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Blockchain News Cryptocurrency News Ethereum News

Fireblocks Adds New Staking Service For DOT, XTZ and ETH 2.0

Fireblocks announced today it has integrated with Blockdaemon and Staked to add new staking services for over 165 enterprise and institutional customers. The new Fireblocks PoS capabilities will debut with initial support for Polkadot (DOT), Tezos (XTZ) and Eth 2.0.

“Fireblocks already simplifies securing and trading cryptocurrencies, like Bitcoin and Polkadot. With the roll-out of DOT staking, Fireblocks is quickly becoming an all-in-one solution for crypto power users,” said Jack Platts, Co-Founder of Hypersphere Ventures.

Traditionally, setting up staking was complicated and required 2-3 full time employees to integrate and manage nodes, or turning to a cold storage custodian, which fragments infrastructure, distributes assets across different providers, and limits operational flexibility.

Now, in addition to leveraging Fireblocks’ secure MPC-based wallet technology and Network for crypto custody, settlement, and DeFi, the world’s largest institutional digital asset investors and managers can add staking to earn more revenue from DOT, Tezos or Ethereum 2.0 assets.

“To set up staking, you need the highest degree of security in storing the asset and delegating it to the staking nodes,” said Michael Shaulov, CEO of Fireblocks. “There has been an increase in demand from our customers requesting simple and secure access to these strategies by utilizing their Fireblocks MPC wallet. We are extremely excited to roll out these new staking services on the largest PoS networks, giving our customers an opportunity to enhance their yield by 5% to 15%.”

Starting today, Fireblocks’ customers will be able to stake DOT, XTZ and ETH 2.0 tokens all from the Fireblocks platform. The assets will be protected from cyber attacks, internal collusion and human error while accruing rewards. Users will maintain custody of the funds in their Fireblocks MPC-based wallets with an interface to monitor staking performance on Staked and Blockdaemon.

“Fireblocks is a leading pioneer in providing secure digital infrastructure for institutional trading, lending, and borrowing and we are thrilled to partner with them by supporting customers with our validator staking and node management,” says Konstantin Richter, CEO and Founder of Blockdaemon. “Having close collaboration with a leader in the space is essential in driving earning potential forward at an accelerated rate.”

With significant demand from Fireblocks’ customer base, the company will continue to prioritize supporting additional staking protocols in 2021.

“We are thrilled to extend our staking services to a growing number of institutional customers through our partnership with Fireblocks,” said Tim Ogilvie, CEO of Staked, which provides non-custodial infrastructure services for the major PoS blockchains and is the leading independent validator for Ethereum 2.0. “Fireblocks has a well-established reputation for delivering infrastructure and we are delighted to support this new offering for its many enterprise and institutional customers.”

About Fireblocks

Fireblocks is an enterprise-grade platform delivering a secure infrastructure for moving, storing, and issuing digital assets. Fireblocks enables exchanges, lending desks, custodians, banks, trading desks, and hedge funds to securely scale digital asset operations through the Fireblocks Network and MPC-based Wallet Infrastructure. Fireblocks has secured the transfer of over $200 billion in digital assets and has a unique insurance policy that covers assets in storage & transit.

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Cryptocurrency News Ethereum News Litecoin News Ripple News

Flare Networks Announces Smart Contracts For Litecoin

Ripple’s late 2020 rise was due partly to a massive airdrop of Flare (FLR) tokens. Now, the smart contract solution is actually adding support for Litecoin (LTC). An FLR airdrop to Litecoin users is actually in the works.

XRP wallets included in the December snapshot will receive a Flare tokens (worth a great amount of money, potentially).

In a Jan. 8, 2020 tweet, Flare says that they will “reduce” the number of Flare tokens for the project’s founders by five billion. This extra will be distributed to “Litecoin participants.” The Tweet promises clarification in the coming week.

A Flare for airdrops Tokens on the Flare network, known as Spark, will be used for governance and as collateral following the expected token drop in Q2, 2021. The business plans to bring smart contracts to Ripple’s XRP. Previously, Ripple was seen as a vehicle for funds transfer, and Flare claims that Spark tokens will add value.

With this tweet, the company is actually announcing what was somewhat unexpected: that the network will support other cryptocurrencies besides XRP, namely Litecoin.

Flare received a large amount of hype and press before the December snapshot for the airdrop to XRP holders.

For what it is worth, the company is naming their FLR tokens XFLR tokens (for XRP) on their site. There can probably be LFLR tokens for Litecoin. But it may not stop there. Flare could add support for other cryptos.

The rationale for choosing to integrate with Litecoin, over some other similarly sized digital assets, may have come right down to the fact that after XRP, LTC was the next biggest asset currently with no smart contract capabilities.

