Inside Cryptocurrency - August 16th, 2019

Inside Cryptocurrency (Aug 16th, 2019)

Scam not behind Bitcoin drop / Wright request denied / Coinbase Custody buys Xapo service

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Happy Friday everyone!

Just your friendly Inside Bitcoin newsletter writer here : )

I'm compiling a Top 100 Twitter list focusing on people within the crypto space, which I think you'll find interesting. You can find it here.

Some people you may already follow, others you may not, but hopefully it'll open you up to new faces that you'll consider following. Let me know if I've missed anyone that you think should be included in the list as well.

Have a great weekend!

Market Watch: Bitcoin is holding on to $10,000 during late morning trading Friday. Will it be able to rise over the weekend or succumb to lower figures?

  • Bitcoin: $10,096 (⬆️ 0.54%) // $180.7 billion market cap.
  • Ethereum: $183 (⬇️ 0.75%) // $19.6 billion market cap.
  • XRP: $0.261 (⬇️ 0.93%) // $11.2 billion market cap.
  • Bitcoin Cash: $308 (⬆️ 0.21%) // $5.5 billion market cap.
  • Top 100 Winner: Bytecoin: $0.0006 (⬆️ 13.69%) // $112 million market cap.
  • Top 100 Loser: ICON: $0.207 (⬇️ 11.83%) // $101 million market cap.

Prices are as of 11:05 a.m. EDT.

1. A $3 billion Chinese Ponzi scheme has been cited as the reason behind a drop in Bitcoin's price from earlier this week; however, according to one researcher, a closer look suggests this may not be the case. Several crypto publications have put the apparent drop off of Bitcoin down to the fraudulent investment scheme known as PlusToken, with Dovey Wan, founding partner of blockchain-based investment company Primitive Ventures, suggesting that those involved in the scam may be selling off thousands of Bitcoin in small amounts. Yet, according to researcher TokenAnalyst, a review shows that only a few number of addresses linked to PlusToken had any significant Bitcoin balances and had moved them recently. The PlusToken scam is reported to have generated around 70,000 Bitcoin worth around $700 million and 800,000 Ether coins. –BLOOMBERG

2. Would-be Bitcoin creator Craig Wright has had a request denied to dismiss an ongoing lawsuit against him filed by the estate of his late business partner David Kleiman. U.S. District Judge Beth Bloom made the decision based on Wright's past testimony and his credibility before the court. In his argument to dismiss the case, Wright stated that the federal court did not have subject matter jurisdiction over the case. Bloom countered by saying that it did, in fact, have subject matter jurisdiction over civil actions, particularly when the amount in question exceeded $75,000 and the lawsuit was between people from different states. Just yesterday, it was reported that Jonathan Warren, the developer of peer-to-peer messenger Bitmessage, had testified against Wright, stating that some documents in the Kleiman v. Wright lawsuit were faked. –COIN DESK

3. Follow Friday: Blake Rizzo

Former commercial litigation attorney Blake Rizzo found himself drawn into the crypto space after he was approached by crypto enthusiast Jason Berlin with the Tour de Crypto idea. In 2018, Berlin along with fellow rider Jovel Velasquez set off on a cross-country cycling trip across the U.S. with the aiming of raising as much of the $1 million target for the Houston Area Women’s Center (HAWC).

Intrigued by the idea, Rizzo joined the guys becoming the group's head of charity affairs. Since the tour, which the team are hoping to replicate in other countries, Rizzo has also set up his law firm, Blake Rizzo Law, focusing on the world of the blockchain. As a blockchain and digital security attorney, Rizzo's office specifically looks at cryptocurrencies, Security Token Offerings (STOs), and the tokenization of assets.

He's also an executive director of the Houston Blockchain Alliance, legal advisor to the Litecoin Foundation, and an attorney and charity advisor for Rapids, a decentralized platform that connects social media with the blockchain.

Rizzo has just under 2,700 followers on Twitter and often retweets posts that relate to things he's involved in such as the Houston Blockchain Alliance or the World Crypto Conference.

