XTRD Product Update

It’s halfway through 2018, and the crypto landscape is maturing quite well with the advent of normalization, custody, technology, and regulatory clarity.

In a major milestone last month, Ethereum and Bitcoin were declared non-securities by the SEC, paving the way for capital inflows and greater regulatory certainty. A new Bitcoin ETF application was filed, we will hopefully hear the SEC confirmation by 8/10 but likely it will be pushed another 45 days as per approval guidelines. BlackRock is exploring the space too, after their leading employees left to start crypto companies. Participating in the blockchain space is quickly becoming less of a me-too progressive fad for larger organizations and more of a must-have to keep up with rapid developments and client demand for exposure.

This time it’s different — there is custody, more regulatory clarity, minimums that will necessitate larger/accredited investor participation and the entity applying is the CBOE and VanEck.

On the XTRD side, we are seeing the demand for our products spike — but some are in greater demand than others. In particular, this is true of the XTRD Dark Pool solution, leveraging actual banking custodians for fiat and digital asset custodians for crypto to allow for cheap, easy, and vetted large OTC trades.

In line with our road map, we have recently released our FIX API, the unified market data and execution API for institutional use. The following product is to be a downloadable trading platform called XTRD PRO that allows for manual execution across exchanges.

However, given enormous institutional interest in the Dark Pool product, we have decided to prioritize XTRD Dark first. We feel that adjusting to market needs is important, and as the blockchain industry changes quickly, we must be nimble in order to meet incoming demand head on.

For fiat custodianship, the solutions we are leveraging are Noble Markets and Signature Bank, allowing for custody and seamless journal transfers of tens to hundreds of millions of dollars on the fiat side of the XTRD Dark trades.

On the crypto escrow side, we are exploring itBit (US based and fully licensed), DACC (physical custody in secure environment dealing with over 70 tokens) and Noble (digital custody coming!).

By integrating these fiat and digital custody solutions along with a dark matching engine and white-listed participants, a vetted, KYC enabled, fund verified trusted XTRD Dark Pool environment will facilitate hundreds of millions of dollars of large crypto to fiat trades at 20x less cost than current exorbitant OTC transaction middlemen fees.

XTRD PRO and XTRD SPA continue to be our focus and we are aiming to bring them online in 2018, with XTRD PRO coming first. On the XTRD PRO side, we’ll be publishing live screenshots as soon as the production version is in testing. An updated roadmap will be published soon as well.

Also — Thomas Lee’s analysis of the potential scope of the crypto market as driven by a generational shift is quite illuminating — see it here, highly recommended.

Steve Nerayoff joins the advisory board of XTRD

Steven Nerayoff, one of the original creators of the framework for Initial Token Offerings (ICOs), has joined the company as a strategic advisor. Nerayoff will advise XTRD as the company begins to roll out the product and onboard institutional clients for the initial trials of their complete trading platform.

“Steve is legend in the world of blockchain and cryptocurrency and to have him onboard with us as we begin to onboard major strategic partners is incredible and truly an honor,” said Alexander Kravets, CEO of XTRD. “His deep knowledge of the industry, unmatched experience, connections, and expertise will prove invaluable for us in the near future. It’s also a huge testament to our project and the grand vision we have for a person like him to recognize the potential in our future and we are humbled by that.”

Nerayoff is a prolific serial entrepreneur, attorney and inventor of 20 international patents, having founded seven companies in Silicon Valley and New York City. He is a blockchain pioneer with his involvement in top projects and is also the Chairman of the publicly listed company Global Blockchain Technologies (OTCMKTS:BLKCF) (TSXV:BLOC). He also founded Alchemistspecializing in blockchain project development and investment. Steven has assembled a team of industry leaders having advised and invested in over 25 projects, including: Aion, Bancor, Ethereum, Factom, GlobalBlockchain, Investfeed, Kudos, Lisk, MAD, Po.et, Polymath, Ripio, RSK, Sirin, Steemit, Storm, Streetwire, tZERO, Veridium, Vezt, ZCash, and Zencash.

Steven’s innovative work as the legal architect of Ethereum’s record setting token sale continues to be the basic structure used throughout the world today. Steven innovated the concept of “utility”, specifically using the concept of “gas” or “fuel” for legal purposes. Steven continues to be instrumental in defining the industry standards.

“XTRD is fantastic project that is potentially solving one of the biggest challenges in cryptocurrency and providing a mechanism that brings institutional investors into the crypto,” said Nerayoff. “What’s more, the team backing them up have the experience, connections, and technical background to make it happen.”

