Spotlight news this week: “SEC Decision That Ethereum Is Not a Security Paves Way for ETH Futures”

Reading news with a cup of coffee is what a Bitcoin trader may do everyday. Among tons of crypto news that seem to take more time than you think, Remitano is happy to give you highlighted stories that we have collected during the second week of June.

SEC Decision That Ethereum Is Not a Security Paves Way for ETH Futures

Ether is not a security, according to Bill Hinman, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Director of Corporate Finance. “Based on my understanding of the present state of ether, the ethereum network, its decentralized structure, we believe current offers and sales of ether are not securities transactions.”

This is a good new for Ethereum. From the start Vitalik did not sign up for Ethereum as a security. This can make the second biggest cryptocurrency become illegal if SEC declares that Ethereum is a security.

The statement is right in line with SEC Chairman Jay Clayton’s earlier statement that cryptocurrencies are not securities. Rather, Clayton said digital tokens that back companies like stocks are, but cryptocurrencies don’t behave like securities.

Hinman also noted the SEC will not be changing rules applying to crypto and digital assets. Digital assets that back companies still need to register with the SEC.

Hinman updated this by saying, “Can a digital asset originally sold in a securities offering eventually be sold in something other than a security? How about cases when there’s no longer a company? I believe in those cases, the answer is a qualified yes.”

Money-Laundering Task Force Wants Binding Rules for Crypto Exchanges

Task Force Wants Binding Rules for Crypto Exchanges

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF), an intergovernmental organization that develops policies to tackle money laundering, is planning to develop binding rules for the world’s cryptocurrency exchanges, a report indicates.

The official stated that Japanese authorities aspire to become a leader in the matter and to promote the adoption of new binding rules by 2019. The government official said that the group aimed to hold talks around the subject starting on June 24, also added that Japan’s government hopes to cooperate with the US and European countries on the issue.

While current non-binding guidelines suggest some money-laundering controls for the industry – including that exchanges should be registered, suspicious activity reported and customers verified – it is currently at different nations’ discretion as to whether and how they are implemented.

The FATF talks, according to the report, will also look at the effectiveness of the existing rules, their application to new exchanges and how any new system would work with nations that have banned crypto trading.

Walmart Patent Eyes Crypto Payments for Power Supply Precision

Walmart Power Supply Precision

According to a patent application filed by Walmart in December 2017 and revealed on Thursday by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, retail giant Walmart is exploring a way to let households manage their electricity bills using cryptocurrency – a concept it says could potentially lead to increased efficiency and lower prices.

Since the requirements would be visible on the public ledger, energy providers would be able to accurately allocate the required electricity to the household. Each transaction would also be recorded on the blockchain.

As the cycle goes on, the user’s demand and consumption history would be traceable and transparent, and could be used to make more accurate requests for supply. Further, if the actual usage of a specific device is more than is prepaid for, other devices can lend their budgeted electricity, while excess electricity would be credited to next cycle.

Walmart explained that the effort comes as a way to address a growing difference between energy provided and that actually consumed, an imbalance that leads to spiking electricity costs.

The patent, though currently in review process and not yet granted, marks the retail giant’s latest effort in exploring cryptocurrency’s underlying blockchain technology for consumer use.

As previously reported by CoinDesk, the company has also filed blockchain patent applications that seek to utilize blockchain to boost its digital sales, as well as track its food supply chain.

Former Trump Advisor Steve Bannon Calls Crypto ‘Revolutionary’, Plans Entry Into Market

Former White House strategist Steve Bannon has revealed he owns a “good stake” in bitcoin and is interested in creating his own “deplorables coin” cryptocurrency.

The far right agitator told The New York Times that digital currenciescould help him regain power and influence, saying, “control of the currency is control of everything.”

The decentralised nature of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies fits with the libertarian politics he has spent much of his career promoting, as does its potential to undermine the established order.

“It’s disruptive populism,” Mr Bannon said. “It takes control back from central authorities. It’s revolutionary.

“It was pretty obvious to me that unless you got somehow control over your currency, all these political movements were going to be beholden to who controlled the currency.”

New Blockchain-Based Supply Chain System Is Presented by Microsoft and Ardents

Microsoft and Ardents

Microsoft has partnered with Ardents, a supply tracking solutions provider, to develop a new product tracking platform using blockchain technology, AI, and IoT, Food Engineering reported June 14.

