Bits and stuff: April 29th, 2018

A really short summary today, I’m off to the Collision conference in New Orleans… (never been to Louisiana before!).

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Oh, I’m on the Blockchain Insider podcast this week! It was even more fun than I expected, and the best part was meeting my fellow panellists, Sara Feenan, Jo Lang and Olivia Vinden – I could have chatted to them all night. Host Sarah Kocianski was brilliant as usual, and apart from her eloquence and wit, had the generosity to provide wine during the taping…

blockchain insider

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Jemima Kelly of the FT wrote a great article calling out the dubious governance (and maturity) of the IOTA team… (yes, we do need to hold pioneering founders to a certain ethical standard).

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This past week we saw the debate kick off in earnest on whether or not ethereum and ripple’s tokens are securities.

Gary Gensler, former chairman of the CFTC and ex of the Obama administration and Goldman Sachs, believes that they are.

But at the same time, he believes that cryptocurrencies will be “somewhere in the financial system in a meaningful way.”

Peter van Valkenburgh of CoinCenter argued that ether should not be considered a security. Preston Byrne explained why he thought it should.

A Twitter battle ensued, of course.

‘Dis gonna be good.

dis gonna be good

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Gillian Tett of the Financial Times points out that overlooking the rise on non-bank lending – at this point in the market (when everything looks rosy) – should be setting off alarm bells.

She reminds us that, according to the International Monetary Fund:

“’Signs of late cycle credit dynamics are already emerging in the leveraged loan market,’ the IMF Global Financial Stability Report observes, noting that ‘in some cases, [this is] reminiscent of past episodes of investor excesses’.”

On the one hand, “getting non-banks involved means that any future pain will be widely dispersed, rather than just sitting with banks” (although not sure how that’s better).

On the other hand, “if the non-banks suffer losses when defaults rise, it is also possible that this will spark severe capital markets contagion, hurting banks and non-banks alike.” Yes, especially when we take a look at who else those non-banks have lent to, and under what conditions.

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So much more to talk about, it was a damn interesting week, but gotta go to the airport so I’m just going to hit “Publish” and try and catch up next week (yeah, that’s not gonna happen…).


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