This Week In Crypto is a weekly segment from the Live Coin Watch News team, providing readers with a fun, succinct, and pertinent summary of the most important Bitcoin-related events in the past seven days.
Bitcoin, from a weekly standpoint, is effectively flat, sitting at $11,300 as of the time of writing this. However, over the past seven days, the cryptocurrency market has been rife with volatility. In fact, since our previous “This Week in Crypto” report, BTC has traded anywhere from $10,800 to $13,200.
Price action aside, the underlying cryptocurrency industry saw an array of interesting developments: U.S. President Donald Trump made his first public comment on Bitcoin & Libra, an Ethereum-focused application for Augur closed, and the Litecoin Foundation managed to secure a partnership with a notable NFL team. Nice.
This Week in Crypto
- App for Ethereum-Based Augur, Veil, Closes up Shop: Bitcoin may be back, but not all crypto startups have left the bear market unscathed. Announced via an out-of-left-field blog post this week, Veil, an application/plug-in for the Ethereum-based prediction platform, Augur, will be shortly closing up all operations. Per Veil chief executive Paul Fletcher-Hill, this shutdown will occur by disallowing users from adding Augur markets to the platform. The cryptocurrency entrepreneur suggested that the project failed as a result of a lack of “good onboarding experience” and inability to become fully “decentralized or regulated”. For those unaware, Veil was slated to become a platform that would make Ethereum-based prediction betting more accessible to the mainstream.
- Litecoin Becomes the Official Cryptocurrency of the NFL’s Dolphins: Litecoin (LTC) has been adopted by a major American sports club. Starting in the upcoming National Football League (NFL) 2019 season, the original Bitcoin fork will be the “official team cryptocurrency” of the Miami Dolphins. This collaboration will “give Litecoin the ability to tap into one of the NFL’s largest and most passionate fan bases” via branding and advertisements at the Dolphins’ home arena, the Hard Rock Stadium. The cryptocurrency may also be featured in “online properties and digital content”. Litecoin’s blog post unveiling this unique partnership did not mention terms, or how exactly the cryptocurrency would be featured in advertisements or through the Dolphins’ online channels. What it did mention was that through payment processor Aliant Payments, attendees of Dolphins games will be able to purchase 50/50 raffle tickets with Bitcoin and Litecoin.
- Wall Street Giant Goldman Sachs in Search of Digital Asset Staffer Amid Crypto Push: According to a report from The Block, which cites a job posting from Goldman Sachs, the notable Wall Street bank is really looking into this space, hence the need for a “Digital Asset Project Manager.” “Further than ever before”, that’s what Goldman Sachs’ HR team wrote to describe its entree into the cryptocurrency space to job candidates. Per the listing, the Project Manager for Goldman’s new cryptocurrency unit will be “exploring” opportunities in this industry, meaning they will be responsible for “defining both the scope and direction of the business.” Just last month, the chief executive of the institution, semi-professional disk jockey David Solomon told a French news outlet that Goldman is eyeing its own cryptocurrency. Solomon, along with some insiders speaking to outlets, hinted that Goldman may launch something like JP Morgan’s cryptocurrency, the fittingly-named JPM Coin.
- IRS Renews Cryptocurrency Efforts as BTC Returns to Mainstream: After announcing intentions to release new guidance and tools for U.S. cryptocurrency users, the IRS has begun to brief agents of its Criminal Investigation division on this asset class. According to a leaked 181-part slide deck from the American tax agency on digital assets, the agents will be advised to use a number of techniques and tactics to target evaders. These techniques include interviews, “open-source searches”, electronic surveillance, social media scrutiny, and Grand Jury subpoenas.
- Donald Trump Finally Looks to Tackle Bitcoin: The story of Thursday was undoubtedly the unexpected Twitter thread from Donald Trump on cryptocurrency. That day, the American leader tried to dismantle the value proposition of not only decentralized cryptocurrencies, like Bitcoin, but Facebook’s Libra too. Trump claimed that Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies aren’t money due to their volatility and lack of “backing”, while adding that they serve to aid illicit activities.
- Japanese Exchange Bitpoint Hacked for $32M in XRP, Bitcoin, More: Japanese crypto asset exchange, Bitpoint, has just been subject to a large hack, during which attackers managed to steal over $30 million worth of Bitcoin, XRP, Ethereum, Litecoin, and other digital assets. The funds were siphoned out of the exchange via its hot wallet, not the cold wallets as first suggested by some users. Revealed in an announcement published via Remixpoint, the upstart exchange’s parent company, claimed that around 70% of the funds lost originate belong to its customers, with the rest coming from company coffers. Remixpoint’s shares lost 20% in the wake of the debacle.