Norwegian ‘City’ Replacing Fiat and Cash for Its Own Cryptocurrency

norway cryptocurrency

Liberstad, a libertarian city in southern Norway, has reportedly dumped fiat currencies and cash. In their place, it has instituted its own cryptocurrency — City Coin. 


The not-so-cleverly-named cryptocurrency will replace all other forms of legal tender.

A spokesman told Express.co.uk:

City Coin is a secure and innovative cryptocurrency based on City Chain, a smart city platform that enables the design, implementation and use of next-generation services for smart cities and their inhabitants. As the first cryptocurrency to be officially adopted by a smart city, City Coin is the only medium of exchange within Liberstad. It will be used for the payment of city services and worker wages and for funding civic projects. Inhabitants can pay for anything ranging from haircuts, a dozen local eggs or an artisan loaf of bread using CITY, marking a milestone for real-world use of blockchain technology. Over 100 land plots have already been sold within Liberstad and more will become available to purchase using CITY in the near future.

While the prospect may seem farfetched, it bears remembering that Liberstad is a small city based on The Libertania Project’s principles of anarchism and non-aggression. According to its official website, it is a private city in which “all property is private and all services are performed by private actors” and founded on the belief “that all human interactions should be voluntary.”

norway blockchain

The spokesman also told the daily national middle-market tabloid newspaper:

We are a small group of individuals who are seeking a change in the way society works. We want a society where people decide over themselves and can live together without government authorities. Liberstad will become a city where anarchism can get a physical foothold in one of the world’s most socialist countries. We also want a city where everyone has the opportunity to buy both houses and land for a price that is far below other house and cottage prices in Norway. In Liberstad you will be able to live without high mortgage or rent, and without any direct and indirect taxes. Liberstad will become a city where life is easier, more relaxing and without the high cost of living. In the long term, we can together develop a private city where people have greater freedom and opportunity to live the life they desire.

Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (BTC) and libertarianism have long gone hand-in-hand. Liberstad and City Coin are just further small examples of what could be in store for freedom-loving individuals in the not-so-distant future.

What do you think of Liberstad and City Coin? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.

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Source: Blockchain

Litecoin (LTC) Price Analysis: Healthy Pullback Could Lead to More Upside

The price of Litecoin (LTC) is currently consolidating after a small pullback from the well-overbought levels seen late last week. Is there more upside for the altcoin in the immediate future? 


After leading the marketwide charge late last week, the price of Litecoin (LTC) has cooled off and is looking set for another move. Odds are, that move will be to the upside — at least against Bitcoin (BTC).

Daily Exponential Moving Averages

litecoin price

Litecoin’s three exponential moving averages (EMA) are looking rather bullish against its big brother, Bitcoin.

The 50-day EMA has crossed over both the 100-day and 200-day EMAs, suggesting the popular altcoin is ready to undergo a full-fledged trend reversal.

200-Week Moving Average

Adding additional support to that theory is the 200-week simple moving average (MA), as shown below:

litecoin price

Litecoin’s break above the 200-week MA last week was indeed bullish.

It will be even more bullish if the price can remain above the long-term indicator, which is useful for identifying when a digital asset is in a bearish trend or a bullish trend.

Stochastic Relative Strength Index (RSI)

The Stochastic Relative Strength Index for LTCBTC is also suggesting that the ‘silver to Bitcoin’s gold’ is cooling off after being overbought following the announcement of confidential transactions possibly coming to the LTC blockchain in the future.

litecoin price

The indicator is heading down towards oversold territory while price remains relatively stable. Those looking to long Litecoin or accumulate before the altcoin’s block reward halving on Aug 8 may be encouraged to do so when the Stochastic RSI reaches oversold territory — depending on market conditions at the time, of course.

Litecoin’s dollar valuation will, naturally, depend largely on Bitcoin’s price movement in the coming days and weeks. That said, with fundamental developments and a halving on the not-so-distant horizon, betting against BTC may be a solid bet in the medium term.

What do you think of the Litecoin price? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below! 


Images courtesy of TradingView.

