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Something’s Brewing at Facebook’s Cryptocurrency Division


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It’s not entirely clear what exactly is going on in Facebook’s nascent cryptocurrency division, but several reports suggest that something is afoot.

Facebook Meets with Cryptocurrency Project Stellar

The first comes from Business Insider, who reports that Facebook’s blockchain research group recently met with Stellar to discuss how the social media conglomerate could leverage distributed ledger technology (DLT) as it explores potentially building out a payments network.

According to unnamed sources, the two parties discussed how Facebook could fork the public Stellar blockchain, much as chat app Kik did after it decided to create an independent blockchain for its Kin cryptocurrency rather than piggyback on the main Stellar network. The task force is also said to have met with other unnamed cryptocurrency projects.

The publication also reports that Facebook has rapidly been expanding its blockchain division. One job posting said that the endeavor “is a startup within Facebook, with a vision to make blockchain technology work at Facebook scale and improve the lives of billions of people around the world.”

Facebook’s Crypto Lead Steps Down from Coinbase Board

Further stoking the coals of the rumor mill is the announcement, first reported by CoinDesk, that David Marcus, a Facebook vice president and the former head of its Messenger division, has stepped down from his post on Coinbase’s board of directors, a role he originally took on at the cryptocurrency exchange giant last December.

Marcus, as CCN reported, left his role at Messenger in May to lead Facebook’s blockchain division, where he reports directly to Facebook CTO Mike Schroepfer.

facebook cryptocurrency david marcus speculation
Source: Twitter

A Coinbase spokesperson told the publication that Marcus had stepped down to avoid the appearance of a conflict of interest, leading to speculation that Facebook is preparing to make a major announcement regarding its cryptocurrency plans.

Earlier this year, financial news outlet Cheddar reported that multiple sources had said that Facebook is “specifically interested in creating its own digital token, which would allow its more than two billion users to facilitate transactions without government-backed currency.”

Cryptocurrency has also been on the mind of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, who said that one of his personal challenges for 2018 is to learn more about technologies “like encryption and cryptocurrency.”

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Huobi Global Will Support Stablecoin Trading Through its HUSD Offering

It would appear there is still plenty of stablecoin action on the horizon in the cryptocurrency industry. More specifically, there has been an influx of such currencies over the past few months. Huobi Global is now planning to introduce its own stablecoin, although it is a bit different from what one would expect. The Huobi Global Stablecoin Plan On the surface, it is rather commendable to see so many exchanges offer stablecoins to its users in quick succession. Gemini issued its own stablecoin a few weeks ago, and Circle has their own currency pegged to the US Dollar as well. Combined with the likes of USDT and TUSD, it is evident there is a fierce battle for market traction taking place right now. That should introduce more market liquidity moving forward, although the reality may be very different. Assuming stablecoins will take off, however, Huobi Global might be on to something in this regard. More specifically, the company acknowledges there is a demand for trading with stablecoins, but the exchange is doing things a bit differently first and foremost. They are effectively launching a program which seems much like yet another stablecoin, however it is nothing along those lines. To put this in perspective, Huobi Global will support deposits of Paxos Standard, TrueUSd, USD Coin, and Gemini Dollars. These four stablecoins have all come to market in 2018 and are quickly bringing some much-needed competition to Tether. As a result, a lot of exchanges are rushing to integrate support for these stablecoins Huobi Global is no different in this regard, even though the company will not necessarily allow for trading in either of these stablecoins. Instead, the platform will convert deposits of these four stablecoins into something known as “HUSD”. It is a bit similar to how Bitfinex converts USDT deposits into USD, even though they should be treated as to separate currencies. In the case of Huobi Global, their conversion to HUSD makes sense, as users can still withdraw this balance in any of the supported stablecoins. It is simply the actual trading which will not occur in PAX, TUSD, USDC, or GUSD. To a lot of users, this might seem a bit unusual. After all, there is not necessarily a need for converting stablecoins to a native “currency” and then converting it back to said stablecoins. For Huobi Global, the company is evaluating this approach and they might integrate support for additional stablecoins in the future. Any stablecoin not meeting the company’s risk control standard will be removed from the platform accordingly. The bigger question is whether or not this project will generate a lot of success. After all, this added layer on top of dealing with stablecoins will not necessarily appeal to a lot of investors, but the concept also has a fair bit of merit in the end. It is good to see the exchange not necessarily introduce its own stablecoin, even though HUSD will serve that specific purpose. The post Huobi Global Will Support Stablecoin Trading Through its HUSD Offering appeared first on NullTX.

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