10 October 2020

This week in the cryptocurrency market was all about new developments, investments, and participation of other financial companies to the crypto market. The Decentralized Finance (DeFi) market has entered a major correction over the last week.

After a massive bull run this summer, top DeFi tokens lost over 30-50% over the last week dragging the overall market down. Let’s take a look at some of the other important news for the week.

Jack Dorsey Leads Square to Invest $50MM in Bitcoin

On Thursday, October 8, payments and financial services company Square Inc announced a $50 million investment in Bitcoin. The company said that it purchased 4709 Bitcoins over the last few days by pouring around 1% of its total assets in BTC.

Square, led  by Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, is popular for its Cash App that allows users to buy and sell Bitcoins in a seamless way. Today, Square’s Cash App has more than over 30 million Monthly Active Users (MAUs) on the platform.

Speaking about the latest Bitcoin investment, Square’s chief financial officer, Amrita Ahuja said: We believe that Bitcoin has the potential to be a more ubiquitous currency in the future. As it grows in adoption, we intend to learn and participate in a disciplined way. For a company that is building products based on a more inclusive future, this investment is a step on that journey.”

Square called cryptocurrency as an instrument of “economic empowerment” and noted that its latest BTC investment aligns with the company’s purpose. Last year in 2019, Square announced its crypto subsidiary Square Crypto to focus on contributions to Bitcoin’s open-source work.

While Jack Dorsey tweeted about the investment, he seemed more eager on sharing the way they did it. In fact, Square released a complete whitepaper dubbed “Square, Inc. Bitcoin Investment Whitepaper” that details Square’s exact method to go about Bitcoin investment and can serve as a blueprint for other companies in the future.

Jack Dorsey Responds to Square’s Acquisition of $50MM of Bitcoin and Square Inc, Bitcoin Investment Whitepaper (via Twitter)

The whitepaper details how the company handled the execution of such a large BTC purchase, how it secured its Bitcoins as well as the open-source documentation for safe storage.

Square joins business intelligence company MicroStrategy who invested a whopping $425 million in Bitcoin this year. The company has reportedly amassed over 37,000 BTC in total. Here is what MicroStrategy co-founder, Michael Saylor, has to say about his Bitcoin investments.

Michael Saylor on MicroStrategy’s Acquisition of 37,000 Bitcoin (BTC) (via Twitter)

 

MetaMask Announces Token Swaps for Its Ethereum Browser Extension

ConsenSys-owned MetaMask announced its new feature for token swaps that happen directly through its browser extension or mobile application. However, initially, the feature will be available on Firefox browser and later rolled to other browsers and MetaMask mobile.

The MetaMask wallet allows users to quickly access decentralized applications (DApps) on the Ethereum blockchain and use them via a regular browser. This new token swap feature will fetch several different decentralized liquidity sources and bring users the best available price for DeFi tokens.

Previously, MetaMask users needed to navigate several other decentralized exchanges and aggregators to check token prices. Now, the token swap feature brings this convenience to the MetaMask platform by offering an improved and integrated experience with higher efficiency for DeFi and Web 3. Besides, it will also allow users to get quick access to the rapidly growing decentralized financial system.

Jacob Cantele, Head of Product at MetaMask said: MetaMask now offers the best trading experience in DeFi. Swaps will benefit those who are actively using MetaMask, as well as new users who are trading on exchanges and aggregators. We believe bringing greater transparency and efficiency to DeFi on Ethereum will result in a better network experience for all.”

To offers its users the best DeFi token rates, MetaMask has collaborated with services like Kyber, Uniswap, Paraswap, and others. To integrate all these aggregators further, MetaMask has joined hands with ConsenSys Codefi platform.

Thus by introducing this new token swap feature, MetaMask will be offering its users a simpler, streamlined experience thereby reducing complexity and facilitating faster adoption of DeFi.

In another milestone, MetaMask announced crossing over 1 million monthly active users on its platform. The announcements read: “MetaMask user growth happens in a compounding feedback loop similar to the feedback loop of the internet itself. Users onboard to use one site, and end up discovering hundreds of other sites from decentralized finance to gaming to new communities”.

Frustrated With Regulatory Hurdles, Ripple Chairman Considers Move from US

The San Francisco-based blockchain startup Ripple has been having quite a rough period dealing with regulators especially over the ‘security’ status of its XRP cryptocurrency.

Speaking at the LA Blockchain Summit 2020, Ripple Chief Executive Chris Larsen said that the company is considering moving base out of the U.S. to some other crypto-friendly destinations like London, Switzerland, Singapore, or Japan.

Larsen said that the regulatory environment for crypto innovation in the U.S. is really not encouraging. He further noted: “To be honest with you, were even looking at relocating our headquarters to a much more friendly jurisdiction. The whole tenor continues to be one of frustration that we don’t have more clarity and we don’t have more of a pro-US approach.”

Different regulatory laws in different states of the U.S. is another major hurdle, pointed Larsen. This is not the case with the above mentioned crypto-friendly nations. Ripple currently employees over 500 people across its nine global offices most of which are in the U.S.

Larsen also warned that the regulators’ high-handed behavior will ultimately cost the U.S. in terms of losing the tech war to China who has accelerated development on multiple fronts. China has already started testing its Digital Yuan and it has successfully conducted over 3 million Digital Yuan transactions said Fan Yifei, the deputy governor of the People’s Bank of China (PBoC).

The U.S. has also started its work on the Digital Dollar and is currently testing its viability in the country’s monetary system. However, when it comes to implementation, China has been leading the show.

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Edmund McCormack
Tech industry veteran and blockchain technology investor. Simplifying cryptocurrency for almost a decade.

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