Germany Explores Blockchain Strategy as Bitcoin Wars Heat Up

Germany ― Europe’s largest economy ― may be hopping on the bitcoin bandwagon as it explores how to deploy blockchain across various industries. The German government has launched a consultation process in a bid to formulate a comprehensive blockchain strategy before the summer begins. Berlin is a tech hub that’s home to 170 startups that could use blockchain, the technology underpinning bitcoin. Government sources told Reuters that industry groups and companies have been invited to offer their recommendations for incorporating blockchain to bolster the German economy. Sources say there is keen…

Major Omani Bank Joins RippleNet Cross-Border Payment Network

Oman’s second largest bank by market value, BankDhofar, has begun using RippleNet technology for cross-border payments to India. The news was tweeted by the managing director of South Asia and MENA at Ripple, Navin Gupta, on Feb. 16. RippleNet is a global blockchain-based payment network of institutional payment providers, that was developed by technology company Ripple. In January, RippleNet expanded its network to over 200 customers, including such industry players as JNFX, SendFriend, Transpaygo, FTCS and Euro Exim Bank. Per the recent announcement, BankDhofar has become the first bank in…

Bitcoin Price Breaks Medium-Term Resistance after Surging 8% in a Day

The Bitcoin market came back on its bullish track during the February 18’s trading session. The Bitcoin-to-Dollar rate (BTC/USD) on Monday established an intraday high towards 3917, up 8.08% since the open. The pair rallied through the Asian session and continued its upside momentum after the European market opened. Around 1600 UTC, BTC/USD also broke through a strong resistance trendline of the medium-term triangle pattern discussed in our Bart Simpson analysis. Have a look: BITCOIN PRICE 4H CHART | SOURCE: COINBASE, TRADINGVIEW.COM Last week, we had left the Bitcoin market…

Tim Draper Predicts Crypto Will Rule, Only Criminals Will Use Cash in Five Years

Billionaire investor and known Bitcoin (BTC) bull Tim Draper argued that in five years, only criminals will use fiat as crypto becomes universally widespread. Draper made his claims in an interview with American financial news tv channel Fox Business released on Feb. 18. Reiterating his previous statements predicting that fiat money will become laughable and obsolete in five years, Draper has elaborated on his forecast, stating that nobody but criminals will keep using cash, since criminals who use crypto can be tracked via blockchain. He said: “The criminals will still…

Bullish Sentiment for Bitcoin As Long Bets Near 11-Month Highs

Bullish bets on bitcoin, the world’s largest cryptocurrency by value, reached 11-month highs on Monday, according to the data from the cryptocurrency exchange Bitfinex. The number of long positions on bitcoin’s US dollar-denominated exchange rate (BTC/USD) jumped to 38,237 BTC at 04:10 BTC – the highest level since March 30, 2018 – and were last seen at 36,176 BTC. While long positions have risen by 35 percent in the last three weeks, short positions have remained largely unchanged. As a result, the long-short ratio, a barometer of market sentiment, has…

Iota Foundation Partners With Incubator Nova to Fund Startups Using Blockchain

The Iota Foundation, the company behind the cryptocurrency Iota (MIOTA), announced its partnership with startup incubator Nova through a press release shared with Cointelegraph on Feb. 18. According to the release, the partnership aims to fund new startups employing Iota’s platform through the “Iota Cofoundery” program on Nova’s website, which focuses on the early stages of startup development and seed funding. The program also grants the selected startups access to Nova’s mentoring program and tech startup team, reportedly consisting of over 20 startup consultants specialized in technology. Nova has reportedly…

German Government Consults Industry About Blockchain Technology

The German government is consulting companies and industry groups that could become stakeholders in the country’s blockchain development, Reuters reports on Feb. 18. The unnamed companies and groups have reportedly been invited to supply recommendations from this week onwards. Reuters also cites unspecified government sources saying that it is still unclear if those recommendations will translate into regulation in the near future, but concrete results are currently being sought. According to the article, about 170 startups in Berlin are involved with blockchain or distributed ledger technology (DLT), and startups in…

Indonesia’s Commodity Futures Regulator Releases Regulation for Crypto Futures Market

Indonesia’s commodity futures regulator has established a legal framework for operating crypto and digital assets futures markets, according to an official press release published on Feb. 18. The Indonesian Commodity Futures Trading Supervisory Agency (Bappebti), which operates under Indonesia’s Ministry of Trade, has officially required multiple entities involved in crypto futures trading to seek regulatory approval and apply for registration before legally operating in Indonesia. The news follows the recent release of legislation that officially recognizes Bitcoin (BTC) and other digital assets as trading commodities. The Bappebti first greenlighted crypto…

CFTC Commissioner Brian Quintenz Suggests Creation of Crypto Self-Regulatory Organization

United States Commodity and Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) commissioner Brian Quintenz has suggested that participants in the cryptocurrency industry should create a self-regulatory structure. Quintenz made his remarks during a Bipartisan Policy Center panel held on Feb. 12. More precisely, Quintenz said that because of the CFTC’s lack of crypto statutory oversight capability, he suggested that crypto “platforms come together to form some type of self-regulatory structure where they can discuss, agree to, implement, and hopefully examine or audit.” According to Quintenz, such an organization could carry out audits concerning…

Bitmain Announces Energy-Efficient ASIC Chip for Mining Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash

Chinese mining giant and ASIC hardware producer Bitmain has announced its next generation 7nm (nanometer) ASIC mining chip, according to a press release published on Monday, Feb. 18. The new mining hardware, BM1397, is designed for mining cryptocurrencies that use the SHA256 algorithm for their proof-of-work (PoW), such as Bitcoin (BTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH). BM1397 requires less power for mining cryptocurrencies, representing a 28.6 percent improvement in power efficiency in comparison with the company’s previous 7nm chip, BM1391. The new chip will be used in new Antminer models —…