prices

What's happening:

New to Crypto Insider? Business Insider has a ton of articles to get you caught up to speed, including:

What other questions do you have about crypto? Ask them in Business Insider's Crypto Insider Facebook group today to discuss with readers from all over the world, as well as BI editorial staff. 

SEE ALSO: Google is banning all bitcoin, ICO, and cryptocurrency ads starting in June

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Why 555 is always used for phone numbers on TV and in movies

CRYPTO INSIDER: Only bitcoin is in the green

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

race finish line runners winner

Welcome to Crypto Insider, Business Insider’s roundup of all the bitcoin and cryptocurrency news you need to know today. Sign up here to get this email delivered direct to your inbox.

Bitcoin was the only major cryptocurrency in the green Wednesday afternoon, while most others had declined.

Here are the current prices:

crypto prices

What's happening:

New to Crypto Insider? Business Insider has a ton of articles to get you caught up to speed, including:

What other questions do you have about crypto? Ask them in Business Insider's Crypto Insider Facebook group today to discuss with readers from all over the world, as well as BI editorial staff. 

SEE ALSO: Google is banning all bitcoin, ICO, and cryptocurrency ads starting in June

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: A neuroscientist explains why reality may just be a hallucination

CRYPTO INSIDER: Only bitcoin is in the green

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

race finish line runners winner

Welcome to Crypto Insider, Business Insider’s roundup of all the bitcoin and cryptocurrency news you need to know today. Sign up here to get this email delivered direct to your inbox.

Bitcoin was the only major cryptocurrency in the green Wednesday afternoon, while most others had declined.

Here are the current prices:

crypto prices

What's happening:

New to Crypto Insider? Business Insider has a ton of articles to get you caught up to speed, including:

What other questions do you have about crypto? Ask them in Business Insider's Crypto Insider Facebook group today to discuss with readers from all over the world, as well as BI editorial staff. 

SEE ALSO: Google is banning all bitcoin, ICO, and cryptocurrency ads starting in June

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: A neuroscientist explains why reality may just be a hallucination

Ripple Joins Hyperledger Blockchain Consortium

CoinDesk, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Ripple has joined the Hyperledger project along with thirteen other companies and organizations.

Volkswagen just unveiled a pickup truck concept that shows it's ready to take over the US

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

vw atlas tanoak

  • Volkswagen introduced the Atlas Tanoak pickup truck concept at the New York International Auto Show on Wednesday.
  • The truck can produce 276 horsepower, 266 pound-feet of torque, and accelerate from 0-60 mph in 8.5 seconds.
  • While VW has no plans to produce the truck at the moment, it signals the company's increased attention to the preferences of US consumers.


Volkswagen has made a serious effort to appeal to an American car market dominated by SUVs and pickups in the past year.

And on Wednesday, the automaker unveiled the Atlas Tanoak, a pickup truck concept that signals the company's increased attention to the preferences of US consumers.

The dual-cab, short-bed pickup truck debuted at the New York International Auto Show. Volkswagen has no plans to produce the vehicle at the moment, though the company indicated in a press release that it would consider a production version of the concept based on the response it receives.

vw atlas tanoak

The Atlas Tanoak has a 3.6-liter V6 FSI engine, eight-speed automatic transmission, and VW's 4Motion all-wheel-drive system. The vehicle's engine can produce 276 horsepower, 266 pound-feet of torque, and accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 8.5 seconds. At 214.1 inches, it's 15.8 inches longer than VW's Atlas SUV, and its 9.8-inch ground clearance is two inches higher than the Atlas.

On the inside, the vehicle can seat five passengers. Most interior settings are controlled digitally through a touchscreen infotainment system. 

vw atlas tanoak

The Atlas Tanoak is the second concept Volkswagen has revealed this week, after it unveiled the Atlas Cross Sport concept on Tuesday. The Atlas Cross Sport is a smaller version of the Atlas SUV, which was introduced in 2017 for the 2018 model year. Volkswagen also redesigned its Tiguan compact SUV and eliminated the Touareg mid-size SUV for the 2018 model year.

Before revamping its SUV lineup, Volkswagen had struggled to make headway in the US market due to its reliance on smaller passenger cars, a strategy that was successful in Europe, Asia, and South America, but didn't align with American preferences for larger vehicles.

vw atlas tanoak

SEE ALSO: These were the top-selling trucks in America last year

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Goldman Sachs investment chief: Bitcoin is definitely a bubble, Ethereum even more so

Will the Financialization of Hash Power Bring an End or an Opportunity to Bitcoin Miners?

CryptoCoins News, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

This is a paid-for submitted press release. CCN does not endorse, nor is responsible for any material included below and isn’t responsible for any damages or losses connected with any products or services mentioned in the press release. CCN urges readers to conduct their own research with due diligence into the company, product or service mentioned

The post Will the Financialization of Hash Power Bring an End or an Opportunity to Bitcoin Miners? appeared first on CCN

‘All Hell Will Break Loose’: Abra CEO Predicts Bitcoin Price Boom Will Return This Year

CryptoCoins News, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Mainstream financial analysts might be fixated on Bitcoin’s so-called “death cross” and what it might mean for the flagship cryptocurrency moving forward, but Abra CEO Bill Barhydt believes that another rally is just around the corner. Barhydt, who once designed trading systems for Goldman Sachs, told Business Insider that hedge funds and other institutions are

The post ‘All Hell Will Break Loose’: Abra CEO Predicts Bitcoin Price Boom Will Return This Year appeared first on CCN

Energy-saving Bitcoin rival Chia raises from A16Z, plans mini-IPO

TechCrunch, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Bram Cohen invented torrenting. Now he’s building a cryptocurrency called Chia that doesn’t waste electricity like Bitcoin, and top investors are lining up. Chia has just raised a $3.395 million seed round led by AngelList’s Naval Ravikant and joined by Andreessen Horowitz, Greylock and more. The money will help the startup build out its Chia […]

Hedge funds' favorite stocks are having a brutal month

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Confused, worried trader

It's been a tough month for the darlings of the hedge fund investment world. 

Back in December, Business Insider published a list of the stocks hedge funds love the most. And it's been a brutal few weeks for the 10 top stocks, with several down more than 10% in the last month. In comparison, the S&P 500 is down around 4%, and the Dow is down around 5%.

It's not all bad for hedge funds' bets, of course, with many of the market's favorite short trades benefitting from the recent volatility. Nvidia, a popular short target, is down 12% in the last month, for example. And Tesla's tumbling stock has made short sellers $1.9 billion in less than a month, as reported by my colleague Joe Ciolli. 

And more generally, higher levels of dispersion, a measure which reflects how widely market returns are distributed, creates opportunities for investors. According to Bank of America Merrill Lynch, dispersion is the highest since 2009, when the market was just starting to recover from the financial crisis.

Still, it's been a rough month for some of the most popular stocks. Here's a look at the top stocks and their one month performance:

  1. Facebook: -16.2%
  2. Amazon: -6.6%
  3. Alibaba: -3.95%
  4. Alphabet: -10.5%
  5. Microsoft: -6%
  6. Time Warner: +0.47%
  7. Apple: -7.46%
  8. Bank of America: -9.5%
  9. NXP Semiconductors: -2.93%
  10. Citigroup: -10.7%

SEE ALSO: The choppy trading that's rocking stocks is an ominous sign for the future of the bull market

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Goldman Sachs investment chief: Bitcoin is definitely a bubble, Ethereum even more so

A Tesla Model X caught on fire after crashing into a highway barrier — and Tesla has a theory about why the crash was so bad (TSLA)

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

tesla model x crash

  • A Tesla Model X caught fire after crashing into a highway barrier in Mountain View, California, on Friday.
  • It's unclear what caused the accident or whether Autopilot was engaged before the crash, but Tesla revealed that the software had been activated around 85,000 times without any reported incidents on the section of highway where the accident occurred.
  • Tesla also said that a shortened impact attenuator may have increased the damage caused by the crash.


