North America

Welcome to another weekly blockchain news roundup from around the world. Here, we present to you all the latest Bitcoin news, continent by continent and country by country.

United States

Chicago Association Forced to Withdraw ETF Application: The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) has withdrawn the application pertaining to its Bitcoin Exchange Traded Fund (ETF). The application’s withdrawal was intimated by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Although the exact reasons were not given, the possibility lies in the US government’s shutdown. With a majority of staff unavailable in the SEC, CBOE application would not have been processed in time and that would have affected investors confidence.

At the same time, a Chicago based crypto exchange, Seed CX now offers spot trading options for big players like institutional investors. The exchange said it offers a fully licensed and regulation compliant system, with plans to launch digital asset derivatives that are inline with Commodity Future Trading Commission.

MIT Professor Claims Blockchain will help Borderless Economy: A professor from the famed Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has claimed that blockchain technology is perfect for a borderless economy. Professor Silvio Micali said that before blockchain, only two of three crucial requirements (security, scalability, and decentralization) could ever be fulfilled. With all three by blockchain being true, it has the right ingredients.

A team of researchers at the institute have also claimed to develop cryptocurrency that, according to the MIT blog, is 99% less data intensive than Bitcoin. Apart from the bandwidth efficiency, the cryptocurrency dubbed Vault also deploys Proof of Stake model, instead of the energy-hungry Proof of Work that Bitcoin uses.

Douglas County to Initially Invest $50,000 for Blockchain Innovation Campus: The Washington state’s Douglas county seems to defy the crypto market meltdown by sanctioning USD 50,000 towards the development of its blockchain innovation campus. With the recent months seeing Bitcoin prices falling, the county has been able to bring in miners with its relatively cheaper hydroelectric power stations.

NASDAQ CEO Believes Crypto at Crossroads: NASDAQ CEO, Adena Friedman, has said that cryptocurrencies are now at a critical crossroad where they can either fade out or become integrated into the economic fabric of the world. In this regard, she expressed that cryptocurrency should be given “an opportunity to find a sustainable future in our economy.”

IBM is collaborating with big healthcare service providers for a blockchain ecosystem that would improve how sensitive information such as personal medical records are handled, along with increasing health claim speeds and transactions.

New Hampshire Passes Bill to Allow Taxes to be Paid in Bitcoin: Lawmakers in the state of New Hampshire have proposed a bill that would make it legal to pay taxes and fees with Bitcoin by 2020. The first time the idea was proposed in the state was back in 2015. New Hampshire has once again become one of many U.S. states proposing their own crypto acceptance bills.

Mexico

Havard University to Pilot Blockchain Factory Safety System: Harvard University has teamed up with clothing brand Levi Strauss to develop a blockchain based factory safety management system. The aim is to remove the dependency on third-party health and safety auditors, and mould the current HSE system into a completely independent self-reporting one. The platform will be deployed for its test phase at one of Levi’s factory in Mexico.

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