Ripple Says Microsoft, BitGo and Bitso Powering XRP Ledger, Updates Total Cryptocurrency …

Ripple has updated key stats on the amount of XRP it holds as well as which companies are helping to power the network. As of February 9th, 2020, …

Ripple has updated key stats on the amount of XRP it holds as well as which companies are helping to power the network.

As of February 9th, 2020, the San Francisco payments company says it has 49,700,000,013 XRP worth about $13.8 billion left in its cryptographically secured escrow accounts. The company placed 55,000,000,000 XRP in escrow back in late 2017, executing a monthly schedule that releases 1 billion XRP and makes the funds available for the company to sell.

Ripple says the escrow process is designed to give investors a way to track the company’s XRP holdings.

“Since 2012, Ripple has methodically sold XRP and used it to incentivize market maker activity to increase XRP liquidity and strengthen the overall health of XRP markets… By securing the lion’s share of XRP, people can mathematically verify the maximum supply of XRP that can enter the market.”

In the fourth quarter of 2019, the company says it sold a total of $13.8 million in XRP to institutions over the counter, while selling zero XRP on crypto exchanges.

Meanwhile, Ripple says Microsoft remains the most high-profile XRP Ledger validator processing transactions on the network.

The US-based digital asset trust company BitGo and Mexico-based crypto exchange Bitso are two of the newest enterprises contributing to the network. CGI, Berkeley Haas, Telindus, University of Tokyo, GateHub, WorldLink, Bahnhof and Flagship are also running validators, according to Ripple.

Ripple powers 17.1% of the ledger’s top-tier validators. In the long run, the company says it plans to detach itself from the process of deciding which entities are the most trusted on the network.

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Disclaimer: Opinions expressed at The Daily Hodl are not investment advice. Investors should do their due diligence before making any high-risk investments in Bitcoin, cryptocurrency or digital assets. Please be advised that your transfers and trades are at your own risk, and any loses you may incur are your responsibility. The Daily Hodl does not recommend the buying or selling of any cryptocurrencies or digital assets, nor is The Daily Hodl an investment advisor. Please note that The Daily Hodl participates in affiliate marketing.

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This Cryptocurrency Goliath Now Holds 277000 Bitcoin (BTC) Worth $2866000000 – Has …

Grayscale, the largest institutional asset manager in crypto, is now holding about 277,000 Bitcoin (BTC) worth $2.866 billion. The firm offers crypto …

Grayscale, the largest institutional asset manager in crypto, is now holding about 277,000 Bitcoin (BTC) worth $2.866 billion.

The firm offers crypto exposure through its Bitcoin-backed flagship product, the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC). It also offers altcoin trusts, including Ethereum, XRP, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Stellar, Zcash, Ethereum Classic and Horizen.

The company has released a new overview of its assets under management. It shows that Ethereum and Ethereum Classic are the second and third most popular cryptocurrencies among investors.

Source: Grayscale

The Grayscale Bitcoin Trust exploded in popularity in 2019 when the firm says the total investment across all of its products that year hit $607.7 million. That figure is higher than all cumulative investments from 2013 to 2018.

The company says institutional investors with deep pockets are fueling much of its growth.

  • 71% of 2019 investment came from institutional investors
  • Client base expanded by 24%, with existing clients accounting for more than 75% of capital raised
  • 36% of Grayscale clients now have allocations to multiple products within the Grayscale product suite

At the recent Crypto Finance Conference in Switzerland, Grayscale managing director Michael Sonnenshein said institutional money in the world of crypto has arrived, and Bitcoin is already eating into gold’s market share.

“I think one of the areas that’s already underway is taking share of the gold market – or Bitcoin or other digital assets emerging as this digital store of value. Perhaps gold and other things may have been that type of investment that had a place in a portfolio when the world was much more physical. For better or for worse – I would argue for better – the world has gone quite digital. And so, it’s time to start thinking about what constitutes a digital store of value, and so we start looking at things like Bitcoin.”

