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Experts Cite Specialization as Key to Blockchain’s Incorporation Into Financial Services

Panel of experts from Digital Asset, ISDA, UBS, and Barclays discussed next steps in blockchain incorporation into financial services.

Four experts discussed the future blockchain in financial services, agreeing on the importance of specialization in a panel on crypto derivatives at Synchronise Europe in London today, June 18.

Some of the original conceptualisation of blockchain needs to be available publically to be materially modified to suit the needs of diverse financial services, said Kelly Mathieson, head of enterprise solutions at Digital Asset.

Mathieson argued that enterprise grade versions of blockchain technology are now viable, and that there has been a divergence from the original blockchain concept. Those versions of blockchain are needed to be changed in a way that would enable them to fit for purpose, and in some cases to be legal in certain jurisdictions, she said.

Mathieson further addressed the issue of general purpose language for smart contracts, stating:

“There has begun a shift away from general purpose language for uses in smart contracts, where we really want to begin to model and represent the legal definition and the market rules. Many of these early languages put all the data out there and then attempted to express financial services entitlements by either imposing confidentiality on it or obfuscation.”

Clive Ansell, head of market infrastructure and technology at ISDA, agreed that the development of blockchain-based solutions needs community engagement with real business challenges.  He said that it is necessary to create an environment that allows firms not to vary their smart contracts unless they really have to.

Lee Braine, Investment Bank CTO Office at Barclays, further argued that the process of standardization will ensure long-term viability. Industry players should purportedly define what they have done for their latest technological refresh.

Executive director at UBS, Yunqinq Zheng said that the active DApp ecosystem will appear once everyone is digitized and standardized, highlighting the importance of cultural and mindset transformation.

Earlier in June, Hester Peirce, commissioner at the Security and Exchange Commission’s (SEC), commented on the SEC’s approach towards this category of highly regulated financial derivatives, noting that the SEC is “still smothering ETFs with personalised attention as if they were infants.”

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Coinbase Custody Holds $1.3B in Assets Under Custody, Expects to Hit $2B ‘Soon’

Coinbase Custody announced that it holds $1.3 billion in assets under custody and the firm expects to hit $2 billion soon.

Coinbase Custody revealed that it holds $1.3 billion in assets under custody (AUC) and the firm expects to hit $2 billion AUC soon in a Twitter thread published on June 13.

In a series of tweets, what is evidently the official Coinbase Custody Twitter account reported that last week the company’s CEO, Sam McIngvale, and its chief information security officer, Philip Martin, visited the United Kingdom. The purpose of the visit was reportedly “to discuss the institutional cryptoeconomy with a range of prospects and clients.”

During the meeting, the firm’s representatives argued that, while many believe that there are no institutional-grade offerings in the cryptocurrency space, Coinbase Custody is in fact such an offering. The firm’s representatives stated that the company is insured, regulated and secure custodian. The thread also specifies:

“We have $1.3bn AUC and expect to hit $2bn soon. We have no intention of stopping there. […] Coinbase Custody services over 90 clients. Of those, approximately 40% are outside of the US.”

Lastly, the tweet also claims that — as cryptocurrencies mature as an asset class — financial hubs such as London are becoming centers for crypto innovation.

During an on-stage discussion at Consensus in mid-May, Brian Armstrong, CEO of Coinbase, said that its custody service had already received $1 billion in assets under management.

As Cointelegraph reported in March, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission is soliciting industry input as it potentially reconsiders existing custody rules in specific cases of digital asset trading and settlement.

In April, Hong Kong trading and asset management firm BC Group announced that it is launching an insured custody service for cryptocurrencies.

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Bitcoin ATM Spotted Spitting Out Money in London

A
few days ago Londoners witnessed a bizarre movie-worthy scene: A
Bitcoin ATM suddenly started spitting bills non-stop in a shopping
center.

Several people were able to record the odd event and share it on Reddit. On the footage, a security guard protects the machine from the curious people who saw the scene. None of them (at least as far as one can see in the video) tried to take a bill.