Disclaimer: The contents of this article are not intended to be construed as investment advice and should not be taken as such. Always consult a trained financial professional before making any investment decisions and be prepared to lose your entire investment. The cryptocurrency market is particularly volatile — always do your own research.

Full Disclosure: The author of this article holds Litecoin (LTC) and Bitcoin (BTC).

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Source: Blockchain

Bitcoin Cash Spoils XBT Provider AB’s Plans for a Crypto ETP

bitcoin cash

XBT Provider AB planned on launching an exchange-traded product (ETP) in the form of a cryptocurrency basket last year but backed out because one of those cryptocurrencies spoiled the party. Can you guess which one? 


As suggested by a report from Bloomberg, XBT CEO Laurent Kssis “didn’t have a clue” about the potential for a Bitcoin Cash (BCH) hard fork — which happened late last year — despite getting the green light from Swedish regulators to launch a cryptocurrency ETP. He told the privately held financial, software, data, and media company:

It’s important to ask how the community is responding to the split and who’s going to support one asset versus the other. If we get it wrong, these assets will drop and if they’re part of the basket we can’t go back because it’s in the final term-sheet.

Though Kssis never explicitly mentions Bitcoin Cash as the culprit, one can put two and two together. The altcoin experienced a high-profile ideological split in Q4 2018 when the community took sides between Bitcoin Cash Satoshi’s Vision (SV) and Bitcoin Cash ABC.

The confusion was largely blamed for pushing the price of Bitcoin (BTC) down below yearly support in dramatic fashion — though one might argue that it was heading down anyway.

bitcoin forks

Commenting on XBT’s retraction of the ETP, Bloomberg strategist Mike McGlone stated:

Hard forks are indicative of some of the primary issues in cryptos pressuring prices. The overall issue is rapidly increasing crypto supply and negative signals for potential institutional investors of how still nascent the market is.

In even simpler terms, McGlone’s statement could be interpreted as one which claims investors outside of the cryptocurrency industry have no idea why there are so many “Bitcoins” in the first place.

It’s not an easy task to explain to someone how Bitcoin Cash was originally created because some people in the community thought it was more in line with Satoshi Nakamoto’s real vision for peer-to-peer electronic cash, but then that sub-community had an apparent disagreement over what Satoshi Nakamoto’s real vision for peer-to-peer electronic cash actually was — and that one of those people actually claims he is (or “was”) Satoshi Nakamoto.

At the end of the day, if you don’t know enough about cryptocurrencies to know that Bitcoin Cash might hardfork at an all-but-planned date, you probably shouldn’t be offering it in a basket of digital assets to institutional investors.

What do you think about XBT’s putting the breaks on its cryptocurrency ETP? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below! 


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.

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Source: Blockchain

Paris Fintech Forum Reportedly Over Crypto — But Who Really Cares?

paris cryptocurrency

It’s no secret that the Bitcoin and the cryptocurrency industry it spawned are currently experiencing the depths of what many are now calling ‘The Crypto Winter’ — a fact reportedly evidenced by this year’s Paris Fintech Forum. 


The Paris Fintech Forum (PFF) bills itself as “the most exclusive European annual event on digital finance and Fintech.” Last year, the event was packed full of newfound ‘cryptocurrency experts’ and ‘blockchain advisors’ and others looking to ride the wave of the recently-deceased 2017 bull market. This year was different.

According to Bloomberg, the overarching theme of the conference focused on traditional banking — with topics such as branchless lending and ‘banking-as-a-service’ taking center stage.

SWIFT vs. Ripple

The highlight of the conference for the cryptocurrency crowd was the battle between SWIFT CEO Gottfried Leibbrandt and Ripple Labs Inc. CEO Brad Garlinghouse. The latter likened the two companies to Amazon and Wal-Mart, while Liebbrandt stated:

Banks are not ready for a model where you convert into a crypto and then convert back again. It’s not clear to us that blockchain is better than what we have today.

SWIFT

Who Cares?

