Three well-known crypto trading firms are banding together on a new venture | ICOs are not liquidating their ETH treasuries. Yet. | Possible scenarios following the Bitcoin Cash hard fork

Bitcoin $4,359                    Ethereum $131.88 
Crypto Mkt Cap $143B              BTC Dominance 52.90%

“Someone's sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.” — Warren Buffet, CEO Berkshire Hathaway

The Big Block

A band of cryptocurrency trading desks is opening up their books to help institutions better understand the price of bitcoin — and they’re hoping the move will take the floundering market to the next level.

Three major cryptocurrency over-the-counter traders — Genesis Trading, Cumberland, and Circle Trade — announced they would provide data for a new index, dubbed MVIS Bitcoin US OTC Spot Index. The new product, which is run by MVIS, a division of asset manager VanEck, is a standout given it draws data from OTC desks as opposed to exchanges, such as Coinbase and Kraken. “Transparency is coming to the over-the-counter market,” Gabor Gurbacs, head of digital asset strategy at VanEck said in an exclusive interview with The Block. “Before this no one would publish the price and it happened behind the scenes.”

Whereas most of the attention in crypto has been on large spot exchanges, most of the action happens on OTC desks where trades are executed in the shadows. Trading volumes across the crypto market have floated around $20 billion in recent days, but some estimates put OTC volumes significantly higher. “The big deals have to go OTC. A lot of the exchanges limit the order size, so you have to break up your orders, and that’s just fatal,” explained Monica Summerville, director of fintech research at Tabb Group, in an interview with Forbes.

Read More on The Block (3 Minutes)


Around The Block

The possible scenarios following the Bitcoin Cash hard fork

On November 15th at block 556767, the Bitcoin Cash network splintered into two competing factions: Bitcoin ABC and Bitcoin SV. Regular readers of The Block know we’ve been on the forefront of Bitcoin Cash debate — covering all the major events leading up the hard fork. The Block summed up the reasons for the debate, interviewed major participants, mapped out the key companies involved, and covered institutional investors’ views on the split.

With the chain split completed and both sides adamantly asserting they deserve the Bitcoin Cash brand, the following examines the different scenarios that might come to fruition in the days and weeks ahead. — More


ICOs are not liquidating their ETH treasuries, despite price declines. Yet.

The price of ethereum has dropped to an 18-month low on Tuesday, settling at $135 at 10am ET. While no one is certain what is causing the recent sell-off, one of the underlying catalysts is certainly the SEC’s heightened enforcement action.

Two weeks ago, the SEC charged the founder of EtherDelta, Zachary Coburn, with operating an unregistered national securities exchange that allowed trading of tokens that are securities under federal securities laws. Four days ago, the SEC announced it had settled charges against two companies (Airfox and Paragon) that raised funds through ICOs. As The Block highlighted, the SEC appears to be developing a template for ICO enforcement. It therefore seems reasonable to expect further enforcement action in the near term. — More


Bakkt has pushed back its bitcoin futures launch to 2019, but phase two is still on track — More

A certain type of investor is exiting the crypto market for the first time, according to Genesis Trading CEO — More

The Spanish government will inspect 15,000 crypto users to prevent tax fraud — More

TransferWise CEO: We won’t use blockchain until there is more adoption — More

Department of Justice is investigating Tether’s connection to Bitcoin’s price rally — More


The Block wants to understand who our readers are. Please take a few minutes to respond to our short survey. Your participation will give us a better understanding of our readers and what interests them! Please note that the survey results will be anonymized and aggregated. Please take the survey here.