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Here’s what you need to know on Tuesday

Markets:

BTC/USD is hovering at around $6,900. The coin has recovered from the recent low $6,570, however, it is still below psychological $7,000. The first digital coin has gained nearly 3% in the recent 24 hours and stayed mostly unchanged from the start of the day. Currently, BTC is moving within a short-term bullish trend amid low volatility. 

At the time of writing, ETH/USD is changing hands at $157.60, close to the intraday high. The second-largest coin has been recovering from Monday’s low $149.86 and gained 2.5% on a day-to-day basis. ETH/USD is moving in a short-term bullish trend in sync with the market. The volatility is shrinking.

XRP/USD stays below $0.1900 during early Asian hours. At the time of writing, the coin is changing hands at $0.1888, mostly unchanged since the beginning of the day.  From the short-term perspective, XRP/USD is trading within a bearish trend amid low volatility.

Among the 100 most important cryptocurrencies,Komodo (KMD) $0.4424 (+14.9%), Binance Coin (BNB) $15.45 (+11.9%) and DxChain Token (DX) $0.0014 (+7.5%) are in the green zone. The day’s losers are CyberVein (CVT) $0.0299 (-8.0%), DigiByte (DGB) $0.0055 (-5.9%), Bytecoin (BCN) $0.00024 (-4.25%).

Chart of the day:
XRP/USD, 30-min chart

Industry

‏‎The coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the inefficiencies of the international payments infrastructure, according to Marjan Delatinne from Ripple. The top-executive of the third-largest cryptocurrency startup by market value believes that the new tech automation, machine learning and digital assets will transform the traditional industry of cross-border payments, while COVID-19 will speed up the process. 
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In the last five years, the payments industry has seen greater change and disruption than it has in the previous 30. For instance, in the UK and elsewhere in Europe, card payments have now overtaken cash for the first time ever, and in light of coronavirus, the contactless transaction limit is being raised to support a decline in willingness to physically carry paper money.

She also added that automated processes have been already replacing the need for bookkeeping and drastically reduce settlement times. However, the cross-border payment systems resisted the innovations so far. The financial institutions have been using a bulky and expensive a correspondent banking model since 1970s.

Bitcoin miners be earning $6.7 million less per day if Bitcoin prices don’t go ballistic after the halving, according to the recent estimates by The Block. 

The scheduled reduction of bitcoin’s block reward will take place in May 12 or May 13, depending on the speed of the block production. Currently, miners earn in aggregate about $13.4 million a day. But after the halving, their revenues will be slashed in half, to $6.7 million. Many less efficient miners may face financial issues and have to disconnect their equipment to stop losses. As a result, healthier miners will be able to increase their market share, which will result in industry consolidation.

Regulation

The European Union may introduce a batch of new regulations for cryptocurrencies as the lawmakers consider creating s separate body that will be engaged in supervising the cryptocurrency sector. 

According to the report prepared and published by the European Parliament, cryptocurrency mining may be used for money-laundering purposes, while some blind spots in regulation allows for all sorts of abuses. 

In compliance with the updated version of the Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive (5AMLD), all cryptocurrency companies and services have to follow  KYC and AML rules as of January 2020. The new report is focused on mining. The lengthy document describes newly minted coins as potentially dangerous.

Newly mined coins are by definition ‘clean’, so if someone (e.g., a bank) is willing to convert them into fiat currency or other crypto-assets, the resulting funds are also clean. A first regulatory step could be to try to map the use of this technique and subsequently, if it effectively proves an important blind spot, to consider appropriate countermeasures. 

Quote of the day

It worries me that, contrary to ’08, this market crash has not lead to more interest in #AustrianEconomics. Maybe 2020s will be similar to 1930s, when populism reigned, and Austrianism was deemed obsolete. On the other hand, today there’s the powder keg of BTC + global inflation.

Tuur Demeester, independent investor and economist