Moving forward, Sonnenshein believes Millennials and younger generations will also play a key role in the adoption of crypto assets.

“I think the analogue that’s not being discussed as much, which we find to be exceedingly important, is in the United States, over the 25 years, we’re looking at about $68 trillion that’s going to pass down from older generations, baby boomers, down to Millennials and younger generations.

So we’re certainly not going to go out and say that we think $68 trillion is moving into digital currency. What we do think, however, is investors today need to be positioning their portfolios and looking at skating towards where the puck is going.

Younger generations do not necessarily have the same investing preferences and the same kind of investments don’t necessarily resonate with them. And so if you are raised in the time of Apple and Venmo and Bitcoin, the ability to pay your friends digitally, buy a flight with airline miles, whatever it may be, we most certainly think that digital currency is going to be a recipient of some of that value as money is transferred from one generation to the next.”

In December, Charles Schwab released a report showing the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust is the fifth most popular equity among its millennial investors, ahead of Disney and Netflix.

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Disclaimer: Opinions expressed at The Daily Hodl are not investment advice. Investors should do their due diligence before making any high-risk investments in Bitcoin, cryptocurrency or digital assets. Please be advised that your transfers and trades are at your own risk, and any loses you may incur are your responsibility. The Daily Hodl does not recommend the buying or selling of any cryptocurrencies or digital assets, nor is The Daily Hodl an investment advisor. Please note that The Daily Hodl participates in affiliate marketing.

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Bitcoin Faces Off Against Orwellian Dystopia of Government Surveillance, No Cash and Digital …

In the latest episode of the Unchained podcast, host Laura Shin interviews Alex Gladstein, chief strategy officer at the Human Rights Foundation.

In the latest episode of the Unchained podcast, host Laura Shin interviews Alex Gladstein, chief strategy officer at the Human Rights Foundation.

Gladstein soars 20 years into the future, transporting us into a world of chip implants, mass surveillance and IDs linked to digital currency accounts for non-stop tracking of every conceivable transaction.

Having pushed society well beyond efficient systems, AI miracles and cost-saving technological advancements, the new dystopia weaponizes big data to control people. In swift order it can punish outliers, manipulators, slackers and the anti-establishment rabble-rousers. Opting out isn’t easy.

Says Gladstein,

“With cash gone, it’s extremely difficult to buy a burner phone or SIM card.”

On the other side of the rainbow lies Bitcoin (BTC) and the techno-utopia of anonymous and pseudonymous everything. While the two extremes seem equally unlikely to play out, Gladstein says current efforts in the cryptosphere are laying the blueprint.

“How close we get to a more positive and open financial future is dictated by what we do now with the Bitcoin ecosystem in 2020 and moving forward.”

First, Bitcoin’s value will have to be understood well beyond its price tag and it will have to transcend the roughly 45 million people, or .058% of the world’s population, who use BTC today.

To move the needle on Bitcoin adoption, Gladstein argues that industry leaders need to introduce global education and improve usability while also focusing on privacy solutions and ways to scale the network for the mainstream.

He adds that another major priority is integrating Bitcoin into a platform like Twitter so that users can protect their identities and reveal “an absolute minimum” about themselves.

Says Gladstein,

“We’ll need to use digital assets that don’t require Know Your Customer (KYC) or Anti Money Laundering (AML) compliance.”

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Disclaimer: Opinions expressed at The Daily Hodl are not investment advice. Investors should do their due diligence before making any high-risk investments in Bitcoin, cryptocurrency or digital assets. Please be advised that your transfers and trades are at your own risk, and any loses you may incur are your responsibility. The Daily Hodl does not recommend the buying or selling of any cryptocurrencies or digital assets, nor is The Daily Hodl an investment advisor. Please note that The Daily Hodl participates in affiliate marketing.