4. Coinbase Custody has purchased the custody business of crypto wallet provider Xapo for a cool $55 million. According to a person familiar with the deal, the acquisition means that Coinbase now has more than $7 billion in crypto assets under management. The majority of Xapo's largest clients have agreed to transfer their assets to the crypto exchange, giving Coinbase control of over 514,000 Bitcoins. A blog post from the company states that it is now the world's largest crypto custodian. Coinbase succeeded in purchasing Xapo after outbidding investment firm Fidelity Investments. The announcement of Coinbase's purchase follows on from yesterday's news that British bank Barclays is no longer in partnership with Coinbase. –FORTUNE

5. The Australian Tax Office (ATO) has begun writing letters to 18,500 Self Managed Super Funds (SMSFs) warning that it's illegal to invest 90 percent of their retirement fund in one asset class such as crypto. According to an ATO spokesperson, there have been two cases of SMSFs losing a large amount of their retirement savings by investing in crypto. The letters from the office remind investors that they have a "duty" to follow legal requirements and to avoid risky investments. A failure to do so could result in fines of up to AU$4,200. –MICKY

6. Brian Armstrong, CEO of Coinbase, has said that the platform is seeing between $200-$400 million a week in new crypto deposits coming from institutional customers. Taking to Twitter, Armstrong said that 12 months ago it would have been an open question as to whether institutions were going to embrace crypto. He went on to say that "it's safe to say we now know the answer." His remarks followed on from the announcement that Coinbase Custody had confirmed its acquisition of Xapo. –COINTELEGRAPH

7. Changpeng Zhao, CEO of Malta-based crypto exchange Binance, has indicated that the platform will launch its U.S. regulated crypto-to-fiat platform within the next two months. Back in June, it was reported that Binance would temporarily stop serving U.S. traders ahead of its Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) approved exchange launch. To achieve this, Binance is teaming up with a company known as BAM Trading Services. –CHEDDAR

8. San Francisco-based cryptocurrency exchange Poloniex has said that it will be removing 23 trading pairs today due to low trading. The platform made the announcement on Twitter. Those that are deemed for removal include Litecoin/Monero, Dash/Monero, Zcash/Monero, Maid/Monero, NXT/Monero, Bytecoin/Monero, Lisk/Ethereum, Golem/Ethereum, Mana/Ethereum, Qtum/Ethereum, Steem/Ethereum, OmiseGo/Ethereum, Loom/Ethereum, Status/Ethereum, Civic/Ethereum, Kyber Network/ Ethereum, Gas/Ethereum, Bancor/Ethereum, Loom/Tether, Status/Tether, Kyber Network/Tether, Bancor/Tether, and Foam/USD Coin. Poloniex added that each coin will continue to be "independently tradable." –TWITTER

9. Tech journalist Monty Munford has revealed to the BBC how he lost over $30,000 worth of cryptocurrency after failing to take the proper steps of securing his private key. During the 2017 crypto bull run, Munford bought Bitcoin and Ether, which he then stored on myetherwallet. However, instead of writing down his private key and storing it securely among his other financial documents, he decided to copy and paste it into a draft email. It was only when he decided to take his money out when the market starting dropping at the beginning of 2018, that he found hackers had stolen his entire crypto pot. –BBC

10. Chipmaker Nvidia has posted a 17 percent growth in revenue over the last quarter. It has risen from $2.22 billion to $2.58 billion. The revenue boost follows after the company experienced a surge in profits to $3.12 billion last year as a result of increasing demand from crypto miners for its GPU chips. However, after industry prices dropped during the bear market, demand dried up, which saw the company posting disappointing results in November. According to Collette Kress, Nvidia’s chief financial officer, sales have finally "normalized." –THE NEXT WEB

This newsletter was written and curated by Rebecca Campbell. She has been writing and reporting on various industries for the past 10 years, more specifically tech in the last three. Connect with her on Twitter.

Editor: David Stegon (senior editor at Inside, whose reporting experience includes cryptocurrency and technology).

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