Binance Achieves $446M in Profits in 2018 Despite Bear Market — Feb 6, The Block Crypto
Binance CEO Changpeng ‘CZ’ Zhao expected the exchange’s net profit to be between $500 million and $1 billion in 2018, but based on the latest calculations, the firm was a bit shy of hitting the low end of CZ’s prediction, bringing in a total of $446 million. In total, Binance has brought in approximately $655 million in the six quarters of its short existence.
Report: Gold-Backed Cryptocurrency Launched by Iranian Banks — Feb 5, Coindesk
A gold-backed cryptocurrency has reportedly been launched in Iran. The token is called PayMon and was launched by four Iranian banks in partnership with Kuknos Company, a blockchain startup. The most likely aim is bypassing the economic sanctions enacted by US president Trump. In July 2018, it was reported that Iran is seeking a way to tokenize its national currency, the rial.
OUR OPINION: The state-issued digital currency is inevitable, as the majority of central banks are researching a way to remove the M0 monetary base (cash) from circulation. State-issued digital currency is one of the options, but it can be implemented in different ways, use different mechanisms, and be pegged to other fiat currencies or free float. It can use a general public blockchain, e.g. Ethereum, or it can be issued and operated on a private blockchain, e.g. J.P. Morgan’s Quorum. Furthermore, the digital asset can be a tokenized fiat currency or be backed by assets such as gold, silver, or bitcoin.
Sound money is money for which the issuance rate is well-known and predictable. History tells us that currency is either backed by precious metals or is completely based on trust (fiat); the government can always increase the supply, either by diluting its metal reserves (as in WWI) or simply by printing new notes (quantitative easing) and consistently keeping interest rates low (fractional reserve banking). Neither are true forms of sound money, as the issuer is still a centralized entity and gold-backing means nothing when a financing demand arises. It is certain that the current form of cash represents the only means of privacy in a fiat system and will most likely be gone if government-issued digital cash starts circulating.
Vitalik Says High-TPS Projects Are Centralized Trash — Feb 7, EMW
During the Blockchain Connect Conference in San Francisco, Vitalik Buterin, creator of Ethereum, expressed his negative opinion of projects claiming high transaction throughput. The only reason these projects can achieve this is their high level of centralization.
OUR OPINION: We couldn’t agree more. The whole point of the crypto space is to create decentralized networks for information and value exchange. Projects hiding behind Delegated Proof-of-Stake run a complete network on 21 or 27 nodes. In the case of NEO, the situation is even worse, as nobody can become a block producer without the consent of the Onchain company, and if just a few nodes stop operating simultaneously, the whole blockchain will stop processing blocks. They pretend to offer decentralized networks and camouflage the facts by talking about high transaction throughput.