Bitcoin Marks 10 Years of Existence

Bitcoin 10 years

January 3rd, 2009 was the day when the very first block on the Bitcoin blockchain was created.
Since then, the cryptocurrency has been on a wild ride, from reaching almost $20,000 at the end of 2017, to tumbling below $4,000 at the end of 2018.

“Over the last 10 years we’ve gone from this didn’t exist to now pretty much the entire world understands what it is, whether they agree with it or not,” said Matti Greenspan, a senior analyst at eToro.

The first (genesis) block has provided the foundation for an ecosystem that changed our perception of how money is valued and managed in modern age.

Creator of Bitcoin more powerful than Facebook CEO

Worth Magazine, an American publication oriented towards the world of finance and business, included Satoshi Nakamoto in their “Power 100” list for 2018. They named the Bitcoin creator as the 44th most powerful person in finance, placing him before Nasdaq’s Adena Friedman and Mark Zuckerberg.

Satoshi Nakamoto is a pseudonym, could be a man, a woman, or a group of persons who created Bitcoin. It is believed that Nakamoto controls 980,000 bitcoins, which is around 5 percent of all the Bitcoin that can ever be mined.

How much is Bitcoin worth today?

The Bitcoin price fell almost 80 percent over the previous year. Many believe that the bearish 2018 was only a large price correction, and that Bitcoin will likely experience a huge comeback.

“Bitcoin holds a big promise of sovereign and sound money – the bubble we experienced a year ago was an unfortunate consequence of human greed and short-term thinking. Bitcoin hasn’t changed in the past year and it remains the same asset, whether it’s worth $20K or $3K. It’s potential and usefulness haven’t diminished with the price,” said Clement Thibault, senior analyst at Investing.com.

At the time of writing this article, Bitcoin price managed to gain momentum above $3,900 and is currently worth $4,047.

Russian Central Bank Cancels Licenses Of 5 Forex Brokers

Russian Central Bank

The Central Bank of the Russian Federation, unveiled it has withdrawn the licenses of 5 Russian forex trading companies.

The affected companies – Alpari Forex, Fix Trade, Trustforex, Teletrade Group and Forex Club have a deadline until January 27th to cease operations and pay off their customers.

Reasons for license revocation

According to the regulators, the main reason for the license withdrawal were ongoing violations  throughout the year, such as improper execution of the prescriptions of the Central Bank, violation of reporting procedures, disclosure of inaccurate information on the company website, violation of the procedure for maintaining internal accounting and others.

“There are not so many direct customers of the companies under our supervision – 2,000 clients in total. Out of them, no more than 470 are active, those who [have] made at least one deal within a month,” said Larisa Selyutina, CBR’s Head of Securities Market and Commodity Market Department.

Liabilities of these five forex brokers amount to 35 million rubles, and will  be returned to clients by January 27, 2019.

Putin spokesperson backs up CBA’s actions

Dmitry Peskov, the spokesperson of President Vladimir Putin, stated that the move to suspend the license of five forex brokers was within the competency of the Russian financial mega-regulator.

The Association of Forex Dealers (AFD) published a statement that it is suspending the membership of the five brokers, which further worsens the position of the brokers in question.

Alpari Forex does not want to surrender without a fight, so the company will appeal the decision of the CBR. Alpari shared that the Russian central banj has been acting in contradiction with the local rules and regulations. The company stated that it has 1,000 clients in Russia and that their funds are protected in accordance with Russian legislation.

After the bank’s move, only four companies remained on the market – Alfa-forex, PSB-forex, Finam-forex, and VTB-forex.

Saxo Bank To Become Owner Of BinckBank

Saxo Bank

Danish multi-asset brokerage company Saxo Bank has agreed to buy all shares of Dutch online bank BinckBank for around EUR 424 million in an all-cash public offer.

Saxo Bank will pay EUR 6.35 per share, representing a premium of 35% to BinckBank’s closing price on Friday.

Motives behind the acquisition

The online trading sector is currently facing multiple challenges, such as increased regulation, changing customer behaviour and technoogy investment requirements. Traditional banks have stepped up their tech capabilities, in an effort to compete with fintech startups and large internet platforms such as Amazon.

“Combining BinckBank with Saxo Bank is a true win-win for all parties. Clients will get better products, prices, platforms and services, employees will benefit from enhanced career opportunities and, importantly, we will gain the necessary scale to further step up investements in technology and in our people. As the investement and trading industry matures and faces new regulation as well as rising expectations for digital client experience, scale, technology and multi-asset capabilities become increasingly key to long-term success,” said Kim Fournais, CEO & founder of Saxo Bank.

