- Libra Cryptocurrency: Facebook Unveils Global Money
Facebook Inc has finally unveiled its much-awaited cryptocurrency on Tuesday.
The cryptocurrency called Libra will be managed by Libra Association, an independent group formed to ensure its transparency and evolve the new ecosystem.
According to Libra Association, global internet connectivity has empowered billions of people globally and with just $40 smartphone, people can access numerous information, high-fidelity communications, and a wide range of lower-cost convenient services.
While this connectivity has helped more people access the global financial system, 1.7 billion adults remained outside the financial system with no access to traditional bank. That is 31 percent of global population.
Again, for those who have access to financial services, transfers are slow and take an average of 3 to 5 working days for a single international transfer to be completed.
On cost, the company said it cost 7 percent on average to send money internationally and for unbanked, they pay $4 more to access cash. Meaning, more transactions are cash-based. To be precise, about 85 percent.
This explains why U.S. retail businesses lose an estimated $40 billion annually to cash theft.
According to the company, by addressing all the aforementioned, about $3.7 trillion will be added to developing economies and 95 million new jobs will be created. People’s earnings potential will increase by 20 percent while extreme poverty will drop by at least 22 percent.
Facebook and Libra Association plans to address these issues with Libra, a simple global currency and financial infrastructure that can empower billions of people.
The association on its new website said: “Moving money around the world should be as easy and cheap as sending a text message. No matter where you live, what you do, or how much you earn.”
What is Libra?
Libra, has explained by Investors King, is a stablecoin version of cryptocurrency built on blockchain technology.
Libra will be tied to a basket of fiat currency to regulate its movement and help eliminate challenges currently hurting Bitcoin and the rest of unregulated cryptocurrencies.
The team hope to push cryptocurrency to mainstream and allow comprehensive regulatory control while maintaining its unique decentralise nature.
Calibra, Libra Digital Wallet
Facebook established a new subsidiary, Calibra, to provide financial services that will allow people access and participate in the Libra network.
Like other cryptocurrencies, Libra needs a digital wallet, therefore the first product Calibra will introduce is a digital wallet for Libra. The digital wallet will be available in Messenger, WhatsApp and as a standalone app.
The company expects to launch the app in the first half of 2020, the same period Libra will be officially launched.
Libra Association said the service will eliminate financial bottleneck and reduce cost of global transfer, currently put at an average of $25 billion yearly.
All these, the association said it hopes to address with Calibra, a digital wallet that people can use to save, send and spend.
Members of the Libra association will be responsible for managing Libra Reserve and development of Libra Blockchain.
The Founding Members of Libra Association that will work together to finalise the association’s charter and become “Founding Members” upon its completion are, by industry:
• Payments: Mastercard, PayPal, PayU (Naspers’ fintech arm), Stripe, Visa
• Technology and marketplaces: Booking Holdings, eBay, Facebook/Calibra, Farfetch, Lyft,
Mercado Pago, Spotify AB, Uber Technologies, Inc.
• Telecommunications: Iliad, Vodafone Group
• Blockchain: Anchorage, Bison Trails, Coinbase, Inc., Xapo Holdings Limited
• Venture Capital: Andreessen Horowitz, Breakthrough Initiatives, Ribbit Capital, Thrive Capital,
Union Square Ventures
• Nonprofit and multilateral organizations, and academic institutions: Creative Destruction Lab, Kiva, Mercy Corps, Women’s World Banking
Paypal Commences Cryptocurrency Exchange Business
Paypal Expands Operation to Include Cryptocurrency Exchange
Paypal Holdings Inc, the world’s leading online payments solution, has finally expanded its operations to include cryptocurrency exchange following months of planning.
The company customers will now be able to buy, sell and hold bitcoin and other crptocurrencies using the PayPal digital payment wallets.
PayPal move was after the company’s competitor, Square, expanded into cryptocurrency exchange space in 2018 and developed a wallet that support bitcoin transactions through its Cash app. However, PayPal took it a notch higher by developing wallet that support Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin.
The decision to venture into cryptocurrency exchange space would boost the attractiveness of the unregulated digital asset and further push it to the mainstream given the fact that PayPal present has 346 million active users accounts with 26 million merchants.
“The shift to digital forms of currencies is inevitable, bringing with it clear advantages in terms of financial inclusion and access; efficiency, speed and resilience of the payments system; and the ability for governments to disburse funds to citizens quickly,” PayPal CEO Dan Schulman said in a statement. “Our global reach, digital payments expertise, two-sided network, and rigorous security and compliance controls provide us with the opportunity, and the responsibility, to help facilitate the understanding, redemption and interoperability of these new instruments of exchange.”