A Tesla Model X caught fire after crashing into a highway barrier in Mountain View, California, on Friday. The car's driver, Wei Huang, died after being taken to the hospital, The Mercury News reports.

On Tuesday, The National Transportation Safety Board said on its Twitter account that it would investigate the crash. The agency said it's unclear whether Tesla's semi-autonomous Autopilot system was activated before or during the crash.

Tesla also released a statement about the accident in a Tuesday blog post titled, "What We Know About Last Week's Accident." In the post, the company said that it hadn't been able to retrieve the vehicle's logs yet.

Still, the post revealed a few insights into what happened in the crash.

The first is that Tesla's data indicates the company's vehicles had driven the same section of highway where the crashed occurred about 85,000 times with Autopilot engaged since the software debuted in 2015 — and around 20,000 times since the beginning of 2018 — without any reported accidents.

The second is that the impact attenuator near the area where the Model X crashed appears to have been shortened before the accident. An impact attenuator is a safety barrier, found on highways, that's designed to reduce the impact when a car crashes into a concrete lane divider. Photos included in the post show the attenuator at a much shorter length the day before the accident than it had been previously, which Tesla believes increased the damage caused by the crash.

The NTSB's investigation is the second this year involving a Tesla vehicle. The first came in January, after a Model S hit a fire truck in California while Autopilot was activated. The fire truck was parked in the emergency lane on the side of the highway while responding to a prior accident, according to The Mercury News.

In September, the NTSB determined that Autopilot was partly responsible for a fatal 2016 accident involving a Model S.

SEE ALSO: Self-driving cars could be deadly — but they aren't going to affect Tesla's and Uber's business as much as everyone thinks

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Goldman Sachs investment chief: Bitcoin is definitely a bubble, Ethereum even more so

Science Shows It's Better to Mine Cryptocurrencies Than Speculate on Them

Inc, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

New research could settle a long-standing question for the Bitcoin and cryptocurrency enthusiast.

‘Don’t Do it’: Federal Reserve Official Warns Against Investing in Bitcoin

CryptoCoins News, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

The president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta needs just three words to convey his opinion on investing in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies: “Don’t do it!” Raphael Bostic, who has led the Atlanta branch of the Fed since 2017, delivered this message on Tuesday at the Hope Global Forums annual meeting, which promotes entrepreneurship

The post ‘Don’t Do it’: Federal Reserve Official Warns Against Investing in Bitcoin appeared first on CCN

Uphold Adds Buy and Sell Options for Ripple's XRP

CoinDesk, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Digital payments startup Uphold announced Wednesday that it has added support for Ripple’s XRP cryptocurrency.

Bitcoin Cash Bull Failures Could See Traders Move to Bitcoin

CoinDesk, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Bitcoin is likely to outperform its rival bitcoin cash in the short-run, the technical charts indicate.

Luxury Car Dealer Teams with BitFlyer for Big Bitcoin Payments

CoinDesk, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

A Japanese car dealership is adding bitcoin as a payment option with support from cryptocurrency exchange bitFlyer

'It's funny but it's not funny': Trading executive warns about pivots to blockchain

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Jason Paltrowitz LinkedIn

  • Business Insider spoke to Jason Paltrowitz, executive vice president at OTC Markets, about the ongoing cryptocurrency and blockchain craze.
  • He says the company has beefed up its oversight and warnings to investors about potential fraud as it continues to see companies boost their stock price by pivoting to crypto. 
  • "It's funny but it's not funny," he told Business Insider. "This is the latest avenue for potential fraud and things that will harm investors, and so we need to take it seriously."

A swath of publicly traded companies — from iced tea bottlers to biotech firms — have found good fortune by slipping things like blockchain or cryptocurrency into their names.

While some of those pivots have occurred on major exchanges, many have occurred on alternative trading systems (ATS), and the craze has led perhaps the most well-known of these, OTC Markets Group, to beef up its oversight to protect investors from fraud.

"Some of its kind of funny, companies that one day were making lawnmowers and the next day they're in bitcoin or a cryptocurrency," said Jason Paltrowitz, the group's Executive Vice President of Corporate Service told Business insider in an interview. "It's funny but it's not funny."

"This is the latest avenue for potential fraud and things that will harm investors, and so we need to take it seriously," he added.

The company on Wednesday launched new stock promotion flags on its website that will warn investors that may be the subject of promotional activity. OTC says these illegal promotions "harms investors, impedes capital formation and disrupts efficient pricing mechanisms."

Paltrowitz wants to make clear, however, that the group wants to provide a marketplace for blockchain and cryptocurrencies — so long as they follow all applicable laws and regulations. He points specifically to the Grayscale Bitcoin Investment Trust, which trades on the group's top OTCQX market, as an example of a successful crypto company listing on the marketplace.

He also said that the OTC marketplace provides an easier way for companies to access public markets, without the deluge of regulatory work national exchanges require.

"Our market, as an ATS, can be a little bit more flexible, specifically to the needs of two very distinct types of companies: the first is the large 'Blue Chip' global names that are already listed on their national exchange and don't need or require duplicative reporting standards to the US," explained Paltrowitz. These include companies like Heineken and Adidas, both listed on OTC. 

"The second would be the the small- and micro-cap companies where being on a National Exchange is incredibly expensive both from a dollar perspective and a time perspective," he said.

But there are also companies who end up on OTC markets less-than-willingly.

Take Long Blockchain, for instance. The company, known until late 2017 as the Long Island Iced Tea Company, saved itself from being delisted by Nasdaq with the trendy name change, but said in a regulatory filing last week that it is considering moving its listing to OTC as it struggles to keep its stock price above the minimum market cap for the Nasdaq exchange.

Between 30 and 50 companies leave the national exchanges — both willingly and unwillingly — each year in favor of OTC markets, Paltrowitz said, most of which end up on the group's pink market, "which is not one of our premium markets."

It's not clear where Long Blockchain will end up if it does move its listing — neither the company nor OTC Markets could comment on any ongoing proceedings. But Paltrowitz remains optimistic for new companies on OTC going forward.

"IPOs and new companies coming to market have been strong going back to 2015 and last year was one of our best years ever" Paltrowitz said. "I think that this year that momentum continues."

SEE ALSO: The iced tea company that avoided de-listing by pivoting to blockchain may once again be at risk of being kicked off Nasdaq’s exchange

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Facebook can still track you even if you delete your account — here's how to stop it

'It's funny but it's not funny': Trading executive warns about pivots to blockchain

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Jason Paltrowitz LinkedIn

  • Business Insider spoke to Jason Paltrowitz, executive vice president at OTC Markets, about the ongoing cryptocurrency and blockchain craze.
  • He says the company has beefed up its oversight and warnings to investors about potential fraud as it continues to see companies boost their stock price by pivoting to crypto. 
  • "It's funny but it's not funny," he told Business Insider. "This is the latest avenue for potential fraud and things that will harm investors, and so we need to take it seriously."

A swath of publicly traded companies — from iced tea bottlers to biotech firms — have found good fortune by slipping things like blockchain or cryptocurrency into their names.

