The Japanese are Using Bitcoin More than Expected

Since Japan started recognizing bitcoin as a method of payment, more Japanese are using the digital currency than expected. discussed this trend with Yuzo Kano, CEO of Bitflyer, the largest bitcoin exchange in Japan by volume.

Also read: Media Frenzy in Japan as Bic Camera Starts Accepting Bitcoin

Bitcoin Gaining Acceptance in Japan

The Japanese are Using Bitcoin More than ExpectedOn April 1, Japan started recognizing bitcoin as a method of payment, similar to prepaid cards and gift certificates. Since then, Bitcoin usage and awareness in Japan have been growing.

Among retailers that started accepting bitcoin in April were two Bic Camera stores. The Japanese consumer electronics giant partnered with Bitflyer to accept the digital currency. The news was heavily reported by mainstream media in Japan. Kano told

The news that big retail shop Bic Camera started accepting bitcoin from this April was reported on many TV programs, newspapers and websites and this news made many people interested in Bitcoin.

Interest in Bitcoin has spiked among merchants in Japan and many other retail stores are considering accepting the digital currency. “We are expecting that some large retail shops and e-commerce sites will introduce bitcoin payment within this year,” Kano conveyed, adding that “more and more to come in the next year.” So far, he said:

Thousands of shops have already applied [to accept bitcoin payments].

Japanese Increasingly Using Bitcoin

The Japanese are Using Bitcoin More than Expected
Sushi-Bar Numazuko Ginza 1st

Last week, Japanese national newspaper Yomiuri Shimbun, which claims to have the largest circulation in the world, wrote that Bitcoin is “increasingly being used in Japan.”

For example, the publication reported that a popular conveyor belt sushi restaurant in Tokyo called Sushi-Bar Numazuko Ginza 1st is seeing a spike in bitcoin usage. While bitcoin was used only a few times a month two years ago at the restaurant, about 70 payments were made with bitcoin in March.

The restaurant also has a Bitcoin ATM inside. The fee for buying bitcoin there is 11.9 percent with the daily limit of ¥100000, according to Bitcoin ATM tracking website, Coinatmradar.

The restaurant manager told Yomiuri Shimbun:

Japanese customers are using bitcoin more than we expected.

Kano echoed the sentiment, telling that: “At the moment, we’ve heard that mainly Japanese users use Bitcoin payment. There are not many foreigners or tourists using Bitcoin payment.” Males between 20s and 40s show the strongest growth in Bitcoin usage, the CEO revealed. Bitflyer is also seeing a significant growth in its user base. “The number of customers has been growing rapidly since April 1,” he said, adding that currently “the number of our users is almost 600k.”

No FX Fees

There is also the added advantage of not having to pay foreign exchange (FX) fees when using bitcoin compared to when exchanging foreign currencies into yen. According to Yomiuri Shimbun:

When foreign tourists exchange dollars and other currencies to yen, they are charged a commission of about 3 percent. However, if they use bitcoins, they do not need to exchange money or pay exchange commissions.

In addition, the government has announced that, starting in July, purchasing bitcoins in Japan will no longer be levied consumption tax of 8 percentScreenshot_1

CME Files Patent for ‘Physically Settled’ Bitcoin Derivatives Clearing System

CME’s New Patent Application

CME Files Patent for "Physically Settled" Bitcoin Derivatives Clearing SystemsCME is an American financial and commodity derivative exchange based in Chicago. Today, it is the world’s largest options and futures contracts exchange, based on the number of contracts outstanding.

The company filed a patent application titled “System for Physically Delivering Virtual Currencies” with the USPTO on November 4, 2015. It was then published on the agency’s website on May 4.

The inventors listed on this patent application are Ryan Pierce, Sandra Ro, and Mansoor Ahmed. According to CME:

The present invention relates to systems for clearing derivative contracts based on virtual currencies and, in particular to systems that allow for the physical delivery of virtual currencies without the clearing counter-party directly possessing the virtual currencies.

CME Files Patent for "Physically Settled" Bitcoin Derivatives Clearing SystemsThe aforementioned derivative contracts include common futures and options contracts, CME details. In addition, the company specifies that “the virtual currency comprises bitcoin” without naming other cryptocurrencies.

Last month, the USPTO published another Bitcoin-related patent application by the company. The patent for “Derivative Contracts that Settle Based on a Virtual Currency Difficulty Factor or an Index of Virtual Currency Generation Yield” was filed in October 2015 but published in April this year.

