CFTC Publishes New Advisory to Clarify Crypto Futures Trading

CFTC Publishes New Advisory to Clarify Crypto Futures Trading

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) — the United States’ top-ranking derivatives regulator — has published an advisory providing further guidance to both clearinghouses and exchanges seeking to list cryptocurrencies on their platforms. The cryptocurrency space has been riddled with concerns about the vetting process for contracts, like bitcoin futures, and the CFTC is looking to clear the air.

Staff members have issued the following statement:

“Commodity Futures Trading Commission (“CFTC” or “Commission”) staff believes it is important to encourage innovation and growth in these products, but within an appropriate oversight framework that enables exchanges and clearinghouses to operate within the confines of the core principles. To this end, Commission staff continues to monitor developments in these products and discuss the risks and challenges they present with industry and market participants.”

The CFTC says it’s focusing on the latest “best practices” for launching cryptocurrency derivative contracts, saying that exchanges should be able to monitor “underlying cryptocurrency spot markets” and coordinate with federal regulators. They should also be allowed to contact market participants and request comments regarding pending contract launches.

Division of Clearing and Risk Director Brian Bussey mentioned, “CFTC staff is providing this information, in part, to aid market participants in their efforts to design risk management programs that address the new risks imposed by virtual currency products. In addition, the guidance is designed to help ensure that market participants follow appropriate governance processes with respect to the launch of these products.”

While the advisory is not considered a final “compliance checklist,” it does offer insight pertaining to current CFTC expectations and aims to assist both clearinghouses and exchanges in keeping up with changes in the crypto market. The guidance provided in the report includes enhanced market surveillance, large trader reporting, outreach to stakeholders and derivatives clearing organization (DCO) risk management.

Both CME Group and Cboe Global Markets were among the first trading platforms to launch bitcoin futures contracts in December 2017. At the time, both companies had consulted with the CFTC on a strictly limited basis. Bitcoin’s volatile nature and price swings caused many Wall Street players — including the Futures Industry Association — to request that the CFTC further examine virtual currency derivatives before allowing them to be traded.

Thus far, bitcoin futures have behaved as few new contracts have, and their liquidity continues to grow through limited means. However, a study conducted by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco ultimately discovered that the release of bitcoin futures led to the steep drop in cryptocurrency prices last January by allowing “pessimists” to enter the game.

The CFTC has been in control of bitcoin activity since 2015 through the Commodity Exchange Act. The organization has worked extensively to rid the cryptocurrency space of unregistered futures exchanges and protect consumers from fraud, manipulation and illicit practices.

To read the full advisory, click here.

This article originally appeared on Bitcoin Magazine.

Visa UK’s Former CEO Joins Crypterium

Crypto Debit Cards

Last week, on May 19, former Visa UK and Ireland CEO Marc O’Brien said in an interview with Business Insider that he had been named CEO of a cryptocurrency startup named Crypterium. O’Brien was the CEO of VISA UK from 2008 to 2014. During the interview, he said that the Crypterium team is working hard to promote the acceptance of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum and make them legitimate payments. Tools that allow users to use them for daily product and service transactions, tools like crypto debit cards.

“Currently, cryptocurrency is actually hard to use as ...

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Market Update Report May.22

The crypto market is experiencing another correction against the dollar. The consensus event affected the market for the better, but did not meet the expectations of the price hikes behind it, and we saw a continuation of the downward trend of Bitcoin and

OPEN Announces Partnership with Kucoin

The success of OPEN’s private sale (to the tune of $250M+) was exciting, but they are aware that many members of the OPEN community were unable to participate and it was important for them to provide the community an opportunity to support OPEN as soon

Bitcoin Price Watch: Currency Falls to $8,200

At press time, bitcoin is trading for roughly $8,220 – about $130 less than where it stood yesterday. One source places current resistance levels at $8,600, which bitcoin was previously unable to break. The currency rose to the $8,500 mark 48 hours ago,

What Is ShareRing Cryptocurrency?

A lot of cryptocurrency and blockchain projects sound rather appealing on paper. Whether or not they will come to fruition and succeed is a different matter altogether. ShareRing aims to become the world’s first trusted token for sharing services. I

Joe Davis; Vanguard Economist, Predicts Bitcoin Price Will Crash to Zero

Joe Davis

Joe Davis; Vanguard economist believes that Bitcoin price (BTC) will crash to zero, and it will never emerge as reliable currency.

Bitcoin price remains range-bound after falling 15% from three months high of $9,900 level. The bearish trend has been receiving support from influential icons. The debate over the use of Bitcoin as a medium of exchange is also contributing to the sell-off.

Bitcoin price trades around the $8,300 level today. Altcoins are in the red after a short rally at the beginning of the week.  The total cryptocurrency market hovers in the range ...

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Crypto Scams: Australian Consumers are the Latest Victims

Crypto scams are a prominent problem within the crypto industry. Even though the problem has been addressed on many occasions, and many are fighting to solve it, that doesn’t mean that the general public can sit back and not do their part to stay vigilant. 

