The Daily: Anti-Crypto Politician Backed by Payments Firm, Grayscale Raised $250m in H1

The Daily: Anti Crypto Politician Backed by Payments Firm, Grayscale Raised $250m in H1

In today’s edition of Bitcoin in Brief we cover an American anti-crypto politician who is financially backed by a legacy payments firm, a positive change of leadership at Goldman Sachs, Grayscale’s performance during first half of 2018 and much more.

Also Read: Mastercard Patents a Method to Manage Cryptocurrency “Fractional Reserves”

He Who Pays the Piper Calls the Tune

The Daily: Anti Crypto Politician Backed by Payments Firm, Grayscale Raised $250m in H1Whenever you hear politicians talk about something and it sounds like they don’t have a clue about it, it’s important to remember that they may have a vested interest in misunderstanding it that way. An example of this came as US Representative Brad Sherman (Democrat-California) blasted cryptocurrencies at a House Financial Services Committee hearing entitled “The Future of Money: Digital Currency” on Wednesday.

“We should prohibit U.S. persons from buying or mining cryptocurrencies,” Rep. Sherman proclaimed. “Mining alone uses electricity which takes away from other needs and-or adds to the carbon footprint. As a store, as a medium of exchange, cryptocurrency accomplishes nothing except facilitating narcotics trafficking, terrorism, and tax evasion.”

And indeed members of the crypto community where quick to point out on social media and forums that, according to, his top financial contributor for 2017-2018 is Allied Wallet. This company is an online payments processor offering credit card, ACH and other legacy services that stand to lose out once wider cryptocurrency adoption makes them redundant.

DJ D-Sol Takes the Helm at Goldman

The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (NYSE: GS) has announced that Lloyd C. Blankfein will retire as Chairman and CEO on September 30, 2018, and that the Board of Directors has appointed David M. Solomon to succeed him in both roles. The move caught the interest of cryptocurrency investors as, while Blankfein was more hesitant, Solomon is considered to be open to trading the new instruments. “We are clearing some futures around bitcoin, talking about doing some other activities there, but it’s going very cautiously,” Solomon said in an interview on Bloomberg TV last month. “We’re listening to our clients and trying to help our clients as they’re exploring those things too.” Goldman Sachs must “evolve its business and adapt to the environment,” he explained.

On a side note, Solomon is also known for moonlighting as a DJ at exclusive parties around the world. Yes, really.

Great to get some time on the decks at #theEMAwards.

A post shared by D-Sol (@djdsolmusic) on

Grayscale Raised $250m in H1 2018

Grayscale Investments, the wholly-owned subsidiary of Digital Currency Group which offers trusts for BTC, BCH, ETH, ETS, XRP, ZEC, and LTC, has released a report that analyzes the activity across its product range during the first half of 2018. The figures show that the company raised almost $250 million ($248.4 million) in its investment products, making it the strongest fundraising six-month period since Grayscale launched its first product in September 2013. The company also notes that institutional investors accounted for 56% of all new investment dollars into Grayscale products, a pronounced increase in allocations to the asset class despite a broad-based price reduction across digital currencies during 2018.

The Daily: Anti Crypto Politician Backed by Payments Firm, Grayscale Raised $250m in H1

Coinbase Not Approved for Securities After All?

Earlier this week Coinbase claimed that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) had approved its takeover of Keystone Capital, Venovate Marketplace, and Digital Wealth, the three entities that Coinbase sought for their securities licenses. Now the company appears to be walking back from these statements.

“It is not correct to say that the SEC and FINRA approved Coinbase’s purchase of Keystone because SEC was not involved in the approval process,” Coinbase spokeswoman Rachael Horwitz told Bloomberg. “The SEC’s approval is not required for the change of control application,” Horwitz claimed. “Coinbase has discussed aspects of its proposed operations, including the acquisition of the Keystone Entity, on an informal basis with several members of SEC staff.”

Stellar Sharia

The Daily: Anti Crypto Politician Backed by Payments Firm, Grayscale Raised $250m in H1The Stellar Development Foundation has announced a couple of days ago that it obtained a Sharia compliance certification for the network from the Shariyah Review Bureau (SRB), an international Sharia advisory agency licensed by the Central Bank of Bahrain. The foundation hopes that this certification will help grow the Stellar ecosystem in regions where financial services require compliance with Islamic financing principles. Whether or not many potential crypto investors were really waiting for a token with a Sharia-compliant sign of approval, the move certainly didn’t hurt Stellar as XLM is now worth over 50% more than just a week ago.