The veteran Wall Street traders who are building XTRD are introducing a new infrastructure that would allow banks, hedge funds, and large institutional traders to easily access cryptocurrency markets. By building a low-latency infrastructure with a unified FIX API, a technology used on Wall Street for over 25 years, along with a standalone trading platform and liquidity aggregation the company will provide precise and virtually instant pricing data while minimizing ‘slippage’ for the trading of digital assets. The company will also be building a private dark pool for private institutional trading off of the public blockchain.

XTRD is currently live with their first product, a unified FIX based multi exchange API for market data and execution co-located at NY4 Equinix data center with data connectivity across the globe. In development are several other primary solutions, such a as a unified milti-exchange trading platform, a dark pool product for OTC orders that works by leveraging digital asset and fiat custodians to facilitate large OTC orders at low cost, and liquidity aggregation across multiple exchanges.

XTRD CTO Serg Gulko – Voice of America – Crypto Market Volatility

XTRD Update: July 9, 2018

Summary

  • Crypto Exchange Gemini Hires Former NYSE Tech Chief
  • Swiss Stock Exchange to Tokenize Securities With New DLT Platform
  • Exclusive Weekly crypto market update from Steven Aitchison
  • Upcoming XTRD events

Crypto Exchange Gemini Hires Former NYSE Tech Chief

Cryptocurrency exchange Gemini has hired former New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) chief information officer Robert Cornish to serve as its first chief technology officer. Find more details in Coindesk article: http://bit.ly/2ue0QOE.

Swiss Stock Exchange to Tokenize Securities With New DLT Platform

Switzerland’s principal stock exchange has announced that it is developing a blockchain-based platform to tokenize traditional securities. Find more details in Coindesk article: http://bit.ly/2m36P5e.

Exclusive Weekly crypto market update from Steven Aitchison

Another exclusive weekly crypto update by Steven Aitchison — Youtube blogger and experienced crypto trader. This update contains weekly market overview, the most important cryptocurrency news from the last week and useful crypto trading tips. Please find more details in our blog post: http://bit.ly/2J8lKUY.

Upcoming XTRD events

To increase awareness of our project and attract more clients, partners, and new community members, XTRD will participate/speak at these events:

Feel free to stop by our exhibition booths and say “hello” or ask tough questions during roundtables.

XTRD Update: July 2, 2018

Summary

  • XTRD FIX API Product Update — June 30th
  • What Cryptocurrency Can Learn From Wall Street
  • Hardware Wallets Poll
  • XTRD events are on crypto calendars
  • Exclusive Weekly crypto market update from Steven Aitchison
  • Upcoming events

XTRD FIX API Product Update — June 30th

Summer is usually associated with vacations, trips, and overall relaxation. But not for the XTRD team! We are using this time to be prepared for the upcoming autumn run. First of all, we released the new version of FIX API gateway with added Binance support. So now our clients can receive normalized market data and trade on this exchange through our NY4 servers. Find more details in the XTRD FIX API Product Update — June 30th, 2018 http://bit.ly/2IGa3Va

What Cryptocurrency Can Learn From Wall Street

The groundbreaking potential of the cryptocurrency space has been well-documented over the last couple years. The maverick-like nature of the new industry is refreshing, and its non-conforming characteristics appealing. Yet, even the most radical innovations and industries can learn from their more established, monolithic counterparts that have come before them. When it comes to crypto, one of the primary sectors it can model is one of the largest, stablest sectors on the planet: Wall Street.

Read about 4 of the biggest lessons cryptocurrency can take from Wall Street in our new article: http://bit.ly/2Nh5ynu.

Hardware Wallet Poll

Take part in a hardware wallet poll. The question is “How do you sign your Ethereum transactions?” Please choose one of the four offered options or add your own option in comments: http://bit.ly/2tIKQEg.

XTRD events are on crypto calendars

XTRD events are now on CoinMarketCal and CoinsCalendar. Please click these links and then click “Real” for each event, this will help us to promote the project via these channels.

Exclusive Weekly crypto market update from Steven Aitchison

Another exclusive weekly crypto update by Steven Aitchison — Youtube blogger and experienced crypto trader. This update contains weekly market overview, the most important cryptocurrency news from the last week and useful crypto trading tips. Please find more details in our blog post: http://bit.ly/2Kojiix.

Upcoming events

To increase awareness of our project and attract more clients, partners, and new community members, XTRD will participate/speak at these events:

Feel free to stop by our exhibition booths and say “hello” or ask tough questions during roundtables.