By being duped by these scams, you run the risk of ending up like Australian consumers in 2017. What does that mean? Read on, you’ll soon understand. 

Crypto Scams Hit Australia 

Yesterday, Australia announced that its consumers lost over $2.1M to crypto scams last year. Specifically, Australia’s Competition and ...

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Bitcoin Price Watch – BTC/USD Slips Below $8,500

Bitcoin Price Watch

On Tuesday morning, Bitcoin price slipped below $8,500 once again after the cryptocurrency managed a slight comeback over the weekend. Its trading volume was not sufficient to maintain the latest bull run.

BTC/USD Back Down To $8,200. The sell-off Subsides.

As of 12:30 PM EST, Bitcoin price is sitting at around $8,200. However, BTC/USD is currently on another upward trend that is testing a major resistance level at $8,250. A break above that could send Bitcoin price further toward the $8,300 mark it was trading at earlier today. The major support level for BTC/USD is held ...

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70+ Investigations: 40 Regulators Crack Down on Suspicious Crypto Schemes

70+ Investigations: 40 Regulators Crack Down on Suspicious Crypto Schemes

Forty regulators in the US and Canada are reportedly collaborating in the largest coordinated crackdown on cryptocurrency scams to date by state and provincial officials. The operation has triggered over 70 investigations so far, with 35 cases completed or pending.

Also read: Yahoo! Japan Confirms Entrance Into the Crypto Space

Mass Crackdown

The North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) said Monday that US and Canadian securities regulators have launched nationwide investigations on suspicious cryptocurrency investment schemes, the Washington Post reported. This is “the largest coordinated crackdown to date by state and provincial officials on bitcoin scams,” the news outlet wrote. CNBC elaborated:

More than 40 state and provincial watchdogs are participating in ‘Operation Crypto-Sweep,’ which has triggered at least 70 investigations so far.

70+ Investigations: 40 Regulators Crack Down on Suspicious Crypto SchemesNASAA is a voluntary association whose members are securities administrators from states, provinces, and territories in the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Canada, and Mexico. According to its website, the association is the oldest international organization devoted to investor protection.

The association, which helps coordinate Operation Crypto-Sweep, confirmed that “as many as 70 investigations have been opened in the sweep, with more expected in the coming weeks.” Furthermore, the Washington Post detailed, “As many as 35 cases are pending or already completed, with some resulting in cease-and-desist letters warning the alleged schemes that their unregistered activity violates state securities law.”

The efforts focus on “unregistered securities offerings that promise lucrative returns without adequately informing investors of the risks” as well as initial coin offerings (ICOs), the regulators explained.

Fighting Fraud

By posing as members of the public, the NASAA task force found roughly 30,000 crypto-related domain name registrations, the news outlet described, adding that “Many of the alleged scams use fake addresses, slick marketing materials and promises of over 4 percent daily interest,” the news outlet described. “A few have even used unauthorized photos of high-profile individuals, such as Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, to portray themselves as aboveboard.”

70+ Investigations: 40 Regulators Crack Down on Suspicious Crypto SchemesThe director of enforcement at the Texas State Securities Board, Joseph Rotunda, was quoted saying, “Although the international task force’s work is far from complete, my suspicions have already been confirmed: The market for cryptocurrency investments is saturated with fraud, and our work is only revealing the tip of the iceberg.”

Last week, the Wall Street Journal published a study showing that out of 1,470 ICOs, 271 were found to contain “red flags that include plagiarized investor documents, promises of guaranteed returns and missing or fake executive teams.” Investors have poured more than $1 billion into these 271 ICOs, the publication added. In addition, a Chinese government-backed industry organization also published its fake crypto analysis last week, claiming that its monitoring system has detected 421 fake cryptocurrencies.

Massachusetts’ Secretary of the Commonwealth, William Francis Galvin, emphasized on Monday:

Not every ICO or cryptocurrency-related investment is fraudulent, but we urge investors to approach any initial coin offering or cryptocurrency-related investment product with extreme caution.

NASAA president and the director of the Alabama Securities Commission, Joseph Borg, explained that “consumers face higher risks of being misled at a time when the intense demand for bitcoin has prompted many retail investors to take extreme steps to gain exposure to the currency, such as taking out a bigger mortgage.”

What do you think of Operation Crypto-Sweep? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock and NASAA.


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The post 70+ Investigations: 40 Regulators Crack Down on Suspicious Crypto Schemes appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Ripple News: LMAX Exchange Adds XRP; TapJets May Add XRP Payment

ripple news

The top-ten coins are in the red today, with the exception of Stellar (XLM). This means coins like Ripple (XRP) are down Tuesday. Why, though? Is there negative Ripple news floating around the crypto space? Or is XRP down because of the overall crypto market decline? 