While some of those pivots have occurred on major exchanges, many have occurred on alternative trading systems (ATS), and the craze has led perhaps the most well-known of these, OTC Markets Group, to beef up its oversight to protect investors from fraud.

"Some of its kind of funny, companies that one day were making lawnmowers and the next day they're in bitcoin or a cryptocurrency," said Jason Paltrowitz, the group's Executive Vice President of Corporate Service told Business insider in an interview. "It's funny but it's not funny."

"This is the latest avenue for potential fraud and things that will harm investors, and so we need to take it seriously," he added.

The company on Wednesday launched new stock promotion flags on its website that will warn investors that may be the subject of promotional activity. OTC says these illegal promotions "harms investors, impedes capital formation and disrupts efficient pricing mechanisms."

Paltrowitz wants to make clear, however, that the group wants to provide a marketplace for blockchain and cryptocurrencies — so long as they follow all applicable laws and regulations. He points specifically to the Grayscale Bitcoin Investment Trust, which trades on the group's top OTCQX market, as an example of a successful crypto company listing on the marketplace.

He also said that the OTC marketplace provides an easier way for companies to access public markets, without the deluge of regulatory work national exchanges require.

"Our market, as an ATS, can be a little bit more flexible, specifically to the needs of two very distinct types of companies: the first is the large 'Blue Chip' global names that are already listed on their national exchange and don't need or require duplicative reporting standards to the US," explained Paltrowitz. These include companies like Heineken and Adidas, both listed on OTC. 

"The second would be the the small- and micro-cap companies where being on a National Exchange is incredibly expensive both from a dollar perspective and a time perspective," he said.

But there are also companies who end up on OTC markets less-than-willingly.

Take Long Blockchain, for instance. The company, known until late 2017 as the Long Island Iced Tea Company, saved itself from being delisted by Nasdaq with the trendy name change, but said in a regulatory filing last week that it is considering moving its listing to OTC as it struggles to keep its stock price above the minimum market cap for the Nasdaq exchange.

Between 30 and 50 companies leave the national exchanges — both willingly and unwillingly — each year in favor of OTC markets, Paltrowitz said, most of which end up on the group's pink market, "which is not one of our premium markets."

It's not clear where Long Blockchain will end up if it does move its listing — neither the company nor OTC Markets could comment on any ongoing proceedings. But Paltrowitz remains optimistic for new companies on OTC going forward.

"IPOs and new companies coming to market have been strong going back to 2015 and last year was one of our best years ever" Paltrowitz said. "I think that this year that momentum continues."

SEE ALSO: The iced tea company that avoided de-listing by pivoting to blockchain may once again be at risk of being kicked off Nasdaq’s exchange

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: In 50 years we'll have 'robot angels' and will be able to merge our brains with AI, according to technology experts

Why Bitcoin's 'Death Cross' May Turn Out a Bear Trap

CoinDesk, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Bitcoin risks entering a technical "death cross" soon, but the bearish signal will likely not be as severe as has been made out in reports.

Canadian Homeowner Will Only Take Bitcoin for Condo Sale

CryptoCoins News, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

A Toronto man is demanding digital currency for his Ontario property. Former Wall Street businessman Derryn Shrosbree has listed his home for 35 bitcoins- $450,000 in today’s market. He told CBC News that the move was driven by a belief in the technology: “I believe it’s the future”. It marks the first local occurrence of

The post Canadian Homeowner Will Only Take Bitcoin for Condo Sale appeared first on CCN

European markets are tanking as the tech sell-off spreads

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

People write messages next to a slogan at Facebook's headquarters in London, Britain, December 4, 2017.

  • Stock markets are down across Europe after sell-off in the US overnight.
  • The slump is driven by reignited trade war fears and the fallout from Facebook's data scandal.
  • The Stoxx Europe 600 Technology index is down 2.5%.


LONDON — Global stock market's wild week continued on Wednesday as European markets followed counterparts in Asia in the US on a downward slump.

Here's the scoreboard of the key moves at 9.30 a.m. GMT (4.30 a.m. ET):

The collapse comes after fears of a global trade war were reignited. US President Donald Trump is reportedly planning on slapping limits on Chinese investment into US companies. That sent the US stock markets nosediving and Asian markets followed suit overnight.

Micheal Hewson, the chief market commentator at CMC Markets, points out that sentiment is being dented by ongoing concerns over regulation of tech giants in light of Facebook's data sharing scandal.

"The so-called “FANG” stocks of Facebook, Amazon, Netflix and Google (Alphabet) saw some of their biggest falls in years as concern about a crackdown on how these companies use personal data prompted a re-examination of how these companies are valued," Hewson said in a morning email.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Technology index, which tracks large listed European tech companies, is down 2.49% on Wednesday morning. The worst performer, Dialog Semiconductor, is down over 11% on the Frankfurt stock market.

The global stock slump is the latest big move in a volatile week for shares. The Dow jumped more than 400 points on Monday, leading to a rally in Europe on Tuesday as trade war fears subsided briefly.

SEE ALSO: Stocks dive 600 points from their high after reports Trump will crack down on Chinese companies investing in the US

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Goldman Sachs investment chief: Bitcoin is definitely a bubble, Ethereum even more so

'All hell will break loose': The crypto market will boom again in 2018 according to the CEO of American Express-backed startup Abra

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Bill Barhydt, Abra

  • Crypto market has more than halved in size since the start of the year.
  • Abra CEO Bill Barhydt thinks Western institutional investors will start investing this year and provide price support.
  • "Once the floodgates are opened, they're opened."


LONDON — The founder of a Silicon Valley-based cryptocurrency business said the sector will boom again this year once big investors watching from the sidelines move into the market.

Abra CEO Bill Barhydt told Business Insider: "I talk to hedge funds, high net worth individuals, even commodity speculators. They look at the volatility in the crypto markets and they see it as a huge opportunity. Once that happens, all hell will break loose.

He added: "Once the floodgates are opened, they're opened."

Cryptocurrencies exploded in popularity and price before Christmas but the market has declined in size from over $800 billion at its peak in mid-December to $300 million today.

The slump in prices has coincided with a decline in Google search traffic for crypto-related topics, which closely correlates with prices.

Despite market wobbles, Barhydt is confident that prices will recover later this year as institutional investors such as hedge funds and asset managers begin to dip their toes into crypto. Speaking to Business Insider this week during a trip to Europe, Barhydt pointed out that some Japanese financial institutions began investing in crypto at the end of last year and that was partially behind the price rally at the time.

"There really is zero large-scale institutional money from the west in crypto right now," Barhydt said. "That is happening in Japan. Once a arge sizable chunk of Western institutional money starts to come in — watch out.

"Institutional interest is now starting to grow regardless of the Google trends."

Barhydt said institutional investment in assets like bitcoin or ethereum will create a "halo effect" for the wider crypto market and he said: "That's going to happen this year I think."

Regulators around the world have been moving to crack down on cryptocurrency markets, which have been plagued by scams and hacks. The US Securities and Exchange Commission has in recent weeks reportedly begun looking at hedge funds that have invested in cryptocurrencies. Barhydt is unphased by this and believes regulation will actually help encourage institutional investors.

"We're getting closer and closer to real clarity in the West that it's OK putting half a percent of your assets into crypto," he said.

While half a percent is a tiny amount of exposure for big investment firms, it could still work out at hundreds of millions of dollars, which would be a huge boost to crypto markets, Barhydt said.abra buy bitcoinAbra is a digital wallet designed for smartphones that lets people around the world buy and hold up to 20 cryptocurrencies and 50 fiat currencies.

