The head of the Central Bank of Russia, Elvira Nabiullina, confirmed that they are considering to issue Central Bank-backed cryptocurrency. However, the central bank’s head confirmed that they would oppose the issuance and circulation of any private currency as it could damage monetary policy and threaten financial stability.
The head of the Central Bank of Russia, Elvira Nabiullina, while speaking in Duma, confirmed that they are actively studying how various digital currencies pilots are working in other countries. However, the central bank stands against the issuance of private cryptocurrencies.
A statement put out by the country’s central bank read that issuing private currencies could damage the monetary policy and threaten the financial stability of the country. However, the Central Bank’s head confirmed that they are considering to issue a state-backed cryptocurrency.
Russia is a key player in the crypto industry.
Recently, when Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao visited Russia for the first time, he said that Russian Vladimir Putin would have the most influential role in the near future of the crypto industry. He was referring to a crypto bill that is pending in the Russian parliament. However, the Central Bank of Russia has no plans of legalizing the use of cryptocurrencies any time soon.
China is expected to launch its Central Bank-backed digital currency any time soon. As reported earlier, Turkey has also joined the list of countries that are planning to issue CBDCs.
CBDC: Governments’ weapon to fight bitcoin?
Many countries are studying stablecoins and planning to launch their state-backed cryptocurrencies. A CBDC is a perfect way for countries like China and Russia to keep track of people’s financial activities as they are completely centralized. On the other hand, bitcoin provides people with financial privacy that does not settle well with countries who like mass surveillance. It is expected that in several countries around the world would issue their own cryptocurrencies in coming years to keep people off from decentralized currencies like bitcoin
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Could Cash Restrictions in Malaysia Boost Crypto Usage
Malaysia has joined a growing list of nations imposing capital controls on their people. Economic and geopolitical tensions are forcing governments to restrict the flow of money across their borders. As this is practically a form of financial subjugation, will more turn to crypto?
Crypto Over Cash Controls?
It was reported by local media this week that Malaysia’s central bank is planning to impose a cash transaction limit of RM25,000 (approx. $US6,000). Bank Negara (BNM) deputy governor and chairman of the National Coordination Committee to Counter Money Laundering (NCC), Datuk Abdul Rasheed Ghaffour, said that the measure was to address the abuse of physical cash used for illicit activities.
The restrictions will apply to all cash transactions including payments of goods and services and donations and transfers between parties and businesses. There are a couple of exemptions however including transactions to and from regulated financial institutions and humanitarian aid donations.
The banker asserted that it would not affect households since, according to their very small survey, 80 percent of them are of low and middle income with average cash transactions well below the limit.
“Our engagements with individuals suggested that a single transaction over RM25,000 by cash is really (unprecedented). This can also be seen with the average total expenditure of households across various income brackets.”
He added that the two-fold objectives of the cash embargo were to complement the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter Financing of Terrorism framework in Malaysia and send a message that anonymous transactions will not be tolerated.
As another nation stomps on the rights of its people, the use of crypto currency may get a boost as a result. It has already been suggested that Bitcoin and crypto usage could spike as it has done in other countries that have imposed capital controls.
No Bitcoin Rush Just Yet
According to Coin.dance which has measured localbitcoins volume in MYR, there has been no increased activity yet which doesn’t mirror the yo-yoing of BTC price over the past couple of years.
LBC vol MYR – Coin.dance
A Reddit on the topic generated a response from a Malaysian in the crypto industry who suggested it may not cause a big Bitcoin rush. Reasoning would be that individuals can still use large amounts of cash providing they inform the bank the purpose of the transfer. This system is in place in many other countries already.
He added that there were many migrant workers in Malaysia that exclusively use cash and it has yet to develop the digital payments systems that are abundant in China. Additionally, crypto usage for payments is also very low there;
“I have yet to stumble on a place that accepts cryptos. And I’m living in the city. Most crypto fans here are probably like me too – more interested in the speculation and trading part although we know quite a bit about the technology too.”
