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Consensus is Happening But Here are a Few Other Leading Blockchain Conferences Taking Place

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Consensus is Happening But Here are a Few Other Leading Blockchain Conferences Taking Place

Consensus is Happening But Here are a Few Other Leading Blockchain Conferences Taking Place

Consensus has taken over the limelight thanks to the many institutions and businesses that have announced that they will officially be shifting into the blockchain. However, the conference in NYC, which has for a while been the industry’s biggest is not the only event that you should mark on your calendar. The reality is that the crypto community never sleeps.

Just like binging on new series and movies on Netflix, there is always something new happening in the community, and new people to connect with, in the crypto verse. The following are some of the top conferences to look out for after the NYC conference.

Top Conferences To Look Forward To

Malta Blockchain and AI Summit, Malta, 23-24 May

The last event held in Malta last year saw the attendee numbers rival those of the Consensus convention. It was a summit that was attended by more than 8,500 industry shakers and movers. You should note that Malta is home to cryptocurrencies such as OKEx and Binance.

This year’s summit has promised to deliver more progress than last year’s convention. It will deliver a bill that was enacted by the local government, which gives DAO a legal personality. Attendees will also be able to catch speeches from industry leaders like Tim Draper and Roger Ver.

UNCHAIN Bitcoin and Blockchain Convention, Berlin, June 14-15

UNCHAIN is probably one of the least hyped blockchain events happening this year. The event has traditionally limited the number of attendees to only five hundred. It does, however, make up for this with quality.

The reason why UNCHAIN limits the total number of attendees is to ensure that the conversations taking place are meaningful. Attendees also get to network with investors and crypto entrepreneurs on the sidelines.

Blockchain Expo, Amsterdam, 19-20 June

If you will be attending the UNCHAIN event, why not give yourself a few more days in Europe? From Berlin, you can easily head over to the Netherlands to enjoy world-class brews, networking, and great conversation on everything crypto related.

Unlike UNCHAIN, Blockchain Expo is seeking to attract as many as ten thousand attendees. Some of the sponsors include Ethereum Alliance, the Enterprise, and IBM.

Barcelona Trading Conference, Barcelona, July 10-11

From the name, you can deduce that this particular conference is aimed at discussing everything related to trading. Participants can expect to engage in stimulating conversation and get great advice and insight from thought leaders. There will also be an opportunity to network and take photos with the event participants.

Confirmed speakers include top executives from major exchanges such as Bitfinex, Nash, Binance, Bitstamp, and Kraken. The topics to be discussed will include security tokens and stable coins. The leaders are also expected to tackle issues touching on liquidity and decentralized exchanges.

World Cryptocurrency Con, Las Vegas, Oct 29-31

If you would prefer to attend a smaller and more intimate event, then World Crypto Con to be held in Las Vegas is the ideal event for you.

It is projected that there will be around five thousand attendees, speakers, and sponsors. Walmart, SAP, Binance, RavenCoin, and BAT will also be in attendance.

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Grayscale Widens Net for Ethereum Investors with Trust’s FINRA Approval

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By CCN: Digital asset investment firm Grayscale Investments, which boasts $1.2 billion in AUM, has received regulatory approval for another cryptocurrency product to be traded in the secondary market. FINRA, which is a self-regulatory organization, has given its stamp of approval to the Grayscale Ethereum Trust for the over-the-counter (OTC) markets under the trading symbol ETHE.

While this investment vehicle launched back in 2017 during the last bull run, it was limited to institutional and accredited investors in private transactions requiring a minimum investment of a whopping $25,000. The FINRA approval creates the opportunity for individual investors to now capture the opportunity as well.  Grayscale Managing Director Michael Sonnenshein told Bloomberg:

“The secondary market really opens up the opportunity for any and all investors.”