Barhydt, a serial entrepreneur, founded the business in 2014 and it has raised $40 million in funding from the likes of American Express, Fidelity's venture capital arm, and Foxconn, the Asian manufacturer of parts for Apple.

Abra expanded its offering from bitcoin and ethereum to its current suite of 70 crypto and fiat currencies earlier this month. Barhydt said the reception has been better than Abra expected and he said the fact that successful launches are possible in a down market demonstrates the resilience of the crypto space.

"People are really interested in altcoins, what's going to be the next big thing," he said. "We weren't expecting the growth to be this fast."

SEE ALSO: Crypto projects that raised hundreds of millions of dollars are being 'intentionally non-transparent'

DON'T MISS: Everything you need to know about the complex relationship between Ripple and cryptocurrency XRP

NEXT UP: Visa CFO on cryptocurrencies: 'You have a bubble when the guy shining your shoes tells you what stock to buy'

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: How the super-wealthy hide billions using tax havens and shell companies

'All hell will break loose': The crypto market will boom again in 2018 according to the CEO of American Express-backed startup Abra

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Bill Barhydt, Abra

  • Crypto market has more than halved in size since the start of the year.
  • Abra CEO Bill Barhydt thinks Western institutional investors will start investing this year and provide price support.
  • "Once the floodgates are opened, they're opened."


LONDON — The founder of a Silicon Valley-based cryptocurrency business said the sector will boom again this year once big investors watching from the sidelines move into the market.

Abra CEO Bill Barhydt told Business Insider: "I talk to hedge funds, high net worth individuals, even commodity speculators. They look at the volatility in the crypto markets and they see it as a huge opportunity. Once that happens, all hell will break loose.

He added: "Once the floodgates are opened, they're opened."

Cryptocurrencies exploded in popularity and price before Christmas but the market has declined in size from over $800 billion at its peak in mid-December to $300 million today.

The slump in prices has coincided with a decline in Google search traffic for crypto-related topics, which closely correlates with prices.

Despite market wobbles, Barhydt is confident that prices will recover later this year as institutional investors such as hedge funds and asset managers begin to dip their toes into crypto. Speaking to Business Insider this week during a trip to Europe, Barhydt pointed out that some Japanese financial institutions began investing in crypto at the end of last year and that was partially behind the price rally at the time.

"There really is zero large-scale institutional money from the west in crypto right now," Barhydt said. "That is happening in Japan. Once a arge sizable chunk of Western institutional money starts to come in — watch out.

"Institutional interest is now starting to grow regardless of the Google trends."

Barhydt said institutional investment in assets like bitcoin or ethereum will create a "halo effect" for the wider crypto market and he said: "That's going to happen this year I think."

Regulators around the world have been moving to crack down on cryptocurrency markets, which have been plagued by scams and hacks. The US Securities and Exchange Commission has in recent weeks reportedly begun looking at hedge funds that have invested in cryptocurrencies. Barhydt is unphased by this and believes regulation will actually help encourage institutional investors.

"We're getting closer and closer to real clarity in the West that it's OK putting half a percent of your assets into crypto," he said.

While half a percent is a tiny amount of exposure for big investment firms, it could still work out at hundreds of millions of dollars, which would be a huge boost to crypto markets, Barhydt said.abra buy bitcoinAbra is a digital wallet designed for smartphones that lets people around the world buy and hold up to 20 cryptocurrencies and 50 fiat currencies.

Barhydt, a serial entrepreneur, founded the business in 2014 and it has raised $40 million in funding from the likes of American Express, Fidelity's venture capital arm, and Foxconn, the Asian manufacturer of parts for Apple.

Abra expanded its offering from bitcoin and ethereum to its current suite of 70 crypto and fiat currencies earlier this month. Barhydt said the reception has been better than Abra expected and he said the fact that successful launches are possible in a down market demonstrates the resilience of the crypto space.

"People are really interested in altcoins, what's going to be the next big thing," he said. "We weren't expecting the growth to be this fast."

SEE ALSO: Crypto projects that raised hundreds of millions of dollars are being 'intentionally non-transparent'

DON'T MISS: Everything you need to know about the complex relationship between Ripple and cryptocurrency XRP

NEXT UP: Visa CFO on cryptocurrencies: 'You have a bubble when the guy shining your shoes tells you what stock to buy'

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: How the super-wealthy hide billions using tax havens and shell companies

'All hell will break loose': The crypto market will boom again in 2018 according to the CEO of American Express-backed startup Abra

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Bill Barhydt, Abra

  • Crypto market has more than halved in size since the start of the year.
  • Abra CEO Bill Barhydt thinks Western institutional investors will start investing this year and provide price support.
  • "Once the floodgates are opened, they're opened."


LONDON — The founder of a Silicon Valley-based cryptocurrency business said the sector will boom again this year once big investors watching from the sidelines move into the market.

Abra CEO Bill Barhydt told Business Insider: "I talk to hedge funds, high net worth individuals, even commodity speculators. They look at the volatility in the crypto markets and they see it as a huge opportunity. Once that happens, all hell will break loose.

He added: "Once the floodgates are opened, they're opened."

Cryptocurrencies exploded in popularity and price before Christmas but the market has declined in size from over $800 billion at its peak in mid-December to $300 million today.

The slump in prices has coincided with a decline in Google search traffic for crypto-related topics, which closely correlates with prices.

Despite market wobbles, Barhydt is confident that prices will recover later this year as institutional investors such as hedge funds and asset managers begin to dip their toes into crypto. Speaking to Business Insider this week during a trip to Europe, Barhydt pointed out that some Japanese financial institutions began investing in crypto at the end of last year and that was partially behind the price rally at the time.

"There really is zero large-scale institutional money from the west in crypto right now," Barhydt said. "That is happening in Japan. Once a arge sizable chunk of Western institutional money starts to come in — watch out.

"Institutional interest is now starting to grow regardless of the Google trends."

Barhydt said institutional investment in assets like bitcoin or ethereum will create a "halo effect" for the wider crypto market and he said: "That's going to happen this year I think."

Regulators around the world have been moving to crack down on cryptocurrency markets, which have been plagued by scams and hacks. The US Securities and Exchange Commission has in recent weeks reportedly begun looking at hedge funds that have invested in cryptocurrencies. Barhydt is unphased by this and believes regulation will actually help encourage institutional investors.

"We're getting closer and closer to real clarity in the West that it's OK putting half a percent of your assets into crypto," he said.

While half a percent is a tiny amount of exposure for big investment firms, it could still work out at hundreds of millions of dollars, which would be a huge boost to crypto markets, Barhydt said.abra buy bitcoinAbra is a digital wallet designed for smartphones that lets people around the world buy and hold up to 20 cryptocurrencies and 50 fiat currencies.

Barhydt, a serial entrepreneur, founded the business in 2014 and it has raised $40 million in funding from the likes of American Express, Fidelity's venture capital arm, and Foxconn, the Asian manufacturer of parts for Apple.

Abra expanded its offering from bitcoin and ethereum to its current suite of 70 crypto and fiat currencies earlier this month. Barhydt said the reception has been better than Abra expected and he said the fact that successful launches are possible in a down market demonstrates the resilience of the crypto space.

"People are really interested in altcoins, what's going to be the next big thing," he said. "We weren't expecting the growth to be this fast."

