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Nigeria’s SEC and Central Bank Partner to “Look Into” Cryptocurrencies Weeks After Ban

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Nigerian Youths Are Unfazed By Country’s New Bitcoin Ban

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After a few weeks of placing a ban on cryptocurrency trading in the country, the Central Bank of Nigeria has agreed to partner with the country’s SEC to study cryptocurrencies further for a better regulation strategy. This comes as a result of the SEC advocating for a look into the industry rather than a complete ban as the cryptocurrency industry is a fast-growing one.

The head, Registration, Exchanges, Market Infrastructure and Innovation Department of the country’s SEC, Timi Agama speaking during a virtual lecture organized by the Association of Capital Market Academics of Nigeria (ACMAN) in Nigeria’s capital Abuja, on Sunday said the roughly $2 trillion cryptocurrency market should not be ignored, but rather better understood.

Agama said although the SEC does not encourage money laundering or any bad practice associated with the use of cryptocurrency, the industry is growing fast and is likely to drain investments from the stock market, hence the need to embrace it and make it work for the country. Speaking on the challenges with crypto, he said: 

“Part of the desire of the SEC even in the future is to provide a regulatory framework that will take care of all these challenges that we have seen internationally and the entire world is grappling with in terms of cryptocurrency and digital assets.

“For us at the SEC and capital market, it is something to look at, the world cannot be moving forward and we will be static, no,” he added.

On the 7th of February, the Central Bank of Nigeria issued a directive to commercial banks to cut off business ties with crypto exchanges and other individuals operating with crypto. This received a lot of criticism from experts and crypto enthusiasts both within and outside the country. Since then, Nigerians who account for a large share of the world’s cryptocurrency trading volume resorted to the use of P2P platforms to trade cryptocurrencies – this made the ban of no consequence.

The SEC understands this and its position is that the industry should be given the best possible regulation to guide its growth as well as give both local and international players a level playing field to grow.

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The views expressed in the article are wholly those of the author and do not represent those of, nor should they be attributed to, ZyCrypto. This article is not meant to give financial advice. Please carry out your own research before investing in any of the various cryptocurrencies available.

Source: https://zycrypto.com/nigerias-sec-and-central-bank-partner-to-look-into-cryptocurrencies-weeks-after-ban/

Blockchain

Polkadot Gears Up for Parachains Launch: Unveils ‘Common Good’ Parachains

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Polkadot, the interoperable blockchain protocol spearheaded by Ethereum co-founder Gavin Wood, has announced its forthcoming parachain launch.

Parachains – application-specific blockchains that connect to the main network and benefit from its security and computing capacity – are viewed as the building block of Polkadot’s ecosystem. Initially, the plan was for 100 parachain slots, with an auction process determining who gets to ‘lease’ parachains for defined time periods.

However, according to a blog post published by the team on February 25, some slots will be made available for ‘governance-allocated parachains,’ also known as common good parachains. These common good parachains have been conceived to address the so-called “free rider” problem, wherein parachains can forgo contributing to elements (such as bridges) that may benefit the ecosystem as a whole.

Solving the Free-rider Problem

The free-rider problem is best understood with reference to an analogy. Supposing a levy is imposed on car manufacturers to offset pollution: in turn, vehicles’ cost is increased, and all drivers are forced to pay extra.

Although everyone will subsequently benefit from a less toxic atmosphere, only those who actually buy a car will have contributed: the others (cyclists, for example) are considered free riders.

Polkadot’s governance process will essentially earmark parachain slots for consideration outwith the auction process, with a Council and Technical Committee representing passive stakeholders and supplying technical guidance. Both groups will then decide whether to accept or reject the direct registration of certain parachains.

According to the blog post, both system-level chains and public-utility chains may emerge as blockchain categories that qualify as common good chains.

Any parachain, in other words, that the Polkadot team deem beneficial for the overall ecosystem – bridges, identity projects, and smart contract platforms and governance would all theoretically be under consideration.

Chains that help remove transactions from the Relay Chain and enable more efficient parachain processing seem the likeliest to be considered ‘common good.’

As noted in Polkadot’s blogpost:

“By allocating a subset of parachain slots to common good chains, the entire network can realize the benefit of valuable parachains that would otherwise be underfunded due to the free-rider problem.

Polkadot’s governance system is on the bleeding edge of social coordination and it will be exciting to see how it helps the network evolve to meet the needs of its constituent parachains and stakeholders.”

Polkadot Gears Up for Parachain Launch

The Polkadot team recently published a roadmap noting that all upcoming parachains will be tested on regular parachain testnets, like Rococo and on Kusama Network. The latter being Polkadot’s canary network.

Kusama is a proving ground for parachains, allowing developers to build and deploy them and experiment with Polkadot’s governance, staking, nomination, and validation functionality.

Once parachains are live, community members will have their say on which additional features and network upgrades should be incorporated over time.

