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Western Union Ready to Support Customers’ Crypto Adoption

  By David Drake   For over a hundred years, the global money transfer landscape has radically evolved from localized payments, that were the preserve of banks, to the emergence of numerous money transfer companies. One of the world’s leading money transfer company, Western Union, has managed to keep up with the changing financial landscape. It has established itself as a trusted global leader, operating in more than 200 countries with over 500,000 agents worldwide. Recently, Western Union announced it is ready to add cryptos to the list of currencies on its list of operations. Months prior to this announcement, the company was against plans to include cryptocurrencies in its transfer business citing low adoption of cryptos by its customers. But this has since changed. Speaking to Reuters Plus, Odilon Almeida, President, Western Union Global Money Transfer said the company is ready to include any currencies in its service. He ... Read More »

Western Union Ready for Cryptos: How will this Impact Uptake of Digital Assets?

  By David Drake   Western Union, the global money transfer leader says it is ready for digital currencies. The company is not entirely new to cryptocurrencies as it has been testing Ripple, an international technology payment for months. In a recent announcement, the company indicated that it is equipped to incorporate digital currencies, as it views them like any other currencies. The Potential In view of the potential that blockchain and cryptocurrencies have in business, Western Union sees their eventual use as possible alternatives. Existing resources that the company has, like billions of client accounts, a global network of retail outlets and its existing digital transfer of fiat are likely to make it successful. At the same time, Western Union’s decision to incorporate digital currencies in its services is likely to have a positive impact on the cryptocurrency industry. Transactions are currently considered slow and expensive but integration of ... Read More »

Why Western Union is All Set to Include Cryptos in its Services

  By David Drake   Western Union,  the global funds remittance giant is considering going paperless this year. In an interview with Reuters Plus, Odilon Almeida, Western Union President, said the company has been exploring ways to include cryptocurrencies in its services. The global funds transfer giant has also considered employing blockchain technology in its operations as a way of adding value to its services. Consumers do not have to own cryptocurrencies or digital wallets to access this service as the company plans to offer conversions to fiat currencies. According to Almeida, Western Union is set to work with any currency. He said the company is already operation with 130 currencies and if at any point it finds introduction of cryptocurrencies strategic, it will just view it as another currency. Crypto Integration But the plan to add cryptos in its services  will only take off if the company secures global ... Read More »

Crypto vs Institutional Investors: What Issues Must Industry Players and Governments Address?

  By David Drake   Cryptocurrencies have captured the attention of a growing number of companies and institutions. The Dutch audit firm, KPMG, is among the latest firms to focus on cryptocurrencies. As one of the leading four global audit firms, KPMG launched a report that clearly shows digital assets are worth considering, but insist that institutionalization is key to their success. The utilization of blockchain and token transactions made KPMG believe that the tokenization will shape the global economy moving forward. For KPMG experts, tokenization will be one of the most impactful innovations powered by cryptocurrencies in the coming years. According to the report, digital currencies are capable of revolutionizing the financial sector by creating an open system. The Big Question Such a system would be free of centralized control, provide wide access to financial resources as well as affordable and faster payment solutions that connect people anywhere. Acknowledging ... Read More »

What will it Take for Bitcoin’s Price to Recover in 2019?

  By David Drake   2018 was by all means a difficult year for cryptocurrencies, but the last two months have been even more challenging for the leading digital currency, Bitcoin. In November, Bitcoin traded at less than $4000, the lowest it has reached since October 2017. This price drop sent waves of panic across the market even as the prices of other cryptocurrencies plunged in a trend that lasted several weeks. The price of Bitcoin tumbled despite the fact that Bloomberg reported in a research by the Cambridge Center for Alternative Finance that in the initial three quarters of 2018, the number of verified digital currency users almost doubled. According to the research, the number of cryptocurrency users hit the 35 million mark in 2018, up from 18 million in 2017, and 5 million in 2016. The number of cryptocurrency accounts also increased significantly to reach 139 million in ... Read More »

Government vs Industry Players: What Role Does Each Have in Bringing Institutional Capital to the Crypto Market?