The
cashier was spitting out money for several minutes, which is why
several people speculated that it was not a malfunction but rather a
hack. The methodology, known as “jackpotting” basically
allows the hacker to operate the ATM remotely making it spit out
money on command.

If true, the perpetrator could be facing criminal charges.

Bitcoin ATM Operator: “It Was Not a Hack”

Shitcoins Club, a polish company that owns more than 60 Crypto ATMs distributed all over Europe, managed the Bitcoin ATM.

In statements to The Next Web, Shitcoins Club denied that it was a hack and commented that from their point of view everything was a trick to give the illusion that the ATM went crazy:

“Everything was going well during this transaction … As you can see there is a bag in front of the ATM.”

In fact, in a Reddit post, a spokesperson said that anyone can see the location and funds availability of each of their ATMs, so it was easy to withdraw such a large amount of money (as long as the necessary funds were available).

“Our ATMs are the only ones in UK which can handle large cash withdrawals. On our website shitcoins.club on the “locations” tab, you can find out exactly how much GBP ready to withdraw holds each of our ATMs. The ATM at Bond Street Station (West One Shopping Centre), has at the moment 30,000 pounds which can be withdrawn immediately, in exchange for BTC, LTC or DASH. Our ATMs are usually topped up to 20 000 pounds.”

So everyone is free to draw their own conclusions. Maybe it was all the work of a skillful hacker who somehow wanted to generate a negative image of Bitcoin ATMs or maybe it was all the work of a troll who wanted to make a joke by daring to lose his money at the hands of a crowd that one can never know for sure how will react before the opportunity to have free money.

Either way, cthe rypto-verse is one weird place to be sometimes

The post Bitcoin ATM Spotted Spitting Out Money in London appeared first on Ethereum World News.

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Financial Service Giant BNY Mellon Appoints New Head of Blockchain

Subhankar Sinha will be the company’s new Head of Blockchain, a role for overseeing BNY Mellon’s blockchain ventures.

New York-based global investments company, Bank of New York Mellon (BNY Mellon), has named Subhankar Sinha as the company’s Head of Blockchain, according to a May 13 press release.

Sinha’s role in the corporation will be to work on creating and furthering partnerships with startups, accelerators and other businesses in the blockchain field.

Sinha previously worked as a director for the London-based international accounting firm PwC, co-founding and co-leading the firm’s American blockchain consulting practice. After leaving PwC, he created a firm to advise startups on business models.

BNY Mellon put out a job offer (now defunct) for the role of “Blockchain Senior Principal” on online business networking platform LinkedIn four months ago, noting that they were seeking a “subject matter expert for the Firm on blockchain/DLT technologies.”

BNY Mellon — a bank with $34.5 trillion in assets under custody and/or administration, and $1.8 trillion in assets under management — has been testing blockchain technology since 2015, even releasing so-dubbed BK Coins as tokens for internal use as corporate incentives, according to the WSJ.

Since then, BNY Mellon has used blockchain tech to keep backup records of transactions and co-founded a project (Utility Settlement Coin or USC) to issue currencies on the blockchain. More recently the company has partnered with the Intercontinental Exchange to provide private key storage for crypto assets.

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Mayday, Mayday: London Bitcoin Investor Crashes Lamborghini

Bitcoin Entrepreneur Ditches Exotic… In A Ditch

Last year, Soulja Boy released a track titled “Bitcoin”. Although the Chicago-based artist has since claimed that crypto’s glory days are in the rearview mirror, that track saw Drako spit fire about exotics, a pseudo-meme in the cryptocurrency community. Funnily enough, however, it appears that the “when Lambo?” meme and industry jokes of similar caliber are a tad too accurate.

According to a report from ABC News from Australia, a purple-esque Lamborghini Huracan, owned by a cryptocurrency entrepreneur, was found in a ditch near London last week. They claim that the car, valued at a cool $500,000 U.S., was discovered by Andrew Laurence, a local photographer & videographer, in one of London’s northern boroughs not 72 hours ago.