With a conference regularly dominated by those interested in, at most, ‘disrupting’ the traditional banking system, viable cryptocurrencies — such as Bitcoin (BTC) — really have no place. The first and foremost cryptocurrency wasn’t made to provide blockchain solutions for financial institutions and traditional banks. It was made to provide individuals the opportunity to be their own bank while rendering third-parties irrelevant and traditional banks unnecessary.

Unless you are an XRP bagholder or one who truly believes cryptocurrencies’ primary usage is to make banks operate better, this year’s vibe at the PFF shouldn’t concern you.

What do you think about the Paris Fintech Forum’s reported disinterest in cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below! 


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.

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Source: Blockchain

Startup Receives $1.7 Million to Help Keep Cryptocurrency Controlled

cryptocurrency law

Token Relationship Management (TRM) has received $1.7 million from investors like Blockchain Capital to provide cryptocurrency startups with solutions to stay compliant with local regulations. 


Staying compliant in an ultra-confusing and ever-changing regulatory landscape is not easy for your average cryptocurrency startup looking to actually stay complaint as opposed to simply exit scam with users’ funds. Now, startup TRM is offering a RegTech solution as part of its Token Relationship Management platform.

TRM’s offering is designed to simplify on-chain anti-money laundering (AML) compliance for companies working with cryptocurrencies and digital assets. According to a press release, the platform offers solutions for “on-chain customer due diligence, transaction monitoring, and customer relationship management.”

money laundering

KYC and Transaction Monitoring

In addition to RegTech, TRM is also developing solutions for the automated detection of suspicious activity. Such activities include money laundering and the manipulation of markets.

More than 20,000 individuals have already KYC’d themselves and their Ethereum (ETH) addresses on RegTech.

TRM’s product has already been put to use with TrustToken’s TrueUSD — a stablecoin backed by the US dollar not entirely dissimilar to Tether (USDT).

Explained Esteban Castaño, TRM CEO and co-founder:

We believe that cryptocurrency is going to be a democratizing force in the world that lets anyone exchange value and access financial services. But to get there, we need to make it easier for everyone to be compliant. Just as the Internet led to an explosion of new content, crypto is leading to an explosion of new financial products and markets. We need regulatory and compliance infrastructure that scales with this new world.

TrueUSD

Keeping Cryptocurrency Controlled

Though regulatory compliance is important for any legitimate business, Bitcoin (BTC) and many other cryptocurrencies were created and developed to help individuals maintain control over their financial and personal freedom. Solutions like TRM’s RegTech appear help centralized institutions maintain centralized control over the cryptocurrency space. Solutions like this may help facilitate the mainstream adoption of cryptocurrency-related technologies but appear to do little to further decentralization.

What do you think about TRM’s RegTech solution to help cryptocurrency startups remain regulatory compliant? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.

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Source: Blockchain

‘Blockchain’ Being Used by London Rail Company to ‘Incentivize Changes in Passenger Behavior’

london train blockchain

DOVU, a startup from London with goals of becoming the world’s leading marketplace for transport data, has reportedly commenced a working relationship with rail company Go-Ahead. 


The working relationship has some serious investment interests behind it. DOVU launched two years ago and is backed by both Jaguar Land Rover’s InMotion Ventures and U.K. government-backed fund Creative England. Go-Ahead, likewise, is listed on the FTSE 250 — an index that contains the 101st to the 350th largest companies listed on the London Stock Exchange — and boasts more than one billion passenger journeys per year.

jaguar land rover blockchain

‘Incentivizing Changes in Passenger Behavior’

According to a report from TechCrunch, the rail company plans on using DOVU’s blockchain-powered reward platform “to learn more about its customers and to incentivize changes in passenger behavior.” What kind of data will be collected has not been detailed, but it is known that customers will be able to earn loyalty points in the form of cryptocurrency for sharing said data.

train passengers blockchain

Blockchain or Buzzword?

From the sounds of it, DOVU and Go-Ahead’s plan sounds like a prime example of a ‘blockchain‘ project that aims to further centralize an already-centralized industry, as opposed to disrupt or decentralize it. It also appears that ‘blockchain technology’ is being used as little more than a buzzword tacked on to traditional rewards points for completing post-ride surveys.