The deal is expected to close in the third quarter of the next year. If Saxo Bank buys at least 95% of the shares, BinckBank will be removed from the Euronext Amsterdam listing.

“Since the origins of BinckBank in 2000, we have managed to build a strong position. We have become market leader in the Netherlands and Belgium and are strong challengers in France and Italy. We are confident that by combining BinckBank with Saxo Bank, we will be able to further strengthen our offering and growth in these markets,” said Vincent Germyns, chairman of the BinckBank executive board.

Last month, Saxo Bank rolled out SaxoInvestor, a new platform designed specifically for the growing investor segment. The platform was initially launched in Denmark. It will be internationally introduced in the first quarter of 2019.

Barclays Rolls Out New Mobile Banking Feature


Barclays, a multinational investment bank, has enriched its mobile banking app with a tool that allows customers to “switch off” certain types of spending on their debit cards.

Barclays is the first traditional U.K. bank to offer the service. Some smaller online account providers already offer similar features.

Barclays cooperated with The Money and Mental Health Policy Institute in identifying problematic spending categories.

Blocking categories, not retailers

Barclays will enable customers to switch off spending in five categories: gambling, purchases made via premium-rate phone lines, restaurants, takeaways, pubs and bars; groceries and supermarkets; and gas and diesel.

“We are always looking for new ways to support our customers and make it easier for them to manage their finances. We work with a range of advisors and partners, as well as consulting with our customers, to identify how our customers’ needs are changing and what works for them. This new control feature is the latest new service that we have introduced in the Barclays Mobile Banking app that aims to give all of our customers a better way to manage their money in a simple, secure and effective way,” said Catherine McGrath, managing director at Barclays.

Customers who will especially benefit from this type of service are those with mental health issues, compulsive gamblers, and those who rely on caregivers or guardians to handle their personal finances.

Gamblers to benefit the most

More than 8 million people in the UK are finding themselves in “problem debt,” which implies they are unlikely to repay. One huge factor is gamling, which can be done in physical stores or online.

“GambleAware welcomes this initiative by Barclays, which we hope will encourage other banks to do the same. There are 340,000 problem gamblers in Britain and a further 1.7 million at risk, and initiatives like this can play an important role in helping to reduce gambling-related harms,” said Marc Etches, the chief executive of GambleAware.

Attempted payments that belong to the “switched off” category will be automatically declined.

CryptoKaiju Rolls Out Crypto-Themed Vinyl Toys

CryptoKaiju cryptocurrency-themed toys

CryptoKaiju, a U.K. blockchain startup, has announced the launch of world’s first vinyl toys fully traceable on a public blockchain, along with a subscription box office.

For each purchased toy, the buyer will get a unique token that sits within a smart contract. Each toy contains unique metadata describing it – color, gender, date of birth, a description and two personality traits.

130 Genesis figures

The first figure, designed to illustrate a monster with a Bitcoin theme, is called Genesis and currently costs $55. The first batch will be limited to 130 pieces, and will not be repeated again.

“As a longtime collector of designer toys such as Kaws, Futura Pointmen and Medicom Bearbricks, I’ve previously had issues with not having full confidence that what I was buying was genuine, as well as issues with knowing exactly how many items have been produced in each batch. The concept of bringing not just provenance, but also a personality, through a set of attributes to a physical toy is extemely intriguing. That’s really where the idea for Kaiju came from and we’re excited to explore the full potential of this technology,” said Oliver Carding, co-founder of Crypto Kaiju.

Every toy comes with a tamper resistant NFC chip built into the foot, which will allow smartphones to communicate with other devices containing such NFC tag.

About CryptoKaiju

Founded by Coin Journal’s Oliver Carding along with James Morgan, David Moore and Andy Gray, three founders of Known Origin.

“When I met the guys from KnownOrigin I was introduced to the world of ERC-721 art which led me to the idea of creating a physical collectible which has come with a lot of challenges, from exactly how we link the toy to the smart contract, to how we ensure the tag can’t be removed and attached to another item,” said Oliver Carding.

Once the stock is exhausted, the company will create a new set of vinyl toys that will vary in color, style and digital traits.

Forex Weekly Outlook – November 26-30

Forex Weekly Outlook November 26-30

The week after Thanksgiving will be in the sign of a meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping that takes place on Friday.

