Several San Francisco-based financial technology companies have joined together to lobby regulators and lawmakers on cryptocurrencies. Interestingly, they have plans to pay their lobbying firm in digital coins. Ripple and several other digital money transfer startups are among this group.
The Motivation behind this Coalition
The name chosen by this new group of companies is “Securing America’s Internet of Value Coalition”, as they plan to achieve interconnected financial systems where payments across the globe can be made instantaneously without the need for middlemen. The group has announced to retain Klein/Johnson Group as their lobbying firm because of their expertise in lobbying for technology and financial services issues.
These efforts come at a time when Congress and government agencies like the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) are striving to devise new federal rules for digital currencies and their underlying technology ‘blockchain’. Official concerns surrounding the crypto market are high price swings, usage of cryptocurrencies for criminal activities and several fraudulent public offerings. Majority of the fintech companies are seeking government interventions which promote innovation and competition by reducing barriers to entry in this sector. “These companies plan to weigh in with the Congress, the SEC, the IRS and all other agencies which deal with cryptocurrencies,” said Izzy Klein, co-founder of Klein/Johnson.
Federal Government is interested!
“We comprehend the fact that this is complicated and there is an enormous amount of disinformation on this subject, but we are delighted by the amount of interest in this topic in D.C,” said Chris Larsen, executive chairman of Ripple. The group plans to pay their lobbying firm Klein/Johnson about 10,000 XRP and $25,000 every month. Klein explained that his company will convert the XRP price into dollars when it will mention the payments on federal lobbying forms. Currently, a deeply pressing issue for Ripple is whether its XRP digital token is deemed a security and subjected to SEC regulations or not.
Will Ripple Live Up to the Billing as the Next Leading Cryptocurrency?
The rise of Bitcoin made some early investors very rich. Anyone who purchased Bitcoin before 2015 for few Dollars has a success story to tell. Currently the value of Bitcoin is approximately $6,380, however, they had to wait for quite some time before reaping the rewards. And the fact that the value of Bitcoin continues to rise, investors are still making more and more each day.
We have seen how Bitcoin has drastically changed the lives of many traders and investors, Analysts are now looking for the next big thing in the cryptocurrency sector…could it be Ripple?
The strength of Ripple
Recently, Ripple has gained a lot of attention and partnerships. Some Ripple proponents are predicting XRP could be the next Bitcoin. I know, its sounds crazy and its value will not rise overnight, but can we expect to see a significant increase by 2019? lets take a look.
Ripple has performed well in the previous year. At one point in time it had dethroned Ethereum from its position as the altcoin with the largest market cap despite the fact that many in the cryptocurrency community consider it useless. While Ethereum has gained back its, Ripple has shownsustained growth and plans on launching new products soon.
Ripple was launched in 2012, approximately three years after Bitcoin. An U.S based company called Ripple Labs built Ripple. Its primary concern was to come up with a payment system to be used by banks to facilitate the transfer of funds both internationally and domestically. Currently, many financial institutions prefer Ripple due to its payment processing. The Ripple XRP token is being ranked third in the coinmarketcap.
The primary difference between Ripple and other popular cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum is that Ripple is centralized with most of its coins being held by the company and founders. Bitcoin and Ethereum systems are backed by global miners who process and verify transactions making them much more aligned with the decentralization and trustless nature that has drawn many to the cryptocurrency movement.
Ripple transaction modes are controlled by specific financial institutions such as RBC, UBS, and Westpac among others. The fact that Ripple has a great control over their system worries many buyers and sellers. Most investors opt for a decentralized platform such as Bitcoin. You can use some of the major free bitcoin telegram signals to understand how crypto prices rise and fall.
Working together with regulators
According to Brad Garlinghouse, Ripple CEO, for any kind of industry to grow and move forward, it has to work together with regulators. During an interview with CNBC’ Fast Money, Brad said the entire industry should realize the importance of working with the system. Exactly how the Blockchain revolutions happen within the system and never outside the system.
There are numerous ways on how the Ripple Blockchain platforms work better than Bitcoin and what has caused Ripple to gain popularity.
Ripples transaction fees and speed
When comparing Ripple and Bitcoin transaction times, Ripple comes out faster by miles. XRP takes seconds for the transaction to be processed and confirmed while BTC may take minutes.
Regarding Ripples transaction fees, Ripple is nearly free. The standard transaction fee for a standard transfer is 0.00001XRP. For instance, in January, when Ripple was selling at $3.29, the transaction fee for such a case would have been $0.0000329. In reality, this means that it would only cost you $1 to send over 30,000 transactions.
Ripple is attempting to position itself as the service of choice for banks looking to make cross-border transactions. With such an ambitious goal, it’s no wonder speculators have made XRP one of the highest trading volume cryptocurrencies on the market, especially with the xRapid launch just around the corner.
When it comes to scalability, the Ripple system works better than Bitcoin. As mentioned earlier, Ripple transaction speed is very high. For instance, it takes Bitcoin approximately one second to handle seven transactions while Ripple an handle over 1,500.