Very little seems revolutionary about this news. However, it nevertheless serves as an example of how ‘blockchain technology’ continues to permeate into the post-2017 Bitcoin world.

What do you think about DOVU and Go-Ahead’s working relationship to incentive the sharing of passenger data via cryptocurrency rewards? Do you think ‘the blockchain’ is even needed in this instance? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below! 


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.

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Source: Blockchain

Binance Now Supporting Visa and MasterCard Payments

bitcoin visa mastercard

Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency trading exchange by volume, announced today that both debit and credit card payments for cryptocurrencies are now open — thanks to a partnership with Simplex, a fully-licensed financial institution that offers online fraud-protected payment processing solutions. 


Binance users are now afforded the opportunity to purchase Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), and XRP (XRP) via Visa and MasterCard debit and/or credit cards — a process which takes between 10-30 minutes on average.

The fee for card payments is 3.5 percent per transaction or $10 USD — whichever amount is higher.

Facilitating Mainstream Adoption

The move comes as part of Binance’s long-term goal or increasing both the adoption and accessibility of cryptocurrencies for the wider public. Explained Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao:

We want to provide Binance traders with fast and easy access to crypto, in the most secure way possible. Partnering with Simplex allows us to instantly bridge the gap between credit card payments and crypto for traders globally. On Binance.com, you can now buy crypto with credit cards and start trading in minutes.

Likewise, Simplex CEO and cofounder Nimrod Lehavi stated:

Easy and fast credit card payments, for mainstream users, is a key factor in wider adoption of crypto in general. We’re thrilled to partner up with Binance and together enable a much better, fast and easy experience.

It should be noted that purchasing cryptocurrencies through Binance via Simplex is subject to local bank policies.

Binance

Continual Development

Binance’s partnership with Simplex comes shortly after the world’s leading exchange launched support for euro and British pound sterling trading via Binance.je and Ugandan shillings trading via Binance Uganda.

Zhao sees the construction of fiat gateways as critical to facilitating mainstream adoption of cryptocurrencies and cryptocurrency trading, stating:

The crypto industry is still in its early stages and most of the world’s money is still in fiat. Building fiat gateways is what we need now to grow the ecosystem, increase adoption and introduce crypto to more users.

What do you think about the partnership between Binance and Simplex to allow debit and credit card payments on the platform? Let us know in the comments below! 


Images courtesy of Twitter, Shutterstock.

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Source: Blockchain

Bitcoin ATMs Ignore Market Downturn, Rapidly Spread Throughout US Cities

bitcoin atm

Bitcoin ATMs continue to spread across the United States at a rapid clip. 


Chicago is the latest city to see an increase in ATMs supporting both the cryptocurrency market leader and various popular altcoins — thanks to an Atlanta-based company called Lux Vending, which has dropped 30 ‘Bitcoin Depot’ ATMs throughout the Chicago already this year.

The addition to Lux’s machines reportedly brings Chicago’s total Bitcoin ATM count up to nearly 100.

The fifth-most-populous North American city is already a hotspot on the Bitcoin radar, with major exchanges CME Group and Cboe Global Markets already offering non-physically-settled bitcoin futures contracts. San Francisco-based exchange giant Coinbase recently set up an office in Chicago, and various cryptocurrency-oriented startups currently call the Windy City home.

bitcoin atm

Brotherly Bitcoin Live

Philadelphia also reportedly has nearly 100 Bitcoin ATMs operating in its area — many of which are “hidden in plain sight” in places like Rittenhouse Square, South Philly, and Queen Villiage, according to Philly-based Straight Up Capital’s Sean Keefe.

Keefe also told KYW NewsRadio 1060 that he expects more business to begin accepting the dominant cryptocurrency as the ATM machines become more popular and more widespread.

Bitcoinist Bitcoin ATMs Milestone

Know Your Coinstar

In related news, Coinstar recently launched support for the purchasing of Bitcoin with individuals’ ever-growing collections of spare change. Though this news caused a good deal of excitement when it broke, interested parties soon had their parades rained on after the machines reportedly required extensive know-your-customer (KYC) checks that validated in ultra-sluggish fashion.