SEE ALSO: Crypto projects that raised hundreds of millions of dollars are being 'intentionally non-transparent'

DON'T MISS: Everything you need to know about the complex relationship between Ripple and cryptocurrency XRP

NEXT UP: Visa CFO on cryptocurrencies: 'You have a bubble when the guy shining your shoes tells you what stock to buy'

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: How the super-wealthy hide billions using tax havens and shell companies

India’s Biggest Tax Filing Platform is Helping Investors File on Bitcoin Gains

CryptoCoins News, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

A new partnership between major cryptocurrency exchange Zebpay and tax filing platform Cleartax aims to assist cryptocurrency investors file taxes on capital gains from their crypto assets. As Indian authorities continue to be perfectly ambiguous over guidelines or regulations for cryptocurrency adopters and the industry respectively – bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are neither legal nor illegal,

The post India’s Biggest Tax Filing Platform is Helping Investors File on Bitcoin Gains appeared first on CCN

Shares in a Hong Kong magazine publisher surged almost 900% on their first day of trading

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Hong Kong

  • Hong Kong media company sees shares jump almost 900% on day of IPO.
  • Shares in Most Kwai Chung, a media firm which publishes a popular satirical magazine, climbed from HK$1.2 (£0.11; $0.15) to a high of HK$11.76 (£1.06; $1.50).
  • "We feel surprised about the market response," a spokesman for the company said.

LONDON — Shares in a Hong Kong media company and publisher surged nearly 900% from their opening price on Wednesday.

Most Kwai Chung, a media firm which publishes a popular satirical magazine called 100 Most and has a TV channel called Most TV, debuted on Hong Kong's Hang Seng index.

The firm's IPO was 6,289 times oversubscribed — meaning that people wanted to buy 6,289 times more shares than were being offered.

Prices surged as a result, with the company's stock climbing from an initial price of around HK$1.2 (£0.11; $0.15) to a high of HK$11.76 (£1.06; $1.50) during the day. That marks a rise of 880%.

"We feel surprised about the market response," Ivan Yuen, a spokesman for the company said, according to a report from the South China Morning Post.

After a huge initial spike, prices have slipped, and by around 8.35 a.m. BST, just before the close of the Hong Kong market, price services are quoting Most Kwai Chung's share price at around HK$6.35 (£0.57; $0.81).

100 Most, Most Kwai Chung's flagship product is a satirical weekly magazine which includes 100 Chinese language articles about topics of the week. It was launched in 2013, and has quickly gained popularity among younger people in the city state.

"The demand for the stock is largely due to the brand name," Alex Wong, director of asset management at Hong Kong-based Ample Capital told the SCMP.

"100Most magazine and Most TV are popular among many Hong Kong people."

SEE ALSO: MACQUARIE: 'Reality is just fake news' — and it's making it impossible to value assets

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Goldman Sachs investment chief: Bitcoin is definitely a bubble, Ethereum even more so

US Futures Self-Regulator Reminds Members to Report Crypto Activities

CoinDesk, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

A U.S. futures self-regulator is reminding its members the obligation of reporting any involvement in bitcoin or bitcoin derivatives transactions.

MACQUARIE: 'Reality is just fake news' — and it's making it impossible to value assets

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

matrix

  • The modern world is nigh on impossible to analyse, and it's making investment decisions hugely difficult, according to one analyst.
  • "Investors seem to be striving to find order and pattern in a world that has neither," according to Macquarie's Viktor Shvets.
  • Valuing assets as "safe" simply cannot be done anymore, he believes.


LONDON — Investors seeking patterns and order in the modern world are likely to be disappointed, as neither exists anymore, according to Viktor Shvets, global strategist at Australian investment bank Macquarie.

Writing to clients this week, Shvets argues that the world is dominated by too much noise and not enough signal, a phenomenon leading to what he calls "a growing chorus of shrill voices" searching for meaning where there simply is none.

"It is only human to search for patterns as without some order, there are no investment strategies. Instead, it becomes a world dominated by noise," Shvets wrote in the note, titled "The end of liberal order."

"Whether it is Trump tariffs, CBs (incessant debate – ‘too dovish or too hawkish?’) or Facebook and the role of social media, investors embark on a fairly meaningless task of calculating likely damages while trying to rationalize these actions within confines of conventional economic theory (trade is good; lack of it is bad).

"As a result, there is a growing chorus of shrill voices about onset of trade wars and/or need for deep regulatory changes."

An example of this "growing chorus," Shevts says, can be seen in the reactions to recent episodes of widening bond spreads. Previously moving spreads would be treated with caution, but not as a major incident, but now they are "almost immediately interpreted as the onset of major liquidity contraction."

As a consequence, Shvets concludes that "in a modern world of signals, noise & AI driven re-pricing, reality is just ‘fake news’ (or basically facts you don’t like)."

This noise, he says, makes it impossible to assess what can be described as a "safe" asset.

"De-globalization and constraints on capital flows are now not anomalies, but are an integral part of the new investment climate. It implies that it is no longer possible to assess what is ‘safe’. Aggressive public sector & technological disruptions blur lines between ‘safe’, ‘value’, ‘cyclicals’ etc," he writes.

How then, are investors supposed to make any money? The answer, in Macquarie's eyes, is to "stay with quality, growth, and thematics," in the equity market.

Shvets is well known for his outlandish predictions and off-the-wall analysis. Recent examples include a note last month in which he said capitalism is dead and finance has become a poison, and the argument that cryptocurrencies and the blockchain technology underpinning them could end up being like the 21st century's version of the invention of the motor car.

SEE ALSO: MACQUARIE: Cryptocurrencies could be the 21st century's version of the Model T Ford

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Goldman Sachs investment chief: Bitcoin is definitely a bubble, Ethereum even more so

10 things you need to know in markets today

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Apple CEO Tim Cook attends the annual session of China Development Forum (CDF) 2018 at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing, China March 25, 2018. REUTERS/Jason Lee

Good morning! Here's what you need to know.

1. Apple announced a new 9.7-inch iPad. The new iPad, which was announced on stage at an event in Chicago, is intended for education. It will have new versions of Apple software like Pages, Keynote, and Numbers, and will support Apple Pencil.

2. The Trump administration is mulling a crackdown on Chinese investments in technologies that it considers sensitive by employing a law reserved for national emergencies. The International Emergency Economic Powers Act, enacted in 1977, allows the president to declare a national emergency in response to an "unusual and extraordinary threat."

3. A Slovak court has ordered Uber to suspend its operations in the country. The court was responding to an action by taxi drivers who say the ride-hailing service represents unfair competition.

4. Banks have lined up to advise on €7.3 billion-equivalent of debt financing to back the buyout of Akzo Nobel's specialty chemicals business. Akzo Nobel announced on Tuesday the sale of 100% of the business to private equity firm Carlyle Group and Singapore's GIC, for a slightly better than expected enterprise value of €10.1 billion.

5. India rejected a proposal from Google to roll out its Street View service. Junior home minister Hansraj Ahir did not give a reason for the decision - though Indian media reported in October that the defense ministry had raised security concerns.

6. BMW faces a class-action lawsuit filed in a New Jersey court for alleged emissions cheating on diesel vehicles including its X5 and 330d models. "BMW's representations were misleading for failure to disclose its emissions manipulations," the suit, which was filed in the United States District Court of New Jersey, said.

7. OPEC is seeking a long-term deal to cooperate on oil output controls with Russia and other non-OPEC producers, said Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. “We are working to shift from a year-to-year agreement to a 10-20 year agreement,” the crown prince told Reuters in an interview in New York. “We have agreement on the big picture, but not yet on the detail.”