Featured Image: Shutterstock/Ollyy

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Crypto Analyst’s Meta 2020 Bitcoin Prediction Goes Viral – BTC, Ethereum, Ripple, XRP Newsflash

From Bitcoin prediction inception to new ATM support for XRP, here’s a look at some of the stories breaking in the world of crypto. Bitcoin. With about …

From Bitcoin prediction inception to new ATM support for XRP, here’s a look at some of the stories breaking in the world of crypto.

Bitcoin

With about four and a half months to go until Bitcoin’s next halving, predictions on whether the event will impact the price of BTC are getting extremely meta.

Crypto analyst Jacob Canfield posted a viral prediction on the halving, which will slash the amount of BTC miners earn for powering the network in half, further slowing the supply of new Bitcoin entering the market.

According to Canfield’s tongue-in-cheek argument, the halving is so well-known, priced in and predictable that it’s actually no longer priced in at all.

The halving is priced in so much that it’s actually not priced in and no one is buying bitcoin except the smart money who knows it’s not priced in who has convinced everyone else it is priced in so when the halving occurs and price is skyrocketing no one will be holding bitcoin

— Jacob Canfield (@JacobCanfield) December 28, 2019

Adaptive Capital analyst Willy Woo is offering an interpretation of Canfield’s hypothesis. He says it’s naive to think market prices are always a perfect reflection of all available information.

“Translation: While the public believe in efficient market theory and that markets perfectly price in all available information. Market traders know the price chart is a war of strategy and fuckery designed to make the most money for the best players.”

As for his current take on BTC’s trajectory, Canfield says he thinks Bitcoin will likely dip lower in January.

“Longing $6700-6800 in January will be a good deal. I was hoping for $5500, but not sure we get there. Not sure we see much lower for a while after that. Will revise if the context of the market changes, but that’s what I’m seeing so far.”

Meanwhile, Woo recently said he thinks Bitcoin’s on-chain metrics indicate a long-term bull run is on the horizon.

Ethereum

A new Ethereum hard fork is upon us.

The Muir Glacier upgrade will delay implementation of Ethereum’s so-called difficulty bomb for more than a year. The move is designed to ensure miners are incentivized to stay on board as the platform switches to its new proof-of-stake consensus model.

The latest stats on Ethernodes indicate about 66% of node operators are currently prepared for the update, which is set to happen on January 2nd.

Glad that everyone is ready for the #Ethereum hard-fork on New Year’s Day. 😂 pic.twitter.com/UNWiacA6MQ

— samson.btc (@Excellion) December 29, 2019

Ripple and XRP

The crypto ATM company General Bytes says XRP is now supported on its network of 3,000 machines.

The company says ATM operators now have the option to decide whether they want their machine to support the digital asset.

“Owners can now enable XRP as it is backported to all machines sold to date. Of course, an ATM operator needs to enable it as they are the ones who own the machines, wallets, etc.”

The news comes a month after Ripple’s fundraising and development arm Xpring invested $1.5 million in Coinme, a crypto ATM company based in Seattle.

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Disclaimer: Opinions expressed at The Daily Hodl are not investment advice. Investors should do their due diligence before making any high-risk investments in Bitcoin, cryptocurrency or digital assets. Please be advised that your transfers and trades are at your own risk, and any loses you may incur are your responsibility. The Daily Hodl does not recommend the buying or selling of any cryptocurrencies or digital assets, nor is The Daily Hodl an investment advisor. Please note that The Daily Hodl participates in affiliate marketing.

Featured Image: Shutterstock/Clari Massimiliano

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Hodl Hodl Wants You to Clone Its P2P Bitcoin Exchange

Hodl Hodl plans to make its software freely available so anyone can launch their own version of the peer-to-peer bitcoin exchange. Announced …

Hodl Hodl plans to make its software freely available so anyone can launch their own version of the peer-to-peer bitcoin exchange.

Announced Saturday at the Baltic Honeybadger conference in Riga, Latvia, the plan is, in part, a recognition that Hodl Hodl’s business model is vulnerable to regulatory crackdowns.

“History teaches us that if a government wants to shut you down, it will,” Hodl Hodl CEO Max Keidun told CoinDesk.

