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Ethereum Co-Founder Says Tether Backed By USD

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Joseph Lubin, one of the co-founders of Ethereum, has thrown his weight behind the controversial stable coin of Tether (USDT). In an interview with Yahoo Finance, Lubin elaborated why he believes that USDT is backed by actual US dollars in a one-to-one ratio. He added that:

“Tether’s an interesting project. Based on our analysis, which involves just talking to a bunch of people in the space, we do believe that tethers are backed 1-to-1 by U.S. dollars in bank accounts… With respect to market manipulations, I’m not sure that market manipulations are related to Tether directly, if they do exist.”

Tether Market Manipulation

The market manipulations Joseph Lubin is referring to, are claims by a research paper by faculty at the University of Texas (Austin) stating that USDT is used to prop the value of Bitcoin (BTC) during times of turmoil. The co-authors of the paper, Professor John M. Griffin and Ph.D. Candidate Amin Shams of the same institution, stated that USDTs are minted whenever the value of BTC is declining significantly. The newly minted Tethers are then used to prop the value of BTC in the markets.

The paper goes on to conclude that:

“Our analysis centers on examining potential manipulation of Bitcoin and other major cryptocurrencies. We examine whether the growth of a pegged cryptocurrency, Tether, is primarily driven by investor demand, or is supplied to investors as a scheme to profit from pushing cryptocurrency prices up. By mapping the blockchains of Bitcoin and Tether, we are able to establish that entities associated with the Bitfinex exchange use Tether to purchase Bitcoin when prices are falling. Such price supporting activities are successful, as Bitcoin prices rise following the periods of intervention. These effects are present only after negative returns and periods following the printing of Tether.”

According to Lubin, the manipulation in the crypto markets might stem from the fact that most trading platforms are relatively unregulated when compared to traditional securities exchanges. He would add:

“Ideally we’ll get a little better regulation of those centralized exchanges, at least, and we’ll see less sloshing around in price.”

Ethereum’s Difficulty Bomb Delayed

In other news, Ethereum’s core developers have decided to delay the network’s ‘Difficulty bomb’ by agreeing to include the code for such a change into the upcoming Constantinople fork.

The ETH difficulty bomb refers to the increasing difficulty level of puzzles in the mining algorithm used to reward miners with Ethereum on its blockchain. As the puzzles become more difficult to solve, there is a lag in the production of blocks on the ETH network. This lag will continue to slow down the network resulting in a scenario that has been referred to as an ‘Ice Age’ where rewards will not be based on Proof-of-Work but on Proof-of-Stake.

Per the agreement by the Ethereum core developers posted on Github, the difficulty bomb will be delayed for about 18 months and there will be a reduction in the block rewards with the Constantinople fork. The summary decision stated that:

“Starting with `CNSTNTNPL_FORK_BLKNUM` the client will calculate the difficulty based on a fake block number suggesting the client that the difficulty bomb is adjusting around 6 million blocks later than previously specified with the Homestead fork. Furthermore, block rewards will be adjusted to a base of 2 ETH, uncle and nephew rewards will be adjusted accordingly.”

This decision and plans for a hard fork, further provide hope that the Ethereum core developers will also come to a discussion with regards to the scalability issues evident on the Ethereum network.

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Disclaimer: This article should not be taken as, and is not intended to provide, investment advice. Global Coin Report and/or its affiliates, employees, writers, and subcontractors are cryptocurrency investors and from time to time may or may not have holdings in some of the coins or tokens they cover. Please conduct your own thorough research before investing in any cryptocurrency and read our full disclaimer.

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How is the Crypto Market Changing?

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It has been around a month and a half since the start of 2019, and there are already some pretty obvious changes in the way the crypto market operates, especially when compared to the last year. Early 2018 was almost a complete opposite. The previous year started with cryptocurrencies at their strongest, only to see them crashing down after a few weeks. Back then, the ICO model was still quite strong, and so was the hype surrounding the crypto space. New investors kept entering the space, and new startups emerged with their tokens ready to be sold.

As the year progressed, things started to change. The prices continued to drop, the ICO model went down from around $1.4 billion in raised funds at the beginning of the year to only $100 million in the last month.

The ICO model lost investors’ trust, as many of the projects turned out to be either too weak to survive after the crypto winter struck, or scams which tricked investors out of their money and disappeared. Not to mention that the increase in ICOs popularity attracted the regulators who cracked down on them pretty hard, especially in the US.

With all of that happening, it is of a small surprise that the investors started giving up on ICOs, especially with the constant drops in prices which saw even the largest coins…

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Understanding the Uses of Different Types Of Cryptocurrencies

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Cryptocurrencies – a term which has become incredibly prominent in the mainstream media during recent years due to the proliferation of Bitcoin millionaires. As a result, the new form of currency has earned an almost infamous status. However, as with any major step forward, there is still much confusion regarding the use of cryptocurrencies, what different types of innovative electronic cash exist and what they might mean for the future.

We’re putting all of this to rest as we explain what each of the leading cryptocurrencies can do.

Bitcoin

The most popular form of cryptocurrency, Bitcoin was first thought up in 2008 by the elusive and still unknown creator, Satoshi Nakamoto, who published the whitepaper online.

It took almost a decade for the cryptocurrency to reach its peak, but in December 2017 a single Bitcoin roughly exchanged for the price of $17,000, meaning anyone who held a substantial amount of the electronic cash became significantly wealthy.

In its early years, the cryptocurrency was strictly used as an alternative for cash transactions, and predominantly for trading goods and services. However as it has increased in popularity, its range of uses has also widened, now deployed for a variety of purposes including acting as collateral for investments at merchant banks, a direct debit for subscriptions services and most notably for sports betting.

Ripple

Bitcoin’s closest source of competition, Ripple was founded…

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New DoJ Ruling May Cripple Gambling dApps

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A new decision made by the US Justice Department has expanded restrictions regarding online gambling in the US affecting gambling dApps. While the Federal Wire Act of 1961 prohibited online gambling regarding sports since 2011, the new decision expanded on this, and it now includes all forms of internet gambling. Unfortunately for many, this now also includes cryptocurrencies.

The new decision came due to considerable difficulties when it comes to guaranteeing that only interstate betting will take place and that payments will not be routed via different states.

The new announcement was explained in a 23-page-long opinion issued by the Department of Justice’s legal team, which pointed out that the 2011 decision misinterpreted the law. According to that decision, transferring funds was to be considered a violation, but data transfers were not included. By exploiting this oversight, it was possible for gamblers to turn to internet gambling. Unsurprisingly, many have realized this early on, including startups, as well as large, established firms. This, of course, also included cryptocurrency companies as well.

The new decision changes what is allowed online

The decision to include all forms of internet gambling is a massive hit in the…

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