  By David Drake   Cryptocurrencies are becoming essential to the global market. According to KPMG, they are indeed vital, but will take time before they reach their full potential. Currently, the crypto market is primarily speculation-driven as retail investors choose startups based on their ability of their crypto product to add value. Because of their nature and unpredictability, KPMG  suggests virtual currencies will need the input of institutional investors to flourish in future. Institutional investors such as hedge and grant funds are seen as key to contributing to the stability of digital currencies. They are likely to address inequity in the cryptomarket by allowing large volume trading without causing a crash in exchanges as recently witnessed in price drops. Over the years, institutional investors have steered clear of cryptocurrencies due to their unpredictability. However, as the potential of virtual currencies increases, investors are expanding their asset portfolios to include ... Read More »

Top 3 Ways to Attract Institutional Investors to Crypto Assets

  By David Drake   KPMG, a Big Four Audit Corporation, issued a report on last month agreeing, to a large extent, with the sentiments of other bullish investors that are already circling. According to the company, ignoring cryptocurrencies now is somewhat an impossibility. While institutional investors have remained on the fence regarding this nascent asset class, KPMG, in its 42-page long report, stated that this risk-averse group will likely embrace cryptocurrencies. For this company, it’s no longer a matter of whether or not the big players will hop on board. It is more of what governments and other key industry players should do to make this happen. The Necessary Action One of the major reasons institutional investors have not been keen to test the waters is the wide scale scamming of millions of dollars in funds. Many exchanges still operate under unregulated schemes as governments struggle to adapt to ... Read More »

What Really Needs to Happen to Attract Institutional Participation In Crypto-Assets?

  By David Drake   Crypto-assets are worth paying attention to, according a report recently released by KPMG. The audit firm points out that crypto-assets have the potential to solve some of the challenges that current economies face but must first attract institutional participation. The report argues that institutions, such as exchanges, fintech companies, banks, payment providers, broker dealers, and others need to be involved in the cryptocurrency industry to ensure trust, utility and scalability is reached in the global financial system. But for such synergy to be achieved, what role should industry players and governments play? 1.  Regulation One of the most significant boosts that governments can offer the cryptocurrency industry is developing clear, crypto-friendly regulation. Companies involved in crypto-assets recognize the role that governments have in protecting customers through regulation within their jurisdictions. However, there is need to have progressive regulation tailored to the industry as opposed to ... Read More »

Bitcoin Price and the Probable Causes of its Downward Trend

  By David Drake   The world’s leading cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, has been on a downhill trend with its price dipping to below $4000 last month. This kind of price drop was last seen in August 2017, yet it is the lowest Bitcoin has ever gotten and raises questions on whether this could be the end of the cryptocurrency. Optimists, however, note that the last time Bitcoin price sunk this low, they dramatically recovered to the highest price of $20,000 in December 2017. Why the Price Dip The most likely reason for the price dip is the ongoing differences in Bitcoin Cash fork which led to two factions, the Bitcoin cash and Bitcoin cash SV. As a result of the fork, these factions have been dumping Bitcoins, leading to an increase in supply and pushing Bitcoin prices down. Also, the tough regulations provided by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) have ... Read More »

Why Community Divisibility Might be Behind the Recent Market Crash

  By David Drake   Over the past weeks, the cryptocurrency industry has experienced a dramatic decline in its total market capitalization. The prices of most cryptocurrencies took a sharp nosedive, disappointing investors. The industry’s growth had started to slow down after hitting highs towards the end of 2017. This is particularly true for Bitcoin which reached an all-time high of about $20,000 in price. After the market crash, its price dropped below the $4000 mark for the first time this year. At its lowest price, the cryptocurrency market lost about $92 million in capitalization since the price began to drop on the 14th of November. Bitcoin History Although this picture might fuel concerns about the industry’s future, crashes like this are not uncommon. Due to the value of the industry and its decentralized nature, compared to traditional markets such as stock and forex markets, the cryptocurrency industry has a ... Read More »

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