Lamoborghini Huracan Performante in a ditch

Per local media, which cited a post-mortem conducted by the local police bureau, the car fas found as seen above, with its driver-side door jammed against a crevice. At first, it wasn’t clear who owned the car, with Laurence speculating that it could have been an article owned by a Premier League footy player.

But, in a surprise turn of events, it was revealed that Michael Hudson of Bitstocks, a cryptocurrency investment advisory group, owned the car. He turned up to the scene as locals began to clamor. In a comment given to a local car Youtuber, who was documenting this odd imbroglio for his channel, Hudson noted that he lost control of his exotic due to water on the road, and decided to crash his car into a ditch instead of not hitting a pole, which could have caused serious bodily harm.

The Youtuber, Yianni Charalambous, who customizes cars for celebrities, noted that the Bitcoin investor stayed calm through this whole debacle, making it clear that he wasn’t under the influence of any illicit (in that context) substances.

Lambos Going Out Of Crypto Style?

Maybe, this could be the start of the Lambos & crypto movement fizzling out.

Last month, Jason Williams, a founding partner at Morgan Creek Digital Assets, took to his Twitter page, followed by an array of crypto’s most fervent investors, to claim he’s “going to do something that has never been done in crypto.” Williams, who is peers with Mark Yusko, the founder of the overarching Morgan Creek brand, and Anthony “Pomp” Pompliano, an anti-bank, pro-Bitcoin figure, noted that he wants to sell his neon orange Lamborghini Huracán for Bitcoin.

In a matter of a few hours, his tweet, first seen as a joke, garnered boatloads of traction on crypto’s secluded corner of Twitter. Armin Van Bitcoin, a pseudonymous Canadian enthusiast, noted that this was a “wise move,” accentuating his long-term belief in the flagship cryptocurrency.

Vivek joked that Williams should tokenize the car, likely referencing Pompliano’s sentiment that all securities and assets, whether it be stocks, bonds, real estate certificates, or otherwise, will be put onto blockchains eventually. Riccardo Spagni, a key member of the Monero community and a preeminent crypto commentator, echoed Armin’s thoughts on the move, adding that “Huracans are awful investments… it’s better to get rid of it.”

This prompted a response from the Morgan Creek Digital partner, who noted that he has “too many cars, not enough BTC honestly.” The rest of the comments under his fun tweet were similar to the aforementioned, as many zealots for the decentralized movement found this move to be more than logical.

Photo by Cris Ovalle on Unsplash

The post Mayday, Mayday: London Bitcoin Investor Crashes Lamborghini appeared first on Ethereum World News.

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Global Demand for Blockchain Engineers Up 517 Percent in a Year, Says Hired

Global demand for blockchain engineers is up by 517 percent year-over-year, according to the report.

The global demand for blockchain engineers is up by 517 percent year-over-year, according to a report released by recruitment company Hired on Feb. 28.

The document also notes that the second-fastest growing software engineering role is security engineer, with 132 percent growth, and third is embedded engineer, up 76 percent. The blockchain engineer role also consistently stayed among the top-three most-paid software engineering jobs in the various cities covered in the report.

Specifically, blockchain engineering is the second most-paid software engineering specialization in New York and London, the third in the San Francisco Bay area and Toronto, and the first in Paris. The average of the average salaries that blockchain engineers receive in the aforementioned cities is $105,400.

The San Francisco Bay area is the location with the highest salaries, $155,000 on average, while Paris comes in last, with blockchain engineer salaries averaging around $67,000.

As Cointelegraph reported in October last year, the average earnings of a blockchain engineer have soared to between $150-175,000 per year.

A study published by recruiting site Glassdoor in the same month found that crypto and blockchain-related job opportunities significantly increased in the United States in 2018, despite the slump in cryptocurrency prices.