Bitcoin Poses a Clearing Challenge

CME Files Patent for "Physically Settled" Bitcoin Derivatives Clearing SystemsIn its patent filing, CME claims the needs for new systems and methods for transactions involving digital currencies including bitcoin, citing that these assets “can be transferred pseudonymously”.

“Some types of futures contracts are ‘physically’ settled” where the actual commodity is delivered by the relevant counter-party at final settlement, the company explains, adding that:

A clearing counter-party could facilitate physical delivery of virtual currency contracts by instructing the sellers of expiring contracts to transfer the virtual currencies directly to the clearing counter-party, and the clearing counter-party would then transfer the virtual currencies to the buyers.

However, digital currency transactions “cannot be reversed without the consent of the recipient,” CME wrote, noting that “computer security breaches or employee dishonesty” could result in permanent loss of these assets. Furthermore, holding them “for settlement of derivatives contracts at a clearing counter-party presents a tempting target for thieves” and storing them also carries unique risks requiring specialized security procedures. The company believes:

Virtual currencies, such as bitcoin, create challenges for clearing counter-parties.

After outlining many risk factors, CME asserts that “there is a need in the art for improved systems and methods for clearing derivative contracts based on virtual currencies while minimizing risks to clearing counter-parties.” The patent describes “systems and methods that allow a clearing counter party to confirm that virtual currency has been physically delivered without taking possession of the virtual currency,” the company details.Screenshot_13

Frexit Could Boost Bitcoin’s Price Beyond Record Levels

The Euro is ‘a Deadweight’

Frexit has been proposed by a number of French politicians during the 2017 presidential elections, including presidential candidate Marine Le Pen. She said:

The euro has protected no one, quite the contrary. The euro has been a deadweight for prices, a deadweight for jobs, a deadweight for the competitiveness of our businesses and it would be much simpler to kick-start the economy without this common currency.

Frexit Could Boost Bitcoin's Price Beyond Record Levels
France’s presidential candidates

On Sunday, May 7, the French people will cast their final vote in the country’s presidential election. Two candidates remain out of 11 from the first round; Le Pen and Emmanuel Macron.

The far-right Le Pen is in favor of Frexit. She wants to replace the euro with a basket of new national currencies, and even considers capital controls. Her opponent, Macron, is a centrist who is in favor reforming the EU to avoid Frexit.

Le Pen has reportedly spoken against Bitcoin to the point of suggesting banning the cryptocurrency. Macron, however, supports experimentation and the use of blockchain technology.

Frexit Could Boost Bitcoin’s Price

The effect of Frexit on Bitcoin could bear a resemblance to how Brexit affects the digital currency after Britain voted to leave the EU in June last year. “Brexit offers an opportunity for the UK to become a hub for cryptocurrencies if it tries to reposition itself as an innovation economy,” Bob Swarup, a principal at Camdor Global Advisors, told The Telegraph.Frexit Could Boost Bitcoin's Price Beyond Record Levels

With the upcoming election, France’s future looks uncertain, similar to Brexit and Trump’s victory in the U.S., according to European Bitcoin startup Bitwala. “If the situation feels a little bit like a deja vu, this is because it is.”

The startup noted that “the price of bitcoin experienced a 25% hike from the day before Brexit to the next,” adding that:

The uncertainty regarding the value of Euro and Franc would increase demand in the cryptocurrency the following day of the Frexit referendum.

Frexit Could Boost Bitcoin's Price Beyond Record LevelsOperating in over 120 countries with over 20 currencies, Bitwala claims to have over 25,000 users. The company offers remittance services using Bitcoin.

“Hundreds of thousands of workers and immigrants currently residing in France are sending billions across borders to support their families with remittances,” the startup detailed. “Percentage of deposits and money transfer fees could eat directly into the savings of many affected families.”

Bitcoin “could play a vital role upon the possible withdrawal of France’s withdrawal from the European Union and the reintroduction of the Franc,” Bitwala believes, adding that:

If France does pull a Frexit, Bitcoin will experience a surge beyond record levels in terms of price.

USD, JPY, and CNY Markets Dominate Bitcoin Trade Volume


Bitcoin markets have been wild lately with massive trading volume as the price is higher than it’s ever been before. Currently, the price per bitcoin is coasting along at an average of roughly US$1550-60 with 24-hour global trade volume reaching $700 million across worldwide exchanges on May 4.

U.S. And Japanese Bitcoin Trading Volumes Go Head to Head
Global 24-hour BTC trade volume tops $765 million.

Throughout this time many bitcoin participants and spectators are curious to know who is trading the most bitcoin these days. Many news outlets are pointing to Japan as interest has increased significantly in the region. It’s also being said that Japanese trading is capturing the lion’s share of bitcoin daily trade volume. However at present JPY trading is roughly tied with USD bitcoin trade volume, and CNY numbers follow slightly behind.