What Cryptocurrency Can Learn From Wall Street

The groundbreaking potential of the cryptocurrency space has been well-documented over the last couple years. The maverick-like nature of the new industry is refreshing, and its non-conforming characteristics appealing. Yet, even the most radical innovations and industries can learn from their more established, monolithic counterparts that have come before them. When it comes to crypto, one of the primary sectors it can model is one of the largest, stablest sectors on the planet: Wall Street.

Instead of reinventing the wheel, taking the best practices from the financial industry and tailoring them to this emerging space can truly take the technology to infinity, and that’s exactly what we’re determined to accomplish here at XTRD. Based on our years of experience in the financial sector, we are applying proven, battle-tested practices that Wall Street has to offer and integrating them into our suite of products designed for the crypto space. By unifying crypto exchanges with our software, big players such as hedge funds, financial institutions and algorithmic traders can finally get fully immersed in the industry, resulting in high liquidity and lower fees for end users.

On that note, here are 4 of the biggest lessons cryptocurrency can take from Wall Street.

1. Unification Means More Money

Unifying crypto exchanges won’t only be advantageous to the large institutions involved, it will also benefit all other parties across the board through lower fees, faster trades and much more. Additionally, with less market volatility, parties with much bigger pockets will begin to invest and trade throughout the space. With more money being circulated throughout the industry, the floodgates of the mainstream adoption of cryptocurrency will be opened. This will lead to unprecedented opportunities for individuals from all walks of life in the form of new business ventures, investment opportunities, startup funding and more.

2. With More Money Comes More Security

Unfortunately, good intentions don’t always equate to good behavior. With complete decentralization and a lack of oversight in crypto, corruption becomes much more likely. Whether in the form of unscrupulous attackers hacking into a user’s wallet or a company having the ability to charge exorbitant trading fees for their coin, little can be done given the low volume of buyers, sellers and key decision makers within the space. In fact, according to research conducted by the University of Singapore and the University College of London, out of 1 million smart contracts examined, 34,000 were found to have vulnerabilities, making it clear that security needs to be a priority for crypto.

As more financial institutions begin investing in crypto, these same institutions will want to protect their assets, and will more than likely go to extraordinary measures to ensure their assets are secure. This will likely equate to more scrutiny, technological advancements, and checks and balances put in place in order to maximize protection of a user’s coins.

3. Leveraging a FIX-based API

In 1992, Bob Lamoureux and Chris Morstatt developed a monumental technology that replaced the clunky, manual communication traditionally used in equity trading with electronic communication, beginning with Fidelity Investments and Salomon Brothers. This enabled seamless communication and allowed data to help make optimal trading decisions for buyers and sellers across different markets. FIX API is a proven method of connecting markets that has become the industry standard since its inception.

Yet, despite the widespread popularity of the crypto space, no FIX equivalent exists to bridge the gap. This is one of the problems we’re addressing here at XTRD. With our low latency, FIX-based API, crypto markets will finally be able to be connected in one convenient place.

4. These Problems Will Not Go Away

Ignoring the problem of saturation with no real order or organization altogether will not make the issue disappear. According to Investing.com, as of May 2018 there were over 1,600 cryptocurrencies listed on the market, and this number only grows larger with each passing month. Without a proper, all-encompassing solution to the high volume of coins, liquidity will continue to remain low as the number of buyers and sellers remains relatively small.

The solution here is simplicity. With simplicity and consistency in a market comes less volatility. In conjunction with lower volatility, adoption rates will increase as well, making it clear that the faster crypto exchanges are unified, the easier the industry will be able to soar to new heights.

The cryptocurrency industry is a lot of things: exciting, promising and innovative. Yet, one thing it certainly is not is streamlined, efficient or user-friendly. By the same token, the speculative nature of the market has made it clear it’s far from perfect. By applying a handful of the most reliable practices of Wall Street to cryptocurrency, the industry’s full potential will be able to be unlocked, and previously immeasurable opportunities for people across the globe will be made possible.

XTRD Product update from Equinix NY4 data center

XTRD FIX API Product Update — June 30th, 2018

Summer is usually associated with vacations, trips, and overall relaxation. But not for the XTRD team! We are using this time to be prepared for the upcoming autumn run.

First of all, we released the new version of FIX API gateway with added Binance support. So now our clients can receive normalized market data and trade on this exchange through our NY4 servers.

