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Crypto Weekly - Feb.8


A summary of select stories from the cryptocurrency and blockchain world during this week.

Bitcoin Enters Longest Stretch Of Bear Market

The world's most popular cryptocurrency plunged from its peak of $19,500 in December 2017 to around $3500 in February 2019, losing more than 80 percent of its value in more than a year. Bitcoin has so far witnessed three significant bear markets, the first being in 2011, which spanned 163 days. During the week, Bitcoin witnessed 82 percent drop in value. 2018 was a disastrous year for Bitcoin, which hit a 15-month low of $3,122 on December 15.

Twitter's Jack Dorsey Says Holds Only, And Enough Bitcoin

Twitter Inc.'s co-founder and CEO Jack Dorsey in a tweet said he is holding only and enough bitcoins, showcasing his belief in the largest cryptocurrency. In an earlier interview with The Joe Rogan Experience, Dorsey, who is also the CEO of payment app Square, had said bitcoin to be the internet's native currency despite the recent severe loss in its trading value. Dorsey's payment platform Square reportedly has supported bitcoin since 2014 allowing users to pay for items with cryptos as well as to trade in them.

Blockchain Technology in Healthcare Market to Hit $1.64 bln by 2025: Study

Blockchain Technology in the global healthcare market is set to surpass $1.64 billion by 2025, according to a new research study published by Global Market Insights, Inc. The growth is attributable to the expected increase in cost savings for several healthcare applications while using blockchain technology. The implementation of blockchain technology in healthcare is estimated to save billions of dollars by aiding in preventing frauds and counterfeit drugs.

Venezuela Introduces New Cryptocurrency Rules

Amid political turmoil in Venezuela, the government issued a decree establishing a legal framework for cryptocurrencies in the country. The elaborate decree, consisting 63 articles, has set rules for the purchase, sale, use, distribution, and exchange of cryptocurrencies and related products. It also made a registration system mandatory. One rule says heavy penalties, equivalent to 100 to 300 sovereign crypto assets, will be imposed for unlicensed crypto activities.

Crypto Exchange ErisX hires former Execs. of Barclays, YouTube, CBOE

Cryptocurrency trading platform ErisX announced the addition of three top-level officers, who were employees of major companies such as Barclays, YouTube, and CBOE in the process of building a robust, secure, and regulated digital asset platform. In a statement, the company said it has appointed Robert Thrash as Chief Operating Officer, Arnold Connell as Head of Infrastructure, and John Denza as Business Development Executive.

Russian Government to conduct Blockchain-powered Unified State Exam

Russia's Federal Service for Supervision in Education and Science (Rosobrnadzor) is planning to implement blockchain technology for the Unified State Exam in 2019 , according to a report by Russian news agency TASS. Passing this exam is a prerequisite after graduation from school to enter a university or a professional college.

Opera partners Safello allows in-browser crypto purchases for Scandinavians

Web browser maker Opera Software AS is partnering European crypto exchange Safello to enable in-browser purchases of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin on the Opera web-browser for android for users in the Scandinavia countries of Denmark, Norway, and Sweden. Safello's brokerage solution is being integrated with Opera's blockchain-powered browser for Android to drive wider adoption of cryptocurrencies.

South Korea central bank warns against state-backed cryptocurrency

South Korea's central bank has warned that adopting a state-backed cryptocurrency will undermine the country's financial system, leading to liquidity shortage and high interest rates. According to a report published by the Bank of Korea (BOK), the introduction of a central bank digital currency (CBDC) will replace demand deposits held by local commercial banks as investors will go after the BOK-backed CBDC thinking that it is far safer, Korea Times reported

Bill Allowing New Hampshire To Accept Taxes In Crypto In Crucial Stage

A Bill allowing New Hampshire state agencies to accept cryptocurrencies as mode of payment for taxes has been unanimously approved by the House Subcommittee. The law will address any accounting, valuation, and management issues related to the acceptance of cryptocurrency, and identify a third party payment processor that will process cryptocurrency transactions at no cost to the state.

20-year-old Indicted For Stealing Funds Through 'SIM Swapping'

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance, Jr. announced the indictment of 20-year-old Dawson Bakies for stealing the identities and funds of more than 50 victims across the United States in a sophisticated "SIM swapping" scheme executed from his Ohio home. Bakies is charged in a New York State Supreme Court indictment with Identity Theft, Grand Larceny, Computer Tampering, and Scheme to Defraud, among other charges.

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