The Litecoin Foundation has stated it is “very excited to see the capability of smart contracts and interoperability coming for Litecoin through Flare.”

This also opens up the possibility of more such integrations that would bring the DeFi ecosystem to all non-ETH coins in the near future.

Flare has said it may support other networks in the future, but this was given little attention. Support for, say, the Bitcoin network could have implications that are huge and give ETH a run for its money.

Smart contracts and Ethereum competition? The short version of the purpose of Flare is actually to facilitate smart contracts on protocols that don’t have them built in. Flare is backed by XRP, and the airdrop to most XRP-hodling wallets cast Flare into the spotlight.

The very last several weeks have seen insane interest in Ethereum, and as the time tested and secure smart-contract chain, that is no surprise. The #2 crypto may have new investors interested in case they feel like they “missed the boat” with Bitcoin.

But the tech backing Ethereum’s value is the smart contracts. Though there are actually lots of other similar protocols that are potential rivals (DOT, EOS), ADA, Ethereum still reigns supreme.

Nevertheless, if other networks (like XRP or LTC) could support smart contracts, that would widen their appeal. In case these protocols could be interoperable via the Flare network, that would be a coup for Spark tokens (Flare hasn’t suggested they’ve plans for this).

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Bitcoin News Cryptocurrency News Ethereum News Litecoin News Ripple News

World’s Oldest Operating Crypto Exchange Forecasts Trends For 2021

At the beginning of 2021, the world’s oldest cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, has seen an all-time high of over $40,000 on 8 January 2021, which is not surprising, since institutional investors as well as high-net-worth individuals consider BTC as a hedge against extraordinary fiscal stimulus programs. Here is an AMA summary from Chief Research Officer, Dan at BTCC.

ETH Price Prediction in 2021

The world’s largest financial derivatives exchange, CME Group, announces its ETH derivative product will go live on February 2021, following the launch of Bitcoin derivative product. It means Ethereum will be considered as a financial product, and will be regulated by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC). We expect that the launch of ETH derivative product next year will bring more institutional funds into the market, thus the price of ETH is very likely to see a massive rise.

Growing Number of Institutional Players Entering the Crypto Market

The year of 2020 also has seen numerous examples of institutional investors turning their attention to the world’s most popular cryptocurrency. For example, one of the largest insurance firms, MassMutual, has purchased $100 million of Bitcoin on December 2020.

We expected to see the crypto market to rise from the end of 2020 to 2021. The difference between the bull run this year to the one in 2017 is that previous bull was driven by individual investors and some whales. However, the bull run this year is mainly driven by institutional investors pushing the price up.

Top 10 Cryptocurrencies to Look Out for in 2021

The major theme of crypto market next year will be around DeFi, Polkadot, and ETH 2.0, therefore we will expect ETH remain unchanged at the top 2. While XRP, BCH, LTC and EOS are not what the market needs for next year, we expect to see these coins fall out of their current ranking.

Here is a prediction of crypto ranking in 2021 by Dan: BTC, ETH, USDT, LTC, XRP, BNB, LINK, UNI, DOT, BCH.

BTCC currently offer 9 major cryptocurrency trading pairs including Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), EOS (EOS), Ripple (XRP), Stellar (XLM), Dash (DASH), and Cardano (ADA). Users can trade Bitcoin with leverage.

About BTCC

Founded in 2011, BTCC is the world’s longest-running crypto exchange and currently headquartered in the UK. With nearly 10 years of operating history, BTCC is known for its safe and stable, top-end market depth, and as well as faster transaction speed. 

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Bitcoin News Cryptocurrency News Ethereum News Litecoin News

Cryptocurrency Market Cap Blows Through $1 Trillion

A wave of recent institutional buying has propelled the total market cap of all cryptocurrencies to exceed the $1 Trillion level for the first time ever.

The price of bitcoin hit another all-time high Wednesday. Bitcoin (BTC) was trading around $36,868 as of 7 p.m. ET, Gaining 6.5% over the previous 24 hours, and easily surpassing Jan. 2’s previous record high of $34,366.

According to the latest data, the $1 trillion cryptocurrency economy has gained significant value in the last 24 hours. The world’s largest cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, is topping the list with a market cap exceeding $680 billion.

Best Performing Cryptocurrency Assets

Ethereum is the best performing asset among major cryptocurrencies, the total market cap of Ethereum jumped nearly 60% in the last 7 days to reach a market cap of $137 billion. As of writing, the price of Ethereum is hovering around $1,211, within striking distance of its all time high.

