Ripple (XRP) could be a neutral link between CBDCs

Ripple Labs released a whitepaper on the need for CBDCs in the global economy. The paper, titled “The Future of CBDCs,” talks about CBDCs and the issues they would face if released.

According to Ripple, CBDCs are essential to ensure the survival of the fiat system. However, the design and development of CBDCs would differ based on individual countries’ specifications. The difference makes it challenging to conduct cross-border transactions, it said.

The paper said, “It is likely that we will end up with a world of different CBDCs, making interoperability critical. Although most CBDCs focus on solving domestic problems, the global nature of trade and finance means that cross-border coordination is needed, baked into the original recipe of each CBDC.”

Ripple Labs suggested that central banks could solve this problem the same way the world had solved the Internet’s initial problems. The Internet became a tool for information exchange because there was universal agreement to build it using common standards.

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SpaceX has launched 60 more Starlink satellites into space

SpaceX is continuing to press ahead with the Starlink expansion. A total of 240 Internet satellites have now been launched into space within a month.

A Falcon 9 rocket from SpaceX has put 60 more Starlink satellites into low-Earth orbit. The rocket was launched from Cape Canaveral Cosmodrome in the US state of Florida. The booster of the two-part rocket had already been used on five previous flights.

SpaceX had already carried 60 Starlink satellites into space on March 4, 11, and 14, 2021, respectively. Within just three weeks, the private space company has thus put 240 satellites into orbit. The total number now amounts to 1,385 Starlink satellites. Accordingly, SpaceX will soon have reached the planned number of around 1,500 satellites for the first phase.

Later, however, several tens of thousands of Starlink satellites are deployed, which will then primarily supply regions of the earth that have so far been poorly connected with fast Internet. The satellite-based Internet is already being used in initial tests in some USA, Canada, and England regions. According to the manufacturer, the test phase will be extended to Germany, New Zealand, and other regions in the United Kingdom from the middle of the year.

SkyBridge Capital has filed for a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund

 

SkyBridge Capital has filed for a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund, or ETF, with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

SkyBridge Capital, a New York-based investment firm, filed for the right to launch a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund or ETF. The firm filed its application with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on March 19.

Skybridge Capital and its founder Anthony Scaramucci are very interested in Bitcoin, and the interest has increased even more after the successful launch of the Skybridge Capital Bitcoin Fund company. In late February, Scaramucci said that he expects a bitcoin price of 100K this year in an interview.

The documents say the First Trust SkyBridge Bitcoin ETF will seek to list its shares on the New York Stock Exchange Arca. A ticker symbol has not yet been announced for the fund.

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Pakistan builds two pilot crypto mining companies

A Pakistani province plans to establish two pilot hydropower-powered mining farms to further the adoption of cryptocurrencies.

According to a Reuters report, Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province plans to build two pilot hydropower-powered cryptocurrency mining farms. While the report does not specify that the farms would mine Bitcoin particularly, the ongoing bull market in the Bitcoin price, the growing institutional acceptance of the asset and the overall market dominance of BTC would all indicate that they would.

While the cost of construction remains unknown, a senior government official, Zia Ullah Bangash, who is a provincial government advisor on science and technology, said:

“We’ve been approached by people who want to invest, and we want them to come to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, make some money, and for the province to make money from it as well.”

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In 2021 the number of Bitcoin ATMs in the world grew by more than 20%

Since the beginning of the year, the number of installed Bitcoin ATMs has increased by 21.8%, according to the Coin ATM Radar service. As of this writing, the number of devices has reached 16,974, and on Jan. 1, 2021, there were 13,928.

New Bitcoin ATMs are now being installed at a rate of more than 36 units per day.

Also, in recent months, the ratio of running units to disconnected units has noticeably increased.

The vast majority of working devices are in the U.S. – 14,388, or 84.7% of the world’s total. Canada has 1,315 (7.7%) bitcoin-ATMs installed, which is more than in all of Europe.

Among device manufacturers, Genesis Coin and General Bytes dominate, with market shares of 38.6% and 27.5%, respectively.

The top 10 operators manage more than half of the bitcoin-ATMs in operation (60.3%). The top three – CoinFlip, Bitcoin Depot, and CoinCloud – have about 10% of the total.

Brazil to approve Bitcoin ETF

The Brazilian Securities Commission (CVM) approved Latin America’s first exchange-traded fund (ETF) based on the first cryptocurrency.

QR Asset Management’s ETF under ticker symbol QBTC11 will be listed on the B3 São Paulo Stock Exchange.

Evolve Funds Group’s bitcoin-ETF will follow the CME CF Bitcoin Reference Rate index’s dynamics from the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME Group).

