CoVenture operates a venture capital firm, a direct lending business, and CoVenture Crypto, a cryptocurrency asset management firm run by co-founders Ali Hamed and Nikhil Kalghatgi. CoVenture Crypto operates multiple strategies and is backed by a large, publicly traded financial institution. Ali Hamed: During my freshman year at Cornell, I launched a software startup, and after that I started doing Angel investing. I didn’t have the capacity to write anything larger than a $25,000 check at a time and would find that when I tried to invest in people, they’d say the money was great, but what they really needed was help building the product. That made us think about how ridiculous the venture capital business model is – where you put $50 million into a fund and give out $1 million at a time to kids who can code and hope they can start a company – it just made no sense to us.
Coinfloor, a group of cryptocurrency exchanges targeting institutional and sophisticated retail traders, has launched CoinfloorEX – a cryptocurrency futures exchange.
CoinfloorEX will offer for the first time ever physically delivered cryptocurrency futures contracts, which the firm says will protect investors and traders against price slippage on positions at time of settlement, as well as allay concerns of market manipulation.
“The cash settled futures have been around since 2011 and so far they haven’t succeeded very much. When you talk to the institutional players they all want physically delivered futures,” says Mark Lamb, co-founder of Coinfloor.
Hehmeyer Trading + Investments, a proprietary trading firm based in Chicago, has launched a new fund aimed at providing certain qualified investors access to the cryptocurrency market.
The fund aims to track the performance of the proprietary Hehmeyer Cryptocurrency Index (HCI).
Launching as a commodity pool for qualified eligible persons and accredited investors, the fund will be managed by Hehmeyer Capital Management, LLC, a commodity pool operator registered with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and a member of the National Futures Association (NFA).
Thomson Reuters, through its partnership with MarketPsych Data, has launched a new version (v3.0) of its MarketPsych Indices (TRMI), which includes its first sentiment data feed for Bitcoin.
It also includes and/or enhanced market sentiment data for several asset classes, new user capabilities, and additional coverage.
Over 400 news and social media sites, many specific to cryptocurrencies, were added to the feed. Each site is scanned and scored in real-time, aiming to capture market-moving sentiments and themes. TRMI v3.0 also includes expanded sentiment coverage of national fixed income securities and stock market indexes for the top 61 global economies and the Eurozone. Coverage was also further expanded in the currencies, countries, and agricultural commodities asset classes.
The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has said that certain exchanges listing crypto-assets need to register with the agency because they offer trading in products that meet the definition of a “security”.
In particular, it is targeting exchanges that list crypto-assets linked to Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs).
“A number of these platforms provide a mechanism for trading assets that meet the definition of a “security” under the federal securities laws. If a platform offers trading of digital assets that are securities and operates as an “exchange,” as defined by the federal securities laws, then the platform must register with the SEC as a national securities exchange or be exempt from registration,” says the SEC in a statement today.
A US district judge has said that cryptocurrencies can be regulated as commodities by the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).
According to a Memorandum & Order (M&O) for a court case brought by the CFTC against cryptocurrency business operator, Patrick McDonnell, the judge ruled that “virtual currencies can be regulated by CFTC as a commodity”.
Virtual currencies are “goods” exchanged in a market for a uniform quality and value…They fall well within the common definition of “commodity” as well as the CEA’s definition of “commodities” as “all other goods and articles . . . in which contracts for future delivery are presently or in the future dealt in”, stated judge Jack Weinstein in the M&O.
In a speech delivered today, Bank of England Governor, Mark Carney, stated that crypto-assets don’t currently pose a risk to the stability of financial markets, even as he declared that cryptocurrencies are “failing” as a form of money.
Speaking at the inaugural Scottish Economics Conference at Edinburgh University on the subject of the future of money, Carney’s speech was heavily focused on cryptocurrencies.
Addressing the question of how well cryptocurrencies fulfill the traditional role of money, Carney argued that the answer has to be judged against the functioning of the entire cryptocurrency ecosystem. This ecosystem includes exchanges that enable the buying and selling of cryptocurrencies, miners who create new coins and verify transactions and the wallet providers who effectively offer custody services.
Genesis Trading, which offers two-sided liquidity for digital currencies, has today launched a new affiliate, Genesis Global Capital, an institutional digital currency lending business.
Genesis Capital will allow institutional investors the opportunity to borrow bitcoin, ether and other digital currencies in large quantities over fixed-terms.
“Having been incubated by our affiliated company, Genesis Trading, we feel we’re in a great position to truly understand the pulse of the market and identify evolving industry needs quicker than most. We believe now is a great time to offer an institutional-focused lending service because it will increase general li
Mobile payments and cryptocurrency startup, Circle, has acquired the crypto-asset exchange Poloniex.
Circle is backed by $140 million in venture capital from investors including Goldman Sachs, IDG Capital Partners, Breyer Capital, Accel Partners, General Catalyst Partners, Baidu, CICC Alpha, EverBright, WangXiang and CreditEase.
Circle has two main business lines. According to the company, “Circle Pay helps people around the globe connect to one another and share value just as they would share any other kind of content on the open borderless Internet; Circle Trade serves institutions and investors as one of the world’s largest providers of crypto asset liquidity.”
Circle says that it is also planning to launch an app that will enable individuals to tap into crypto-asset investment “through a simple, seamless, mobile experience”.
At a recent buy side event hosted by Profit & Loss and CME Group in New York, a panel of cryptocurrency experts discussed how institutional investors and traders should think about these assets within a portfolio.
Interest in cryptocurrencies has skyrocketed amongst investors and trading firms over the past year, as the market capitalisation for this nascent asset class has increased dramatically and volatile price action has offered the potential for outsized returns compared to many traditional asset classes.
Yet some firms still consider cryptocurrencies to be too risky to include in their portfolio, a position that Ari Paul, managing partner and CIO of the hedge fund BlockTower Capital, took issue with on the panel.