Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) Released a List of its Favorite Cryptocurrencies; Same ‘Tokens’ To Be Included in Bakkt As Well?

ICE (Intercontinental Exchange), the parent company of the NYSE (New York Stock Exchange) has initiated a research unit for 58 cryptocurrency projects and 19 FIAT currencies.
ICE, in partnership with Blockstream, has established the ‘Cryptocurrency Data Feed’, which will provide with real-time and historical data of cryptocurrency prices from all over the world. Nevertheless, it has selected only 2.75% of the total number of cryptocurrency projects in the market.

This is what this means for Crypto traders
— ICE Data Services (@ICEDataServices) March 14, 2019

Cryptocurrency Projects Included in the Data Feed
The entire list of cryptocurrencies added to the Data Feed can be obtained here. The Data Feed would provide real-time thorough analysis of 58 cryptocurrencies on its official website.
Moreover, widespread inclusion of only 58 cryptocurrencies from a total of 2106 projects would narrow down the targets of the investors. However, at the same time could hurt the altcoin markets and exchange volumes in the short term.
Some of the notable cryptocurrencies from the list are:

Stable Coins: The stable coins which will be added to the list are USD coin, TUSD, Tether, and Gemini Dollar.
High Market Capitalization ‘tokens’: Despite the cryptocurrency markets being highly volatile a couple of projects have cemented their position and were rightfully included in the data. These included: Ether (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), Cardano (ADA), Monero (XMR), NEM, Ripple (XRP), Stellar (XLM), and NEO
Potentially Valuable Projects: Some of the other cryptocurrencies with low market capitalization also features in the list. Currently, they can be analogous to penny stocks in traditional markets. These include Siacoin, Augur (REP), Ardor (ARDR), Basic Attention Token (BAT), Bitshares, Bytom, CyberMiles, (CRO), Digibyte (DBG), Dogecoin, Steem Dollars (SBD), Nebular, Mithril, Metaverse ETP, Zilliqa, and Ox.
Huobi Included But No Binance (BNB) Coin: In exchange related token Huobi was included however Binance (BNB) coin was included.

Bitcoin Cash (BCH), BSV, Bitcoin Gold and Ethereum Classic (ETC) the infamous hard forks from Bitcoin and Ethereum were also included in the list.
Providing a Global Data Base For Cryptocurrencies
Due to their decentralization, Cryptocurrency Exchanges have become ubiquitous in the world. However, there is no authorized metrics that would give out authentic real-time data. Hence, ‘price discovery’ becomes a significant challenge due to a multitude of avenues.
The ICE data would provide insight on the project along with increasing the efficiencies for its traders. It would also facilitate pricing evaluation through proper surveillance and portfolio managers with statistics that will enable the crypto-assets to be traded between peers or customers directly.
While dealing with currencies, volatility and protection against adverse market movements is of prime importance to import/export traders and investors. Hence, the ‘global coverage’ would enable hedge funds to manage their risks better.
Expectations from the Bakkt Platfrom
The Bakkt Platform will be one of the first institutionally backed cryptocurrency trading platforms. Hence, the number of cryptocurrencies expected to be included in the initial phases was limited. However, the data feed suggests that the Bakkt Platform might consist of more than just a few cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin.
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Source: CoinGape

Bakkt: Starbucks receives disproportionate amount of shares in platform following deal

Owing to a new deal, Starbucks received a “disproportionate” amount of shares in Bakkt. The deal between the two comes in the middle of Bakkt’s launch that was awaited by a lot of institutional players in the United States.
According to The Block, a spokesperson close to the deal said, “There’s a high value from having a brand of this level” and that this was not surprising due to the support Starbucks gave Bakkt. The Seattle-based coffee company secured a “mutually beneficial” agreement which provides it with a huge stake in Bakkt.
Starbucks accepts payments through cryptocurrencies via Bakkt’s software that converts crypto-to-fiat. Currently, this service will only be available to customers in the US. However, there was no information regarding their future plans or Starbucks’ global expansion of the service.
Starbucks announced its partnership with Intercontinental Exchange, Microsoft, and BCG on August 3, 2018. Additionally, this would users to buy anything at Starbucks using cryptocurrencies and Bakkt’s software.
Starbucks’ Maria Smith, Vice President of Partnerships said,
“As the flagship retailer, Starbucks will play a pivotal role in developing practical, trusted and regulated applications for consumers to convert their digital assets into US dollars for use at Starbucks.”
Bakkt’s launch was delayed three times and is now awaiting approval from the CFTC [Center for Commodity and Futures Commission]. The delay in approval was speculated to be due to to the recent U.S Government shutdown.
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Source: AMB Crypto

Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) Chief Confident About Future for Bakkt and Crypto 

