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Japan’s Crypto Garage Is Raising the Bar for Bitcoin-Based Cryptofinance Products

Sponsored: At Crypto Garage, innovators are working to create a wide array of specialized cryptofinance tools.

The post Japan’s Crypto Garage Is Raising the Bar for Bitcoin-Based Cryptofinance Products appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

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This is a sponsored article provided by Crypto Garage.

At Tokyo-based Crypto Garage, innovators are working to create a wide array of specialized cryptofinance tools to help facilitate a transformation of our financial world into one based on the values of Bitcoin: transparency, security and decentralization.

“We see a world where there is a platform for various types of assets that can be transacted without counterparty risk,” as Justin Dhingra, chief cryptofinance officer at Crypto Garage, put it. “Our service is not here to replace the existing financial infrastructure, but instead give the end customer, ranging from consumers to institutions, a choice to conduct different types of financial transactions on a peer-to-peer (P2P) basis.” 

Crypto Garage’s DNA in Bitcoin

Crypto Garage seeks to become the leading architect of products in the cryptofinance space, which it defines as a specialized field that integrates modeling and structuring from financial engineering, cryptography and Bitcoin technology.

In terms of how this vision can interact with the world of Bitcoin, Crypto Garage believes that security is paramount for building a financial infrastructure and that Bitcoin is the only protocol that is suitable for a secure network.

The company has been active since 2018, when it was founded as a partnership between Digital Garage, Tokyo Tanshi and Blockstream. Digital Garage is a Tokyo Stock Exchange-listed company and started its research in the Bitcoin protocol in 2015 in collaboration with some leading Bitcoin Core developers. DG Lab, Digital Garage’s research and development organization, continues to work on advancing the Bitcoin protocol by supporting core protocol developers. Digital Garage is also an early investor in Blockstream. Tokyo Tanshi is a well-established money market broker in Japan with 100 years of history.

Pushing Bitcoin Cryptofinance Applications Forward

Building up a company that seeks to leverage the concepts of financial engineering, cryptography and Bitcoin technology has not been a straightforward or easy task.

“Our approach is to go after long-term tech but still win short-term business,” Dhingra said. “In 2019, we broke ground on the announcement of our digital asset settlement application called SETTLENET on Blockstream’s Liquid Network. With SETTLENET,  digital assets can be settled simultaneously using atomic swaps. The instant settlement is an attractive feature for trading purposes where one counterparty no longer needs to worry who pays first when settling a trade.   SETTLENET seeks to apply the decentralized, P2P, trust-minimized principles of Bitcoin to the trading community.”

SETTLENET’s expected launch date is set for June 2020.

For the long term, Crypto Garage aims to spread cryptofinance products through Bitcoin, Lightning and the Liquid Network, and one key technology it is working on is the Discreet Log Contracts (DLCs) protocol.

DLCs enable the creation of monetary contracts directly on the Bitcoin blockchain, using an oracle for determining its outcome, but without having to reveal the existence of the contract to the oracle. As with regular contracts, parties first need to agree on the terms, such as the different payouts for the possible outcomes. They then pre-commit their collaterals in a Bitcoin transaction broadcast to the blockchain, and can unilaterally redeem their payouts at contract maturity using a signature from the oracle over the outcome value. Using the Bitcoin blockchain removes the need for an intermediary third party, while also mitigating counterparty risks.

The first natural applications of this kind of technology are financial contracts, such as options, futures and derivatives and Crypto Garage is testing the possibilities of this technology. In 2019, Crypto Garage traded a financial contract linked to the price of BTC/USD with Blockstream and a U.S. equity option settled in bitcoin with Skew, a crypto derivatives data platform company, using DLCs.

From the lessons learned from 2019, Crypto Garage is working on an application based on DLCs called P2P Derivatives that enables trust minimized derivative transactions between two parties. Crypto Garage expects to release an MVP version of the application around May 2020.  With the MVP, Crypto Garage hopes to stir interest for further development and usage of DLCs and P2P cryptofinance products.

To continue to push Bitcoin-based cryptofinance applications, Crypto Garage wants to see more progress in the development of best practices for open-source technology within the Bitcoin industry. As one example, the P2P derivative product is based on open-source specifications for DLCs jointly developed with Suredbits. Crypto Garage is actively looking for more contributions to these specifications, so if you are interested, feel free to reach out directly on the GitHub repository. If you have an interest in beta testing its coming P2P derivatives application, contact the Crypto Garage team at info@cryptogarage.co.jp. Crypto Garage will continue to work closely with the Bitcoin developer community and contribute with OSS.

Make History With a Decentralized Trustless Financial Infrastructure

At Crypto Garage, the team believes that the role of a thriving and decentralized trustless financial system will be a hugely transformative force for people all around the world.