The world’s top cryptocurrencies have gained the limelight in recent days due to a significant increase in market value, but other crypto-assets like Cardano and Stellar have actually performed better than Bitcoin and Ethereum in the last few weeks in terms of percentage gain. Stellar (XLM) has gained more than 60% in the last 24 hours, and 159% in the last 7 days as the total market cap of the cryptocurrency reached $7.4 billion. Further, XLM posted strong gains after an announcement by the Ukrainian Ministry of Digital Transformation to work with Stellar Development Foundation to introduce virtual assets in the country.

Furthermore, Litecoin, Polkadot, Chainlink and Bitcoin Cash posted strong gains in the last few days as all the mentioned cryptocurrency assets gained more than 30% in the last 7 days. Institutional adoption is pushing the cryptocurrency economy beyond the $1 trillion market cap much quicker than most observers had anticipated.

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Blockchain News

RAI Finance Gets Investment From Global Crypto Fund

RAI Finance, a blockchain-based cross-chain swap protocol, announced on the 30th that it has succeeded in attracting a strategic investment from global crypto fund NGC Ventures.

RAI Finance is a protocol that provides cross-chain swap functionality based on the Polkadot blockchain. RAI Finance utilizes Parachains on Polkadot to increase liquidity and provide access to assets across major blockchains.

RAI Finance
RAI Finance

The investment was led by NGC Ventures, a world-renowned crypto fund. NGC Ventures is a Singapore-based blockchain investment company that has invested in major blockchain projects such as Algorand, Polkadot, Terra, and Avalanche. RAI Finance has been able to raise about 1.7 billion won from GBIC and Alphabit through previous investment rounds.

“We are very happy to succeed in attracting a series of strategic investments following the last round,” said Keonho Lee, CEO of  RAI Finance. “We are currently running the RAI swap test version and will soon be ready for the launch.”

Roger Lim, founding partner of NGC ventures also added, “Rai is making DeFi with interchain operability possible, we believe this is one of the most critical things happening in 2021. RAI team are passionate and experienced, we are looking forward to being part of their journey.”

About RAI Finance

RAI Finance is a protocol designed to provide DeFi with a wider range of assets, a higher amount of liquidity, and a diverse set of financial use cases. When this feature set is combined with the cross-chain compatibility of the Polkadot ecosystem, it eliminates fragmentation across the existing DeFi ecosystem by bringing a complement of new assets and a higher amount of liquidity to decentralized finance.

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Bitcoin News Cryptocurrency News

As The World Rings In A New Year, Crypto Investors More Bullish Than Ever

 Bitcoin IRA, the world’s first, largest, and most secure digital asset IRA technology platform that allows clients to purchase cryptocurrencies and other digital assets for their retirement accounts, today released results of their recent survey asking individuals for their market sentiment and investing choices on crypto heading into 2021.

Bitcoin IRA’s survey revealed many cryptocurrency retirement insights.

Overall, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues, investors appear to have a more heightened awareness about inflation and its negative impact on US dollars as more investors indicated it as an investment reason from previous surveys. Also, crypto prices have risen sharply in 2020, with Bitcoin far surpassing all-time highs, and the majority of respondents believe they’ll continue much higher into 2021.

Key takeaways from the survey:

  • Bitcoin’s price projection: 40% of responders believe Bitcoin‘s price will be at least $50,000 at the end of 2021. Bitcoin’s price passed all-time highs in 2020 and investor sentiment remains high likely due to large Bitcoin investments by major companies such as PayPal and MicroStrategy among many others.
  • Reasons to invest: There’s a significant rise in inflation concerns by respondents as 28% of them stated their primary reason for buying crypto was due to inflation concerns. This is nearly twice as many that stated that reason in the company’s previous annual survey in 2019 (17% selected “inflation” then). Other reasons for buying crypto included that they believed prices would go up (65%) and that they simply wanted to diversify (29%).
  • Amount invested: A quarter of respondents stated they have invested 50% or more of their total cash or savings into crypto.
  • Altcoins: Chainlink remains the #1 most requested alternative coin, “altcoin,” for investing (excluding Ethereum) with 22% of respondents selecting it. Other top requested coins included Stellar Lumens (XLM), Polkadot (DOT), and Cardano (ADA).
  • Top features: Earning interest remains very desirable for crypto holders as 26% of all respondents requested it. An additional 15% of users wanted to earn rewards through “staking,” which is another method of earning a return on crypto holdings.

Methodology

The 2021 consumer survey was sent on December 28, 2020, to a randomized group of individuals comprised of the company’s clients, account holders, and customer prospects since 2016. 284 respondents completed the survey. Individuals did not receive compensation or likewise for their participation in the survey.