FINRA Approval Expands the Net for Retail Investor Adoption

Rayhaneh Sharif-Askary, Grayscale’s Head of Sales and Business Development, told CCN:

“We are very excited about receiving FINRA approval for Grayscale Ethereum Trust. As the largest digital currency asset manager, Grayscale continues to bring new opportunities for investors to gain exposure to digital currencies.”

It’s a boon for an industry that is increasingly gaining the right kind of attention from regulators that has the potential to unlock sidelined capital into the space. Not only that, but it’s also a win for Ethereum, the second-biggest cryptocurrency by market cap. It means that retail investors can now gain exposure to ETH in their retirement and brokerage accounts, as Bloomberg points out. It’s a sign that cryptocurrencies are increasingly making their way into the mainstream even if it’s happening at a snail’s pace.

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ETHE Gets Its Value from the Ethereum Price

The value of the Grayscale Ethereum Trust is based on the Ethereum price, the latter of which has seen its value expand by some 80% year-to-date. It will give investors the opportunity to capture some of the gains that ETH has been achieving in 2019 “without the challenges of buying, storing, and safekeeping Ethereum,” according to the announcement, which goes on to state:

“As of April 30, 2019, each Share of ETHE represents ownership of 0.09662399 Ethereum. “

Ethereum price chart

Ethereum’s value has expanded by more than 75% year-to-date. | Source: CoinMarketCap

In addition to the Ethereum trust, Grayscale’s bitcoin and Ethereum Classic trust products are also open to institutional and retail investors. Investors can expect to begin buying and selling ETHE via their “investment accounts in the same manner as they would other unregistered OTC securities” in approximately two weeks.

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Robinhood Zero-Fee Trading App Officially Launches in New York

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American stock brokerage Robinhood Crypto has officially launched its zero-fee crypto trading app in New York, the company announced in a blog post on May 23.

Following the acquisition of a BitLicense by the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) in January 2019, Robinhood now allows New York citizens to trade in seven major cryptos with no commission fee using its Robinhood Crypto platform.

From now, the Robinhood Crypto service is available in 39 states in the United States, including California, Washington and Florida, among others.

The Robinhood trading app allows for the trading of bitcoin (BTC), ethereum (ETH), bitcoin cash (BCH), litecoin (LTC), bitcoin SV (BSV), ethereum classic (ETC) and dogecoin (DOGE). Robinhood users can also track price alterations and updates for those cryptos and 10 additional coins, the blog post notes.

Earlier in April, Robinhood applied for a bank charter with regulators in the U.S. in order to offer traditional banking products and services.

Previously, the DFS granted a BitLicense to a institutional-grade crypto trading platform Tagomi Trading, enabling the company to offer trade routing and order execution services for non-security cryptos including bitcoin, ethereum, litecoin and bitcoin cash.

Recently, on April 18, Bloomberg reported that the ICE was considering acquiring a New York BitLicense to launch bitcoin futures, citing anonymous sources familiar with the matter.

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Here’s Why Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin is undervalued at Spot Rates

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Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin are still incredibly undervalued as present valuations stand. This is on account of the potential of these coins and planned upgrades to make them better according to a crypto trader and enthusiast.

Yes, Bitcoin may have rallied back to possible bull territory. However, it is still fair to say that the coin sits below its true and projected position as a currency and security. Bitcoin came about as an alternative currency with decentralization as a catch for investors and enthusiasts alike.

Bitcoin is resilient and has shrugged off legitimacy questions from naysayers time and time again. The price volatility is just a consequence of intense speculation and uncertainty common with new inventions. Nonetheless, Bitcoin’s transcendent ability to transform the financial world remains effectively eliminating borders and regulatory overreach.

Bitcoin as Digital Gold

Bitcoin is a finite currency. Notably, every fiat currency will return to its inherent value of zero at times of hyperinflation. This is clear from the Venezuelan Bolivar which is worth less than its printing paper at the moment. In this light Bitcoin can become an alternative to collapsed currencies especially in failed states.