U.S. And Japanese Bitcoin Trading Volumes Go Head to Head

According to statistics between the U.S. exchanges such as GDAX, Bitstamp, Kraken, Bitfinex, and Gemini are showing USD/BTC trading at roughly $73 million over the past 24-hours. Japanese exchanges are also trading $73 million USD worth of JPY/BTC per day between Bitflyer, Coincheck, Zaif, and Quoine.

Volume from China is a touch lower as traders see $45 million in daily trades with Huobi, BTCC, and Okcoin volumes. China was once the global leader in bitcoin trades in 2016 but that all changed when trading platforms halted withdrawals and added fees to every trade. Just behind China is Europe, as total percentages of overall Euro trading is around $31.4 million between three major European bitcoin exchanges.

U.S. And Japanese Bitcoin Trading Volumes Go Head to Head
Bitstamp BTC/USD, 24-hour trade volume, is roughly $20 million at press time.

Bitcoin Volumes: Things to Consider

Statistics do show that USD and JPY trade volume is higher than ever before, but some believe these numbers should be taken with a grain of salt. For instance, when China dominated bitcoin markets it was because trading platforms allowed trading without fees which inflated CNY volumes drastically. Since the Chinese exchanges added fees BTC/CNY trade volumes in China have plummeted. One attractive benefit to Japanese bitcoin trading is the fact that exchange’s from the region do not charge fees per trade. This makes skeptics leery of Japanese bitcoin trading volume as JPY statistics may be inflated due to this reason.

U.S. And Japanese Bitcoin Trading Volumes Go Head to Head
Biflyer JPY/BTC 24-hour trade volume shows $13 million USD worth of bitcoins traded at press time.

Secondly, U.S. volumes are high, but that may have a lot to do with Bitfinex market volumes right now. Out of the $73 million in USD 24-hour trade volume, Bitfinex is capturing $30 million of that share at the time of writing. However Bitfinex prices are through the roof right now since the exchange suspended USD withdrawals. Currently, one bitcoin is trading for $1630 on the Bitfinex trading platform which is well above every other exchange that facilitates USD trades.

Are These Top BTC Trading Countries Showing Bitcoin is On the Verge of Mainstream Success?

Nevertheless, people are focused heavily on Japan because the government just recently legalized bitcoin as a form of payment. Furthermore, the bitcoin exchanges Bitflyer and Coincheck hope to encourage thousands of merchants to adopt bitcoin by this summer. To add to all of that many institutional investors are seeing Japan as cryptocurrency hotspot and rumor has it many more exchanges plan on operating in the country.

Mainstream acceptance of bitcoin is also doing well in many other regions worldwide. In the U.S., China and Europe lawmakers are also preparing legislative guidelines for bitcoin use within each country as leaders see trade volumes and popularity has been rising consistently in these countries for well over a year.

The Bitcoin Store: Tending to the Needs of the Emerging Crypto-Culture

One Man’s Bitcoin Passion Turns Into a Crypto Shopping Universe

The Bitcoin Store was created in 2015 by Stephen Macaskill after the New Zealand native sold Amagi Metals, the first online precious metals retailer to accept bitcoin. Macaskill is also a member of the Blockchain Association of New Zealand and has grown passionate about the innovative technology we all love — bitcoin.

The Bitcoin Store: Tending to the Needs of the Emerging Crypto-Culture

Macaskill’s crypto-centric shop is an excellent example of his passion and drive to accelerate the bitcoin ecosystem. The Bitcoin Store is a fantastic place where you can purchase really cool merchandise like t-shirts, hardware devices, artwork, watches, card games, and so much more. Furthermore, you can buy all of these goods with a variety of cryptocurrencies like Dash, Ethereum and others using the Shapeshift ‘Shifty’ button.

The Bitcoin Store: Tending to the Needs of the Emerging Crypto-Culture

The Most Popular Items Sold at the Bitcoin Store

The Bitcoin Store: Tending to the Needs of the Emerging Crypto-CultureHere’s a list of the most popular items you can purchase at the Bitcoin Store:

The Rise of Cryptocurrency Value Has Increased Spending

The Bitcoin Store is having a fantastic first quarter in 2017 as the shop’s sales are 300 percent higher than 2016. Macaskill says the price spikes for bitcoin and numerous altcoins has increased spending quite a bit and people have been purchasing high ticket items like art. One featured artist that’s been selling at the Bitcoin Store is the Montreal painter Guy Hamelin. Another popular artist we showcase at our store is Satoshi Gallery’s artwork which fuses pop-culture with cryptocurrency ideals.