The new blockchain solution, which is called Ardents NovaTrack, was presented at Viva Tech 2018 in Paris. The system offers end-to-end traceability and visibility from the point of origin along the whole supply chain, allowing users to trace single product items within a case. The product was initially designed for the pharmaceutical industry in order to fight distribution of fraudulent copies of drugs, but the developers are reportedly targeting other high-value industries.

According to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), an estimated 10 percent of pharmaceutical products sold worldwide and 2.5 percent of global imports are counterfeit.

Last month, U.S.-based life science research marketplace Scientist.com revealed a new blockchain platform designed to track and protect pharmaceutical data. Within the project, blockchain technology will reportedly be used to verify and validate the entire supply chain.

Canada Releases Official Draft of New Crypto Regulations Focused on KYC/AML

The Canadian government has released an official draft of new regulations on crypto exchanges and payment processors, Canada Gazette reports June 9.

According to the draft, the new regulations seek to address a “number of deficiencies” that the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) outlined after their evaluation in 2015-16, namely in strengthening Canada’s Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Terrorist Financing Regime (AML/ATF).

The new regulations will treat crypto exchanges and payment processors as money service businesses (MSB), which requires them to report large transactions — those over $10,000 Canadian dollars ($7700 USD) — and a new Know Your Customer (KYC) threshold set at transactions of $1000 CAD ($770 USD).

The draft also contains a cost-benefit analysis, which reveals the regulations would cost about $61 CAD mln ($47 mln USD) over the next 10 years.

Australian airport makes history by having every merchant accept cryptocurrencies

Brisbane International Airport is set to make history by becoming the first requiring all merchants operating there accept cryptocurrency, with the shopkeepers accepting numerous coins, including Dash, Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Nem, and Steem.

The airport serves 17 million domestic passengers annually, along with 5.3 million international flyers.

The payment processing software will be set up by Travelbybit, and is designed to give travelers more payment choices.

The move comes on the heels of an Australian government edict in which it was announced that cash purchases of over $10,000 AUD would no longer be allowed.

Oxford Profs Plan Launch of World’s First Blockchain-Based, Decentralized University

Oxford Profs Plan Launch of World's First Blockchain-Based, Decentralized University

A group of Oxford professors are seeking full-degree granting powers in the EU for the world’s first “blockchain university”, according to an email shared with Cointelegraph today, June 14.

According to the team of academics behind Woolf Development, led by Joshua Broggi from the Faculty of Philosophy at Oxford, the proposed “blockchain university” will adopt the traditional Oxbridge course and collegiate structure by focusing on individual tutorial-led modules that will be available to students either on- or offline. The project’s design is “geographically agnostic,” prioritizing a “borderless” academic community over local or national ties.

Woolf’s whitepaper suggests that a blockchain-powered university can address many of the issues currently affecting universities worldwide, including sky-high tuition fees for students, cumbersome bureaucracy and administration costs, and precarious and underpaid academic teaching posts.

As the whitepaper outlines, the immutability of blockchain can function to prevent students from falsifying their academic records, with smart contracts automating students’ attendance, credits and academic paper submissions.

Woolf’s first college, Ambrose, is set to launch in fall 2018. The proposed fees are set to $400 per tutorial, or $19,200 per year “before scholarships.”

A native, fully pre-mined and ERC20-compliant WOOLF token will be used for a wide range of functions, including tuition custodianship, the university budget, internal project developments, and in university governance (voting will be free, but proposing a vote carries a cost as an anti-spamming measure).

Hollywood Actors Set to Star in Crypto-Themed Blockbuster

Hollywood Crypto-Themed Blockbuster

Hollywood will shoot and release its first movie centered on cryptocurrency this year, industry media report today, June 15.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, ‘Crypto’ will focus on laundering of virtual assets and see star roles from the cast of popular US series including Westworld and Mad Men.The lead roles will be played by Beau Knapp of Netflix’s Seven Seconds, as well as Alexis Bledel of Gilmore Girls fame.

Set in upstate New York, the indie “thriller” will tell the story of how an anti-money launderingagent uncovers a network of fraud and corruption in a small town. Bledel will play the source of the corrupt activities, in the form of a “mysterious art dealer.”

“Cryptocurrency has captured the attention and imagination of consumers and entrepreneurs all over the world but has never been explored in film in such a nuanced and exciting way,” co-producer Jordan Levine told the publication.

Collected by Remitano.