8. Huawei, the world's number three smartphone maker, will use the launch of a new flagship phone in Paris to make fresh gains in Europe. It's a region where it has made strides against rivals Samsung Electronics and Apple.

9. Deutsche Bank has begun the search for a new chief executive as investors grow frustrated with the slow turnaround of the loss-making German lender. Paul Achleitner, chairman of the board, has initiated a search to replace John Cryan, the British chief executive officer who has been in office less than three years.

10. A US appeals court resurrected a multi-billion dollar copyright case brought by Oracle against Google parent Alphabet. The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit said Google's use of Oracle's Java development platform to create the Android operating system was not protected under the fair-use provision of copyright law.

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Goldman Sachs investment chief: Bitcoin is definitely a bubble, Ethereum even more so

New safety questions emerge after the fatal Uber crash in Arizona

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Uber volvo xc90

  • The Uber self-driving Volvo SUV involved in a fatal collision with a pedestrian earlier this month had its standard collision-avoidance equipment deactivated.
  • Uber equipped the vehicle with its own autonomous-driving hardware for testing purposes.
  • The Uber-controlled vehicle slammed into 49-year-old Elaine Herzberg on March 18, killing her.
  • Aptiv, the company that makes cameras and radar equipment that comes standard on the Volvo, said "We don't want people to be confused or think it was a failure of the technology that we supply for Volvo, because that's not the case."

The Volvo XC90 SUV that Uber was operating as part of its autonomous-driving program had its manufacturer-installed crash-avoidance equipment deactivated when it hit and killed a pedestrian in Arizona earlier this month.

Uber had installed its own technology on the vehicle instead, according to Aptiv, the company that provides the Volvo with its cameras and radar, Bloomberg reported on Monday.

An Aptive spokesperson told the publication, "We don’t want people to be confused or think it was a failure of the technology that we supply for Volvo, because that’s not the case."

The Israeli tech company, Mobileye, an industry giant that supplies chips and sensors to the likes of Aptiv, that are used for crash-avoidance technology, said it performed an informal replication of the Arizona crash using video of the incident. The company found that its equipment detected 49-year-old Elaine Herzberg on the screen, one second before impact.

It was not immediately clear whether Volvo's agreement with Uber includes allowing Uber to disable the Volvo's factory-installed crash-avoidance features. A Volvo spokesperson declined to comment on the matter Tuesday when contacted by Business Insider.

Investigators say the Uber vehicle was traveling at about 40 miles per hour and did not appear to slow down before hitting Herzberg.

The crash has already dealt a serious blow to Uber, which has been struggling to rehabilitate its image over the past year, but there are fears that the crash could also throw a cloud over Volvo, since its XC90 SUV is the most prominent face of Uber's self-driving program.

The fallout from that crash has forced Uber's autonomous cars off the road in Arizona and, in California, Uber said it would not to renew its permits to test the vehicles there.

Uber Ford Fusion

New questions about Uber's safety decisions emerge

Aside from the disabled factory equipment, new reporting on Tuesday found that Uber scaled back its lidar technology — the radar that employs laser-light pulses that recognize objects and hazards around the car — on its test fleet.

According to former employees and some industry experts cited by Reuters on Tuesday, Uber's decision to pare down the number of radar units mean that the company's self-driving vehicles have "more blind spots than its own earlier generation of autonomous cars, as well as those of its rivals."

Uber's old Ford Fusion self-driving cars had seven lidar units. The ride-hailing company's current crop of Volvo SUVs have just one roof-mounted unit, Reuters reported. Business Insider has not independently verified the number of lidar units Uber employs on its current autonomous vehicles, and the company did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

With fewer of those crucial components, Uber "introduced a blind zone around the perimeter of the SUV," according to former employees and a Carnegie Mellon University expert, who has more than a decade of self-driving technology experience, who spoke to Reuters.

The Uber rival, Waymo, uses six lidar sensors on its self-driving cars. General Motors uses five.

Uber self-driving Volvo SUV

Bad publicity for Volvo

Uber debuted the self-driving SUVs in San Francisco in 2016. The rollout of the program was messy from the start. One of the Uber vehicles was caught on video running a red light on launch day. Uber blamed the incident on human error.

Uber also battled with the California Department of Motor Vehicles over permits the agency required for self-driving cars. The drama escalated quickly when then-California attorney general Kamala Harris threatened legal action against the ride-hailing company.

In March 2017, an Uber-controlled Volvo SUV flipped onto its side during a collision in Tempe, Arizona. The car was operating in autonomous mode when the incident occurred, Uber confirmed to Business Insider at the time.

While the self-driving car space is evolving, and several top-tier companies have made strides in developing the technology, the recent mishaps prove that the remaining challenges are complex and that due diligence is essential.

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Goldman Sachs investment chief: Bitcoin is definitely a bubble, Ethereum even more so

Cryptocurrency Market Retreats $300 Billion as Bitcoin and Ethereum Decline

CryptoCoins News, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Over the past week, the cryptocurrency market and bitcoin have consistently been volatile in the $300 billion region, moving up and down within the range of $280 billion and $350 billion. The market has operated within this boundary throughout March. Continuous Volatility The cryptocurrency market has struggled to demonstrate signs of strong short-term recovery. Analysts

The post Cryptocurrency Market Retreats $300 Billion as Bitcoin and Ethereum Decline appeared first on CCN

$1.6 billion Coinbase just made a big move towards supporting a bunch of Ethereum-based cryptocurrencies

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Brian Armstrong Coinbase

  • Coinbase, the $1.6 billion cryptocurrency exchange that took bitcoin mainstream, will add support for ERC20 tokens.
  • ERC20 is the technical standard behind Ethereum blockchain tokens, which make up the majority of so-called altcoins — alternative tokens that might be embraced by cryptocurrency enthusiasts, but that generally aren't in the mainstream. 
  • Coinbase hasn't said which of the hundreds of ERC20 tokens it will trade on its platform, if any. But it plans to start the months-long process of building out its infrastructure just in case. 

 




Coinbase just made a major move that could lead to much wider adoption for a whole slew of digital tokens down the road. 

The $1.6 billion cryptocurrency exchange announced Monday that it will add support for ERC20 — the technological standard that allows developers on the Ethereum blockchain, who are mostly startups, to develop tokens for use within their products.

The company doesn't have plans to add any specific ERC20 tokens to its exchange at this time. But it's building out the technological backbone to do so, if it chooses. 

"This is an infrastructure upgrade that will enable us to support many more assets in the future," a Coinbase representative told Business Insider. "It will likely take several months of engineering work. Additionally, we will also be waiting for regulatory clarity before moving forward with adding any assets to our products."

Coinbase's influence on the cryptocurrency community is large, and its support for a coin or token could have a massive impact on price. When Coinbase enabled trading for bitcoin cash in late December, the price of the currency jumped from less than $2000 to $9,500, even as its price hovered around $3,600 on other exchanges.

The price of Ripple's XRP coin had a dramatic uptick recently, on mere rumors that Coinbase might add support to its platform. Coinbase has since denied the rumors.

Now, Coinbase could theoretically give the same pop to a whole bunch of smaller tokens.

Ethereum tokens aren't cryptocurrencies, but people trade them

Coin Market Cap TokensCoinbase currently only lets its users trade four cryptocurrencies: bitcoin, bitcoin cash, ethereum and litecoin. 

While ethereum is a cryptocurrency in its own right, a token is slightly different. Most tokens are best thought of as gift cards, or loyalty points. They are valuable within a specific platform, but can't be used outside of that ecosystem. It's kind of like how you can't pay a parking ticket with store credit from Target. 