It’s become a trusted alternative when fiat money’s value is corrupted by politics”

-John McGinnis and Kyle Roche of Wall Street Journal.

The limited availability means Bitcoin can efficiently store value at times of financial crises. This is eerily similar to gold which is also a great commodity to store value that rises in value in hard times for fiat. This has led to some proponents calling Bitcoin digital Gold and rightfully so. As such, the value of $8,000 is momentary as the developed world economy is still doing well.

Ethereum And Litecoin As Alternatives

Ethereum is a great alternative for Bitcoin. That said, the price of $270 is still on the low because of the incredible potential given the possibilities of Smart contracts. More significant is the upcoming Serenity or Ethereum 2.0 upgrade. This upgrade will significantly improve the coin by incorporating technical improvements that improve scalability and performance. At the premier Ethereum Supermeetup, hosted at Token2049, Vitalik Buterin explained the update as follows;

“(It is) a way to bring technical improvements, like PoS and sharding, together to improve the Virtual Machine, Merkle Trees, the efficiency of the protocol, and a whole bunch of small technical things that you have never heard of.”

Ethereum is in this regard still on the downside price-wise. The upgrades are necessary and timely to keep the protocol efficient.

Litecoin, on the other hand, is essentially a better version of Bitcoin. This is because the coin, while having essentially the same possibilities as Bitcoin, is more adaptable to change such as the introduction of smart contracts.

Charlie Lee, a former Google employee, who founded Litecoin, has also given financial support to the Lightning Network.  There are also possibilities of incorporating Mimble Wimble that will inherently scale the network while introducing better security and privacy for the end user. When we add the halving mix in the equation, investors and traders are convinced that we are in the early stages of a mega bull run that will propel asset prices, valuing them fairly.

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Smart contract platform Fantom chooses Binance Chain for interoperability

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Binance Chain, the blockchain from cryptocurrency exchange company Binance, and DAG-based smart contract platform, Fantom, announced today they will be working together to create a multi-asset and cross chain ecosystem.

The Fantom team said it will be supporting a multitude of tokens including the ERC-20 standard, native Fantom token (FTM) standard, along with the BEP-2 token standard on Binance Chain.

“Our reason for choosing Binance Chain as our interoperability partner over any other blockchain is simple, we’re seeing an increasing trend of great projects moving towards Binance Chain, and we want to contribute to the Binance Chain ecosystem so that all these great projects may garner added value from our contributions. Binance and Binance Chain are in a rare position of having the strongest centralized exchange and liquidity on one end, and a very cohesive decentralized ecosystem on the other end, and we believe that there is no better partner for Fantom in its push for greater interoperability within the industry.”

The Fantom Foundation

The collaboration will offer Fantom users a chance to transact and trade FTM while being in custody of their own tokens on Binance DEX.

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Robinhood Opens Trading for 7 Cryptocurrencies in New York

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Robinhood, the popular stock and crypto investing app, has officially launched bitcoin, ethereum, and other cryptocurrency trading in New York.

Silicon Valley-based Robinhood received a BitLicense from the New York Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) in January 2019 and on Thursday opened access to crypto trading in the Empire State.

From the press release:

Currently, you can invest in seven cryptocurrencies on Robinhood Crypto: Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Bitcoin SV, Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, Litecoin, and Dogecoin. You can also track price movements and news for those and 10 additional cryptocurrencies.

New York is unique and problematic for crypto traders because all purveyors must apply for a BitLicense, most notably for companies that are “storing, holding, or maintaining custody or control of virtual currency on behalf of others,” according to NYDFS.

Many crypto startups have avoided the requirements entirely by becoming BitLicense refugees and refusing to do business in the state.

“Here we are two miles from the Statue of Liberty and you cannot sell CryptoKitties in the state without that license. That’s the absurdity of what’s happened here,” ShapeShift CEO Erik Voorhees complained in 2018 when asked about the controversial license at CoinDesk’s Consensus conference in New York.

Image courtesy of Robinhood

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