Schulman says PayPal is “eager to work with central banks and regulators around the world” in supporting cryptocurrency.
Please note that PayPal users can only transact in cryptocurrency using fiat currency without ability to withdraw their purchased digital asset to a third party wallet or transfer from third party wallet into their PayPal powered wallet. Meaning PayPal users can only purchase PayPal cryptocurrencies and transact within the platform.
Ethereum Accounted for 96% DeFi Transactions in Q3 2020 as ETH Miner Fees Double Bitcoin’s
Ethereum Represents 96% of All DeFi Transactions in Q3 2020
According to the research data analyzed and published by Stock Apps, Ethereum’s transaction volume soared to $119.5 billion in Q3 2020. In comparison to the $10.2 billion volume posted in Q2 2020, that was a 1,200% increase.
Based on Coinmetrics’ data, Ethereum fees shot up during the same period, eclipsing Bitcoin’s fees for the first time on August 13, 2020. As of September 2020, ETH fees stood at $276 million, nearly double Bitcoin’s $146 million.
Ethereum Miners Made $113 Million from Fees in August, 38x Increase from April
The surge in transaction volume and fees on the Ethereum blockchain was linked to the recent Decentralized Finance (DeFi) hype. DApp Radar reveals that during the period, DeFi apps accounted for 99% of all transactions on the network.
The total DApp transaction volumes on all platforms in Q3 2020 reached $125 billion. There was an increase of $113 billion quarter-over-quarter (QoQ). Most of the activities took place on Ethereum, TRON and EOS. From the total value created, Ethereum accounted for 96%. With 1,956 apps, it was the top DApp blockchain during the period.
Coinmetrics’ data reveals that Ethereum transaction fees surged from $21.98 million on June 1, 2020 to $77.77 million on July 31, 2020. In August, Ethereum miners made $113 million from transaction fees according to Glassnode. That marked a 38x increase from the $3 million recorded in April and a 1.8x increase from the January 2018 all-time high. In September, miners for the first time earned more from fees ($172M) than they did from block rewards ($150M).
According to Glassnode, Ethereum miners made a record on September 1, earning $500,000 in one hour. Daily earnings on that day doubled to $16.5 million from $8.1 million the previous day. On September 2, they made a new record with the average hourly revenue surging to $800,000. They broke this record on September 17, reaching $938,000.
Is Bitcoin Set to Have a 2017-style Mini Boom This Year?
Bitcoin to Surge Like in 2017 this Year
Bitcoin’s price is set to “surge before the end of 2020” with investors keen not to “sleepwalk” through a 2017-style mini-boom, says the CEO of one of the world’s largest independent financial advisory and fintech organizations.
The prediction from Nigel Green, the deVere Group CEO and founder, which has $12bn under advisement, comes as Bitcoin – already one of the best-performing assets this year – appears to be on the brink of a bullish breakout.
In recent days, Square, which is owned by the billionaire founders of Twitter, has allocated 1% of its cash reserves to the cryptocurrency, whilst a former Goldman Sachs hedge fund chief says the price of Bitcoin will jump to $1m in five years.
Mr Green comments: “There’s been something of an avalanche of interest in Bitcoin in recent weeks from household-name investors.
“Investor activity is picking up considerably with various on-chain metrics and ongoing – and heightening – global political, economic and social turbulence suggesting that there will be a price surge before the end of the year.
“Like gold, Bitcoin can be expected to retain its value or even grow in value when other assets fall, therefore enabling investors to reduce their exposure to losses.
“Investors will increase exposure to decentralised, non-sovereign, secure digital currencies, such as Bitcoin, to help shield them from the potential issues in traditional markets”.
He continues: “There’s a growing sense that we’re set to experience a mini-boom similar to that at the end of 2017.
“Prices are yet to catch-up with investor interest – but this is only a matter of time as investors will not want to sleepwalk towards perhaps year-high prices in the run-up to the end of 2020.”
The late 2017 bull run saw the Bitcoin price reach its all-time high of $20,089.
The deVere CEO concludes: “There’s been a notable ramping-up of interest in Bitcoin amongst investors since the end of summer. Indeed, it has been the best performing week for one of the year’s best-performing assets since July.
“I can see no reason why this upward trajectory will not continue between now and the end of the year.”
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