Another of the world’s largest investment banks is quietly building a product that will allow its clients to trade bitcoin, at least indirectly.
Citing a person familiar with the matter, Bloomberg reports that Morgan Stanley, the sixth-largest bank in the U.S. by assets, is creating a proprietary derivatives product that will give traders “synthetic exposure” to the price of bitcoin.
From the report:
“The U.S. bank will deal in contracts that give investors synthetic exposure to the performance of Bitcoin, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. …
Hong Kong-based jewelry retailer Chow Tai Fook Jewellery Group will start to use a blockchain platform to track diamonds, the South China Morning Post reported September 12.
Chow Tai Fook has reportedly put some of its diamonds on a blockchain platform developed by blockchain startup Everledger and secured by the IBM Blockchain Platform. This will reportedly enable the retailer’s customers to ascertain the origin and authenticity of stones sold in its T Mark-branded stores, using a T Mark app.
The T Mark was an initiative started by the company in August of last year, which assigns a series of serial numbers to certain stones so that their provenance and transaction history can be more easily authenticated. …
A handful of Aussie blockchain startups are in Shanghai this week, part of a government-backed trade mission that aims to strengthen ties between the two nations in the industry.
The Australian Trade and Investment Commission (Austrade), the country’s trade agency, and the Australian Digital Commerce Association are jointly organizing a delegation of domestic blockchain startups currently visiting some of China’s biggest fintech companies this week, the Australian Financial Review reports.
On Monday, the delegation visited the Shanghai headquarters of Ant Financial, the $150 billion operator of the world’s single largest mobile payment platform Alipay, with an estimated 520 million users.
As recently as June, Ant Financial raised a record $14 billion in Series C funding with funds earmarked for blockchain development. Later that month, the Alibaba-owned payments giant’s Hong Kong arm launched a near real-time remittance service to the Philippines using blockchain technology. …
French soccer giant Paris Saint-Germain football club (PSG) will launch its own cryptocurrency with a token offering that aims to incentivize its supporters over a blockchain.
The development sees a new partnership between top French Ligue 1 club, Paris Saint Germain (PSG) and blockchain company Socios.com which is based in Malta. The partnership is based on the ‘socios’ concept that already exists between football fans of Real Madrid and Barcelona.
PSG plays in the highest tier of France’s soccer league and has been hailed as the country’s “most popular” team. The club is owned and bankrolled by a Qatar state investment firm and holds the record for the highest transfer fee paid with the $263 million purchase of Brazilian football star Neymar from Barcelona in 2017. …
Following a landmark deal with the NFL announced in August, live streaming platform SportsCastr has announced a parnership with the Women’s National Basketball Players Association (WNBPA) to power live, interactive video content for fans.
WNBA Players Association Inks Deal with ICO
Through a partnership with REP Worldwide, the WNBPA’s group licensing and player-marketing representation agency, SportsCastr will give basketball fans access to premium content from the most elite women’s professional basketball players in the world using SportsCastr’s FanChain token.
CCN recently reported that SportsCastr signed a similar deal with the NFL Players Association, giving fans the ability to become color commentators and access to exclusive content and player insights. …
Industry startup Crypto.com, formerly ‘Monaco’ before a rebrand, has revealed its plan to issue 100,000 Visa-powered cryptocurrency debit cards in Hong Kong and Singapore.
The Hong Kong startup confirmed that it would pit its debit cards against the insecure revolving credit practiced by mainstream credit card issuers, as reported by the South China Morning Post. Kris Marszalek, Crypto.com’s founder and chief executive officer, referred the line of credit practice as “unethical,” which unjustifiably allows banks to make profits from undeserving people.
“These people should not be given a credit card in the first place,” said Marszalek.
Revolving Credit v/s Crypto-Backed Lending
The availability of credit when needed is known to be one of the main advantages of Revolving Credit. However, it also influences credit card users to spend more than they afford. Non-payments — or even late payments — can trap borrowers into the maze of compound interests. Also, Revolving Credit allows banks to keep loan rates unhinged, and rights to change credit limits and interest rates at will. …
Computing giant IBM has launched a blockchain-based financial solution that it says has the potential to completely upend the existing status quo in global payments and remittances.
The new solution called ‘IBM Blockchain World Wire‘ combines the Stellar blockchain with digital assets to make instant money transfers possible of a guaranteed value possible.
In July, CCN reported that IBM backed a dollar-pegged stablecoin issued by Stronghold on the Stellar network. In the same month, IBM announced that it was involved in an environmentally friendly crypto project also built on Stellar.
The new Stellar-based platform describes itself as a “financial rail that can simultaneously clear and settle cross-border payments in near real-time.” According to IBM, World Wire integrates readily with any existing payment system and it supports payments of any size, to any destination, in any asset type within a high-security environment. …
BAT Over Bitcoin
As CCN reported last month, Brave Browser has demonstrating a rapid rate of growth throughout 2018, achieving 10 million downloads on the Google Play Store.
Since its debut in 2016, Brave has consistently partnered with publications and publishers such as YouTube and Twitch streamers to reward content creators with payments made through cryptocurrency.
When Brave Browser initially launched and for the subsequent three quarters, Brave Browser utilized Bitcoin, the most dominant cryptocurrency in the global market, as the main cryptocurrency of the browser. …
Google BigQuery, Google Cloud’s Petabyte-scale data warehousing solution, has made the Ethereum dataset available to enable the exploration of smart contract analytics, the company announced on a blog.
BigQuery has made it possible to explore all of Ethereum’s historical data. Ethereum’s ETL project on GitHub includes all source code that can be extracted from the blockchain and entered into BigQuery. Google is seeking new contributors and blockchains.
Making Blockchain Data Accessible
The purpose of making the Ethereum blockchain data accessible on Google Cloud is to make all data stored on the blockchain easily accessible. While Ethereum’s software contains APIs for functions that can be accessed randomly, such as checking wallet balances, the API endpoints are not easily accessible for all data stored on the blockchain. …
China’s ongoing drive to dominate the emerging global blockchain technology sector has been underlined by news that Alibaba Group Holding alone filed more than 10 percent of all blockchain patents worldwide in 2017.
Intellectual Property Rights Arms Race
Research by Thomson Reuters shows that 56 percent of all 406 blockchain patents issued around the world in 2017 came from China, with the United States a distant second with 22 percent. …