There are two exchanges in our “hot list” to be added in the next release — OKEx and Bittrex.

Secondly, we are also working to add more functionality, directly not related to exchanges integration.

To add more value into our real-time normalized market data feed, we decided to add crypto-related news streamed inside the same FIX session!

Information is one of the crucial components of crypto trading. NewsEdge (by AquireMedia) will provide us with real-time updates and analytics(!) about all events that might have an impact on the industry. XTRD will transform NewsEdge wire format into FIX protocol News message(35=B) and then stream to our clients.

Are you looking to build crypto-trading terminal or run trading desk? We get you covered with real-time normalized market data and news coming from the one reliable source.

Despite the fact, that most of the XTRD tech team is hard-core backend developers, we understand entirely that interactions with users are also important. Not all people enjoy black and white terminals and command line interfaces (what a shame…).

In order to provide a more human-friendly interface for the clients, we decided to improve part of the back-office application that used to perform payments in XTRD tokens.

The end goal is to make our clients’ life more comfortable when they are transferring XTRD tokens for obtained services — execution, market data, and cross-connections.

Serg Gulko tried to record a brief video from our location in Equinix NY4 data center. The idea was good but realization completely failed. The only one thing you can learn from this video is the level of noise, created by all these machines.

XTRD Update: June 25, 2018

Summary

  • Alex presentation in Israel
  • News from Crypto Rico
  • New — Lex Sokolin from Autonomous Research answers our questions
  • XTRD events are on crypto calendars
  • Connecting Crypto: Why Unifying Crypto is Beneficial For All
  • Exclusive Weekly crypto update from Steven Aitchison
  • Clarity from the SEC — Bitcoin and Ether Likely Fail the Howey Test
  • Upcoming events

Alex presentation in Israel

XTRD CEO Alex Kravets presented at the Alchemist Money Summit in Tel Aviv last week upon the invitation of Ethereum co-founder Steven Nerayoff, discussing institutional entry into the cryptocurrency markets.

News from Crypto Rico

XTRD CTO Serg Gulko reveals the mystery around recent XTRD Puerto Rico trip in a short team update: http://bit.ly/2KhS5xd.

New — Lex Sokolin from Autonomous Research answers our questions

Lex Sokolin, XTRD advisor, Autonomous Research Fintech Strategy Director and Autonomous NEXT creator has shared his opinion on what will be the catalyst and commensurate timeline for institutional capital entry into the crypto space:

“There are several layers to institutional maturity. One is the entry of institutional investors, like large ETFs and mutual funds, into the space. Think about this as manufacturing of financial product. In order for this to happen, the manufacturer needs three things: custody, liquidity and the removal of regulatory overhang. While the value chain of custodians may indeed fundamentally change in response to decentralized networks, traditional investors still need legal custody of these assets. So the industry is working on what are essentially translation mechanisms of hardware and software (i.e., hot and cold storage) into accounts on a custodian that a fund can use. Once you have this, administration, taxes, performance reporting will follow.

Second, current trading happens on about 200 exchanges and another 50 (or more) over the counter venues. This means that markets are shallow, pricing is different across venues, and large trades are hard. Projects like Xtrade and others are tackling how to build the correct layers to connect these disjointed markets. And third, institutions need to remove the fear that regulation will make these assets uninvestable. In some way, it doesn’t particularly matter how the pie is sliced, as long as the risk of something unexpected is taken away.

Even more interesting is the maturity that will allow for these manufactured financial products (i.e., ETFs, funds) to be distributed in the regular wealth management ecosystem. This, I think, is more important longer term. Funds travel a long road from exchanges to broker/dealers to financial advisors and to consumers. On this road is asset allocation software, risk assessment, manager selection, performance reporting, financial planning, and roboadvisors. But until we have the underlying instruments ready, the rest cannot move forward.”

XTRD events are on crypto calendars

Starting from this week we will submit all the XTRD related events or the events we plan to visit on several crypto calendars, such as Coinmarketcal. Please support us by clicking the “Real” button, this will help us to promote our project via these channels. For now we’ve submitted three conferences we plan to visit and present with a booth/on stage:

Please click each of these links and then click “Real” in the “Validation” block on the right side of the page.

Thank you in advance!

Connecting Crypto: Why Unifying Crypto is Beneficial For All

At XTRD, we believe that unifying crypto in a strategic way will help to address its problems and will be beneficial to all parties involved. By fusing the best practices of Wall Street, one of the most robust and stable sectors on the planet, with this emerging and exciting space, an entirely new level of potential is possible. Find more thoughts on that in our new article: http://bit.ly/2yvZRz3.

