Alternative Finances

The Incredible Shrinking Digital Currency

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Bitcoin Tracker | Week 43

Bitcoin is now just a big game of how low can you go with prices down to $374.67 from $410. PYMNTS.com Bitcoin Price index. When looking at the bitcoin trading this week, unless one is truly risky, traders are advised to refrain from shorting the market. Maybe this is one of the reasons why Reddit! feels the need to develop its own cryptocurrency. It sure didn’t help that Bill Gates came out in favor of “digital currencies” when he spoke at Sibos in Boston earlier this week.

Bitcoin is frequently discussed as a disruptor in the B2C space, but we have yet to really see what will happen in the B2B payments space and how bitcoin will play in that area. Market Platform Dynamics CEO Karen CEO met with financial technology advisor and entrepreneur, Marwan Forzley to learn more about bitcoin’s limitations and ability to become an innovator in the B2B payments space. Join Forzley, Webster and other influential players in the B2B payments space on October 15th in New York City to learn more.

The Bitcoin Sentiment Index moved up a notch to 93.82 from 91.86, despite this downward trend.

 As always, if you have any news you’d like to share, please send it our way at contactus@pymnts.com.

On the Plus Side … Everyone’s favorite internet rabbit hole (Reddit!) has raised $50 million in funding for a cryptocurrency of their own. Some big names backing this round, including Sam Altman, president of Y Combinator, Alfred Lin of Sequoia Capital and Marc Andreessen of Andreessen Horowitz. Other investors include Peter Thiel, Ron Conway, Paul Buchheit, Jared Leto, Jessica Livingston, Kevin and Julia Hartz, Mariam Naficy, Josh Kushner, Snoop Dogg, and Yishan Wong. The goal of this cryptocurrency would be for it to be backed by shares of Reddit! and then distributed to the community and investors have agreed to give back 10 percent of their shares to the community.

* October 2, 2014 – An e-commmerce gateway for alternative and traditional forms of payments, PayStand, released its API to support payments with bitcoin.

* October 2, 2014 – Federal Courts are getting closer to a bitcoin definition as more cases surrounding bitcoin are held in the Federal Courts.

* October 1, 2014 – Georgia Tech agreed to partner with BitPay in order to process bitcoin for concession sales.

* October 1, 2014 – “The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin” a documentary is being released this week in select theaters and the film was shown at a financial conference in Boston this week.

* October 1, 2014 – Reddit is considering creating a cryptocurrency backed by shares of the company which would then be redistributed back to the community in recognition of the role it has played in Reddit’s success.

* October 1, 2014 – Former VeriFone CFO, Bob Dykes, believes that bitcoin has “legs because it’s a fundamentally more efficient way of having a transaction”. * October 1, 2014 – Coinbase expanded to five more countries and raised the daily buy and sell limits for European users.

* October 1, 2014 – A ground of US Congress members will soon receive bitcoin donations in the mail. The committee that is focused on bitcoin policy is BitPAC which will distribute $250 worth of bitcoin in paper.

* September 30, 2014 – A Panama-based bitcoin wallet service provider, Coinapult, has $775,000 in funding from a group of investors and investment firms, including Barry Silbert’s Bitcoin Opportunity Corp, angel investor Roger Ver and technology-focused VC firm FirstMark Capital. * September 29, 2014 – Circle Internet Financial opened its invite-only bitcoin financial service to everyone.

* September 29, 2014 – The first regulated trading platform where investors can reduce the risk of owning bitcoins launched, TeraExchange LLC.

On the Dark Side …

The biggest story of all this week is the drop of a bitcoin to its five month low. So much for all of those bitcoin wallets used as a store of value hoping that the price would continue to climb. We’re not sure that we entirely buy the “asset allocation” story since or that the price is declining because more merchants are using it.

* October 2, 2014 – Chairman of the Australian Digital Currency Commerce Association Ronald Tucker called for a new Senate inquiry into digital currencies to result in a ‘correction’ of the government’s current taxation treatment of cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin. Ticker believes that bitcoin should be treated the same way as other financial inputs such as foreign exchange.

* October 1, 2014 – An Irish pub removed the bitcoin ATM that was installed because of legal concerns despite the absence of legal issues surrounding bitcoin in Ireland.

* September 30, 2014 – The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) director Jennifer Shasky Calvery claims that they are not out to villainize bitcoin, just the bad actors.

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Featured PYMNTS Study:

More than 63 percent of merchant service providers (MSPs) want to overhaul their core payment processing systems so they can up their value-added services (VAS) game. It’s tough, though, since many of these systems date back to the pre-digital era. In the January 2020 Optimizing Merchant Services Playbook, PYMNTS unpacks what 200 MSPs say is key to delivering the VAS agenda that is critical to their success.

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