This fact makes Ripple ideal for a big and multi-trillion inter-bank industries. With the Ripple system, banks will be able to send money to international banks easily and faster. Currently, it is very slow and costly to send money internationally. For instance, most banks use a Belgium based third-party organization known as SWIFT to transfer money. This means that someone can’t send money on emergency cases.
With Ripple in the finance sector, financial institutions can use XRP to facilitate money transfer and act as a bridge of liquidity. This ways, banks, and individual investors will save lots of money and time. So, we can expect more in the near future.
The Price of Ripple
The prices for Ripple XRP tokens are considerably lower compared to other high marketcap altcoins, which could make it more attractive to new institutional and retail investors entering the market. This explains why Ripple has attracted so much attention to cryptocurrency speculators. Currently, the value of Ripple’s XRP has improved by more than 7000% from its ICO price.
In fact, over 100 banks have already adopted the Ripple token. Some of these financial institutions include Santander, Credit Agricole, and the Bank of America. With Ripple already making these partnerships with major banks all over the world, we expect to see more in the future.
According to Craig Cole of crypto maps, an expert in the cryptocurrency industry, Ripple could be the catalyst that would make the cryptocurrency sector more mainstream. Ripple is just but a new cryptocurrency on the rise today, but one that promises a lot in the future.
Below is a chart illustrating the current Ripple’s token XRP market cap, price, and daily trading volume.
In summary, there is no doubt that Ripple has a potential to replace the current systems used by banks, but can it survive long enough to do so? Ripple will definitely be a project to keep you eyes on in the years to come.
In a remarkable turn of events, Ripple Labs announced through a press release that it has reached a settlement with R3 HoldCo LLC, XRP II, LLC and R3 LLC. The announcement came on 10 September and as per the statement, “both sides would keep the terms of the settlement confidential and look forward to putting these disputes behind them.”
It was in the month of September last year when the litigation between R3 consortium and Ripple Labs started. R3 consortium initiated it by filing a lawsuit against Ripple Labs in the Delaware Chancery court. R3 alleged through the lawsuit that Ripple Labs violated a purchase agreement for XRP tokens, earlier signed by both the companies. It further stated that the agreement legally enabled R3 to buy up to 5 billion XRPs at the rate of $0.0085 per unit by the September 2019. However, Ripple Lab’s CEO Brad Garlinghouse tried to end the contract through an email sent to R3 chief executive David Rutter.
In October last year, a Delaware judge refused to provide any relief to R3 consortium citing lack of jurisdiction. It forced R3 to pursue its litigation in New York and California. Subsequently, Ripple Labs launched a counterclaim in California, accusing R3 of making several violations against the terms of the agreement. Meanwhile, the value of 5 billion XRPs rose tremendously during this time, raising stakes for both the litigants. In March 2018, California state appeals court denied Ripple’s bid to fast-track an appeal of an order quashing a lawsuit against R3.
About R3 and Ripple
R3 consortium was founded in September 2015. It was established with the backing of nine of the largest investment banks in the world to test blockchain technology for various financial applications. Later, its membership grew to around 80 financial institutions.
Ripple also works with large banks and focused on blockchain-based cross-border payments. It is backed by SBI Holdings, Standard Chartered PLC, Accenture PLC.
Almost a decade after Satoshis middle finger to banks and government, through the creation of a peer-to-peer digital currency which does not need intermediaries to function, bitcoin has inspired the creation of more trading exchanges than seen in traditional markets. Today we’ll focus on Bitmex, a bitcoin futures trading exchange. This will be a review on what the exchange offers, its security status, team behind the spotlight, and pros & cons.
First things first, Bitmex is short for Bitcoin Mercantile Exchange. Its an advanced platform best suited for pro traders. Beginners in crypto trading would do well to garner experience from other simpler platforms. One distinguishing factor between Bitmex and other crypto exchanges is that the former only offers bitcoin futures trading services. Thus, traders are actually not trading bitcoin and other cryptos, but trading contracts/ derivatives with bitcoin as the underlying value. Bitmex also allows margin trading, also known as leverage trading. Records shows the exchange has a trading volume of over 35,000 BTC daily, with not less than $34 billion worth of BTC being traded since first transaction.
Lets backpedal a bit, to explain some terms. Derivatives are contracts whose value is based on an underlying asset. Derivative contracts can be written on virtually anything, including bitcoin. Margin trading, or leverage trading is simply trading with borrowed funds, using the initial balance as collateral. For instance, a trader needs $5000 for a trade, but has $2500, he can then proceed with his trade via a 2:1 leverage. This means he gets to borrow an extra $1 for every $1 he has.
How it Works
Only BTC is allowed for deposits and withdrawals on the exchange. Although, on the exchange, there are trading contracts featuring other cryptos like Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Dash, Ripple, Zcash and a few others. Traders from the US are not allowed on the platform. But of course, some US based traders utilize VPN in order to bypass the IP checks. Contracts are valued in USD and two other fiat currencies: Japanese Yen and Chinese Yuan.
To get started, all that is required is a functioning email to which the account opening verification link will be sent to. Anonymous names are allowed, meaning there is no KYC. However, the complicated nature of the platform, coupled with the high risks involved in margin and derivatives trading, means those able to trade on the platform, are likely to be pros.
