Weekly Recap August 1st – August 7th, 2020 Welcome to our weekly recap for August. Overview  Crypto News Crypto Derivatives Set New Records, ETH Futures Set All-Time Highs, CME Open Interest Spikes Digital currency derivatives have been on fire during the last two weeks as Ethereum futures volumes touched an all-time high on Sunday. The popular derivatives trading platform Deribit saw 1.9 million ETH contracts traded and CME Group is now the third-largest exchange in terms of bitcoin futures open interest. US Congressmen Want IRS to Balance Taxation and Innovation in the Cryptocurrency Space The four congressmen are Bill Foster (D) of Illinois, Darren Soto (D) of Florida, Tom Emmer (R) of Minnesota, and David Schweikert (R) of Arizona. In their letter addressed to IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig, the quartet expressed concern that the “taxation of staking rewards as income may overstate taxpayers’ actual gains from participating in this new technology.” Ethereum Classic Suffers Second 51% Attack in a Week Ethereum Classic has suffered its second 51% attack in aContinue reading »

Synthetix Introduction Synthetix is an Ethereum-based decentralized synthetic asset issuance protocol. The platform allows for the creation of synthetic assets that track the value of its real-world equivalent within its chain. These synthetic assets, or Synths, can be minted through the use of the Synthetix Network Token (SNX) and cover a large range of derivatives including fiat currencies, commodities, and cryptocurrencies such as BTC, MKR, and LINK. The most popular being the platform’s native stable-coin, sUSD, which acts as an onramp to trade for other Synth assets. Stocks, indices, and other derivative support are planned for the future. Source: https://twitter.com/synthetix_io Synths are minted relative to the value of locked SNX at a collateralization ratio. Once minted, it is a tradeable ERC20 token that can be used for long-term investing, trading, or remittances. Stakers of SNX also earn a percentage of fees generated on Synthetix’s non-custodial DEX. The Synths copy the price of an asset but don’t misunderstand that it is the same as holding the asset itself. For example, aContinue reading »

Weekly Recap July 24th – July 31st, 2020 Welcome to our weekly recap for July. Overview  Crypto News Hackers Transfer $28 Million Worth of Bitcoin from 2016 Bitfinex Breach The Bank of England’s upcoming settlement service is being designed to support a possible central bank digital currency (CBDC). The new settlements system is being designed that the bank could incorporate a facility for digital currency transactions, should it decide to support a CBDC. Americans to Buy Bitcoin With Their Second Stimulus Checks After Initial Investment Turned in 50% Profit Instead of buying groceries or paying rent, many Americans opted to invest in the top cryptocurrency when they received their first stimulus checks in April. And the gamble paid off. Those that converted the free money to bitcoin have raked in up to 54% in profit in three months. Now, history may be about to repeat itself. US suffers worst economic decline on record in second quarter as GDP contracts by 32.9% The United States has suffered its worst economic declineContinue reading »

Compound Introduction The compound is a decentralized finance protocol, the second-largest in the current DeFi industry. Similar to MakerDAO, Compound is also a decentralized finance protocol. However, it is more flexible than Maker. The platform supports BAT, DAI, SAI, ETH, REP, USDC, WBTC, and ZRX, compared to Maker supporting only ETH, BAT, and USDC. Depending on the quality of assets, users can apply for loans up to 50-75% of their collateral. With the rise of Maker’s stability fees, Compound has been proving to be a very viable alternative to its competitors. During June 15, the platform’s governance token, COMP, began distribution and garnered additional interests for the project. Users could earn COMP for all cryptocurrencies lent, and borrowed on the app. Demands for the token was high due to limited liquid supply in the market, resulting in a large growth in project capital. Compound even briefly overtook Maker as the protocol with the most value locked during this period. Fundamentals Compound’s token, COMP, is currently valued at $132.66, with aContinue reading »

MakerDAO Introduction MakerDAO is a credit platform supported by Dai, a stable coin cryptocurrency whose value is pegged to USD. As a credit market, Maker allows users to collateralize cryptocurrencies and apply for Dai loans. Holders of the MKR token can participate in Maker’s governance system by votes. The platform itself was a major component for the growth of the DeFi industry in 2019, providing systemically important protocols that supported a majority of the DeFi ecosystem. As a result, MakerDAO has become the sector’s largest protocol, recently surpassing $1 billion in collateral value. However, it is noted that this increase in value is driven by ETH’s rising value, not by additional supply being deposited into the protocol. A majority of activities on the platform consists of users taking leveraged long positions on ETH. This is accomplished by borrowing Dai against ETH and using that Dai to acquire more ETH. Users can borrow Dai up to 66% of their collateral value, with a 150% collateralization ratio. Vaults of users that fallContinue reading »

Decentralized Finance (DeFi) Introduction: Since 2017, the cryptocurrency market has been evolving and building upon itself. From ICOs, to DAOs, and now DeFi. DeFi, short for Decentralized Finance, utilizes open-source software and decentralized networks to apply trustless and transparent protocols to traditional financial products, automating them without unnecessary intermediaries. This would allow for anyone with internet access global, open alternatives to every financial service available today, from savings, loans, trading, insurance, and etc. As of now, DeFi is one of the fastest-growing sectors in crypto; the growth of which is measured with a new metric, “ETH locked in DeFi”. Source: (https://defipulse.com/) Announcement: Starting next week, SynQ will be posting daily blogs, highlighting one particular DeFi project per day, summarizing it’s fundamentals and past 7d performance. Weekly highlights will now go live on Fridays, and will also include the DeFi projects of the week.