So initially it does not look to be happening though the pattern of regime enforced capital controls is increasing across the world.
$15 Million Property Bought With Bitcoin (BTC), Ripple Reports Surge in XRP Transactions, and Ethereum Upgrade Countdown Begins – Crypto Newsflash
A $15.3 million luxury condo in Manhattan has reportedly been purchased using Bitcoin.
According to the real estate outlet The Real Deal, Magnum Real Estate Group sold the property to a group in Taiwan called the “Affluent Silver International LLC.”
“To complete the transaction the parties used Bitpay and Starr. Eric Hedvat, a broker with Jet Real Estate who represented Magnum, said it was a ‘seamless process.’”
This is the third unit in the building that Magnum has successfully sold using BTC.
Ripple and XRP
Ripple is reporting a surge of transactions on its XRP-based remittance network.
The company says the number of transactions moving through its cross-border payments product called On-Demand Liquidity (ODL) has increased seven-fold since the first quarter of this year.
“In less than a year since the commercialization of ODL, we have seen tremendous growth and customer interest with two dozen customers signed on to use the product.
Some of the notable customers committed to using ODL include MoneyGram, goLance, Viamericas, FlashFX and Interbank Peru. There have been more than 7x the number of transactions using ODL from the end of Q1 to the end of October.”
Ripple launched xRapid, now ODL, in October of 2018 and says 24 companies have signed up to use the product.
The countdown to Ethereum’s Istanbul upgrade is on.
Ethereumnodes.org has created a countdown clock for the event. At time of publishing, the update will be implemented on Friday, December 6th.
The Istanbul hard fork is a system-wide update designed to improve the blockchain’s efficiency and security. It’s the eighth hard fork since Ethereum’s launch in July of 2015.
Ethereum’s core developers are currently searching for any critical errors in the code, and if any are discovered the launch date will be pushed back to January.
ARGO BLOCKCHAIN NOW EMPLOYS 7,000 CRYPTO MINING MACHINES
Argo Blockchain, increased the number of its crypto mining machines to 7,000, with plans to add additional 10,000 machines in 2020.
ARGO TO INCREASE CRYPTO MINING MACHINES BY 10,000
The crypto mining industry saw a surge in interest due to recovering prices in 2019, with many of the miners who previously left the industry making a comeback. Crypto mining heavyweight Argo Blockchain, also saw some positive development, mostly in terms of upgrading their mining gear.
The company has been working on increasing its crypto miners, with quite an ambitious goal in mind. In a recent announcement, Argo stated that it plans to employ as many as 17,000 miners by the end of Q1 2020. The mining firm has already ordered 10,000 machines that should arrive in the following months.
Meanwhile, the UK crypto miner stated that the number of machines that are currently being used was already increased to 7,000. Once the additional 10,000 devices arrive — likely in batches, starting from early December — the company will reach its current goal of having 17,000 miners, total.
ARGO OFFICIALS OPTIMISTIC ABOUT THE NEW INVESTMENT
Argo Blockchain’s plans may seem ambitious at first, particularly since mining equipment can be pretty heavy on pockets. However, this industry saw quite an improvement in 2019, with many expecting that the trend will continue in 2020.
So far, 1,026 S17 Antminer machines, which were being used since May of this year, have already achieved a full payback on the investment, indicating that crypto mining is still very profitable. Argo’s executive chairman, Mike Edwards, commented on the new strategy by saying that the company wishes to ensure that the new mining hardware will deliver the strongest possible results.
Of course, crypto mining hardware itself is evolving and becoming stronger and more capable with release of improvised versions. That is why companies like Argo have to make major investments, in hopes that crypto miners will deliver results with their expectations. Doing so also creates long-term value for shareholders.
In other words, everybody wins. While it remains unknown how crypto prices might perform in 2020, experts appear to be optimistic, which is likely what inspired Argo to make such a decision.