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Image of The Week, 17-21 of December: Forbes, The New York Times, Bloomberg and Other

Ian Marchewski

The most important and relevant news about blockchain and virtual currencies that was collected by Binewstoday team from the most trusted sources for you. Get acquainted with the hottest digital economy trends and events below.

Malaysia gets first blockchain bank (OpenGov Asia)

The pioneering physical blockchain bank will soon be launched in Labuan, Malaysia’s federal territory. South Korean cryptocurrency exchange along with a couple of other organizations are responsible for its creation. The newborn financial institution is going to handle financial investments related to blockchain, cryptocurrency, and will also offer some other digital banking services. Bank’s blockchain activities will be managed by a successful crypto company, which managed to raise US$32.5 million in its recent ICO.

Malaysia and the Labuan hub especially have been recognized as a centre of blockchain development and.reportedly the steps are being made towards the creation of the government-backed coin.

ConsenSys plans to spin out most of its startups, and it’s going to mean layoffs (The Verge)

The Ethereum-based blockchain technology conglomerate and startup incubator could get rid of up to 60 percent of employees, The Verge reports. The company will also give up supporting an impressive number of its startups. And that happens just a month after ConsenSys founder Joe Lubin announced a 13 percent staff cutoff. The experts say that these changes are being made in order to adapt the company to a new reality, which is quite opposite to the initial vision where Ethereum was $10,000 worth. The Verge’s source also reveals that all the unnecessary spendings like funding of travels and events are also being severely reduced.

As Bitcoin Trading Shifts Shape, Big Money Stays Away (The New York Times)

Monthly cryptocurrency trading volumes at major exchanges reached $235.8 billion in November and this is a threefold rise from the bitcoin bubble emergence period in September 2017. But these figures are still half lower than their peak a year ago. At the same time, volumes at major retail-focused exchanges such as US-based Coinbase and Poloniex show a 22 and 74 percent decrease respectively.

As we witness the retail punters’ exodus, volumes soar at the exchanges such as Bitfinex that are favored by bigger investors. The industry insiders tend to connect this to the growing activity of mixture of cryptocurrency miners and startups with big holdings, plus prop traders, hedge funds, wealthy individuals and families.

Blythe Masters and the End of a Blockchain Era (Bloomberg)

Masters, who used to be the main person behind the “blockchain, not Bitcoin” philosophy steps down as CEO of Digital Asset Holdings. Her supported idea was that the technological infrastructure of the dark web anti-bank and anti-government cryptocurrency could be cleaned up and adopted by blue-chip firms and banks. Bloomberg says that “timing is good” for Masters to step down and cites its own predictions from 2016 and 2017, noting that the problem was not in the idea, but in the process of its implementation. The majority of the banks, who could barely handle IT upgrades, were not ready at all to lead the tech revolution.

Investors Still Interested In Cryptocurrency But Crave More Education (Forbes)

Forbes shares the newest research by Israel’s eToro which shows that most of investors the company surveyed are still interested in trading digital tokens despite a major decline in the price all year. At the same time, 69% of respondents, who have traded crypto before, were interested in learning more about investing in cryptocurrency. And almost a half of those who haven’t, also name lack of proper education as their main reason.

“There’s a huge demand that is not currently being satisfied to get advice from registered investment advisors about how to get into this asset class,” says the Forbes’ source.

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