Week’s top headlines in the crypto news

Here are this week’s top headlines in the crypto news.

Inflation expectations, the crypto market rallies on promising inflation statistics but comments by fed officials suggest it’s too soon to celebrate.

Ethereum advancements following another successful test. Net developers move up the date for the much anticipated merge. When could eth see the top of its current pop?

Tornado crash a privacy protocol on ethereum is sanctioned by the u. S department of the treasury causing d5 protocols to block associated wallets.

What does it mean for crypto? Blackrock is buying shortly after partnering with coinbase.

The world’s largest asset manager launches a private bitcoin product for its elite clients.

Why this is both bad and good news? cbdc’s coming to your country as citizens around the world lose confidence in their governments their central banks prepare to rush out their dystopian digital currencies.

What you’re about to read is educational content not financial advice.

 

The Best Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency-Lending Companies

Bitcoin loans are becoming increasingly popular among crypto investors seeking for liquidity without having to sell their cryptocurrency.

As an alternative to selling your crypto, you may use it as collateral to acquire a house, start a company, or pay off high-interest debt. There may be tax advantages to borrowing crypto as well. A crypto or bitcoin secured loan does not result in a capital gains event, saving you the trouble of conducting your crypto taxes. Companies that provide cryptocurrency and bitcoin loans have emerged all over the world in order to meet this demand. This article identifies the top 10 cryptocurrency lenders.

BlockFi

BlockFi is a fintech firm based in New Jersey that provides crypto investors with services to allow them to make the most of their digital assets. With interest-earning accounts and low-cost USD loans backed by cryptocurrency, the firm serves customers all around the world, including 47 states in the United States. BlockFi has backing from firms such as Galaxy Digital, Susquehanna, Akuna Capital, Fidelity, Recruit Strategic Partners, Coinbase Ventures, CMT Digital, SoFi, ConsenSys Ventures, and Morgan Creek Digital.

To obtain a loan, you must either offer Bitcoin, Litecoin, or Ethereum as collateral. The firm now offers a maximum of a 50% LTV on your crypto loans.

To borrow $25,000, you’d need to put up roughly 10.06 Bitcoin as collateral (currently worth around $50,000). Interest rates begin at 4.5 percent and extend to 24 months for loans of this sort.

Unchained Capital

Unchained Capital is a crypto and bitcoin lending firm located in Austin, Texas. The business uses a three-step process to grant loans. They can give up to $1 million in cryptocurrency loans per day with the quick procedure.

Unchained has its own approach to loan custody and protection. They break the one-point-of-failure pattern of crypto custody by introducing a multi-signature system for storage.

The vault protects your assets in three key locations using three separate key holders. The collateral is secured by a contract, which is then kept in multi-signature addresses requiring two out of three keys to spend. You (the borrower), Unchained, and a third-party key custodian are the keepers of these keys. There is no single source of failure since no one individual or organization has such influence. This ingenious safety feature adds significant value for Unchained as a whole.

Salt Lending

Salt Lending is a firm based in Denver, Colorado, that provides Bitcoin and other crypto loans. According to its website, Salt Lending is the first blockchain-backed loan and offers loans in Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Ethereum with an LTV ratio of 50%.

The firm is growing its lending areas across the United States and to countries like Bermuda, Brazil, Hong Kong, Switzerland, the UAE, and Vietnam to provide individuals and firms with access to financial freedom via blockchain assets.

As an added bonus, Salts also gives you near-real time monitoring of your account and certain assurances that your assets will be there for you when you need them.

SpectroCoin

SpectroCoin is a crypto broker based in Lithuania that has been a top pick among European crypto brokerages since 2013. SpectroCoin recently introduced a crypto-backed loans program, with minimal requirements at just 25 EUR but maximum loan sizes ranging from 75,000 to 1 million EUR. Furthermore, SpectroCoin offers one of the lowest minimums on the market at only 25 EUR, as well as an option to provide loans with a market-leading 75 percent LTV ratio.

The company accepts bitcoin, ethereum, xem and dash as collateral. Clients may take out and repay loans in major cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and euros.

Businesses may obtain a crypto-backed loan through Worldpay. In addition to crypto-backed lending, the firm provides a wallet, digital wallets, debit cards, and individual IBANs for clients.

Nexo

Nexo, a Swiss fintech firm with offices in the United States and Hong Kong, is one of the world’s major crypto lenders. When you deposit bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies into your Nexo wallet, you may get an instant line of credit.

