There can be no denying that cryptocurrency and blockchain asset trading has become a significant industry in its own right. This became highly evident in late 2017, where in a remarkable move, global cryptocurrency daily trading volumes matched that of the New York Stock Exchange, with more than $50 billion worth of digital assets traded in a single day. Although these volumes have since reduced in size, both retail and institutional investors are still responsible for billions of dollars’ worth of cryptocurrency trading every day.
However, although we are soon approaching the first decade since Bitcoin was created, there is still virtually no connection between cryptocurrencies and real-world blue-chip stocks – until now.
An Estonian based organization known as DX Exchange are launching the world’s first exchange that will allow users to invest in popular stocks such as Facebook, Amazon and Apple, in exchange for leading cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum.
Most importantly, these asset classes have no relationship with CFDs, which is crucial, because they provide investors with virtually no legal rights to the underlying investment. On the contrary, by using the DX platform, users will own the corporate shares they invest in, without needing to go through a third party broker. Here’s why the exchange could be the next big thing.
Fully regulated in the European Union
The days of cryptocurrency exchange platforms operating in an unregulated manner are over. Global governments and international partners are either in the process of enacting legislation related to blockchain assets, or in the case of nations such as Malta, Singapore and Japan, amongst others – regulation already exists.
This is highly pertinent, as for the cryptocurrency space to gain wide-spread adoption, it must fend off its tag as a modern version of the Wild West. Recognizing the need to do everything by the book, the team at DX have received full regulatory approval from the EFIU, meaning that they are able to offer their trading services to more than 500 million users. Further regulatory collaborations are also on the cards, to include other regions.
On top of getting the green light from European regulators, the DX platform have also formed a notable partnership with NASDAQ. The U.S. based exchange will be supporting the DX platform with its industry leading NASDAQ Matching Engine, which provides the underlying technology for high-frequency trading, as well as a safeguard against manipulation.
The partnership is not only notable because of NASDAQ’s long-standing reputation in the financial services industry, but also because the exchange have expressed ongoing interest in crypto-related assets. For example, NASDAQ are set to launch its own Bitcoin futures market in the New Year, along with a range of other potential projects linked to the digital phenomenon.
A fee structure that ensures retail traders are not penalized for lower quantities
Whilst institutional involvement in the cryptocurrency industry will be highly beneficial in the long-run, it is important to remember that the vast majority of trading is initiated by the retail investor segment. As a result, the DX platform aims to offer a highly lucrative fee-structure that ensures low-level traders are not penalized for small volumes.
On the contrary, traditional third party brokers often charge extortionate fees to purchase blue-chip stocks, which are usually in the form of a percentage of the total share purchase, a fixed-fee, or a combination of the two. This can also apply when the trader attempts to offload their shares.
At the other end of the spectrum, the DX platform is offering a simple monthly subscription service of just 10 Euros, which allows users to perform unlimited free trades up to 50,000 Euros. Once this amount is triggered, additional trading fees will apply. This makes the platform ideal for those that only want to trade smaller amount.
Tokenization that represents legal ownership of blue-chip stocks
We mentioned earlier that a common method for low-level traders to access leading stocks and shares is to engage in CFD trading. Whilst this particular asset class does allow traders to get a piece of the blue-chip space, it is important to note that the trader has no legal right to the underlying asset. Instead, they are simply speculating on the future value of the asset.
This is where the DX platform stands out. In a partnership with MPS Marketplace Securities Ltd, who themselves are regulated in the E.U jurisdiction of Cyprus, DX customers will be able to purchase real-world stocks such as Intel, Facebook and Apple, with the purchase resulting in actual ownership of the asset. The innovative concept to the DX structure is that each purchase is represented in the form of a digital ERC-20 token.
For example, if you purchased $500 worth of Apple stocks, they would be replicated on a 1:1 basis as a digital token that is stored on the Ethereum blockchain – not only guaranteeing security, but ensuring that ownership is transparently represented on the blockchain ledger. At this stage, the purchaser, and only the purchaser, has control over the tokens. This also makes it an easy and seamless process should the owner want to sell or trade the blue-chip stocks, all in a fee-free platform up to the 50,000 Euro threshold.
Ultimately, buying, selling and trading leading blue-chip stocks has never been easier. Added in with the fact that trading costs just 10 Euros a month, and the digital tokens represent real-world ownership in a transparent environment, 2019 could be a very interesting year for the team at DX.
76156|Crypto companies beware-the risks of human error are too great to ignore
If there are three things we know about the human error, it’s that it can be costly, dangerous, and ultimately inevitable.
No matter how competent or intelligent a person is, they are bound to make mistakes, and a single error can lead to substantial losses and devastating repercussions to any company that does not take proactive measures.
This is especially true when it comes to managing or accounting for crypto. Although solutions exist to automate manual tasks and streamline finance workflows, many crypto companies continue to depend on a human workforce, leaving them susceptible, because no human is infallible.
Statistics show that overdependence on human skill is a liability not only in the world of crypto but in any company across many vastly different industries.
To demonstrate the severity of the human error and how it can impact your company, let’s take a look at some of the most telling statistics:
For businesses, incorrect or inconsistent data entry can lead to major issues when filing taxes or completing an audit. For crypto accountants, bookkeeping errors can lead to miscalculations of the business’s financial health and can result in inaccurate projections for reports, growth and total revenues.