The firm is part of the QR Capital Group. According to its website, QR Asset Management has R$423 million (~$77 million) in cryptocurrency assets under management and serves more than 10,000 clients in Latin America.

QR Capital said the fund is the fourth such regulated bitcoin-based investment product globally – three of them have been launched in Canada since earlier this year. B3 will be the second stock exchange to offer access to such an instrument.

The company believes that CVM’s decision could hasten approval to launch a bitcoin-ETF in the U.S. The Brazilian agency, like the SEC, is a member of the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO), which coordinates industry regulation.

The alliance also includes the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC), which has registered exchange-traded funds based on the first cryptocurrency by Purpose Investments, Evolve Funds Group, and a joint product from CI Global Asset Management (CI GAM) and Mike Novogratz’s Galaxy Digital.

Litecoin becomes privacy coin with new feature

At the beginning of the cryptocurrency era, the issue of anonymity was of drastic importance. In the meantime, there has been some sobriety in the market in this regard, as people were also obliged by all kinds of legislations to be more regulated. Now Litecoin wants to give anonymity in the crypto industry a new shine with its Mimblewimble update.

The developers have been working on the new technology for a year, which should give the LTC network a new protocol for its blockchain. Mimblewimble is all about user privacy, which could give the cryptocurrency the characteristic of a privacy coin.

But before that can happen, miners will have to wave the new development through. Interested parties can already view the first part of the code on the Github platform.

In a blog post, the Litecoin Foundation explains, “the completed code will then be integrated into the main Litecoin code base, ready for node operators and miners to signal support.” Before that happens, however, the code will be formally tested. If there are no major problems with this, the integration could take place within a few weeks. However, the entire process could take several months.

The community will then decide on the integration of the new privacy function. This will then be an optional option for users to disguise transactions. Technologically, this works via the use of external blocks of a sidechain.

However, the new anonymity will not be mandatory. This is likely because all kinds of supervisory authorities have now targeted existing privacy coins like Monero and Dash.

Grayscale is looking for ETF specialists

Crypto-asset management Grayscale has posted nine openings to develop its ETF business.

This indicates that the firm intends to launch exchange-traded funds for cryptocurrencies. Grayscale posted a link on its Twitter feed to the company’s job page, which states that the firm is looking for ETF specialists.

Grayscale has never previously announced its intention to launch an ETF for bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies and has not filed with the U.S.

Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Among other things, Grayscale is looking for an ETF creation and redemption specialist who will be responsible for managing pricing sources and has an understanding of “how to create a ‘basket’ of digital assets for inclusion in an ETF.”

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Institutional bitcoin holders will increase investments in cryptocurrencies

A survey by crypto fund Nickel Digital found that 40% of institutional investors and asset managers who own cryptocurrencies bought bitcoin to protect against inflation.

According to the survey, more than 85% of digital asset owners plan to increase their cryptocurrency investments over the next two years. 56% expect bitcoin to grow slightly, while 21% expect the asset to rise further in 2021.

The survey included 50 institutional investors and 50 asset managers totaling $110 billion from Germany, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States in January 2021.

Recall that according to a recent survey of U.S. residents, retail investors have more faith in Cardano than bitcoin. The altcoin was supported by 31.8% of respondents versus 22.2% for digital gold.

Earlier, a Goldman Sachs survey showed that 40% of the bank’s clients own cryptocurrency. Of those, more than 60% expect assets to grow over the next 12-24 months.

MicroStrategy buys another 328 BTC

Michael Saylor’s firm made a new purchase of BTC for USD 15 million.

MicroStrategy continues to accumulate BTC. The firm led by Michael Saylor made this Monday a new bitcoin purchase worth USD 15 million equivalent to 328 BTC. In this way, the company brings the total accumulated bitcoin to 90,859 BTC.

This new investment by the business intelligence company comes less than a week after the purchase of 19,452 BTC worth nearly USD 1.026 million, a significantly larger sum than the one made at the beginning of March.

The company’s CEO, Michael Saylor, announced the news on his Twitter account.

Five days ago, the CEO explained that his company “remains focused on two corporate strategies: growing the business analytics software business, and acquiring and accumulating bitcoin”. This new investment confirms the path MicroStrategy is taking.

Regarding the latest purchase, made at an average price of USD 45,710 per BTC, the company officially started its “belief that bitcoin, as the world’s most widely adopted cryptocurrency, can serve as a reliable store of value.”

To date, MicroStrategy has accumulated 90,859 BTC with an average purchase price of USD 24,063. That amount of BTC, today is worth around USD 4.38 billion. Considering that MicroStrategy invested approximately USD 2.186 billion, the company already has a profit of USD 2 billion.