World’s First Crypto Bank Adds Support for Ripple’s XRP

Sygnum Bank, the first crypto bank licensed by FINMA, announced on April 30 that Ripple’s XRP tokens are now available through its banking services platform. Users can access deposit, exchange, and credit services using the popular digital currency. Based in Switzerland, the bank will now allow the third most capitalized digital token behind Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) to be used by clients seeking to diversify their direct investments in digital tokens, in conjunction with other asset management products offered. Sygnum customers can use deposits in traditional currencies, such as…

Arab Bank Switzerland Leads Major Series A for Swiss Digital Assets Firm Taurus

Arab Bank Switzerland has closed a Series A financing round for Swiss digital asset infrastructure firm Taurus Group. While undisclosed, the amount is reported to be an “8-digit” figure in Swiss francs — implying a $10 million+ investment. In September last year, Arab Bank Switzerland and Taurus had partnered to offer the bank’s clients Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH) custody and brokerage services. Today, the bank has revealed it will add XRP to this service next month. Investment will enable Taurus to expand to the wider European market Arab Bank…

CBDCs Offer the New Architecture of Bank Accounts

Despite its nascency, central bank digital currencies and their offshoots have rapidly evolved into a serious alternative to typical bank accounts. A CBDC is electronic money issued by a central bank for use by consumers and companies in lieu of traditional money. The concept was popularized in a particularly interesting paper published in 2016 by Warren Weber, a research consultant for the Bank of Canada, in which a currency issued by a central bank and backed by Bitcoin (BTC) was explored in detail. Central banks the world over have since…

Bank Of China Expands Tests of New Fintech Regulation to Six More Cities

Bank of China launched its first fintech innovation regulatory pilot project in Beijing last year. The bank announced plans to expand its regulatory pilot projects in six more cities and districts on April 27. The bank plans to conduct pilot projects in Shanghai, Chongqing, Shenzhen, Hebei Xiong’an New District, Hangzhou and Suzhou. Ultimately, it aims to improve the financial services in general for the real economy. The bank believes fintech innovation projects under regulation will continue to protect consumer’s rights. At the same time, it will also help small and…

Crypto Firms Brace as World Bank Predicts 20% Crash in Global Remittances

The World Bank has predicted that the global remittance industry will retract by 20% amid the global economic slow-down resulting from the coronavirus pandemic. With a plethora of crypto firms targeting the remittance sector, the news may comprise a poor omen for many blockchain firms seeking to gain a foothold in the cross-border payments industry. World Bank predicts record slump in remittances On April 22, the World Bank published a report predicting that 2020 will see the “sharpest decline of remittances in recent history.” Slashed wages and falling employment of…

Dutch Central Bank ‘Ready to Play a Leading Role’ with Digital Euro

The Dutch central bank wants to be the proving ground for central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) in the European Union. In a 45-page report released by the bank on April 21, the De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB) said it was “ready to play a leading role” with research and development into its own digital currency as well as a Europe-wide digital currency.   A digital Euro is expected to make cross-border payments faster and cheaper for all member states who participate. The Netherlands would be a suitable testing ground, the report said. …

A Major Chinese Bank Unveils the Banking Sector’s First Blockchain White Paper

The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) has released a white paper on blockchain technology applications in finance. According to Sina Finance, the paper is the first of its kind in the banking sector.  The document analyzes the current pain points in the financial sector, and compares Chinese trends in blockchain development to those taking place overseas. It pointed out that finance is the most commonly explored area for blockchain-powered applications:  “There are 420 blockchain information and services providers registered in China. There are 72 firms offering blockchain-based financial…

Bank Of China Says Digital Yuan Will Not Cause Inflation

The Bank of China’s secretive digital currency tests have led to tremendous curiosity among Chinese citizens. Recently, the bank responded with an official explanation of the proposed digital Yuan and how it would work.  A bank representative confirmed on the China Central Television on April 19 that the new digital currency (also referred to as DC/EP, for “digital currency/electronic payment”) pilot test has been carried out in the cities of Shenzhen, Suzhou, Xiongan new area, Chengdu, and the future site of the winter Olympics.  However the researcher stressed that these…

World Bank Digs Deeper Into DLT and FinTech for Financial Inclusion

Financial institutions all over the world are increasingly experimenting with emerging technologies like blockchain to streamline payment systems and achieve financial inclusion. In a new study, the World Bank has once again emphasized blockchain’s potential for financial inclusion. Issued by the Bank for International Settlements on April 14,the new report from the World Bank Group on “Payment aspects of financial inclusion in the fintech era” outlines a wide number of crypto and blockchain-related concepts like stablecoins and central bank digital currencies (CBDC). In the 70-page report, the bank provided a…

$1.5 Trillion Bank Fears Brutal ‘L-Shaped’ Recovery – And Another S&P 500 Nosedive

Barclays has downgraded its year-end price target for the S&P 500 Index by a whopping 16%. The bank isn’t discounting the possibility of an ‘L-shaped’ recovery as opposed to the ‘V-shaped’ rebound many economists are forecasting. Dr. Anthony Fauci says the U.S. should see the “beginning of a turnaround soon,” but don’t expect economic activity to return to normal. The Dow and broader U.S. stock market were in rally mode on Wednesday, extending a swift rebound on hopes that the worst of the coronavirus crisis had passed. But Barclays says…