Yet, with the recent cryptocurrency craze, many traders have found value in purchasing tokens during a company's initial coin offering, or ICO, and then trading them on exchanges the way you might trade stocks. 

There are almost 700 unique tokens listed on Coin Market Cap, and the vast majority are built on Ethereum. Most of them aren't worth much against the dollar, but still have their fans and enthusiasts. They're all used by different companies for different purposes; all they have in common is that almost all of them are based on blockchain tech.

Ethereum is not the only blockchain out there, but many of the tokens sold by blockchain companies in initial coin offerings are built using ERC20, which Coinbase just adopted.

Take Dragonchain, for example, a project designed to create a blockchain that can compete with Ethereum for commercial users.

Dragonchain sold ERC20 tokens in its ICO in order to raise money to build out its product. People who own the coins will, theoretically, be able to use what they own to buy commercial blockchain services from Dragonchain once its own alternative is off the ground.

But on the secondary market, the Dragonchain coin is worth around $0.75 a piece. 

Vice Industry Token (VIT), designed to encourage people to consume more adult content, is also an ERC20 token. Also theoretically, people will earn it by watching pornography on select websites. Then, they would be able to use the tokens to access premium content. The tokens aren't currently sold on any exchanges. 

The most established ERC20 tokens, however, are EOS, which has a $4.65 billion market cap and costs over $6 a coin; Tron, which has a $2.9 billion market cap and costs $0.04 per coin; and VeChain, which has a $1.55 billion market cap and trades at $2.98 per coin. 

Coinbase is probably waiting for direction from the SEC 

Dan Romero

Coinbase has historically taken months to make changes because of its scale, and the high security risk that comes with running a crypto-exchange.

In February, discussing Coinbase's implementation of the bitcoin code update known as SegWit, Coinbase general manager Dan Romero told Business Insider that the company takes its time with technical changes because its "very much a measure twice, cut once culture — and in some cases maybe it's measure three times and cut once."

"We're holding billions of dollars in customer digital currency. Any change we make to that core business structure has to be thoroughly tested both from the implementation, to make sure it's working, standpoint, but also some serious security considerations," Romero said at the time.

But when it comes to ERC20, Coinbase has another consideration: the Feds. The Securities and Exchange Commission is still figuring out whether or not tokens are considered securities and how it intends to regulate such coins. Some states are also starting to clamp down on ICOs. 

SEE ALSO: $1.6 billion cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase isn't adding Ripple after all — and it's obvious why not

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: NFL superstar Richard Sherman is all-in on cryptocurrencies, but doesn’t think his grandmother should invest

$1.6 billion Coinbase just made a big move towards supporting a bunch of Ethereum-based cryptocurrencies

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Brian Armstrong Coinbase

  • Coinbase, the $1.6 billion cryptocurrency exchange that took bitcoin mainstream, will add support for ERC20 tokens.
  • ERC20 is the technical standard behind Ethereum blockchain tokens, which make up the majority of so-called altcoins — alternative tokens that might be embraced by cryptocurrency enthusiasts, but that generally aren't in the mainstream. 
  • Coinbase hasn't said which of the hundreds of ERC20 tokens it will trade on its platform, if any. But it plans to start the months-long process of building out its infrastructure just in case. 

 




Coinbase just made a major move that could lead to much wider adoption for a whole slew of digital tokens down the road. 

The $1.6 billion cryptocurrency exchange announced Monday that it will add support for ERC20 — the technological standard that allows developers on the Ethereum blockchain, who are mostly startups, to develop tokens for use within their products.

The company doesn't have plans to add any specific ERC20 tokens to its exchange at this time. But it's building out the technological backbone to do so, if it chooses. 

"This is an infrastructure upgrade that will enable us to support many more assets in the future," a Coinbase representative told Business Insider. "It will likely take several months of engineering work. Additionally, we will also be waiting for regulatory clarity before moving forward with adding any assets to our products."

Coinbase's influence on the cryptocurrency community is large, and its support for a coin or token could have a massive impact on price. When Coinbase enabled trading for bitcoin cash in late December, the price of the currency jumped from less than $2000 to $9,500, even as its price hovered around $3,600 on other exchanges.

The price of Ripple's XRP coin had a dramatic uptick recently, on mere rumors that Coinbase might add support to its platform. Coinbase has since denied the rumors.

Now, Coinbase could theoretically give the same pop to a whole bunch of smaller tokens.

Ethereum tokens aren't cryptocurrencies, but people trade them

Coin Market Cap TokensCoinbase currently only lets its users trade four cryptocurrencies: bitcoin, bitcoin cash, ethereum and litecoin. 

While ethereum is a cryptocurrency in its own right, a token is slightly different. Most tokens are best thought of as gift cards, or loyalty points. They are valuable within a specific platform, but can't be used outside of that ecosystem. It's kind of like how you can't pay a parking ticket with store credit from Target. 

Yet, with the recent cryptocurrency craze, many traders have found value in purchasing tokens during a company's initial coin offering, or ICO, and then trading them on exchanges the way you might trade stocks. 

There are almost 700 unique tokens listed on Coin Market Cap, and the vast majority are built on Ethereum. Most of them aren't worth much against the dollar, but still have their fans and enthusiasts. They're all used by different companies for different purposes; all they have in common is that almost all of them are based on blockchain tech.

Ethereum is not the only blockchain out there, but many of the tokens sold by blockchain companies in initial coin offerings are built using ERC20, which Coinbase just adopted.

Take Dragonchain, for example, a project designed to create a blockchain that can compete with Ethereum for commercial users.

Dragonchain sold ERC20 tokens in its ICO in order to raise money to build out its product. People who own the coins will, theoretically, be able to use what they own to buy commercial blockchain services from Dragonchain once its own alternative is off the ground.

But on the secondary market, the Dragonchain coin is worth around $0.75 a piece. 

Vice Industry Token (VIT), designed to encourage people to consume more adult content, is also an ERC20 token. Also theoretically, people will earn it by watching pornography on select websites. Then, they would be able to use the tokens to access premium content. The tokens aren't currently sold on any exchanges. 

The most established ERC20 tokens, however, are EOS, which has a $4.65 billion market cap and costs over $6 a coin; Tron, which has a $2.9 billion market cap and costs $0.04 per coin; and VeChain, which has a $1.55 billion market cap and trades at $2.98 per coin. 

Coinbase is probably waiting for direction from the SEC 

Dan Romero

Coinbase has historically taken months to make changes because of its scale, and the high security risk that comes with running a crypto-exchange.

In February, discussing Coinbase's implementation of the bitcoin code update known as SegWit, Coinbase general manager Dan Romero told Business Insider that the company takes its time with technical changes because its "very much a measure twice, cut once culture — and in some cases maybe it's measure three times and cut once."

"We're holding billions of dollars in customer digital currency. Any change we make to that core business structure has to be thoroughly tested both from the implementation, to make sure it's working, standpoint, but also some serious security considerations," Romero said at the time.

But when it comes to ERC20, Coinbase has another consideration: the Feds. The Securities and Exchange Commission is still figuring out whether or not tokens are considered securities and how it intends to regulate such coins. Some states are also starting to clamp down on ICOs. 