The ongoing regulatory delays and hurdles imposed by the US government have not dampened the enthusiasm for crypto related products such as the highly anticipated Bakkt launch.
Bakkt Will be a ‘Moonshot Bet’
The Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) has recently announced its fourth quarter earnings which have beat some Wall Street predictions. Chief executive Jeffrey Sprecher took the opportunity to speak on the sterling performance and shed some light on the Bakkt crypto project. Seeking Alpha ran a full transcript of the conference call in which Sprecher referred to Bakkt as a “moonshot bet”.
Over a billion dollars has been spent on strategic investments in 2018, including the Bakkt crypto futures project, according to CFO Scott Hill. Sprecher added that Bakkt had raised over $180 million from ICE and twelve other investors and partners including Fortress Investment Group and Susquehanna International Group. He said that “as we look to 2019 and beyond we’re excited about the opportunities that lie ahead, not only for our core business but also for newer initiatives,” which includes Bakkt.
The launch delays have been largely the fault of the US government shutdown imposed by president Trump. The highly anticipated product has been seen as a major on-ramp for crypto as it includes some major players. The firm aims to create a crypto ecosystem to bring huge companies such as Starbucks and Microsoft into the crypto industry. Sprecher stated;
“That infrastructure has attracted a lot of very, very interesting companies that have come — some that have invested in Bakkt, some are just working with Bakkt to try to tap into that infrastructure for some new use cases that will involve blockchain and digital assets and other things that we can provide these people. Obviously, we’ve announced the Starbucks — our work with Starbucks and Microsoft. We have very, very large retail franchises global connectivity to end users that we hope will be brought into that ecosystem and could create a very, very valuable company out of that initiative if our business plan plays out.”
Regarding the Bakkt launch date there were no specifics mentioned, only that it is expected ‘later this year’. Last month the company revealed more details about its Bitcoin futures products. The Bakkt BTC (USD) Daily Future will be a 1 BTC contract that will be physically delivered.
Bakkt also announced the acquisition of assets from Rosenthal Collins Group (RCG) last month. The ‘back office’ infrastructure will be needed to develop the crypto ecosystem and ensure full security and a trusted fintech solution for its clients.
Image from Shutterstock
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Source: New

Bakkt to Foster Institution & Consumer Participation, No Leverage & Margin on Bitcoin Contracts

Bakkt, the digital asset platform by NYSE’s owner and backed by Microsoft and Starbucks is working hard at building a transparent and an institutional quality ecosystem for digital assets. CEO Kelly Loeffler explains that they are offering full collateralized or pre-funded bitcoin buying and selling meaning there will be no leverage or margin involved.
NYSE owner’s Bakkt hard at work
It’s been only two weeks that NYSE’s owner, Intercontinental Exchange announced the “launch of regulated, physical Bitcoin futures contract and warehouse planned for November 2018.” Bakkt, a global platform “designed to bring digital assets to the mainstream and help unlock the potential of this important technology.”
In its latest official blog, Kelly Loeffler, the CEO of Bakkt is talking about being already at work on creating an open and regulated ecosystem for digital assets. She shared how in 1999, Nobel Laureate Milton Friedman has predicted the emergence of e-cash and “now are we seeing the promise of a true digital currency.”
From regulated, institutional trading and security solutions to offering more transaction choices to a customer, Bakkt is working on the wider application of digital assets.
The news of the Bakkt has been seen as one of the most important ones for the investors and experts alike. And given the giants viz. Microsoft and Starbucks included in this, it certainly holds a lot of potential for the future of the crypto market. Loeffler acknowledged the “very strong” response they received from worldwide.
People are certainly feeling positive as Mike Strutton of Ironwood shared:
“We may think #ETFs are the big story for #Bitcoin. I believe @Bakkt & “physical” bitcoin futures are going to drive the price – their vision for institutional and consumer retail sounds strong. November will be exciting. Congrats to CEO Kelly Loeffler, woman in crypto.”
Also, read: PwC & NYSE Top Executives Quit to Join BitcoinFirms
Fully collateralized Bitcoin buying & selling
Talking about the widespread need for a trusted infrastructure for storing, spending and trading cryptocurrencies. In order to achieve this, they are working on the “proven framework” comprising of, a consistent regulatory construct, transparent, efficient price discovery, and an institutional quality pre- and post-trade infrastructure.
With a special emphasis on “price discover”, she shares that “trusted price formation is a fundamental part of advancing the promise of digital currencies.” She further talks about not allowing margin or leverage on their contracts stating:
“Specifically, with our solution, the buying and selling of Bitcoin is fully collateralized or pre-funded. As such, our new daily Bitcoin contract will not be traded on margin, use leverage, or serve to create a paper claim on a real asset. This supports market integrity and differentiates our effort from existing futures and crypto exchanges which allow for margin, leverage and cash settlement.”
She further adds:
“Coupled with a secure, regulated warehouse solution, you can begin to see how this market infrastructure can help more institutions and consumers participate in the asset class.”
However, some were quick to point out as did Caitlin Long, a Wall Street veteran,
“Interesting response from @Bakkt today. For #bitcoin this is good news/bad news. First the good–Bakkt disclosed it’s not using margin or leverage (explicitly). That’s positive. But then the bad–it was silent about hidden leverage, which is subtle…”
The blog also points out the fact that the market cap recently dropped below $200 billion but ICOs, corporate R&D and venture investing is still going strong in this arena. This potential has the team excited about the upcoming launch.
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Source: CoinGape