JP Morgan Launches Its Own Digital Currency, And China’s Baidu Reveals Blockchain OS

The State of The Market — February 15, 2019
BTC: $3,640.40 (+0.69%)
ETH: $123.21 (+0.91%)
XRP: $0.303646 (+0.20%)

After a slow decline in the last couple of days, the crypto market posted small gains today. While Bitcoin is still struggling to move past $3,650, the total market cap added nearly $1.5 Billion in the last 24 hours. All of the top 10 cryptocurrencies are in green right now, posting single-digit gains. A clear trend could emerge over the weekend when volumes are low. Meanwhile, Ethereum managed to defend its support at $100 this week, and Ripple has bounced back above $0.30.

In other news, Coinsquare, one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in Canada, has announced the acquisition of the StellarX decentralized exchange as it continues to evolve its platform. The StellarX team says purpose behind the acquisition is to allow for the StellarX platform to fulfill its potential as Coinsquare offers regulatory experience and a full scope plan to build around the platform, as well as an established network in the United States, Europe and Canada. Also, OKEx now offers Thai baht-to-crypto trading on its client-to-client (C2C) platform. At the moment Bitcoin, Tether, Ethereum and Litecoin can be traded with Thai baht on the move is designed to recruit merchants. OKEx also announced that it had hosted a conference in Bangkok to “bring industry leaders together to exchange ideas on blockchain technology.”

1) American bank JP Morgan is set to release a digital currency called JPM Coin. It will be used to settle a small portion of its transactions between clients of its wholesale payments business in real time. The American bank moves over $6 Trillion every day as a part of that business. JP Morgan claims it could also be used to provide instant settlement for securities issuances and even replace the US Dollar held internationally by subsidiaries of major corporations using JPMorgan’s treasury services. Eventually, it could even be used for mobile payments. JP Morgan’s CEO Jamie Dimon is not a fan of cryptocurrencies. On multiple instances, he has criticized Bitcoin and called it a fraud. However, that is not stopping his bank from releasing its own cryptocurrency. (Read More)

2) Chinese search engine giant Baidu has announced the launch of its Baidu Blockchain Engine (BBE), an operating system for decentralized application (Dapp) development. It is a product of Baidu’s cloud computing unit, Baidu cloud. BBE is an open source, commercialized platform, to simplify Dapp development. It provides developers with services such as multi-chain and middle-tier frameworks, as well as smart contract and DApp templates. Additionally, it comes with enhanced data security and privacy protection. BBE will be compatible with Baidu’s existing cloud services. (Read More)

3) Digital currency investment firm Grayscale published its financial report for 2018, over which time they attracted nearly $360 million to their coffers. Grayscale oversees crypto investment trusts that give investors exposure to some of the leading cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, and XRP. Of the total amount raised last year, two-thirds of the funds, or $237 million, originated from institutional investors in what turned out to be one of Grayscale’s best calendar years ever. Nonetheless, inflows slowed in the final months of 2018, as evidenced by $30.1 million coming in versus $95.4 million in the year-ago period. (Read More)

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