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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/polkadot-gears-up-for-parachains-launch-unveils-common-good-parachains/

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Blockchain

Crypto Exchange Mistakenly Sold Bitcoin for $6,000: Now Requests Users To Return It

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What started out as a normal trading day for some PDAX customers led to a favorable turn of fortune, or so it seemed. Their euphoria may have been short-lived by a harsh reality check as the Philippine-based exchange prepares to take legal actions.

Philippine Digital Asset Exchange (PDAX) suffered a flaw that led to bitcoin trading 88% below its actual price. The exchange reported that a surge in trading activity was the cause. At the time, bitcoin was trading north of $50k, but traders were able to scoop some for $6k.

Although PDAX halted operations to fix the glitch, it was a bit too late by then. Some users capitalized on the loophole and withdrew bitcoins out of the exchange.

To avert the massive loss, PDAX has asked traders to return its bitcoin or risk facing legal proceedings. Many users claim to have received messages to this effect.

It remains unclear how the legal proceedings will play for PDAX, with users rightly pointing out that traders’ actions are within the agreed terms and conditions.

Bitcoin Whale Responsible For Glitch?

Large volume transactions have become the order of the day as bitcoin whales step up activity. Their mass transactions often indicate strong bullish signals unless they get hooked while at it.

Reports surfacing on social media led to strong suggestions that the entire fiasco occurred due to an error by a bitcoin whale. who allegedly sold 316,000 BTC for PHP 300k (about $6100) instead of the actual price of PHP 2.3 million ($47,000). This prompted PDAX to cease trading activity and temporarily shut out users.

Users Outraged By Inability To Access Accounts

PDAX’s attempt to control the situation turned out to be counterproductive as it sparked outrage from many users on social media. The downtime, which lasted for 36 hours, left customers furious as they could not access their accounts.

They expressed frustration due to missed trading opportunities and accrued losses from not being able to close positions.

PDAX Clears The Air

PDAX eventually released a comprehensive report addressing the issue. It claimed that an “isolated unfunded order” infiltrated its system and affected the account of its users. It explained further that it had tracked and rectified the glitch and was in the process of fully restoring users’ accounts.

Speaking in a press conference, PDAX CEO Nichel Gaba said:

“It’s very understandable that a lot of users will feel upset they were able to buy what they thought an order was there for Bitcoin at very low prices. But unfortunately, the underlying Bitcoins were never in the possession of the exchange, so there’s never really anything there to be bought or sold, unfortunately.”

The BSP-licensed exchanged assured users that it will continue addressing their concerns and rendering support where necessary.

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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/crypto-exchange-mistakenly-sold-bitcoin-for-6000-now-requests-users-to-return-it/

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Blockchain

Déjà vu: Ethereum’s First Month of CME Futures Overwhelmingly Bearish

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Futures contracts allow institutional investors to hedge against future price movements of an asset with the possibility of shorting them. Just like with Bitcoin, the Chicago Mercantile Exchange launched its products when Ethereum was trading on its way to an all-time high.

It is unsurprising then that the first month of trading futures has been bearish as the asset’s price has retraced heavily and those shorting it on CME would have been correct to do so.

Déjà vu For Crypto Futures

CME launched its Ether futures on Feb. 8, and at the time the asset was trading at around $1,600. As reported by CryptoPotato at the time, a bearish reaction was expected.

Ethereum prices hit an all-time high of $2,050 on Feb. 21, but have corrected by 30% since then to today’s prices of around $1,450 – 10% lower than when the futures were launched.

ETH has underperformed BTC since the CME futures launch but a similar situation occurred with BTC, which underperformed ETH after its CME futures launch.

When Bitcoin futures were first launched in December 2017, the asset hit an all-time high a week or so later then pulled back heavily resulting in a similar effect on futures markets. Exactly the same has happened with Ethereum a little over three years later.

Of course, BTC has recovered and entered a new bull market and the same will happen with Ethereum regardless of how deep this correction goes.

In terms of volumes, the CME is reporting its highest ever day as Feb. 23 with 2,092 contracts traded. That volume has slumped to around 749 contracts on Feb. 26.

Longer-term contracts are likely to be bullish as the rollout of ETH 2.0 and the growth of staking opportunities is likely to push ETH prices to new highs whilst alleviating those epic transaction cost issues.

Ethereum Price Outlook

Currently, Ethereum has gained 4% on the day but has declined almost 30% since its peak last weekend. The asset fell to a monthly low of $1,300 on Feb. 28 but has since recovered a little to trade back over $1,400 again at the time of press.

There is strong support at current levels so ETH needs to remain above it to maintain the current momentum. A fall below could see ETH settle at just over $1,200 but a sustained move higher would need to see resistance at $1,600 broken again.

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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/deja-vu-ethereums-first-month-of-cme-futures-overwhelmingly-bearish/

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