SEE ALSO: $1.6 billion cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase isn't adding Ripple after all — and it's obvious why not

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: NFL superstar Richard Sherman is all-in on cryptocurrencies, but doesn’t think his grandmother should invest

$1.6 billion Coinbase just made a big move towards supporting a bunch of Ethereum-based cryptocurrencies

Business Insider, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Brian Armstrong Coinbase

  • Coinbase, the $1.6 billion cryptocurrency exchange that took bitcoin mainstream, will add support for ERC20 tokens.
  • ERC20 is the technical standard behind Ethereum blockchain tokens, which make up the majority of so-called altcoins — alternative tokens that might be embraced by cryptocurrency enthusiasts, but that generally aren't in the mainstream. 
  • Coinbase hasn't said which of the hundreds of ERC20 tokens it will trade on its platform, if any. But it plans to start the months-long process of building out its infrastructure just in case. 

 




Coinbase just made a major move that could lead to much wider adoption for a whole slew of digital tokens down the road. 

The $1.6 billion cryptocurrency exchange announced Monday that it will add support for ERC20 — the technological standard that allows developers on the Ethereum blockchain, who are mostly startups, to develop tokens for use within their products.

The company doesn't have plans to add any specific ERC20 tokens to its exchange at this time. But it's building out the technological backbone to do so, if it chooses. 

"This is an infrastructure upgrade that will enable us to support many more assets in the future," a Coinbase representative told Business Insider. "It will likely take several months of engineering work. Additionally, we will also be waiting for regulatory clarity before moving forward with adding any assets to our products."

Coinbase's influence on the cryptocurrency community is large, and its support for a coin or token could have a massive impact on price. When Coinbase enabled trading for bitcoin cash in late December, the price of the currency jumped from less than $2000 to $9,500, even as its price hovered around $3,600 on other exchanges.

The price of Ripple's XRP coin had a dramatic uptick recently, on mere rumors that Coinbase might add support to its platform. Coinbase has since denied the rumors.

Now, Coinbase could theoretically give the same pop to a whole bunch of smaller tokens.

Ethereum tokens aren't cryptocurrencies, but people trade them

Coin Market Cap TokensCoinbase currently only lets its users trade four cryptocurrencies: bitcoin, bitcoin cash, ethereum and litecoin. 

While ethereum is a cryptocurrency in its own right, a token is slightly different. Most tokens are best thought of as gift cards, or loyalty points. They are valuable within a specific platform, but can't be used outside of that ecosystem. It's kind of like how you can't pay a parking ticket with store credit from Target. 

Yet, with the recent cryptocurrency craze, many traders have found value in purchasing tokens during a company's initial coin offering, or ICO, and then trading them on exchanges the way you might trade stocks. 

There are almost 700 unique tokens listed on Coin Market Cap, and the vast majority are built on Ethereum. Most of them aren't worth much against the dollar, but still have their fans and enthusiasts. They're all used by different companies for different purposes; all they have in common is that almost all of them are based on blockchain tech.

Ethereum is not the only blockchain out there, but many of the tokens sold by blockchain companies in initial coin offerings are built using ERC20, which Coinbase just adopted.

Take Dragonchain, for example, a project designed to create a blockchain that can compete with Ethereum for commercial users.

Dragonchain sold ERC20 tokens in its ICO in order to raise money to build out its product. People who own the coins will, theoretically, be able to use what they own to buy commercial blockchain services from Dragonchain once its own alternative is off the ground.

But on the secondary market, the Dragonchain coin is worth around $0.75 a piece. 

Vice Industry Token (VIT), designed to encourage people to consume more adult content, is also an ERC20 token. Also theoretically, people will earn it by watching pornography on select websites. Then, they would be able to use the tokens to access premium content. The tokens aren't currently sold on any exchanges. 

The most established ERC20 tokens, however, are EOS, which has a $4.65 billion market cap and costs over $6 a coin; Tron, which has a $2.9 billion market cap and costs $0.04 per coin; and VeChain, which has a $1.55 billion market cap and trades at $2.98 per coin. 

Coinbase is probably waiting for direction from the SEC 

Dan Romero

Coinbase has historically taken months to make changes because of its scale, and the high security risk that comes with running a crypto-exchange.

In February, discussing Coinbase's implementation of the bitcoin code update known as SegWit, Coinbase general manager Dan Romero told Business Insider that the company takes its time with technical changes because its "very much a measure twice, cut once culture — and in some cases maybe it's measure three times and cut once."

"We're holding billions of dollars in customer digital currency. Any change we make to that core business structure has to be thoroughly tested both from the implementation, to make sure it's working, standpoint, but also some serious security considerations," Romero said at the time.

But when it comes to ERC20, Coinbase has another consideration: the Feds. The Securities and Exchange Commission is still figuring out whether or not tokens are considered securities and how it intends to regulate such coins. Some states are also starting to clamp down on ICOs. 

SEE ALSO: $1.6 billion cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase isn't adding Ripple after all — and it's obvious why not

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: NFL superstar Richard Sherman is all-in on cryptocurrencies, but doesn’t think his grandmother should invest

Twitter Abruptly Bans Cryptocurrency Ads — Beginning Today

Bitcoin Magazine, 1/1/0001 12:00 AM PST

Twitter Abruptly Bans Cryptocurrency Ads — Beginning Today

Twitter is a fast player. Less than two weeks ago, the social media giant announced it was developing new policies which would lead to the eventual ban of cryptocurrency and ICO-related advertisements on its platform. Bitcoin enthusiasts everywhere likely figured they had a little time to spare, as the changes weren’t expected to take effect until sometime in April at the earliest.

In addition, it was reported that Twitter would also be banning ads for cryptocurrency exchanges, though there would allegedly be exceptions to the rule.

Executive speculation has now reached an end, as the ban of cryptocurrency marketing strategies takes full effect on March 27, 2018. Twitter was the third major internet mogul to announce such a ban after Google and Facebook, but the first to implement it, leading to questions over whether the industry could be damaged in the long term.

“We are committed to ensuring the safety of the Twitter community,” the enterprise confirmed to The Verge in a statement. “As such, we have added a new policy for Twitter Ads related to cryptocurrency. Under this new policy, the advertisement of Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) and token sales will be prohibited globally.”

Twitter also said that it will end campaigns for cryptocurrency exchanges and digital wallet services.

“We know that this type of content is often associated with deception and fraud, both organic and paid, and we are proactively implementing several signals to prevent these types of accounts from engaging with others in a deceptive manner,” the company said to Bloomberg.

Following the announcement, bitcoin’s price fell by over 7 percent. At press time, the currency is trading for approximately $7,900 — about $700 less than where it stood over the weekend on March 25.

Speaking with TechCrunch, a Twitter representative said the company “will continue and improve upon” its new policies “as the industry evolves.”

Twitter’s attitude and actions toward cryptocurrencies have undoubtedly led to both pain and success in the arena. Only a few weeks ago, the company began removing accounts it felt were impersonating the portfolios or personalities of notable cryptocurrency figures, such as Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin and John McAfee. This ultimately led to serious problems, like the real people — not their impersonators — being banned instead.

At the same time, however, Twitter’s CEO Jack Dorsey has offered bitcoin some of its highest praise in recent years. In an interview with The Times, Dorsey confidently exclaimed that within 10 years, bitcoin would likely stand as the world’s “single” currency, and that fiat or other forms of virtual money would become obsolete or nonexistent.

“The world ultimately will have a single currency,” he stated. “The internet will have a single currency. I personally believe that it will be bitcoin.”

He later commented that bitcoin does not presently have the means to serve as “effective” cash for all, citing its slow transaction speeds, costly trading fees and general volatility as the main issues to overcome, though he does believe the public will garner greater access to bitcoin in the future as the technology behind it improves.

This article originally appeared on Bitcoin Magazine.

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