The financial market is currently a selective market limited to professional financial institutions and corporations, and derivatives contracts are traded based on the trustworthiness of one party able to pay at the expiration of the contract. A good portion of the world still does not have access to the financial market and financial contracts due to not having a bank account and cannot enter into financial contracts freely with anyone in the world. Crypto Garage hopes features like atomic swaps for instant settlement and DLCs for a more trust minimized financial contract framework will bring us closer to a decentralized financial system.

The post Japan’s Crypto Garage Is Raising the Bar for Bitcoin-Based Cryptofinance Products appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

Source: https://bitcoinmagazine.com/articles/japans-crypto-garage-is-raising-the-bar-for-bitcoin-based-cryptofinance-products?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=japans-crypto-garage-is-raising-the-bar-for-bitcoin-based-cryptofinance-products

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Opimas estimates that over US$190 billion worth of Bitcoin is currently at risk due to subpar safekeeping

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May 2021. Safekeeping of cryptocurrencies presents a challenge for institutions holding cryptocurrencies on their clients’ behalf. Cryptocurrency transactions are irreversible and anyone with full access to a wallet’s private key controls the cryptocurrencies that reside within it. Frighteningly, a number of institutional participants and even some large cryptocurrency exchanges rely on subpar custody approaches, leading Opimas to estimate that over US$190 billion worth of Bitcoin is currently at risk due to subpar safekeeping.

Luckily, a number of companies have emerged to address this problem. A new research report from Opimas—Crypto Custody: No More Excuses, authored by analysts Suzannah Balluffi and Anne-Laure Foubert—looks at the landscape of cryptocurrency custody-enabling technology providers and institutional-grade cryptocurrency custodians as well as the size of the market for cryptocurrency custody and brokerage services.

Some key findings in the report include:

Many of even the largest holders of Bitcoin and other digital assets continue to rely on storage devices meant for individual investors. Although some of these self-custody devices and wallets are secure and reputable, the operational risk posed by this approach is significant for institutional investors. Furthermore, a chunk of institutionals’ cryptocurrency holdings sit in hot wallets on exchanges. In total, about 22% of institutional cryptocurrency holdings are safeguarded in these relatively risky manners (Figure 1).

Figure 1. CUSTODY METHODS UTILIZED BY INSTITUTIONAL INVESTORS 

 

Source: Opimas analysis.

There are no more excuses for lackadaisical safekeeping – institutions can now choose from several reputable cryptocurrency custody-enabling technology providers and institutional-grade cryptocurrency custodians. Yet no custody solution is equal – there is still no best practice when it comes to security and governance relating to private keys. For example, some providers may rely on time-tested Hardware Security Modules (HSMs), while others use a newer technology known as Multi-Party Computation (MPC) – see Figure 2.

Figure 2. A COMPARISON OF HSM AND MPC TECHNOLOGY PROVIDERS

Source: Ledger, Fireblocks, Opimas analysis.

Some cryptocurrency custodians have followed in the footsteps of traditional capital markets by adding prime brokerage services to their offerings, including trading and settlement, lending, margin finance, staking, reporting, and capital introduction services. Opimas estimates that the current annual revenues generated by the institutional crypto brokerage and custody market are roughly US$2 billion and will grow to nearly US$8 billion by 2026 – a sizeable portion of this coming from brokerage services (Figure 3).

FIGURE 3. THE MARKET FOR CRYPTO CUSTODY & PRIME BROKERAGE SERVICES IS GROWING 

Source:  Opimas analysis. 

  • Regulations surrounding institutions’ ability to store cryptocurrency have become clearer (and in some cases more favorable) in numerous jurisdictions. Notably, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) ruling in the US has allowed banks to store cryptocurrencies for their customers. This regulatory clarity has led a number of financial institutions around the world to provide trading and custody for digital assets. With the advances in brokerage and custody solutions, Opimas expects institutional cryptocurrency holdings to grow from 20% of the cryptocurrency market cap to over 50% by 2026 (Figure 4).

FIGURE 4. INstitutional cryptocurrency holdings over time 

Source:  Opimas analysis.

Source: PlatoData Intelligence

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Bitcoin (BTC) Price Prediction: BTC/USD Faces Rejection Thrice at the $60,000 Resistance Zone, Resumes Downward Correction

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Bitcoin (BTC) Price Prediction – May 9, 2021
Bitcoin bulls have broken above the $58,000 resistance but the bullish momentum could not be sustained. Today, BTC/USD traded as price reached the high of $59,450. The king coin is likely to retrace to $57,000 low if the bulls fail to break the $60,000 psychological price level.