Any professional will stress the importance of accuracy and verification for manual data entry. It’s simple, mistakes cost money, reputation and even trust from their customers.
Most crypto CFOs and CEOs are keenly aware of the overall need for increased cybersecurity. But they mistakenly approach the problem from the outside in, rather than the other way around. They believe the biggest threats are external and malicious, but nearly 90 percent of cyber attacks stem from human error.
This can even occur without an employee even realizing it, and many employees have exposed themselves and their companies by responding to phishing emails or using weak passwords.
The stakes are incredibly high in the world of cryptocurrency. One compromised employee account can result in potential financial losses for a company, or endanger the privacy of users or customers. It’s more critical than ever for crypto companies to mitigate risks originating from human error, and employ preventative solutions.
Instead of solely focusing on hackers [who rank fourth among all threat actors, according to Netwrix], c-suite leaders should be focused on investigating tools such as Blox.io, a crypto accounting and bookkeeping platform that provides automated and intelligent technical solutions to circumvent the issue altogether.
Humans are to blame for the vast majority of workplace mistakes. Crypto leaders should absorb this point in particular because people tend to trust human intuition over computer logic. But,over-reliance on employee accuracy could lead to serious problems for any company with too much trust, and not enough checks and balances in place.
On the crypto accounting side, employees may accidentally forget critical workflow steps, incorrectly calculate cost basis or mislabel transactions, or create organizational chaos across accounts, exchanges, and wallets. These acts aren’t intentional, but the consequences are undeniably detrimental to a company’s success, reputation, and bottom line.
Data centers are one of the most vital components to almost every industry in existence. They host our data, private user information, websites, cloud services, and essentially everything that takes place online is flowing through data centers across the globe. To exemplify, Facebook recently faced a social media backlash after its servers went down for hours, with many businesses suffering the loss of service and revenue.
When considering that 22 percent of unplanned data center outages are caused by human error, this should raise legitimate concerns over how data is stored and protected. Moreover, if an interruption in server uptime causes a crypto exchange to go down, the repercussions can mean a loss of millions and major backlash from users. The potential for disaster is real, and this is why businesses must be deliberate and proactive.
To conclude, humans are the driving force behind innovation, and employees are essential for critical thinking on high-level decisions and strategy. However, when introducing automation and technology, businesses can limit their exposure to the risks caused by a human error while still leveraging the experience and intuition of the human workforce.
For any company, crypto or traditional, the fear of human error is real and is unlikely to simply vanish. The only means to protect against human error is to use smarter and more innovative technology to assist and empower your human workforce. By integrating technical solutions, businesses can improve productivity, boost performance and protect against costly human mistakes.
Adam Efrima, Co-founder, Blox:
Adam is a blockchain entrepreneur and active member in the Chinese Financial and Fintech industry, living in Shanghai for over 8 years. Adam previously served in leading roles at the Chinese financial conglomerate, CITIC, and eventually founded the Shanghai office for eToro. After being deeply involved in the blockchain space for several years, Adam went on to co-found Blox.io, where he leads the Blox China headquarters, with plans to expand across APAC.
76008|Machi X Beta launch sets pace for new Intellectual Property marketplaces
Machi X – an open marketplace for copyright and intellectual property rights -has officially launched its Beta version of the platform, setting the standard for blockchain-based tokenization of copyright and IP rights. Originally conceived by famous Taiwanese musician, Jeffrey Huang, Machi X connects fans and artists directly, enabling fans to purchase fractionalized ownership in artist creations [i.e., songs] via tokenized copyrights.
Artists and musicians have struggled to keep pace with the rise of P2P technologies that have largely precluded them from maximizing their opportunities for profiting from their work. Further, the prevalence of intermediaries in traditional music revenue structures has hindered better profits for artists.
Machi X changes that paradigm, by removing costly intermediaries and allowing content creators to focus on their craft, giving them the power to maximize the potential of their pieces.
Fans and supporters of musicians can buy tokens representing fractional ownership in song copyrights with ERC-20 compatible tokens [i.e., on Ethereum] and store them in collections on the market or in wallets – even cold storage wallets.
Users can buy copyright tokens using Machi X, USDT, and Maker Dai currently. The platform plans on expanding its support of other tokens following the Beta.
There are three current artists with IP tokens available on the Beta, including Stanley Huang, Nicky Lee, and Khalil Fong. In total, eight IP tokens are available for trading. Machi X is planning on extending their offering of IP tokens further into the creative landscape, targeting movies and TV shows on its future roadmap.
Jeffrey Huang came up with the idea for Machi X following his own struggles in consistently receiving royalty payments and losing out to expensive middlemen that extracted large portions from his bottom line. Founder of both Mithril and 17 Live, Asia’s largest streaming app, Huang strives to foster a new open era for both content creators and their fans to benefit.
Machi X is a ‘Mithril Forged Company,’ and expects to list the Mithril Token as a way to give back to the broader ecosystem that it is a part of.
Machi X offers an alternative funding option to artists outside the limitations of traditional licensing and intermediary-prone avenues. Based in Taiwan, the current artists are well-known and award-winning musicians in Asia.
Following the Beta, the platform will add support for more artists and musicians who can distribute IP tokens representing a stake in their work for fans to collect and profit from their market price and correlating royalty revenue.
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