Coinbase expands OTC and institutional trading services into Asia and Europe | Bank for International Settlements argues Bitcoin ‘is not sustainable without block rewards’

Bitcoin $3,614                    Ethereum $119.32    
Crypto Mkt Cap $121B              BTC Dominance 52.30%  

“[The value of cryptocurrencies] might be to catalyze our thinking on how society can handle access to data and the right to edit it, a much-needed impulse at a time characterized by loss of privacy and the rise of technology-driven disinformation campaigns.” — Raphael Auer, Principal Economist in Monetary Policy Dept. at BIS

The Big Block

Coinbase, the U.S. cryptocurrency exchange, announced Tuesday a plan to push the international expansion of its over-the-counter trading unit.

The San Francisco-based firm rolled out the desk, which brings together buyers and sellers off of its main exchange venue, in November. Now, the platform will be available to certain customers in Asia, the UK, and Europe, according to a press release.

So-called OTC desks oversee much of the volumes in cryptocurrency markets, as noted by research from consultancy Tabb Group, which estimates that trading activity in the OTC market is as much as three times larger than trading activity on exchange venues. Coinbase acts as an agency broker, bringing together the two sides of a trade.

Coinbase Prime, the prime broker business aimed at on-boarding large institutional clients, and its custody business, Coinbase Custody, will also be available in the aforementioned regions. As such, Coinbase will now support for the first time Swift transfers from non U.S. bank accounts in many countries it did not support fiat deposits. To be clear, the firm had already been offering retail services to a number of European countries, including Italy, the UK, and Sweden.

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Around The Block

Bitcoin: The trillion-dollar underdog

In just 10 short years, bitcoin has built a market spanning the globe with millions of active participants. It has generated interest and attracted talent away from the largest banks, hedge funds, consulting firms, and technology companies. Yet despite the numbers, it has retained underdog sentiment among major market players relative to its traditional asset peers. — More

Bank for International Settlements argues Bitcoin ‘is not sustainable without block rewards’

Raphael Auer, Principal Economist of Monetary and Economic Department at the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), wrote a paper titled “Beyond the doomsday economics of “proof-of-work” in cryptocurrencies.” The paper starts with showing how the popularity of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies soared in late 2017, outstripping interest in sovereign currencies, or even gold. Yet Auer points out that according to research by Chainalysis, few people were actually using Bitcoin to buy things. — More

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