The G20 Buenos Aires summit is an important event that could have a meaningful impact on the economy and markets. The approaching week also brings a few additonal key events that we will review right now.


The Munich-based Ifo Insitute is will provide a glimpse at German business climate. The Ifo’s business climate index is expected to descrease from 102.8 to 102.3 in November. ECB President will testify before the European Parliament’s Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee. However, it is not expected that Draghi will provide new views on the monetary policy outlook.
Mark Carney, the leader of the UK central bank, will speak at an event in London.


The U.S.-based Conference Board will release November consumer confidence data. In October, confidence hit an 18-year high.
New Zealand, the 53rd-largest national economy in the world is to unveil its latest trade data.


Fed Chairman Jerome Powell will give speech in New York.
The U.S. will publish revised data of the third-quarter GDP growth, and a report on new home sales.


Australia is to publish figures on private capital spending, while New Zealand is to publish data on business confidence.
The important event in euro zone will be the publishing of preliminary inflation data for Germany in November.
As for the United States, the Federal Reserve will publish the minutes of its November meeting.


As we already mentioned, Presidents Trump and Xi Junping will meet in Buenos Aires on Friday. There are hopes that the meeting will result in calming of tensions which have caused the huge share price drops, especially in US tech stocks.

On this day, Canada will give a glimpse on its GDP growth and raw material price inflation.

Top 9 Countries With Bitcoin-Friendly Stance

Countries with Bitcoin Friendly Stance

While some countries decide to ban cryptocurrencies and ICOs, other welcome them with open arms.
Below we will discover top 9 countries with a friendly attitude towards bitcoin, and blockchain technology overall.

1. Switzerland

Switzerland is known as a crypto-friendly nation due to their regulations and tax-free approach. The country has a virtual coins hub called “crypto valley” located in the city of Zug. The country is also a leader in innovative DLT applications, from blockchain for education, to healthcare and real estate.

2. Malta

Malta is a small country in Europe which is primarily known as a very welcoming country for the gambling businesss. In 2018, the Malta Digital Innovation Authority has been formed, in order to encourage cryptocurrency and blockchain businesses to come to Malta. Huge digital coins exchanges such as Okex and Binanc are moving their businesses to Malta.

3. Slovenia

Slovenia, which soon may carry the title of “Europe’s Silicon Valley,” has the strongest civil support of Bitcoin in the world. Slovenia has plans for blockchain in the Development Strategy for the Information Society until 2020, reputable business communities with more than 300 companies that promote decentralized technologies, 9 Bitcoin ATMs and more.

4. Gibraltar

In 2018, the Gibraltar Financial Services Commission released new regulations for crypto exchanges, in an effort to make the country secure and welcoming for crypto business. Gibraltar has no tax on capital gains or added value.

5. Japan

Despite the fact that Bitcoin was invented in this very country, there were some difficulties regarding its legalisation at the beginning. With the support of the Government, cryptocurrency operations are thriving in Japan. Even salaries are starting to be paid partly in Bitcoin.

6. Singapore

Singapore has traditionally been a friendly country regarding capital regulations. Bitcoin transactions are legal in this country, under some guidelines of Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore.

7. Estonia

Estonia, a country where Skype was originally made, has always been a tech-friendly country so it is no wonder that they welcomed cryptocurrencies so quickly. Bitcoin has an all-encompassing implementation in this country, starting from banking services to healthcare. In this country, there is also a significant number of Bitcoin ATMs.

8. Australia

Australia has a very friendly stance towards Bitcoin and several other cryptocurrencies. Some of the most popular and secured cryptocurrency exhcanges like Coinspot, Cryptopia and BTCMarkets are based in this territory.

9. South Korea

Known for its huge contribution to the world of smartphones that we are currently living, South Korea allows an extensive usage of Bitcoin. The cryptocurrency is used both as a medium of transaction and investment.

Coinsource Obtains BitLicense From NY Regulator

Coinsource Bitcoin ATM

Coinsource, the Bitcoin ATM operator with more than 200 machines in the United States, has received Bitlicense, a virtual currency license from the New York DFS.

Based in Fort Worth, Texas, Coinsouce operates 40 bitcoins kiosks in New York State. The company enables customers to insert cash, buy bitcoin and store it on their mobile wallet. Customers can also sell bitcoin for cash by scanning their mobile wallet on the kiosk. The ATMs support transactions from a minimum of $5 to a maximum of $5,000 per day.