Once registered, one can begin trading, of course after depositing into the Bitmex account. Trading through the Market Order button means it is an instant trade using the current market price. Trading through the Limit Order button means the trade will be initiated once it is triggered by the market getting to the given price. As explained in details in a different article, Bitmex offers two types of leverage accounts on their platform. Futures account which has an expiry date, sometime in the future and perpetual account which is continuously being renewed. Leveraging on Bitmex allows for up to 100x leverage.
Unknowing to many, Bitmexs fees are actually on the high side. But at least, they are straightforward and not hidden nor subtle. Fees depend on the type of contract or the product. From as high as 5% for margin and maintenance, to as low as -0.25% for maker fees. No fees are deducted for deposits and withdrawals. Although, there is a minimum withdrawal amount and a minimum fee to be paid for blockchain load. Trading on Bitmex can only be done on a PC, as there is currently no mobile version, nor an app for the platform.
HDR Global Trading Limited is the holding company for Bitmex. HDR itself was founded by the trio Arthur Hayes, Ben Delo and Samuel Reed, former banker, trader and web developer. Yes, HDR happens to be an acronym for the first letters of their surnames. The trio registered the trading platform Bitmex in Seychelles in 2014, but currently operate out of Hong Kong.
Having such an experienced and skilled team behind the platform presupposes there is a strong security framework in place. This is a fact, considering there are security protocols in place such as multi-signature deposits and withdrawals process, text messages, emails and two-factor authentication features, and also, hardware tokens. Written in kdb+, a database and toolset used by major banks involved in high volume trading, Bitmex has held its ground and has never been hacked.
In todays era of automated responses and chatbots, Bitmex customer support appears to be able to attend to traders within an hour. Feedback on their customer support is good. They also have other on site help like FAQs and trading guides.
All in all, Bitmex has several advantages, with the major disadvantage being that anyone considering braving Bitmex must be a pro trader, a beginner is likely to get rekt, if not careful. The platforms trading sophistication is better suited for persons familiar with crypto trading. For those who like referral programs, Bitmex pays out millions of dollars annually to referrers.
The “tokenization of everything” hits a speed bump
“TOKENIZE THE WORLD” was the ICO battle cry of 2017 and the subsequent drive to democratize art, real estate, cars, securities, and more, has enabled people to buy a token representing the value of any asset you can care to imagine.
So why are we talking about detokenization? The Digipulse CEO recently announced that 98% of all tokens connected to the project would be burned because the issued tokens are being used for speculative investment and not the built in platform. This is an issue for MANY tokenized projects. Will other companies follow suit? Read our entire piece Is Mass Detokenization On The Way.
The overall cryptocurrency market was rather stable this week floating between $205bln to $207bln representing a 1% increase, with an obvious pump and dump yesterday. Fun times ya’ll. But look closer and you will note the top 5 struggled, being held up by the King, Bitcoin.
Bitcoin (BTC): Crypto twitter was all over the place this week. $3k Targets, $11 targets, people capitulating, etc. Very entertaining. Week to week price action found a channel between $6,300 and $6,500, then pumped to $6,680 and subsequently dumped back to $6,400. Not taking into account the PnD Bitcoin experienced 1.5% growth.
Ethereum (ETH): There’s been little love for Ethereum this month. Down 45% since July 24th, there doesn’t seem to be any reprieve in sight for Vitalik’s love child. ETH currently sits at $274 as of this post experiencing a decline of 6% week to week. Curse you ICOs!!
Project of the week QUIZANDO (QUIZ): Social platforms have provided creative people with a soapbox in which to spread their views, opinions, likes and dislikes across the world. To make any revenue from the audiences they need to work hard at getting endorsement deals, look for related affiliates and constantly promote products.
This is where Quizando comes in. The Quizando project is a state-of-the-art quiz delivery system enabling players to participate in a gaming ecosystem that rewards them with cash prizes. Quizando wants to help influencers monitize their influence easily and without the need to be a business expert or turning their channels into a constant adverts.
Want to learn more? Check out our feature on What is Quizando, and learn how you can put your Quiz knowledge to work for you. Intelligence Pays! Sponsored Content.
WHAT’S NEW AT CRYPTO IS COMING
What Is Quizando? – The Quizando project is a state-of-the-art quiz delivery system enabling players to participate in a gaming ecosystem that rewards them with cash prizes. Are you a quiz master?
Is Mass Detokenization On The Way? – For the last while, the “tokenization of everything” has been a constant theme in crpytocurrency, and it’s had people justifiably excited. So why are projects bruning their tokens?
What is Neon Exchange (NEX) – NEX is a platform for payment services and decentralized crypto trade. NEX aims to combine the performance of centralized exchanges with the trust and security features of decentralized exchanges
Blockchain Law Study group Formed in South Korea – In South Korea, lawmakers, industrial experts and judges are teaming up to form a fresh working group which will endeavor to discuss and propose solutions for issues surrounding the blockchain technology.
SEC Denies Nine More Bitcoin ETFs – Please, we all knew this was gonna happen. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Wednesday rejected applications for nine bitcoin-based exchange-traded funds (ETF) from three separate companies.