Bitcoin took another step towards mainstream adoption last week, with Fidelity showing it is serious about the digital currency as a long-term investment opportunity. Meanwhile, the SEC took steps of its own to lower the barrier of entry to private markets.
Fed Chairman Jerome Powell gave a highly anticipated speech that detailed the Federal Reserve’s changing view on inflation. Many have viewed Powell’s comments as a further example of an unreliable monetary policy in the U.S. and the growing case for bitcoin as long-term protection against inflation.
Here’s our weekly roundup of the industry news and big reads.
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Bakkt Futures Volume up on Institutional Trading
The average daily volume of physically settled bitcoin derivatives on Bakkt, the U.S.-based crypto derivatives exchange backed by the parent of the NYSE, has reached record levels over the past month, signalling growing institutional interest in spot bitcoin transactions.
According to a recent interview with Bakkt President, Adam White, “The market recognises the value that a regulated physically delivered bitcoin future offers for hedging and risk management and speculation.” He added, “As the institutions move into the futures, their hedging and risk management needs will evolve towards options, and we are going to be there ready to serve them.”
Historical Context and Key Features of Digital Money Tokens
Barclays CTO Shreepad Shukla has just published an insightful paper where he presents a ‘money tree’ which places the concept of digital money tokens into a historical context by illustrating their evolution from more traditional forms of money and then identifies key features of digital money tokens with options and examples.
Fidelity Launches Bitcoin Fund for Wealthy Investors
Fidelity Investments is launching its first bitcoin fund, confirming in a filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission that it will begin to offer the Wise Origin Bitcoin Index Fund I through a new business unit called Fidelity Digital Funds. Peter Jubber, Head of Fidelity Consulting, will run the new business unit, the filing shows.
The passively-managed, bitcoin-only fund will be made available to qualified purchasers through family offices, registered investment advisers and other institutions; Fidelity Digital Assets will custody the fund. The minimum investment is $100,000.
The Case for $500k Bitcoin – Winklevoss Capital Blog
Last Thursday’s speech by Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell where he made a major monetary policy announcement that the central bank would allow inflation to rise above the 2% target for some time before raising interest rates, has added to the bullish tone around bitcoin and prompted a comprehensive post on the Winklevoss Capital blog published that same day. Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss discuss in detail the approach taken by the US government towards its own currency, and other factors that could cause the price of BTC to one day reach $500,000.
A Global Look at Central Bank Digital Currencies
A new white paper by The Block research, commissioned by KPMG and Blockset, examines CBDC research by pioneering central banks, highlighting one of the most notable trends of the past few years – the rapid push of central banks researching and testing their own digital currencies.
Some of the key takeaways include statistics confirming that over 80% of central banks are engaged in CBDC research efforts, but have no plans to issue a CBDC in the short to medium term. The central banks polled confirmed that they are more likely to launch a retail digital bank currency, rather than a wholesale one, and that declining cash use has been the main prompt for CBDC initiatives.
BIS – Bank for International Settlements – has also just published ‘Rise of the central bank digital currencies: drivers, approaches & technologies’ on this topic.
ConsenSys Acquires JPMorgan’s Blockchain Platform Quorum
Further to the recent news announcement that ConsenSys has acquired Quorum from J.P. Morgan and will merge the enterprise protocol engineering roadmaps and technology, offering a full range of commercial-grade tooling and support services for Quorum users, Joseph Lubin, founder of ConsenSys and co-founder of Ethereum, discusses the acquisition, and covers:
Why JPMorgan sold Quorum to ConsenSys, and how that fits into ConsenSys’s larger enterprise offerings
How the acquisition fits in with the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance and its standards-based approach to blockchain enterprise development
How much JPMorgan invested into ConsenSys
How the Quorum acquisition fits into ConsenSys’s larger restructuring into two main arms focused on software development and venture activity
Coinscrum Crypto Markets and Insights Show – Spotlight on BLINC
Our Founder and CEO Oliver and LAB577’s Director joined Binance’s Teana Baker-Taylor to discuss BLINC – our real-time instant settlements network set to transform the digital assets industry.