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Bitcoin Needs Greater Regulatory Scrutiny – and Here’s Why: deVere CEO

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Bitcoin Needs Greater Regulatory Scrutiny – and Here’s Why: deVere CEO

Greater regulatory scrutiny of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin must become a priority as they continue to play an increasingly normalised role for investors, says the CEO of one of the world’s largest independent financial advisory and fintech organisations.

deVere Group’s chief executive and founder Nigel Green – a long time advocate of cryptocurrencies – is speaking out after both the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and the president of the European Central Bank (ECB) called for more robust regulations for cryptocurrencies this week.

The calls follow the price of Bitcoin jumping more than 300% last year and gained a further 40% earlier this month to reach an all-time high.

Mr Green says: “The calls by financial watchdogs and central banks for greater regulatory scrutiny must be championed as digital currencies, including Bitcoin, are set to play an ever greater role in the international financial system.

“What’s needed is a strong regulatory framework to be established and approved at an international level.  The forthcoming UK-hosted G20 summit might prove to be the ideal opportunity.

“Such regulation will help protect investors, tackle cryptocurrency criminality, and reduce the potential possibility of disrupting global financial stability, as well as offering a potential long-term economic boost to those countries which introduce it.”

He continues: “There is sustained and growing interest in the likes of Bitcoin from both retail and institutional investors. They are now increasingly handling the assets as they would any other asset in the portfolio –for example, sometimes profit-taking, sometimes reinvesting, using the volatility to their advantage, and using these alternatives to help with all-important diversification.

“These mainstream, normalised investor strategies demonstrate that cryptocurrencies must come into the regulatory tent and be held the same standards as the rest of the financial system.”

Previously, the deVere boss has said that one of the best ways to address the regulatory issues is via the exchanges.

“Nearly all foreign exchange transactions go through banks or currency houses and this is what needs to happen with cryptocurrencies. When flows run through regulated exchanges, it will be much easier to tackle potential wrongdoing, such as money laundering, and make sure tax is paid,” he has noted.

“For this to happen, banks will need to open accounts for exchanges, which is why they must be regulated.”

Mr Green concludes: “Cryptocurrencies in some form or another are here to stay – and the market is only set to grow.

“There can be no doubt that regulation of the crypto ecosystem is required and, I believe, it should be a priority.

“The work being done by many international financial watchdogs, lawmakers and central banks, such as the FCA and the ECB, in this area is something I fully support.”

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

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Tesla Will Resume Taking Bitcoin as Payment Once Miners Go 50% Green, Musk Says

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Bitcoin at Record High; Breaches $6,000 Level

Tesla Inc (TSLA.O) Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk tweeted on Sunday that the electric carmaker will resume allowing bitcoin transactions when miners who verify transactions use more renewable energy.

Tesla will resume accepting bitcoin as payment once the cryptocurrency’s power-hungry miners go halfway green, CEO Elon Musk tweeted.

Musk halted Tesla’s months-old crypto foray in mid-May citing environmental concerns. But “when there’s confirmation of reasonable (~50%) clean energy usage by miners with the positive future trend, Tesla will resume allowing Bitcoin transactions,” he said in the tweet.

It is unclear how Musk will fact-check miners‘ clean energy usage as there is widespread debate over where the industry currently stands. Even so, the comments provide a first benchmark for reinstating bitcoin payments at Tesla.

Elon Tweet

Musk’s tweet also reiterates his defense of having sold 10 percent of the electric vehicle maker’s bitcoin stash in Q1 and would also seem to indicate the company hasn’t sold anymore.

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Bitcoin Got Its First Makeover In Four Years

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The first bitcoin upgrade in four years has just been approved by miners around the world. It is a rare moment of consensus among stakeholders, and crypto experts tell CNBC it’s a pretty big deal for the world’s most popular cryptocurrency.

The upgrade is called Taproot, and it’s due to take effect in November. When it does, it will mean greater transaction privacy and efficiency – and crucially, it will unlock the potential for smart contracts, a key feature of its blockchain technology that eliminates middlemen from even the most complex transactions.

“Taproot matters, because it opens a breadth of opportunity for entrepreneurs interested in expanding bitcoin’s utility,” said Alyse Killeen, Founder and Managing Partner of bitcoin-focused venture firm Stillmark.

Unlike bitcoin’s 2017 upgrade – referred to as the “last civil war” because of the contentious ideological divide separating adherents – Taproot has near universal support, in part because these changes are fairly incremental improvements to the code.

What’s changing

Bitcoin’s makeover has to do with digital signatures, which you can think of as the fingerprint individual leaves on every transaction they make.

Right now, the cryptocurrency uses something called the “Elliptic Curve Digital Signature Algorithm,” which is created from the private key which controls a bitcoin wallet and ensures that bitcoin can only be spent by the rightful owner. Taproot will switch over to something known as Schnorr signatures, which essentially makes multi-signature transactions unreadable, according to Alejandro De La Torre, Vice President at Hong Kong-headquartered major mining pool Poolin.