The business offers loans in a number of cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, XRP (Ripple), Binance Coin, and Litecoin.

The process of obtaining a loan from Nexo consists of depositing cryptocurrency in a safe Nexo wallet, receiving immediate access to cash, and no credit checks are required. The wallet is completely insured and enables you to borrow in over 45 different fiat currencies across the world.

Apart from loans, Nexo provides interest-bearing accounts and other financial services based on your cryptocurrency. Today, the firm has already given more than $1 billion in crypto loans.

Crypto Tax Software

Are you using bitcoin and cryptocurrency loans to save money on taxes? Borrowing against bitcoin does not result in a taxable event. Receiving interest payments, on the other hand, does, and monitoring all of your cryptocurrency transactions may be difficult. By utilizing crypto tax software like CoinLedger, you can compute and report your tax obligation for crypto automatically.

CoinLedger is a cryptocurrency tax preparation software that has been used by tens of thousands of crypto enthusiasts to prepare their taxes. Simply submit your transaction history to the system, and it will create the corresponding crypto tax returns automatically. You can distribute these reports or upload them into popular tax filing programs like TurboTax or TaxAct.

ByBit – Our Review

The Singapore based Bybit is a derivative exchange born in late 2018 and focused on perpetual contracts, putting it in direct competition of the likes of Bitmex and Deribit. As the new kid on the block with an aggressive and very efficient affiliate system, it faced immediate skepticism by the crypto community, but dissipated every doubt month after month with consistent upgrades and deep liquidity, as well as innovative gamified elements. It is now in our opinion one of the very best derivative exchanges out there. Let’s see why.

The first thing you’ll notice while signing up to Bybit is how simple and fast the process is and how clean the interface looks. This simplicity and user friendliness will permeate our whole experience on the exchange, something not too common unfortunately in the often overcomplicated derivative exchange world. Bybit operates as a strictly crypto to crypto exchange so it doesn’t require its users to perform stringent KYC verification making it a great choice for all the privacy focused users out there. It currently generates over $1B worth of daily trading, providing deep liquidity on all of it’s trading pairs, especially BTC and ETH.

In terms of security Bybit offers all the features that we have come to expect as industry standards : 2 factor authentication, a deep insurance fund, Ip address white listening. Most of the funds are kept in cold storage, with a multisig system in place : a welcome sight.

The trading engine is extremely powerful and on their website they boast a 99.9% uptime : after our extensive “stress test” we are pleased to report that those numbers are not overstated, we never had problems of any kind and, even more important, never ever incurred in any “bitmexesque” overload issues, even at the most volatile of times. This gives a certain peace of mind when logging in to trade those volatility spikes, and we found ourselves more and more prone to use Bybit as the go to exchange in these situations.

Bybit also employs a really efficient strategy in new user acquisition : gamification. There’s a number of task-related bonuses, pretty significant too, that user can unlock with the completion of very simple actions that pertain either to the social media sphere, compounding Bybit’s exposure further, or to mastering the trading engine, encouraging signups to actually familiarise with the exchange. Those bonus also rotate often and new ones pop up regularly. The total signup bonuses usually amount to about100$ of completely free real money capital that trader can use to master the exchange. Another aspect of their gamification is tournaments : although unfortunately they don’t happen as often as we’d like, Bybit does occasionally run some of the best and biggest crypto tournaments in the space. One of the most spectacular ones being the BTC Brawl, with a 100 BTC prize pool up for grabs !

Together with more tourneys, the only other thing we’d like to see is possibly a few more pairs added, although streamlining operations can also be a choice, and a feature and not necessarily a flaw, and allows them to focus more on liquidity. Right now Bybit offers BTC, ETH, EOS and XRP perpetuals.

All in all, we believe Bybit to be the best up and coming derivatives exchange, with a concrete shot a becoming number one if they expand their offering and continue with their innovative approach.

An introduction to Crypto Tournaments

Part 1 – what is a crypto tournament?

Tournaments are a relatively new format to crypto. The definition of what a crypto tournament is, is in itself pretty vague, and open to interpretation. So let’s try to clarify that, and introduce you all to one of the most exciting and lucrative new trading niches!

A lot of times I hear trading tournament or crypto tournament used in a way that I consider improper : most of the times is some incentivised volume competition, which tends to cater to whales only, and is used to bring liquidity to a newly listed asset. Nothing wrong with this at all, and some of these are actually quite lucrative and might deserve a separate guide for them, but this are not tournaments properly intended.