Nevertheless, the developments from Bitcoin ATM companies and Coinstar are undeniably positive. The United States currently houses more than 3000 machines by itself — far more than any other country in the world — despite the year-long-and-counting market downturn.

What do you think about the continued proliferation of Bitcoin ATMs it US cities like Chicago and Philadelphia? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below! 


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.

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Source: Blockchain

6 Wealthiest Ethereum Wallets May Have Faked Decentralization

Something fishy took place in the world of Ethereum on Dec 1, 2018.


New analysis from AI-powered blockchain investigator ORS CryptoHound has uncovered unusual activity on the Ethereum blockchain, which took place last month.

ORS CryptoHound took a look at the one hundred largest Ethereum transactions for the last quarter of last year and, in doing so, found a strange pattern in the blockchain’s wealthy elite:

  • The six wealthiest wallets all transferred a sizeable sum of ether coins on the date in question — totaling almost $500 million at the time of the transactions.
  • Each of the wallets in question contained a 92-98 percent share of OmiseGo tokens (OMG).
  • The wallets were all seemingly created on the same day.
  • The wallets all cycled their holdings via multiple transactions in a notably similar manner until all of the initial tokens being tracked were divided equally among 39 new wallets containing exactly 150,000 ETH.

ethereum eth

Clearly, the transactions from the six wealthiest wallets in question were all coordinated — but why?

Though the team behind the investigation did not directly point fingers, it did suggest that one or more Ethereum whales — or prominent stakeholders — attempted to make the project appear more decentralized than it really is by separating the aforementioned ether coins and OMG tokens. This would be done to make Ethereum appear to have more integrity.

Fabrizio Fontana, a Chief Analyst of the ORS CryptoHound research team, hopes that the AI-driven investigative tool may be used to highlight similar oddities in the future — stating, by way of a press release:

This investigation is one of the early case studies showing AI’s potential in blockchain and cryptocurrency analysis. Our goal is to provide a free and easy-to-use platform for everyone who wants to collect as much data as possible about a specific blockchain address or transaction.

What do you think about the transactions ORS CryptoHound uncovered? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below! 


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.

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Source: Blockchain

Litecoin Contract Trading Opens on Huobi DM (XRP to Follow)

litecoin ltc long short

Those looking to long and short Litecoin (LTC) now have a new place to do so. Contract trading of the popular Bitcoin spin-off is now available on Huobi Derivative Market (Huobi DM) — as of yesterday (Jan 25, 2019). 


Savvy traders will now be able to utilize Huobi DM to take both long and short positions on the seventh-ranked cryptocurrency by market capitalization. As noted by a press release from the Chinese-founded Singapore-based cryptocurrency exchange, the addition of LTC contract trading allows for “arbitrage, speculation, and hedging.”

Litecoin joins Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), and EOS (EOS) — which have weekly, bi-weekly, and quarterly contracts — on the platform.

litecoin trading

Massive Volatility

LTC is currently trading, at the time of this writing, at $33.38 per coin. Its current price is down significantly from its all-time high of approximately $371. This dramatic price fluctuation creates opportunity, according to Huobi Global’s CEO, Livio Weng.

“Given the huge changes in price Litecoin and other digital assets regularly experience, Huobi DM can be a powerful tool in managing risk and uncertainty,” Weng stated in the press release.

litecoin ltc price

XRP Coming Soon

Those looking to long and short XRP will soon be able to do so on Huobi DM, as well.

Livio Weng, Huobi Global’s CEO, stated:

Litecoin is one of the biggest of the altcoins on the market today and we’ve seen quite a bit of demand for it by our users. We’ll be adding more coin types to the platform as 2019 progresses, with Ripple next on our list.

The addition of more altcoin contracts being offered illustrates the continued growth of the major cryptocurrency exchange.

What do you think of the addition of Litecoin (LTC) contract trading to Huobi DM? Are you excited about the future addition of XRP contract trading to the platform? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below! 


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, CoinMarketCap.

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Source: Blockchain