In practice, that means greater privacy, because your keys won’t have as much exposure on the chain. “You can kind of hide who you are a little bit better, which is good,” said Brandon Arvanaghi, previously a security engineer at crypto exchange Gemini.

It won’t translate to greater anonymity for your individual bitcoin address on the public blockchain, but it will make simple transactions indistinguishable from those that are more complex and comprised of multiple signatures.

These souped-up signatures are also a game-changer for smart contracts, which are self-executing agreements that live on the blockchain. Smart contracts can theoretically be used for practically any kind of transaction, from paying your rent each month to registering your vehicle.

Taproot makes smart contracts cheaper and smaller, in terms of the space they take up on the blockchain. Killeen says that this enhanced functionality and efficiency presents “mind-blowing potential.”

Currently, smart contracts can be created both on bitcoin’s core protocol layer and on the Lightning Network, a payments platform built on bitcoin, which enables instant transactions. Smart contracts executed on the Lightning Network typically lead to faster and less costly transactions.

“Lightning transactions can be fractions of a penny…while a bitcoin transaction at the core protocol layer can be much more expensive than that,” explained Killeen.

Developers have already begun to build on Lightning, in anticipation of the upgrade, which will allow for highly specific contracts.

“The most important thing for Taproot is…smart contracts,” said Fred Thiel, CEO of cryptocurrency mining specialist Marathon Digital Holdings. “It’s already the primary driver of innovation on the ethereum network. Smart contracts essentially give you the opportunity to really build applications and businesses on the blockchain.”

As more programmers build smart contracts on top of bitcoin’s blockchain, there is also the potential for bitcoin to become more of a player in the world of DeFi, or decentralized finance, a term used to describe financial applications designed to cut out the middleman.

Today, ethereum dominates as the blockchain of choice for these apps, also referred to as “dapps.”

Why the wait

Though the bitcoin community has agreed to the upgrade, the rollout itself won’t happen until probably November. A lot of testing ahead of time will reduce the likelihood of something going wrong during an upgrade.

“Upgrades allow the – extremely remote – possibility of a bug entering the system, which would destroy confidence in the whole cryptocurrency system, effectively wiping it out – a ‘self-inflicted wound’ if you like,” said Jason Deane, an analyst at Quantum Economics.

Deane says this is why upgrade processes are so carefully tested, retested, and vetted, again and again, over very long periods of time, prior to being deployed.

Many also remember the disastrous migration of 2013, when an upgrade went wrong and resulted in bitcoin temporarily splitting in half.

“You don’t want different clients or miners in the protocol out of sync. That’s how catastrophic stuff happens,” Nic Carter, founding partner at Castle Island Ventures, told CNBC. “Because we don’t want a repeat of 2013, we have these extremely long lead times.”

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Confident Analyst Says $288k BTC Still In Play

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Bitcoin (BTC) can still hit an average price of $288,000 in the next three years, confident analyst @PlanB has said after BTC/USD shed 7 percent on June 12.

In a tweet on Saturday, the creator of the popular stock-to-flow Bitcoin price models cast aside doubts over the Bitcoin bull run continuing.

Alongside a chart describing Bitcoin as “going for gold,” PlanB was characteristically cool about Bitcoin’s recent progress despite a failure to break out above $40,000.

As Cointelegraph reported, concerns from traders and external sources alike have been mounting over the past week, these centering on a possible deeper BTC price correction.

“$288K still in play,” PlanB retorted.

“It would really surprise me if bitcoin would not touch the black S2FX model line this phase. Regardless of the current volatility.”

Such “surprise” would provide a serious test for the model, which has so far charted Bitcoin’s growth with unique precision.

The $288,000 price tag refers to an average value called for by the Stock-to-Flow Cross-Asset (S2FX) iteration, while a previous version requires a more modest $100,000 average. Both are based on the current halving cycle, a four-year period between block subsidy halvings due to end in April 2024.

Earlier, Cointelegraph noted that spot price deviation from S2F readings has reached levels that normally see a rebound and a new all-time high.

In additional comments, PlanB noted that 2021 really did fit with behavior from other all-time high years — 2013 and 2017 — further quashing suggestions that Bitcoin is facing serious problems.

“Deviation is not much different from 2013 (S2F ~10) or 2017 (S2F ~25), just the usual inertia after a halving,” he told Twitter users. Bitcoin has a “bullish ace up its sleeve”

Mike McGlone, a senior commodity strategist at Bloomberg Intelligence, has added to the upbeat mood over the power of the halvings.

On Saturday, he described Bitcoin’s declining supply as a “bullish ace” for the largest cryptocurrency which can naturally boost the price.

“Bitcoin $100,000 Has Bullish Ace Up Its Sleeve: Declining Supply — This year follows a cut in Bitcoin supply, making the price more likely to appreciate if past patterns hold,” he summarized.

His bullishness comes as Taproot, described as the most important Bitcoin network upgrade in four years, is locked in for activation by nodes.

Due in November, Taproot provides a host of improvements that will, among other things, make it cheaper to use some key features such as multi-signature transactions.

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