Exclusive Weekly crypto update from Steven Aitchison

Another exclusive weekly crypto update by Steven Aitchison — Youtube blogger and experienced crypto trader. This update contains weekly market overview, the most important cryptocurrency news from the last week and useful crypto trading tips. Please find more details in our blog post: http://bit.ly/2tCPrrl.

Clarity from the SEC — Bitcoin and Ether Likely Fail the Howey Test

Great new article by our friend Daniel G. Viola, Partner of Sadis & Goldberg, LLP — Clarity from the SEC — Bitcoin and Ether Likely Fail the Howey Test. Daniel is the Head of the Digital Asset and Compliance Groups at his firm and is also the founder of the Crypto Asset Webinars and the Blockchain Shift Conferences.

Upcoming events

To increase awareness of our project and attract more clients, partners, and new community members, XTRD will participate/speak at these events:

Feel free to stop by our exhibition booths and say “hello” or ask tough questions during roundtables.

Clarity from the SEC — Bitcoin and Ether Likely Fail the Howey Test

By Daniel G. Viola, Partner of Sadis & Goldberg, LLP, a New York based law firm. Daniel is the Head of the Digital Asset and Compliance Groups at his firm and is also the founder of the Crypto Asset Webinars and the Blockchain Shift Conferences.

On May 1, 2018, the Wall Street Journal reported that while Bitcoin escaped government oversight as a security, regulators were examining whether other widely traded cryptocurrencies should be regulated as securities. In particular, Ether, the world’s second most valuable cryptocurrency after Bitcoin. This analysis typically turns on whether the founders of the virtual currency exert significant influence over their value, similar to the way a company’s stock price is dependent on its management team. Critics to this position argue that the analysis depends on how decentralized the organization is. For example, with Ether, since it has become highly decentralized, it should not be deemed a security because an owner of Ether is not relying on the efforts of the founders of Ether to experience a profit from their purchase of Ether.

On June 14, 2018, Mr. William Hinman, the Director of the Division of Corporation Finance at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) seemed to agree with the critics and concluded that Ether , the cryptocurrency of the Ethereum network, is likely not a security and is therefore likely not subject to the requirements of U.S. securities laws. Of course, a non-security can be offered and sold in a way that causes investors to have a reasonable expectation of profits based on the efforts of others. For example, when a Bank Certificate of Deposit, which is generally exempt from being treated as a security under Section 3 of the U.S. Securities Act of 1933 (the “Securities Act”), is sold as a part of a program organized by a broker who offers retail investors promises of liquidity and the potential to profit from changes in interest rates, then this instrument can be part of an investment contract and defined as a security, as set forth in Gary Plastic Packaging Corp. v. Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith, Inc., 756 F.2d 230 (2d Cir. 1985).

Under Section 2(a)(1) of the Securities Act, a security includes “an investment contract.” See, 15 U.S.C. § 77b. An investment contract is an investment of money in a common enterprise with a reasonable expectation of profits to be derived from the entrepreneurial or managerial efforts of others, such as a founder or promoter of a company. See, SEC v. Edwards, 540 U.S. 389, 393 (2004); SEC v. W.J. Howey Co., 328 U.S. 293, 301 (1946); see also, United Housing Found., Inc. v. Forman, 421 U.S. 837, 852–53 (1975) (The “touchstone” of an investment contract “is the presence of an investment in a common venture premised on a reasonable expectation of profits to be derived from the entrepreneurial or managerial efforts of others.”). This definition embodies a “flexible rather than a static principle, one that is capable of adaptation to meet the countless and variable schemes devised by those who seek the use of the money of others on the promise of profits.” Howey, 328 U.S. at 299. The test “permits the fulfillment of the statutory purpose of compelling full and fair disclosure relative to the issuance of ‘the many types of instruments that in our commercial world fall within the ordinary concept of a security.’” Id. In analyzing whether something is a security, “form should be disregarded for substance,” Tcherepnin v. Knight, 389 U.S. 332, 336 (1967), “and the emphasis should be on economic realities underlying a transaction, and not on the name appended thereto.” Forman, 421 U.S. at 849.

In order for an arrangement to be deemed an investment contract, it must qualify under all three (3) prongs of the Howey Test. See also, SEC v. SG Ltd., 265 F.3d 42, 48 (1st Cir. 2001), holding that all the factors must be present in order for an investment contract to meet the statutory definition of a “security.”