Let’s see what we can find out. First, however, let’s look at Ripple price news. 

Ripple (XRP) Daily Chart 

Ripple (XRP) is currently selling for $0.671403. This puts XRP down 1.34% in the past twenty-four hours. 

Source: CoinMarketCap

Ripple (XRP) is ranked ...

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It’s Official: Abra Accepts Litecoin (LTC) Deposits and Withdrawals

Abra accepts Litecoin

It’s finally here, everyone! Now, digital wallet app Abra accepts Litecoin (LTC) deposits and withdrawals.

Abra Accepts Litecoin

The ability to make Litecoin transactions was already possible on Abra, but now the platform has added in the ability to deposit and withdraw Litecoin directly on Abra.

We now support direct #Litecoin deposits and withdrawals! You can now fund your account with LTC from an external wallet and invest in the 25 cryptocurrencies and 50+ fiat currencies on Abra. Please make sure your app is updated to the latest version! https://t.co/6f9CnnJaFP

— Abra ...

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Bitcoin Pizza Day: What You Can Buy Now for 10,000 Bitcoin (BTC)

Bitcoin Pizza Day

Today, May 22nd, is Bitcoin Pizza Day. What does that mean, you may ask? Well, back in 2010, one of the earliest Bitcoin (BTC) purchases was completed. The purchase was for two Papa John’s pizzas. The price back then? 10,000 BTC.

Since that fateful day, Bitcoin’s price has skyrocketed and many other cryptocurrencies have sprung forth from Bitcoin’s success.

Back in the day, 10,000 BTC may have only gotten you two pizzas. But what can that much Bitcoin get you now?

>> TRON (TRX) Update: Upbit and Bithumb Support TRX Token Swap ...

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Verge Cryptocurrency Suffers Its Second Hack in Less Than Two Months

Verge Cryptocurrency Suffers Its Second Hack in Less Than Two Months

Cryptocurrency Verge has suffered what executives are claiming is a DDoS attack. The platform is experiencing a serious delay in its blockchain, which has led to security concerns amongst users and worries about the currency’s stability.

At press time, Verge is trading for roughly $0.052, and its market cap value sits at $785 million. A decrease in the currency’s price has occurred over the last hour, docking Verge down by 0.36 percent, while the coin has fallen by nearly 7 percent over the last 24 hours. Currently, Verge is the world’s 31st largest cryptocurrency per CoinMarketCap.com.

Verge first mentioned the attack in a Twitter post, explaining:

“It appears some mining pools are under DDoS attack, and we are experiencing a delay in our blocks. We are working to resolve this.”

The problem may be more serious than the company is implying, however. The attack lasted more than a few hours and has resulted in over 35 million XVGs (worth approximately $1.7 million) being stolen.

The theft occurred when hackers exploited a specific glitch in Verge’s technology by mining multiple blocks virtually one second apart using the same algorithm. This was the same tactic used in a hack just last month that saw over 250,000 XVGs disappear into thin air, forcing Verge to prepare a subsequent hard fork.

Reddit user ocminer was the first to notice both attacks. The user commented that Verge’s system had not been properly repaired since April, and that “since nothing really was done about the previous attacks (only a band-aid), the attackers now simply use two [algorithms] to fork the chain for their own use and are gaining millions.”

At the time of writing, it is unclear if the hack is still underway or if the threat has been neutralized. Citing frustration over Verge’s apparent lack of security, one Twitter user known as VergeArmy exclaimed, “Doing some research, maybe we should ask all the mining pools to implement Response Rate Limiting (RRL) walls in their code.”

Some investors, however, are looking at the hack as an opportunity to make a little money and add to their portfolios. Twitter users like Daniel Eberhardt, for example, have said, “This is going to cause a temporary decrease in price. The few that see this as an opportunity instead of a threat are the ones that will reap the rewards in the future.”

Another — going by the name of toefur — comments, “Full faith in the Verge Devs!! #vergefam. Meanwhile, I’ll keep buying the dip.”

Described as a privacy-oriented cryptocurrency, Verge has experienced many security issues over the last few months. The company’s Twitter account was previously hacked in March, while additional reports have emerged that suggest Verge has been inadvertently exposing users’ IP addresses. These reports have not yet been confirmed.

This article originally appeared on Bitcoin Magazine.

Crypto Superheroes: Blockchain & Cryptocurrency Heroes Using Their Superpowers for Good

Crypto Superheroes

Andreas M. Antonopoulos | Clark Kent (Superman)
@aantonop

Represents the best attributes of humanity and the ultimate force of good.

When it comes to spreading awareness and providing truly educational content, Andreas alone has done more for Bitcoin (and decentralized cryptocurrencies in general) than anyone else out there. Yes, that’s surely a bold statement, but a true one nonetheless.

Andreas has written and published more than 200 articles on everything ranging from cryptography, security, distributed networks, cloud computing and Bitcoin, all the way to the ethics and politics of distributed systems. ...

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