Open-sourcing the code for its smart contracts, which Hodl Hodl intends to do sometime next year, is a way to deal with the threat, Keidun said, explaining:

“Let’s imagine, our domain gets blocked — some activist would be able to just take the code from Github, fork it and launch something new.”

Already, people in Africa, Asia and Latin America have reached out to the company, asking about such an opportunity, he said. “Peer-to-peer is something emerging markets, in particular, are interested in.”

Rare breed

Hodl Hodl is a rare animal in the 2019 crypto world: as a matter of principle, it focuses on bitcoin (the only cryptocurrency that the company’s founders trust), it doesn’t do know-your-customer (KYC) checks and it has no plan to start.

Why not? “Because we don’t like three-letter abbreviations,” Hodl Hodl’s CTO, Roman Snitko, joked in a slide for his presentation to the Riga conference.

In all seriousness, Hodl Hodl is averse to holding the sensitive personal information that financial institutions are mandated to collect from customers under global anti-money-laundering (AML) regulations.

“We think KYC/AML does more harm by exposing law-abiding users to fraudsters and criminals,” Snitko told CoinDesk. “The information and documents users upload to exchanges has been stolen many times in the past. It also does very little to prevent actual money laundering and criminals from using those services. They always find ways.”

Yet regulators across the globe are tightening the screws on the industry to identify the parties to transactions. Most notably, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), an intergovernmental body, has directed its member countries to make exchanges collect and store information about who their customers trade with.

Winds of change

Hodl Hodl’s founders believe they don’t have to identify customers because the exchange never takes custody of users’ funds.

Rather, it lists offers to buy or sell bitcoin and provides an escrow service in which the seller locks bitcoin in a multi-signature smart contract until the buyer sends fiat. Releasing the bitcoin requires 2 out of 3 signatures, belonging to the buyer, seller, and Hodl Hodl (which steps in as a referee when there’s a dispute).

“We don’t touch the crypto, don’t match users automatically and don’t keep funds in our wallets,” Keidun said. “We create multisigs in a public blockchain,”

In the same June guidance, the FATF said even peer-to-peer platforms may be subject to such regulations in cases “where the platform facilitates the exchange.” It’s unclear whether Hodl Hodl’s escrow service counts as “facilitating.”

But the founders see the way the wind is blowing.

“We’re not switching to the open-source model exclusively because of the regulatory pressure,” Snitko told CoinDesk. “In fact, we haven’t experienced any due to the fact that we’re a non-custodial exchange. However, we do foresee regulators becoming more desperate in their attempts to contain the spread of bitcoin and we refuse to be the victims of desperate actions.”

Passing the reins

At some point, Keidun and Snitko might hand management of Hodl Hodl to others so they can focus entirely on supporting and upgrading the code. (The exchange says it has no head office; employees work remotely, serving 10,000 users worldwide.)

“We want to create a community around us, so that at some point we could pass the reins to other people,” Keidun said. There is no timeframe for that yet.

In his Riga presentation, Snitko also announced Hodl Hodl’s intention to open “a bitcoin smart contract app store.”

Another way people can utilize the code is payments for e-commerce, and in the coming months, the team will focus on making the technology plug-and-play, so people who are not proficient coders can easily deploy it in their online store and accept bitcoin.

“We want to launch a platform for bitcoin smart contracts, so that anyone who wants to sell homes online or do [over-the-counter] trades could use it,” Keidun said, adding that it might be a multi-sig with more than three signatures and it can be used for multiple use cases.

Aside from bitcoin-to-fiat trades, Hodl Hodl’s multi-sig escrow is used in a peer-to-peer predictions market when people bet on things like the price of bitcoin or publicly traded stock, sports results and other measurable outcomes. A real estate platform is also in the works, with a launch tentatively scheduled for 2020, Keidun said.

Image of Roman Snitkoon the stage of the Baltic Honeybadger conference by Anna Baydakova for CoinDesk

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