Blockchain and Cryptocurrency News Roundup

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  • March 1, 2021
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1 March 2021.

Here’s a short summary of some of the biggest headlines in Crypto this week. Google Finance adds crypto data tab, Cardano hits new ATH over the weekend, Rakuten’s customers can now use Bitcoin for shopping and Coinbase stock continues to rise ahead of public listing.

Google Finance Adds Crypto Data Tab

Google Finance, a data site maintained by the tech giant, now has a dedicated “crypto” field. And it has prominent placement, too. Right at the top of the page, where users can “compare markets,” crypto is listed among the five default markets, which also includes U.S., Europe, Asia and “Currencies.” At the moment, it appears Google Finance only tracks a limited number of cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin, ethereum, litecoin and bitcoin cash are displayed by default when clicking the crypto tab. 


Cardano Hits New ATH Over The Weekend

Cardano’s price traded at a new all-time high over the weekend at $1.48 before correcting lower. The ADA declined sharply below $1.20, but the bulls again took charge at the $1.15 level. With the Mary hard fork set to launch at 21:44 UTC on March 1 and bring the Defi token economy to Cardano, what can we expect from the ADA price in the next few days? According to Assetdash data, Cardano has surpassed Tether’s dollar-backed stable coin (USDT) and Binance’s (BNB) to become the third-largest cryptocurrency by market value, with a market capitalization of $39,792,277,652 after by Bitcoin and Ethereum. In the case of the overall collective decline in the cryptocurrency market, the main reason that ADA has surged over the weekend may be due to the hard fork upgrade that will be welcomed on March 1.  

Tim Harrison of IOHK, the main development team behind the Cardano blockchain, wrote: “After the Mary hard fork, Cardano will become a decentralized multi-asset (MA) smart contract platform.” 

After the “Mary” hard fork, the Cardano blockchain will become a “decentralized multi-asset (MA) smart contract platform”, which means non-fungible tokens (NFTs), decentralized finance (Defi) and smart contracts will be supported. While Cardano is receiving mainstream media attention, such integration and upgrades are underway. The second reason is that FD7 Ventures (Dubai), an investment company in Dubai, announced last week that it will sell Bitcoin for $750 million over 30 days. The fund plans to use the proceeds to purchase Cardano (ADA) and Polkadot (DOT). This is undoubtedly major bullish news, but also an important factor that may have attributed to the price increase of ADA.

Rakuten’s customers can now use Bitcoin for shopping

Japanese retail giant Rakuten has integrated its crypto wallet with its payment app, enabling consumers to directly load and convert their Bitcoin holdings for use in everyday spending. According to an announcement published on Feb. 24, users are now able to load up their Rakuten Pay accounts seamlessly with their wallet holdings of Bitcoin (BTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH) and Ether (ETH). Rakuten Pay is a mobile payment app that is operative nationwide and supported at a wide range of large and medium-scale retailers. Back in 2019, Rakuten had already enabled consumers to convert their Rakuten Group loyalty points to cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. Now, a deeper integration is being implemented, tying together Rakuten Wallet, Rakuten Cash (Rakuten’s e-money service) and Rakuten Pay together to support cryptocurrency spending at retailers such as McDonald’s, Seiyu and FamilyMart. There will be no conversion fees between fiat, e-money and crypto holdings, although there is a minimum spend amount of 1,000 yen (roughly $9.40) and a monthly upper limit of around 100,000 yen (roughly $940). To make use of the integration, users will need to be a Rakuten member and have a trading account set up for Rakuten Wallet. The company is also offering a small bonus of Rakuten points to incentivize the new service.


Coinbase Stock Continues to Rise Ahead of Public Listing

Cryptoexchange Coinbase’s pre-IPO shares have continued to rise on private markets following the release of its S-1 regulatory filing on Thursday. The shares, which trade under the ticker CBSE, were up 2.41% at the time of writing—trading at $395 on crypto derivatives trading platform FTX.  About a month ago, a share was worth just $272, so the price has risen 45% in the past month. FTX, the crypto trading platform run by billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried, allows people to invest in Coinbase before it goes public on the Nasdaq. To do this, it’s issued a pre-listing futures contract market. Coinbase shares will debut on the Nasdaq in the coming weeks through direct listing. Right now, there is also a secondary market for Coinbase stock on the Nasdaq Private Market. This means those with vested equity, such as Coinbase employees, can trade shares ahead of the public listing. The document, filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, showed that Coinbase has been doing extraordinarily well: the exchange made a $322 million profit on revenues of over $1.2 billion last year—thanks to the Bitcoin bull run. 


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