Resistance Levels: $65,000, $70,000, $75,000
Support Levels: $50,000, $45,000, $40,000

BTC/USD – Daily Chart

Bitcoin price was rejected thrice at the $60,000 resistance level. Buyers made frantic efforts to sustain the bullish momentum above the recent high but were repelled by overwhelming selling pressure. Consequently, Bitcoin has resumed a downward move as a result of a strong rejection at the resistance of $59,200. The current retracement will extend to the low of $57,000. Nevertheless, if price breaks below the $57,000 support, the market will continue the downward move. That is, the selling pressure will extend to the low of $53,000. On the upside, if price retraces and finds support above $58,000, the upside momentum will resume.

Bank of England Governor Warns on Crypto Investment
Andrew Bailey is the governor of the Bank of England who has warned crypto investors of the inherent dangers of cryptocurrency investment. The governor argued that cryptocurrencies lacked intrinsic value. According to him, “I would only emphasize what I’ve said quite a few times in recent years, [and] I’m afraid they have no intrinsic value. I’m sorry; I’m going to say this very bluntly again: Buy them only if you’re prepared to lose all your money.” Bailey’s comments are coming at a time when crypto markets are characterized by a huge spike in crypto prices. Major altcoins such as Polkadot, Chainlink, and XRP have also seen vertical price actions.

BTC/USD – 4 Hour Chart

Bitcoin risks another downward correction as the king coin faces stiff rejection at the $59,450 resistance. The Fibonacci tool has already indicated a marginal upward move of Bitcoin and a possible reversal. On May 1 uptrend; a retraced candle body tested the 78.6% Fibonacci retracement level. The retracement indicates that Bitcoin will rise to level 1. 272 Fibonacci extension or the high of $59,819.90. From the price action, BTC price has reached a high of $59,450 and has commenced a downward move.

Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://insidebitcoins.com/news/bitcoin-btc-price-prediction-btc-usd-faces-rejection-thrice-at-the-60000-resistance-zone-resumes-downward-correction

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Dogecoin dumps following mention from Elon Musk on Saturday Night Live

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Meme cryptocurrency Dogecoin finally got its long-awaited shoutout on Saturday Night Live — but despite hodler hopes, the immediate result has been a violent dump.

First teased by entrepreneur and DOGE cheerleader Elon Musk in late April, the Tesla CEO finally mentioned the digital asset on live television tonight in his opening monologue of the sketch comedy show. The reference was a throwaway line from Musk’s mother, who joined him onstage and asked if her Mother’s Day gift would be Dogecoin; Musk replied that it would be. 

In the minutes afterwards, $DOGE dumped upwards of 25%, falling as low as $.50 from $.66 highs at the start of the show. It has since partially recovered, trading at $.52 at the time of publication.

An hour before the episode began, the price of DOGE sat at $.66, down from an all-time high of $.72. A pair of bearish headwinds may have shared responsibility for the pullback: Musk himself seemed to try and get ahead of the hype, urging followers in a Tweet to “invest with caution,” and a host of new data indicates that many investors may be rolling their DOGE profits into other, largecap digital assets

Additionally, Barry Silbert — the founder and CEO of Digital Currency Group, the parent company of crypto investment vehicle company Grayscale — announced a public short on DOGE via the FTX exchange. In a series of follow-up Tweets, he revealed that the position was $1 million in size, and that any proceeds or remaining funds after closing the short would be donated to charity. 

(It’s unclear if Silbert was is using “we” in reference to Digital Currency Group, one of its portfolio companies, or is simply and bizarrely using a plural pronoun in reference to himself). 

Many DOGE investors were nonetheless holding out hope for a high-profile shoutout on what looked to be a major pop culture event. NBC, the studio behind SNL, chose for the first time ever to live-stream the episode on Youtube, per the Wall Street Journal.

Even a mention could have significant impact on the price of DOGE as well: the meme currency has proven to be susceptible to price movements based on positive social media volume, and multiple studies have shown that Tweets from Musk often lead to price appreciation. A mention on an even bigger platform was thought to potentially lead to even greater gains. 

Leading into the premier of the episode, Alameda Research trader Sam Trabucco (who said in a previous Tweet that he was “studying the typical SNL episode structure to try and understand when a DOGE mention would be the most natural”) speculated that if a joke or mention didn’t come in Musk’s opening monologue, it would be “all over.”

Despite arriving during the monologue, traders nonetheless responded negatively. It remains to be seen if a DOGE-centric skit later in the show can perhaps turn the speculative asset’s fortunes around.

Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://cointelegraph.com/news/dogecoin-dumps-following-mention-from-elon-musk-on-saturday-night-live

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