January 25, 2016 - In This Issue:







Paypal Turns to Bitcoin Expert to Future-Proof Itself
A man described as being a "bitcoin entrepreneur" has joined Paypal, with the traditional money-shifting business inviting Wences Casares to pull up a chair at its board table.

Casares is best known for being the founder of bitcoin processor Xapo, plus he's had past successes in the world of the digital wallet with a business known as Lemon.

As for what he's likely to actually do for Paypal, the company's CEO Dan Schulman said: "Wences's unique line of sight into the future of commerce is ideally aligned with PayPal's vision of transforming the management and movement of money for people around the globe."

Bitcoin Is Thriving As Stock Markets Dive
In a market crisis, investors should consider safe-haven investments to protect their portfolios. In an era when gold has underperformed for years, bitcoin, the digital currency, might be one answer.

Are markets in crisis? Some financial gurus like George Soros believe its 2008 all over again. While it's probably too early to tell, to Soros' point, the dramatic moves in certain assets mimic that of 2008.

In this first week of the New Year, the S&P 500 has retreated almost 4%, the FTSE 100 has fallen more than 5%, and the Shanghai Composite has lost almost 12%. It's also worth mentioning oil, which continues to crumble, slid to a 12-Year low.

7 Emerging Trends For Bitcoin and the Blockchain
Over the holiday season, CoinDesk published a wide range of feature articles from experts and stakeholders in and outside of the bitcoin and blockchain industry.

Billed as our 2015 Review, the series encouraged guest writers - including experts on law and finance, academics, entrepreneurs and even readers - to discuss the year past and the year ahead.

Our contributors didn't always agree, but they did come up with a number of intriguing predictions, each influenced by their unique positions and experiences in the field.

2016 is likely to see blockchain technology move beyond discussion and into the financial market, professional services firms say.

In exclusive pieces by PwC and Deloitte, both of the firms, which are actively working with financial partners to develop proofs-of-concept (POCs), believe their work will see a wider audience this year.

How bitcoin tech could spark a revolution in government services
The bitcoin digital currency is underpinned by a distributed ledger based on block chain technology: in this case the distributed bitcoin ledger ensures that the bitcoins are authentic. But the basic block chain approach can also be modified to incorporate rules, smart contracts, and digital signatures, which could make it a handy tool for government services.

Those who have been attracted to bitcoin largely because it is perceived to be free of government control may be surprised to see the underlying technology enthusiastically promoted by government, but a new report 'Distributed Ledger Technology: Beyond block chain' from the UK government's chief scientific adviser Sir Mark Walport said that distributed ledger technologies have the potential to help governments.

Areas of opportunity include help "to collect taxes, deliver benefits, issue passports, record land registries, assure the supply chain of goods and generally ensure the integrity of government records and services".

The UK's Chief Scientific Adviser and Scientist Recommends Bitcoin's Blockchain
In a new major report submitted by the Chief Scientific Adviser of the UK today, the government's Chief Scientist Sir Mark Walport explained the innovation has the potential to help governance to politicians and leaders of authority.

The report, titled 'Distributed Ledger Technology: Beyond Block chain' sees Sir Mark Walport explain how distributed ledger technology or the blockchain can help governments collect taxes, issue passports, deliver benefits and "ensure the integrity of government records and services.

The introduction is clear in pinning the origins of the blockchain, which it states "was invented to create the peer-to-peer digital cash Bitcoin, in 2008."

Bitcoin gets its due share of prominence in the report, enough that an excerpt reads: "this report isn't about Bitcoin. It is about the algorithmic technologies that enable Bitcoin and their power to transform ledgers as tools to record, enable and secure an enormous range of transactions."

Still, Bitcoin is mentioned no less than over a hundred times in the report. The report also opined different take of the cryptocurrency compared to the stigma it usually receives.

Is the Number of Investors Preferring Bitcoin Over Fiat Growing?
In the January 2016 press release of Bnktothefuture.com, it was stated that approximately $1bn in venture capital has been invested in Bitcoin companies in the last seven years.  In less than a year approximately 5% of that sum has already been invested through BnktoTheFuture.com.

