Last week was flat for the cryptocurrency market. However, despite the calm in the charts, the industry saw many exciting events. Let us review the most interesting ones.

Two US Pension Funds Invest in Blockchain Projects

Social networks were swept by the news that US Pension Funds would be investing in cryptocurrencies. The wording, however, is not entirely correct. What happened was that two pension funds from Fairfax County, Virginia had invested $40 million in Morgan Creek Digital venture fund specializing in blockchain project investments. The fact that traditionally conservative investors are beginning to see opportunity in the cryptocurrency industry is a big step towards the acceptance of cryptocurrencies. Crypto enthusiasts have embraced the event with optimism. Changpeng Zhao, CEO of Binance, called the event a major breakthrough:

 

KuCoin Exchange Announces a Major Update

The exchange has scheduled a large-scale update for February 18. The process will start at approximately 08:00 a.m. (UTC +8) and continue for 14 hours. Access to wallets and trading will be suspended during that time.
What will change following the update?

API functionality will be expanded
KuCoin will add new order types (Limit, Stop, Market, Post Only, Iceberg order).
User security requirements will be raised.
Trading fee calculation system will be changed (the commissions will be higher).
Self-service functions will be added (users will be able to unilaterally freeze and unfreeze their accounts, etc.).
An SMS notification function will be added (the exchange will notify its users on any changes in their deposits in real time).
The user interface will become more intuitive.

Venezuela Tightens Legislation

The country’s authorities have introduced a 15% commission fee on cryptocurrency transactions. The fee may have been imposed in reaction to a sharp increase in the number of cryptocurrency purchases. In the past week alone, Venezuelans traded 17.1 billion Bolivars for bitcoins.

Weekly cryptocurrency market news report: US pension funds invest in blockchain, JPMorgan launches stablecoin, Ethereum back in 2nd place


The new rules are set out in the “Constituent Decree on the Integral System of Crypto Assets”.

Ethereum Regains Its #2 Position

Early last week, Ethereum regained its position among the top cryptocurrencies on CoinMarketCap. At the moment, its capitalization totals $14.7 billion. Despite the growth, the cryptocurrency is still trading 90% below its all-time high recorded at $1,432 in January 2018.

Ethereum is going through a hard time nowadays. The “complexity bomb” activation was followed by a soft version of the so-called “Ice Age”, which will last until the activation of Constantinople hardfork earlier scheduled for February 27. If Constantinople does not get activated, the complexity may increase to the level, where mining even a single block in the Ethereum network would be impossible.

JPMorgan Launcing a Stablecoin

The coin will be called “JPM Coin”. The experiments to test its use will commence in a few months. The stablecoin is intended for corporate payments totaling about $6 bn per day. Umar Farooq, Chief of JPMorgan Blockchai Projects, identifies three JPM Coin application areas:
international payments (the bank currently uses outdated systems, such as Swift);
securities transactions;
a replacement for dollars.

The JPM Coin pilot project will focus on the bank’s institutional clients (corporations, banks, broker dealers).

Read our analytical market review for other latest cryptocurrency market news