Cryptocurrency analyst, Saxo Bank
Summary: This week the entire crypto market cap fell by 5.5%, bringing the market cap to just above USD 260 bn. Ethereum and Bitcoin fell by 9% and 3.5% respectively. The price is coming down after being rejected from the USD 11k level. On the tech side, long-time developer Peter Wuille announced a new smart contract language for Bitcoin. This new language should help increasing Bitcoin's functionality to the level of its closest rival, Ethereum.
- Bakkt to launch finally
The much-anticipated futures exchange Bakkt has just announced that it received all regulatory approvals needed to start offering its physically-settled bitcoin futures. The launch date is set for the 23rd of September. Upon launch, the market is expecting the exchange to drive up the direct demand for ‘physical’ bitcoins, possibly reducing available supply on the spot markets. Its rival CME offers cash-settled futures which do not require physical bitcoins to transact. Bakkt with its product could become the most liquid exchange catering to traders and investors who prefer more regulated venues for ‘physical’ bitcoin. Now the market is waiting for details of the contracts, such as the margin requirements and trade sizes.
- Binance to compete with Libra
Binance, one of the world’s leading crypto exchanges, announced a global initiative to create local stablecoins in all markets in which it operates. This initiative will compete with Facebook’s Libra ambition. Both firms are seeking to develop a next-generation payment infrastructure independent of any firm to help millions access essential financial services at a relatively low cost. It is doubtful any will succeed considering the regulatory environment. Facebook is already under anti-trust scrutiny for its digital asset plans.
- First crypto exchange to IPO
A Gibraltar-based crypto exchange is seeking to raise about USD 130 mn in an IPO registered with the SEC. This approval of the SEC will allow the firm to sell its tokens to both retail and accredited investors in a first-ever regulated initial public coin offering. This token will be classified as a security with no equity attached but with rights to profits and repayment before shareholders in the event of a liquidation. Users can pay with exchange fees using the token as well. If successful, this will be the first-ever launch of regulated security that is publicly traded on a public blockchain. However, the firm still needs approval from key agencies to launch trading.