Confidence in the future of cryptocurrencies

The cryptocurrency ATM operator applied for the state’s approval three years ago, and in the meantime has been operating under a provisional license.

“Coinsource is the first and only company that operates Bitcoin Teller Machines (BTM) to receive a New York virtual currency license. All New Yorkers – from the people that are unbanked to the people who own the banks – can use our kiosks in their neighborhood retail locations to buy bitcoin instantly in a convenient and familiar way. Now that Coinsource is a license holder, our customers can buy and sell with confidence that Coinsource meets and exceeds the high standards set by the New Yoek Department of Financial Services. New York represents not just a center of global innovation but also one of our largest target markets. We are extremely proud to be the only bitcoin ATM operator holding a New York virtual currency license,” said Sheffield Clark, CEO of Coinsource.

Mr. Clark added that the grant of the license reflects bold confidence of the New York Department of Financial Services in the future of cryptocurrencies.

About Coinsource services

Founded in 2015, Coinsource deploys ATMs to key centers across the U.S., with over 200 machines in 19 states. They offer a high-end compliance and consumer protection program, combined with 24/7 support.
Many customers prefer using bitcoin ATMs rather than online exchanges, which have been criticized for demanding high technical knowledge, high fees, and limited support.

CMC Markets Expands Its Cryptocurrency Offering

CMC Markets, one of the big players in the retail trading space, has included three additional coins to its cryptocurrency spread betting and CFDs offering: litecoin (LTC), bitcoin cash (BCH) and ripple (XRP).
Clients are now able to take a position on the three altcoins paired against the U.S. dollar.

Fulfilling customer demand

At the beginning of the year, CMC Markets’ offering included only bitcoin and ethereum. However, the need for adding more coins has surged, which resulted in expansion of the offer.

“Since the successful launch of our cryptocurrency offering in March, and subsequent extension to retail clients in July, our clients have expressed interest in extending their trading options beyond bitcoin and ethereum. We are pleased to offer them the chance to take a position on bitcoin cash, litecoin and ripple, three altcoins which continue to generate much speculation among traders,” said David Fineberg, Group Commercial Director.

Mr. Fineberg added that they always recommend clients to understand the risks and conduct a thorough research before trading.

Do your research

Like any investment, it is important to do lots of research before you begin. Spread bets and CFDs are leveraged derivative products, whose values derive from the underlying asset. In these trades, the investor can take a position on market movements without owning the asset.

CMC markets entered the cryptocurrency CFDs race carefully, after its rivals such as Plus500, IG Group and Admiral Markets paved the way.

With almost 30 years of successful operation, CMC Markets has grown to become one of the leading retail forex and CFD brokerages. CMC Markets is well-known among traders for their online trading education in the form of webinars and seminars, downloadable trading guides and videos on demand. With more than 10,000 financial products to choose from, CMC Markets is one of the top choices when it comes to choosing the right broker for your trading career.

Tools For Brokers Expands With New Bangkok Office

Tools For Brokers Bangkok Office

Tools For Brokers, a Cyprus-based brokerage technology solutions provider, has unveiled that it has opened a new office in Bangkok.

The opening of the new offices comes as a result of the company’s efforts to expand its operations into Asian markets.

The significance of the move

When it comes to expanding its business operations, the company sees Asia as one of the top priorities. The company has been operating successfully in China since 2016, and Shanghai was the company’s headquarters on the continent until recently.

“Opening a new regional office is first and foremost a big benefit for our customers. Every time we launch in a new location, we build a complete and localized infrastructure for customer service, with pre- and after- sales as well as technical support for users, all in their local language,” said Albina Zhdanova, COO at Tools For Brokers.

More offices of Tools For Brokers could be opened in Asia in the near future.

“The opening of an office in Thailand is also a result of the uneven development of the crypto and forex industry in Asia. Strengthening our position as the world leader in our segment, we must closely monitor the changing situations of local markets in southeast Asia. In addition to this, our latest universal products – Trade Processor, Brokers’ Business Intelligence and PAMM tools – require careful and thorough work with customers, taking into account the specifics of their businesses,” said Alexey Kutsenko, CEO of Tools For Brokers.

About Tools For Brokers

Founded in 2009, Tools For Brokers is an international technology company which provides innovative software solutions to brokerage firms in the forex and cryptocurrency trading. The company’s main market-driven products are Broker Business Intelligence, Tools for Brokers’ PAMM tool and Trade Processor. Last year, the company received the ‘Best Automated Performance Tool’ award at the Finance Magnates London Summit.