They have also claimed that 10% of this investment made through them has used the digital currency BitcoinCT r:  8, that exists without the need for investors to use a bank at all instead of traditional fiat money. Does this mean that the number of investors preferring Bitcoin over fiat is growing?

Is the investment made through Bitcoin increasing in the entire market or is it true just for BnktotheFuture.com?

Simon Dixon, the CEO of BnktotheFuture.com believes that the 10% investment made using cryptocurrency is unique to them, and in the real world Bitcoin investing is tiny compared to fiat money. He stated:

"We are the only online investment platform that is able to compliantly accept fiat and Bitcoin so there is no other comparison. Most coin sales don't accept fiat as they are not regulated to do so."

Popular Digital Currency Bitcoin Is Nowhere Close To Dying Just Yet
If there was any doubt left in people's mind, it is safe to say Bitcoin is far from dead. Even though the digital currency has made the obituaries more times than people can count these days, the demise of Bitcoin has been greatly exaggerated every time. Mainstream media outlets still refer to digital currency as a failing system, while fiat economies and crumbling and oil becomes all but worthless. While Bitcoin started the recovery process, there is no improvement in sight for traditional finance.

Unlike what mainstream media wants people to believe - most of these outlets are sponsored by banks and consorts anyway - Bitcoin is far from dead. Yes, the digital currency faced a major obstacle when Mike Hearn vented his frustration on Medium and switched camps to join R3. But at the same time, Bitcoin community members have seen the flaws exposed by Hearn, and now is the time to let their voice be heard.

Make sure to let anyone who wants to hear it know that Bitcoin is still alive, and kicking back in full force. Stopping the march of digital currency into mainstream society can be slowed down, but the machine is still working hard to push progress to new levels. Even the Bitcoin price seems to be stabilizing itself at an acceptable value for the time being

Bitcoin Is Out To Swing Investing Around
There has been a pronounced growth in the number of Bitcoin wallets since the creation of this cryptocurrency, the rate of growth has been observed to show a sharp increase within the last two years. Considering the amount of BitcoinCT r:  4 wallets in existence, and the forecasted growth within the next few years, could the bitcoin wallet cause a significant change within the world of investing?

Every investor among other things considers primarily the inherent cost of any given investment, and the turnaround time of ventures such as these are major factors that will determine the viability of the investment.

The peer-to-peer (P2P) nature of Bitcoin and the absence of intermediaries has seen the cryptocurrency appear to be very friendly and cost effective to its users.

Recent predictions have seen experts forecast a near future where Bitcoin will significantly change the way that investors carry out their businesses around the globe.

Alexander Bastrykin Views Bitcoin as a Grave Threat to the Russian Federation
According to recent statements by Alexander Bastrykin, Chairman of Russia's Investigative Committee, digital currencies such as Bitcoin pose a great threat to the state's monopoly on the issuance of currency. The chairman warned that the rapid proliferation of virtual currency will eventually result in the destabilization of the financial health of the Russian Federation:

"According to expert estimates, the turnover of money substitutes in Russia for up to 1 percent of GDP. If you exceed this figure by more than 10 percent of this tool will represent a real threat to the financial stability of the state."

In an interview with Rossiyskaya Gazeta, Bastrykin argued that criminals and terrorists are the primary beneficiaries of anonymous virtual currencies such as Bitcoin, "Anonymity payments motivates the use of virtual currency for crime, including such as trafficking in drugs, arms, terrorism financing, tax evasion."

Argentina-based Payment Operator enBitcoins Expands To Colombia
Recently, Argentina-based payment operator enBitcoins expanded its services to Colombia. The company's CEO and founder, Marcelo Guillen told CoinTelegraph they are offering the benefits of Bitcoin utility payments to local residents. Five days ago they posted a small announcement about the launch of their Colombian office at Tarringa.

enBitcoins was the first BitcoinCT r:  4 bills payment service in Argentina. They allow users to pay bills via the Internet without the need  to go out of your home. They charge a 2% fee for their services.
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