DEFINITION

By crypto tournament, we intend a Trading Competition with a fixed buy-in, usually held by an exchange, where as well as the actual wins/losses of each unique trade, you have a prize pool distributed on top of it proportionally to the best performers. So you have a winner that gets the lion’s share of the added prizepool, and then usually top 10% of the field shares the rest. More importantly, you tend to have like we said a fixed buy-in and an equal starting stack, which levels the playing field. And finally, they tend to be ROI ( return on investment ) based. As in : whoever makes the highest return on investment in the predefined amount of time wins. Usual timeframes are daily, weekly and monthly

VALUE

So, the concept is pretty simple, but why should you be interested ? Well, quite a few reasons, actually.

For starters, it’s an amazing and relatively inexpensive testing ground for your trading skills. Usual buy-ins are around 100$. Some are as low as 10 bucks. And for that amount you get to compete on a levelled playing field versus some of the best traders in the world, all starting with the same stack. On top of that, technically you are not forced to take any trade at all if the situation doesn’t look profitable. So the extra prize pool is basically a freeroll.

All that being said, you’ll want to trade, because of course the value is in the added prize pool. Yes, you read that correctly, added. The vast majority of exchanges simply adds those prizes as a bonus, and as an incentive for traders to choose their platform. The more asymmetrical this prize to stack ratio is, the more aggressive it makes sense to be with your stack. But we’ll get to that in part 2 of this series, when we’ll talk about strategy.

Finally, there’s the gamification element : Tournaments are simply a lot of fun ! Climbing the ladder, and going head to head with some of the best in the world during the final minutes of a competition, where every small percentage on every little trade matters is pure adrenaline. Having a definitive win – bragging rights and all – will be morale boost, but also a real testament of your successes as a trader. In such an impermanent line of work, it’s a great way of keeping score. Money per se Is not the all inclusive motivator for some, competition matters. This is all accentuated in Team Tournaments, which we will discuss extensively in part 3 of the guide.

And finally, it will make you a better trader. Having a predefined timeframe, with a limited asset array – Bitcoin and ETH usually – will tend to remove all bias, focus your mind on price action, on the chart. It’s distilled trading in a competitive metagame – it’s not just you in a vacuum, you are adapting your strategy to what others do. Depending on who is ahead or behind you and what they are doing – usually openly and simply displayed – will influence your every decision and add a layer of complexity and psychology to the game. Most tournament grinders ( that’s what an habitual tournament player is called ) I know became much better in all aspects of trading as a result of this.

EXAMPLE

To bring all this together and clariy, let’s make a concrete example. We’ll start with the weekly tournament on Interdax, an up and coming exchange that focuses on tournaments, providing daily opportunities for grinders. You can read this exchange’s review here and get the best fee discount on the market : those do tend to add up quite a bit if you play tournament regularly.

Here is the tournament’s interface, pretty Cleary displayed. At itpagina we have a Tournament resources section as well as a tournament calendar if you want to dig deeper and always stay up to date with all the action !

Up top you see the buy-in, 0.1 BTC in this case. By clicking register, that amount will be “invested” in the competition. A sub account just for the battle will be created, and you’ll simply start trading BTC normally. Any win and losses, will be normally calculated, and you’ll keep/lose them when the competition is over.

Next to the buy in you see the prizepool – 0.25 BTC – which is added for free by the exchange. This is where the value lies. On top of your winnings and loosing, the top 3 players, based on ROI will share that prizepool.

And here is the live view of the battle. There are only 12 players competing in this battle, with top 3 sharing the prizepool progressively : 0.14 btc for first, 0.07 second and almost 0.04 for third. Again, ON TOP of your winnings. As you can see, with 25% of the field getting a prize, and with prizes being so asymmetrically important, there is a lot of strategy involved. On the right, you also see all of your opponents names, their ROI and if they are currently long or short, adding to the metagame element we mentioned before.

Moreover, as I’m sure you are wondering while running these numbers in your head : yes, you are early. Fields won’t be this small forever, nor this soft, with free prizes simply added. There is literally nothing to lose, only extra money to be made if you are going to trade BTC anyways. Team competition are even bigger and more fun, with the recent Binance competition totalling a whopping million dollar prize pool!

We can’t wait for the next one, and itpagina will always have it’s own team competing. You can join us for free here on the telgram and on the dedicated ( tournament only ) mailing list.
Allright, now that you are getting excited about this, it’s time to hone your skill, and prepare an appropriate winning strategy. We’ll talk about this in the second part of our tournament guide.