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Binance Launches OTC Trading Desk, Following Bittrex

Binance has just released a new over-the-counter (OTC) trading desk for larger transactions. The world’s number one-ranked cryptocurrency exchange released the new announcement yesterday via blog post.

Binance Launches OTC Desk

Last week, the largest US cryptocurrency exchange Bittrex launched its over-the-counter trading platform. Bitfinex was the first platform to initiate it back in 2016, and Coinbase launched its own OTC trading for its prime members back in November of 2018.

It seems that Binance was a bit behind the rest when it comes to launching this new project. However, the Chinese-based cryptocurrency exchange pulls far more daily consistent volume than most of these exchanges combined.

“Our OTC desk allows Binance users to trade larger amounts of many cryptocurrencies listed on the exchange, with transactions being settled via their Binance accounts,” Binance explained in the post.

Binance OTC offers services geared towards users wishing to perform trades that are worth at least 20 BTC. Currently, that figure is around $71,000. It remains unknown at this time how often the platform will be used, as trade volume has significantly decreased since 2017. Still, OTC trading desks make it easier for institutional investors to invest in digital currencies.

>> Bitcoin Price Shows Resilience Above $3,500, Despite ETF Rejection

In regular stock trading, big-time investors often flood the markets with large amounts of money, which hasn’t been quite as common with crypto. Enabling OTC trading desks allows big investors to do just that. An OTC trading desk doesn’t guarantee they will do this, but at least they have the option to do so now. Circle confirmed back in December of 2018 that its extant OTC desk handled payments of around $24 billion in 2018—thus further confirming a want and need.

Circle said that it had more than 10,000 OTC trades with 600 distinct counterparties. 36 different crypto assets were traded, accounting in $24 billion in notional volume. Circle offers this trading service 24/7 with coverage in Asia, Europe, and the US.

It will be interesting to see how often the Binance OTC trading desk will be used moving forward.

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Security Tokens Trading Platform | Binance & Malta Stock Exchange MOU

The subsidiary of the Malta Stock Exchange, MSX PLC, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with crypto exchange Binance. The pair will launch a new Security Tokens Trading Platform.

According to a press release from today, the new trading platform will benefit from the two bodies in two ways:

  • From the Malta Stock Exchange’s “26-year track record of operating as a regulated stock exchange” 
  • From the international reach of Binance’s business model.

Security Tokens Trading Platform

And it’s precisely this business model that makes Binance the biggest crypto exchange in the world.

It holds the coveted title as, at its height, it had a 24-hour trading volume of $2.2 billion. But on an average day, it has a median trading volume of $1.45 billion, according to CoinMarketCap.

Earlier this year the exchange opened in Uganda and it also moved to the notoriously crypto-strict South Korea.

But Malta presents bigger opportunities for the exchange. Binance has been growing its footprint in Malta over the last year and Malta isn’t dubbed the “Blockchain Island” for no good reason. The country holds a pro-crypto stance, along with regulations that offer favorable conditions for cryptocurrency and blockchain businesses.

Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao has spoken on the partnership with MSX, saying:

“Malta […] has become a global hub for blockchain technology through active and transparent crypto regulations. This partnership will allow Binance and MSX to host traditional financial assets on blockchain technology through security tokens.”

Joe Portelli, the chairman of the Malta Stock Exchange, expressed how the new venture opened a “new market opportunity [to] develop and push the boundaries of the Maltese financial sector.”

>> Crypto Daily News: OKEx Founder Arrested by Shanghai Police and Man Lost Life Savings When Bitcoin (BTC) Crashed

Crypto Developments Mean Infrastructure for Malta

The Maltese Government is keen to take advantage of the developments that new business brings to its country. Its infrastructure will be greatly improved by encouraging blockchain and crypto business to move to its shores. 

Currently, digital innovation and road infrastructure are at the top of the to-do list for parliament.

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Binance Moves to South Korea

Binance Moves to South Korea: Binance has become the most successful crypto exchange platform in the world. It has taken the exchange just over a year to achieve this title – it cites its beginnings in July 2017 by the now billionaire Changpeng “CZ” Zhao – and it handles the largest daily trading volume in the world; an average amount of $1.45 billion a day, according to coinmarketcap.com.

Now the exchange is reportedly entering one of the world’s major crypto trading markets – South Korea. 

Binance Moves to South Korea

The process has already begun to make such a move happen; Binance has started hiring executives in South Korea for a plan to establish three to five local corporations within 2018.

Also, It hired Jeon Ah-rim as its domestic marketing director and Choi Hyung-won as director of the social impact fund, Binance Labs, which is based – of course – in South Korea. 

Back as early as August 2017, It added language support for Korean on its primary exchange portal – a nod to a plan that had already been in consideration perhaps?

The Timing is Right

According to the CEO of Binance, South Korea is an essential market for the exchange and it has much to gain by joining the competition for what is already a crypto-heavy landscape in the country. Other popular exchanges already active in the country include Huobi, Bithumb, and Upbit.

