22/05/2018: Biggest Stories in the Cryptosphere

by BlockEx

1. Japan’s Biggest Bank Confirms Launch Of Its Own Cryptocurrency ‘MUFG Coin’

The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ (Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group’s (MUFG) banking arm) is finally going to trial its own cryptocurrency, MUFG Coin, next year. This could make MUFG the first financial institution of its size to launch an in-house cryptocurrency. 100,000 MUFG retail bank customers will be involved in the project, making it a large-scale trial. However, those who want to be part of the initiative will have to apply. The 100,000 customers will download an app which will serve as a converter, with one yen being equal to one MUFG coin. It will then be possible to spend the coin in many locations, as well as for international remittances. A two-way ATM machine is also under development. The project was announced previously, but is now confirmed.

2. Argentinian Banco Masventas To Employ Bitcoin In Cross-Border Payments

From Monday, customers using Argentinian bank Banco Masventas will be able to employ Bitcoin in cross-border payments. This will be possible thanks to a partnership with Bitex, an exchange startup focused on the Spanish Markets (Latin America and Spain). The new method represents an alternative to Swift. During an interview with CoinDesk, Bitex Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) Manuel Beaudroi stated that this might be the first time a domestic bank utilise Bitcoin for this kind of payment. Furthermore, Banco Masventas main shareholder Jose Dakak credited the desire for digitalisation and cost cutting as reasons behind this project.

3. CFTC Releases Advisory Guidance For Virtual Currency Derivatives Listings

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) has published a press release announcing the release of advisory guidance for virtual currency derivatives listings, aimed at exchanges and clearinghouses registered with the agency. The document was issued jointly by the CFTC’s Division of Market Oversight (DMO) and the Division of Clearing and Risk (DCR). The idea is for businesses to be able to operate in the fast-paced industry while remaining compliant. Risk management programs will also be created more easily with the information acquired. Last year, CME and Cboe launched Bitcoin futures contracts despite a lack of clarity from the CFTC. However, the unpredictability of the crypto industry prompted parts of Wall Street to voice concerns to the CFTC, Futures Industry Association included.

4. UK Cryptoassets Task Force Has First Successful Meeting

In March, we reported on the launch of the UK’s cryptoassets task force. The first meeting took place on Monday. Members from HM Treasury, the FCA and the Bank of England were among the senior government figures and financial regulators who attended the event. During the meeting, the main objectives were agreed on by all parties. Examples are potential regulations, the cryptoassets’ effect and what would involve the employment of DLT technology in the financial sector. As well as considering the current findings by the government, the task force will also gather different points of view from several bodies. The next meeting will be in July; in the same period, a report for Q3 2018 will also be published.

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