What do you think about today’s news tidbits? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

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Verify and track bitcoin cash transactions on our BCH Block Explorer, the best of its kind anywhere in the world. Also, keep up with your holdings, BCH and other coins, on our market charts at Satoshi’s Pulse, another original and free service from

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Bitcoin in Brief Monday: A Panther’s Moonshot Bet

Bitcoin in Brief Monday: A Panther’s Moonshot Bet

Bitcoin in Brief today is slanted toward a crypto winter slowly thawing, as Pantera Capital bets on a moonshot price point. Also, the world’s most popular decentralized digital asset has been forked more than a plate of good pasta; there’s a growing list of countries who’re less likely to nab your crypto profits; Yahoo! smashes rumors; and a good-hearted wager between bitcoin core and bitcoin cash partisans exemplifies how ecosystem actors should treat one another.

Also read: Bitcoin in Brief Saturday: Hide Your Seed

A Panther’s Moonshot

Bulls have a panther as their advocate to help thaw this crypto winter. We reported this week, “Pantera Capital, an investment firm exclusively operating in the cryptocurrency and distributed ledger technology sectors, has published a letter predicting that bitcoin has established the low for its current bear market. Pantera cites a number of factors as informing its market outlook.”

Bitcoin in Brief Monday: A Panther’s Moonshot Bet

Among those factors are taxes on capital gains, where estimates are in the many, many billions expected from enthusiasts. That in turn, the fund theorizes, dragged prices down, and bitcoin core has found a bottom at $6,500, as holders were forced to sell in order to pay government bills. We continue, “Pantera also states that ‘It’s highly likely’ for the price of bitcoin to exceed its previous record highs of $20,000 ‘within a year,’ asserting that ‘A wall of institutional money will drive’ the growth in price.”

Speaking of Taxes

Until that prediction comes true, readers should pack their bags to save money from the tax man! Start looking for places to stay in Germany, Slovenia, Denmark, Belarus, South Korea, Singapore, as they’re some of the most advantageous.

Bitcoin in Brief Monday: A Panther’s Moonshot Bet

We stressed how many “jurisdictions have yet to update their tax laws to encompass cryptocurrencies. Rules governing taxation are often incoherent and very different even in countries that are part of a common space. In the European Union, for instance, tax rates in member-states vary between 0 and 50%.”

Forking Crazy

Be honest. You’ve never heard of Bitcoin Minor, Bitcoin King, nor Bitcoin Boy. How many times would you guess the Bitcoin network has been forked? During an extensive and really interesting investigation, we revealed nearly 70 times. That’s right, 70.

We summarized findings as how forking “bitcoin used to be a rarity. Then it became the norm. And then it became a meme, with anyone and everyone forking bitcoin on a weekly basis. There have now been a total of 69 bitcoin forks plus another 18 altcoin forks. Holders of bitcoin, monero, ethereum, and litecoin can claim almost 80 additional coins for free. Whether it’s worth their time to do so, however, is another matter.”

The Fork of All Forks Remains a Solid Option

The most famous of forks is, of course, bitcoin cash (BCH). Its being faster, sleeker, younger, and bigger (block wise) has lead those on the bitcoin core (BTC) side to take a stance on BCH’s long term viability. And while each side feels passionate about its coin, and the future that it entails, debate often become rancorous, turning everyone off.

Bitcoin in Brief Monday: A Panther’s Moonshot Bet
A reader responds to a hilarious bet.

We reported how two well-known advocates joked and ribbed one another about Core’s anticipated Lightning Network solution. They bet bragging rights if a demonstration of the solution failed a basic transaction. Loser would have to wear a t-shirt of the winner’s coin. Regardless of which won, the import is how the two men exchanged laughs and good humor, and the ecosystem needs more of both.

Japan Continues to Lead

No laughing matter is how the crypto winter continues its thaw as “Yahoo! Japan has confirmed that it is entering the crypto space by acquiring a stake in a Japanese cryptocurrency exchange that is already licensed by the country’s financial regulator. The company plans to launch a crypto exchange in the fall of this year,” we explained.

Bitcoin in Brief Monday: A Panther’s Moonshot Bet

We Have the Best Readers in All of Crypto

Thanks to our readers liking and sharing, our post on aspects of Islam possibly opening to cryptocurrency was picked up and republished and referenced around the world. Some contend it was the root cause of bitcoin’s recent price rebound. Great job, gang.

The crazy good book by Wendy McElroy we continue to serialize brings in wonderful reader comments and observations. To wit:

Bitcoin in Brief Monday: A Panther’s Moonshot Bet

Do you think bitcoin will continue to rise or to fall to new lows? Let us know in the comments section below.

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