A Bright Future ahead as Bloomberg Launches Cryptocurrency Benchmark Index

Cryptocurrency Benchmark Index launched by Bloomberg and Galaxy Digital Capital Management

A leading digital asset management firm founded by Michael Novogratz named Galaxy Digital Capital Management LP together with Bloomberg launched the Bloomberg Galaxy Crypto Index (BGCI). The aim of the index is to track the performance of most liquid and largest portion of the cryptocurrency market. The BGCI measures the performance of ten USD-traded cryptocurrencies including Ethereum, Ripple, Bitcoin, and Zcash and is market capitalization-weighted. The constituents of the index are diversified across various categories of digital assets like mediums of exchange, stores of value, privacy assets, and smart contract protocols.

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In the evolution of the digital assets space, the creation of the index marks an important step as it allows independent benchmarking for investors and facilitated diversified exposure. a rules-based methodology is used by the BGCI and uses data which has passed both Galaxy Digital Capital Management’s and Bloomberg due diligence processes. Alan Campbell, Global Product Manager for Bloomberg Indices said: “Today’s launch of the Bloomberg Galaxy Crypto Index reflects our clients’ growing interest in cryptocurrencies.” He added, “The index brings our rigorous approach to index construction to cryptos and will provide investors with a transparent benchmark to gauge the performance of the broader market.”

The CEO and Founder of Galaxy Digital Capital Management, Michael Novogratz said “The Bloomberg Galaxy Crypto Index brings unprecedented transparency to the crypto markets. We are excited to help drive the decentralized revolution forward through the creation of BGCI.”

At the inception, the BGCI contains the following ten cryptocurrencies:

Composition of Bloomberg Galaxy Crypto Index
Composition of Bloomberg Galaxy Crypto Index

{More and more are moving from traditional finance to crypto}

West Virginia Contests Elections Using Blockchain Technology 

West Virginia becomes the first state across the globe to start the first-ever government-run, blockchain-mediated vote. Blockchain voting was trialed on a limited amount of people in the primary elections that concluded on May 8th. The company behind the voting system named Voatz has made an application which allows an individual to vote irrespective of their geolocation but ensures that the voting person is eligible to do the same.

Voters during West Virginia Elections
Voters during West Virginia Elections

Mac Warner, the West Virginia Secretary of State is considering making the system available for the general election this November if the trials prove to be successful and trustworthy. The communications director for Mac Warner, Mike Queen stated on Ethnews that “Our team believes blockchain does provide a heightened level of security on this type of mobile voting app. We’re genuinely hoping that will allow this type of a mobile app to be made available in the future – as early perhaps as our general election – to military voters.” 

{Gold and bitcoin are often compared, but is this valid?}

Intercontinental Exchange Plans to Bring Bitcoin to Wall Street

Bitcoin seems to have achieved a level of relevance with some institutional players, After months of denouncement and scrutiny from prominent figures in finance, such as Warren Buffet and Jamie Dimon. During last week, The New York Times published a report that the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), the parent company of New York Stock Exchange planning a Bitcoin exchange of its own.

Traders at Wall Street
Traders at Wall Street

The platform aims to enable big investors to hold, sell, and buy digital asses with swap contracts. It is expected that the initiative could represent a massive shift in Wall Street’s perception of Bitcoin if the plans were to come to fruition as this would be the first trading operation launched by a conventional financial market. It must also be noted that the second largest securities exchange in the world, Nasdaq also announced recently its plans to implement a cryptocurrency exchange once the regulatory issue is resolved. The move by ICE to facilitate Bitcoin trading could result in breaking down barriers to entry for larger investors, increasing adoption and maybe nudge the price up a bit.

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Facebook Forms Exploratory Blockchain Team

According to the reports from CNBC, the head of Facebook’s messaging app Messenger, David Marcus announced that the social media site is exploring possible applications for blockchain technology. Marcus shared in a post Tuesday afternoon on his personal page stating “I’m setting up a small group to explore how to best leverage blockchain across Facebook, starting from scratch.” For almost four years Marcus has been leading Messenger. He joined cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase as a board member in December last year. However, Facebook has not yet revealed how interested it is in applying blockchain.

{Google’s ban on crypto ads is set to be in effect June 2018. The effects remain to be seen.}

This move by Facebook could be attributed to its latest broader shake-up of the product team. the company will operate under three divisions going forward namely, a family of apps” group, “central product services” and “new platforma and infra”.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg in January said that in order to explore the potential of digital currencies for empowering individuals, he would be looking into the same. He said that the use of decentralized systems like those of cryptocurrency could be made in taking away power from the centralized system and place it back in the hands of the individuals.

SEC Commissioner doesn’t support ‘Blanket’ ICO Classification

An SEC commissioner during last week said that a sandbox for ICOs is not the best approach to token regulation. Commissioner Hester Peirce told the audience during the Medici Conference that “My fear that regulators will grab hold of the shovels and buckets is why I am often wary of so-called regulatory sandboxes. I am entirely in favor of finding ways to make appropriate regulatory allowances that clear the way for innovation to flourish. What troubles me about sandboxes, however, is that the regulator is typically sitting there next to the entrepreneurs.”

{Don’t have your own venture capital firm? Be sure to read our latest crypto investing tips article.}

In her ICO-focused speech, Peirce went on to argue that an “open communication” between regulators is required without a sandbox and favored a “lifeguard” approach wherein the regulators “watches over what is happening, but she is not sitting with sandcastle builders monitoring their every design decision.”

Comissioner Hester Peirce during her Speech
Comissioner Hester Peirce during her Speech

Blockchain sandboxes are regarded as the means of satisfying regulators without quashing innovation and has become increasingly popular amongst global regulators. Bermuda, Lithuania, and Malta are amongst many nations who are experimenting with the idea.

The Commissioner also spoke about the possible impact of regulations on innovation and it would create boundaries for innovation if tokens are classified as securities. She said “They will, over time, come to look more and more like securities and securities offering. Innovations that might otherwise have occurred that don’t fit within that ‘security’ framework may never come to fruition.”

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