Wall Street’s FOMO: Grayscale Gobbling Up 21% of Newly Mined BTC—May 29, Bitcoinist
According to a recent tweet by Bitcoin analyst Rhythm, Grayscale bought more than 11,000 BTC in April 2019. With 54,000 BTC being mined per month, the largest cryptocurrency asset manager is buying up about 21 percent of the monthly bitcoin supply. This suggests an increasing demand for crypto assets from Wall Street.
First Tezos Amendment Protocol Activates Network Upgrade-May 30 Coindesk
After three months of on-chain voting, the first Tezos Amendment Protocol process has been completed, and two backwards-incompatible changes have been automatically activated. The baking roll was reduced from 10K to 8K XTZ, and the block computation limit was increased. This is the first network hard fork executed via such a process, with more than 80% of stakeholders casting their vote.
OUR OPINION: The successful activation could be important not just for Tezos, but for the governance of public blockchains in general, which are currently governed by informal DAOs. This was the first amendment process where the activity of stakeholders was more significant than the network upgrades themselves and was a social and technological experiment. In this upgrade, no changes were contentious, and the real test of this governance approach will be tested when the majority of stakeholders split into two or more camps regarding the best approach for further progressing the network, as Bitcoin experienced, resulting in a network and community split.
JP Morgan Blitzing Towards Privacy for Its Ethereum Fork, Quorum—May 31, Blockonomi
Banking giant JP Morgan is continuing to build out the privacy functionalities of its permissioned Ethereum fork, Quorum. The bank’s blockchain developers have built out a modified version of Zether, a zero-knowledge proof (ZKP) system that allows users to conceal transaction amounts on Ethereum or similar account-based smart contract blockchains, e.g. Stellar. Morgan’s rendition, “Anonymous Zether,” goes one step further, allowing users to obfuscate their identities in addition to the transacted sums.
Yahoo! Japan to Enter the Crypto Trading Fray with Upcoming Taotao Launch—May 28, CCN
Yahoo! Japan is launching its FSA-licensed cryptocurrency trading platform Taotao on May 30. It is rumored that the new exchange will largely focus on BTC and ETH spot trading, and options trading on BTC, ETH, BTC, LTC, and XRP are expected. They have also announced that these are only the first offerings and additional crypto assets might be listed later.
OUR OPINION: This is a positive development, as it means more traditional financial firms are entering the crypto exchange business, improving ease of access for institutional investors and risk-averse individuals and increasing the legitimacy of the asset class. Such services, especially outside the US and licensed by a relevant financial authority, are much needed for the possible crypto ETF in the US. One of the main reasons the SEC has not approved a crypto ETF yet is the limited ability of the SEC to prevent spot price manipulation. Cryptocurrencies are global assets not limited to a single juridistriction, meaning financial authorities need to cooperate in order to surveil spot markets and prevent illicit activity. Licensed exchanges from reputable companies in countries where crypto trading activity is high are a positive sign for the convergence of cryptocurrency and traditional financial companies.
DIGITAL ASSETS ON THE MOVE