South Korea is considered as having one of the strictest cryptocurrency regulatory frameworks; last year the East Asia nation banned ICO’s taking lead from China. It has since considered a different stance, as earlier this year Hong Eui-rak, a representative from the country’s ruling Democratic Party gained the support of other lawmakers in Parliament to introduce a bill pushing for the legalization of ICOs.

>>Bitcoin is Bullish but the G20 is Still Out on Regulation

Binance is Powerful

Binance is popular and as a result, it is powerful; Holo (HOT) is the native cryptocurrency of Holochain – the decentralized cloud system, The coin saw a massive 70% gain on Monday morning. This leap was achieved once the exchange announced it will add HOT to its trading platform. 

“Binance will open trading for HOT/BTC and HOT/ETH trading pairs at 2018/07/24 04:00 AM (UTC). Users can now start depositing HOT in preparation for trading,”

It is already the biggest exchange by trading volume and its adoption in Korea is exciting – but competition is stiff. Do you think Binance can win over a large number of Korean traders?

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Binance Donates to Japan Disaster Relief

Binance Donates to Japan Disaster Relief: Japan is prone to natural disasters. Located along the world’s most active earthquake belt, the country’s seen everything from earthquakes to mudslides.

The latest Japanese natural disaster occurred this weekend. On the night of July 7, a 6.0 earthquake hit Japan.

No tsunami warning was issued, but the aftermath of the latest Japan earthquake is becoming dire. As a result, crypto exchange Binance has stepped in to help. 

Binance Donates to Japan Disaster Relief 

Since last Thursday, Japan has experienced heavy rainfall, sparking deadly landslides and floods. Then, on Saturday, the 6.0 earthquake occurred; the time was around 9 p.m. 

With over 60 dead from the floods, Binance has called on the crypto community to help in the Japan disaster relief initiative. Binance itself has pledged $1M for the victims. 

In an official post, Binance announced the $1M donation, as well as calling on “crypto friends and partners” to join them. Instructions were provided to those who would like to donate to the Japan disaster relief. 

Binance Donates to Japan Disaster Relief: CEO Speaks Out

The CEO of Binance also shared the news on Twitter. There, Changpeng Zhao once again called on Binance’s crypto partners to join them “and help our friends in need.” 

Cryptocurrency Donations: Do They Make a Difference?

It wouldn’t be the first time cryptocurrencies were put towards aiding natural disasters or donated for charitable organizations. 

The Freedom of the Press Foundation, for instance, now accepts virtual currencies as donations.

Meanwhile, Ripple is known for making donations, either in dollars or XRP. It donated nearly $30M in XRP to DonorsChoose, $4M to the Ellen DeGeneres WildLife Fund and $50M to Universities for more blockchain adoption. 

The Takeaway

Binance donates to Japan disaster relief, and this is something many other financial institutions should do.

My recommendation is that if you have cryptocurrencies to spare, you should take Binance up on its offer, and donate to the Japan disaster relief. The country has been through enough, and according to the weather forecast, more is to come.

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Binance Trading Suspension | Trades Halt After SYS Trading Irregularities

Binance trading suspension: 13 hours ago, Binance announced that it would go through another ‘system maintenance,’ which resulted in another suspension of trading on its platform for an extended period of time.

A week and a half ago, the major cryptocurrency exchange went through a similar event that resulted in the suspension of the exchange for ten hours.

This time, there was eight hours of downtime.

Binance Trading Suspension: SYS Trading Irregularities

During its maintenance, the Binance internal risk management system found irregular traders in a number of API users. This prompted the suspension of trading and withdrawals on the Binance platform.

The suspension of withdrawals and trades was not originally planned but was a decision made during the maintenance process.

Syscoin, a fork of the Bitcoin protocol, announced yesterday that it had noticed a potential issue and asked major exchanges to suspend the trading of SYS immediately.

This is what prompted Binance’s maintenance, and when irregularities were found, action was taken.

Binance responded to its users affected by the SYS price fluctuation and said:

“For the users who were negatively affected by choosing to trade the rising SYS price, Binance will offer zero-fee trading between 2018/07/05 – 2018/07/14. If you traded SYS during the incident and believe you were negatively affected, please open a support ticket.”

In addition to this, all other Binance users will be given a 70% rebate of the trading fees received from Binance (not including referrals) between July 5th and July 14th. This rebate will be paid out in BNB and calculated using the closing price on the 14th.

>> Binance Halts Trade in System Upgrade

Secure Asset Fund for Users (SAFU)

Binance is also making forward steps to protect its users and is opening a Secure Asset Fund for Users (SAFU). This will begin on the 14th of July, and the company will allocate 10% of all its trading fees to offer protection to Binance users.

These funds will be used in extreme cases such as the one today and any other hacks that could potentially occur on the platform. The SAFU funds will be stored in a separate cold wallet.

While Binance has no control over external cryptocurrency factors such as the one that occurred with SYS, it’s nice to know it is setting some funds aside for its users if these incidents do occur.

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