Schwab Corp announced that the consortium of companies plans to launch a first-of-its-kind cryptocurrency exchange, the latest sign of traditional finance converging with digital assets.
Other prominent players such as Paradigm, Sequoia Capital and Virtu Financial are also backing the new venture. Former Citadel Securities executive Jamil Nazarali has been appointed as the platform’s CEO.
Called EDX Markets, this digital asset exchange aims to offer “safer, faster and more efficient cryptocurrency trading” through on-chain settlements backed by the liquidity of legacy financial institutions.
EDXM will rely on the technology infrastructure built by Members Exchange (MEMX), a member-owned equities trading platform. This will enable the newly introduced exchange to scale its operation to serve retail and institutional investors in a multitude of markets.
In the press release, EDX Markets’ board of directors stated, “Crypto is a $1 trillion global asset class with over 300 million participants and pent-up demand from millions more. Unlocking this demand requires a platform that can meet the needs of both retail traders and institutional investors with high compliance and security standards.”
Ethereum makes history: The Merge goes live
15 September 2022
At around 2:45pm SGT, Ethereum underwent and completed its transition from PoW to PoS, successfully pulling off one of the riskiest and largest-scale software upgrades in the crypto space.
This impressive feat was also achieved without disrupting the network, which secures a multi-billion dollar ecosystem of cryptocurrencies, decentralised apps and NFTs.
The switch from PoW to PoS has fundamentally changed the way how new ETH is created and transactions are validated on the Ethereum blockchain. Up until the Merge, ETH was generated through mining, an energy-intensive process that requires massive computational power and consumes around 0.2% of the world’s electricity.
With the PoS consensus framework, new ETH is rewarded to validators who stake at least 32 ETH. The Ethereum Foundation said the technical upgrade has slashed the blockchain’s carbon footprint by approximately 99.95%.
While Ethereum launched in 2015, discussions and ideas surrounding the transition to a PoS model have begun a year prior when its co-founder Vitalik Buterin published a blog post regarding the concept in July 2014. In December 2020, the Beacon Chain was deployed. This was the PoS chain that was merged into the Ethereum mainnet on 15 September 2022.
Overall, the Merge was a resounding success and certainly one of the largest positive catalysts for crypto this year.
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