June Weekly Recap 5 June 23th – June 30nd, 2020 Welcome to our 5th weekly recap for June. Overview      Crypto News Australians Can Now Pay for Bitcoin at the Post Office Australians can now pay for Bitcoin (BTC) at national post offices, thanks to a new collaboration with local cryptocurrency exchange, Bitcoin.com.au. Customers will now be able to pay for BTC at more than 3,500 Australian Post offices. EU Creating a Regulatory Regime for Cryptocurrencies The European Union’s Executive Vice President of the European Commission for An Economy that Works for People – said Europe had to seize the opportunity to become one of the main rule-makers for digital finance. The new regulatory regime for cryptocurrency will not only cover unregulated digital assets, but it will also consolidate and homogenize existing standards across the continent, Dombrovskis said. Bitcoins Could Be Stolen Using Lightning Network Attacks In a research paper, titled “Flood & Loot: A Systemic Attack On The Lightning Network,” researchers Jona Harris and Aviv Zohar, both ofContinue reading »

June Weekly Recap 4 June 16th – June 22nd, 2020 Welcome to our 4th weekly recap for June. Overview    Crypto News Number of Bitcoin ‘Whales’ Has Risen by 2% Since Halving As of Tuesday, the number of bitcoin whales, as represented by the tally of unique entities holding at least 1,000 coins, was 1,840. That’s nearly 2% up from the level of 1,811 observed on May 1, according to data from blockchain analytics firm Glassnode. The metric clocked a recent high of 1,844 on Monday, a level last seen in November 2017. Infosec Exec Urges US Lawmakers to Tighten Crypto Regs Over Pandemic-Driven Scams Tom Kellermann, head of cybersecurity strategy at publicly traded software company VMWare, told lawmakers that virtual currencies need stronger oversight. There has been an increase in the number of security breaches and thefts at digital currency exchanges, which cybercriminals used to launder stolen money, he said. Bitcoin’s Rise Driven by Institutional Trading, Says Research and Investor Sentiment This week the research firm the Tie tweetedContinue reading »

June Weekly Recap 3 June 9th – June 16th, 2020 Welcome to our 3rd weekly recap for June. Overview          Crypto News Coca-Cola Distributor Offers Bitcoin Payment Options for Aussie Vending Machines Coca-Cola Amatil, the Asia-Pacific bottling giant, has partnered with digital assets platform Centrapay to integrate bitcoin as a payment option from its vending machines across Australia and New Zealand. This means over 2,000 smart vending machines now accept cryptocurrency. Indian Government Reconsiders Banning Cryptocurrency The Indian government is reportedly reconsidering a plan to ban cryptocurrency and the finance ministry has initiated related inter-ministerial consultations. US Financial Services Committee Hearing Discussed the Creation of a ‘Digital Dollar’ At the virtual hearing with members of the DDF, Congress, and leaders from the Electronic Transactions Association, the group listened to a number of speakers. Speaking with the financial columnist, Rachel McIntosh, Christopher Giancarlo told the publication “the purpose of the hearing,” which includes “inclusive banking during a pandemic: using FedAccounts and Digital Tools to improve Delivery of StimulusContinue reading »

June Weekly Recap 2 June 1st – June 8th, 2020 Welcome to our 2nd weekly recap for June. Overview          Crypto News Swiss Banks Launch Cryptocurrency Trading and Custody After Gaining Regulatory Approval The Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) recently approved two banks — Maerki Baumann and Incore Bank — to offer several cryptocurrency services on Friday. India to Significantly Increase Crypto Market Share The Indian cryptocurrency market is poised to gain considerable global market share starting this year, according to a report published last week by Coinpaprika, a cryptocurrency research platform, and Okex, a global cryptocurrency exchange. US Regulators Target Bitcoin ATMs Bitcoin automated teller machines (BATMs) will become the next target for regulators, as world governments tighten screws on money laundering. According to Ciphertrace CTO John Jeffries, crypto-cash machines will attract “greater…regulatory focus” in a bid to rein-in alleged cross-border illicit financial transfers. Japanese Finance Minister Shoots Down Plan to Cut Bitcoin Tax to 20% Japan’s finance minister Taro Aso says he is opposedContinue reading »