The Bitcoin Store: Tending to the Needs of the Emerging Crypto-Culture
The beautiful artwork of Guy Hamelin can be found at the Bitcoin Store.

Besides the vibrant art section, there’s a whole slew of areas at the Bitcoin Store that fulfills everyone’s needs. This includes men’s, women’s and children’s apparel, coffee mugs, soap, stickers, phone cases and more. The best part is, all of our items have a bitcoin or cryptocurrency related theme.

Check Out Our Cool Bitcoin Shop Today

We want our readers to check out the Bitcoin Store as we believe it offers both cryptocurrency veterans and novices the coolest swag you can find online. Moreover, we ship internationally and quickly as well by offering low shipping costs for all of our store products. Our store items are perfect for friends and family members who love bitcoin, birthday presents, holidays and basically any special occasion.

BitCAD Announces a Crowdsale Campaign

IMG_0145MAY 3, 2017 –– BitCAD, a cryptographic smart platform, has announced a crowdfunding campaign to back the development and production of a wide variety of hardware and software solutions based on blockchain technology. The products seek to revolutionize the very core of business relationships and make them easier while enhancing security and reliability of the entire paradigm. Crowdsale will start on May 4, 2017 at 12:00 GMT. The platform’s software solutions include a comprehensive system focused on managing financial processes like accounting, CRM, asset management, or online banking in a decentralized manner. The BitCAD system enables constructing smart contracts for every occasion and introduces a formal legal language to make operations smooth and seamless. Thanks to blockchain technology, once terms and conditions are agreed upon, they cannot be changed. Another solution offers an electronic arbitration system covering both platform members and third parties seeking dispute settlement. Parties may agree any jurisdiction and assign judges from legal systems they deem applicable while ensuring the contract in question meets the legal requirements of said jurisdiction. This tackles the problem of contract applicability across various countries which causes businesses and individuals to spend a fortune seeking a legal advice. Finally, the company develops a decentralized system for biometric identification of users that works as fast as its classic counterparts with no involved risks of compromising sensitive data due to vulnerabilities inherent in centralized solutions. The crowdsale shall last for one month, from May 4th to June 4th of 2017. Out of 100,000,000 tokens supplied overall, 51 per cent will be subject to sale over the course of the campaign, with the remaining funds distributed between the project’s team and early backers (20 per cent), business specialists and academic researchers (27 per cent), while the remaining 2 per cent will be reserved for post-crowdsale bounties. BitCAD founder and CEO Vladislav Mitrofanov stated: “Our systems are set to be as accurate and precise as possible. We seek to remove all vulnerabilities and inconveniences of outdated centralized financial and legal solutions. What we offer is a completely new paradigm where people can feel at home in a decentralized environment, and the internet of things works like clockwork.”

Mexico’s Government Officials Discuss Plans to Regulate Bitcoin

Mexico’s Plans to Regulate Bitcoin

Jose Bernardo Gonzalez, Head of the Mexican Finance Ministry’s Banking, Securities and Savings Unit, said that Bitcoin exists in a free market and cannot be controlled, El Universal reports. In statements made to the publication, he explained how the laws would allow the central bank to regulate bitcoin buyers and sellers, stating that (loosely translated):

What we are trying to regulate are the sellers and buyers of this type of assets [bitcoin] to third parties, but not the virtual asset itself.

He further clarified that the regulators would ensure there are “certain rules to prevent money laundering, user protection and so on.” Specifically, they “would check that these assets are sufficiently liquid and would define the operating characteristics with which financial intermediaries or fintech companies can offer these assets to the public,” he described.

Feedback from the Finance Community

The initiative proposed by the government to modernize Mexico’s fintech sector includes a section about Bitcoin. It was recently presented to the financial sector and was well received, according to Gonzalez. Mexico’s Government Officials Discuss Plans to Regulate BitcoinTraditional banks and brokerage firms in Mexico provided feedback and suggestions. Many are positive and look forward to Bitcoin being regulated, he told El Universal.

“They are seeing that there is complementarity between traditional institutions and the fintech sector,” he recalled.

In a recent Senate appearance, the Governor of the Bank of Mexico, Agustin Carstens, talked about this fintech initiative as well. “The goal is how to take advantage of technological innovation that can reduce costs and increase the reach of the financial system, but everything must be in an environment of prudence and security towards users,” he said. The governor also disclosed that he is confident the initiative will be approved this year.

Central Bank Experimenting with Bitcoin

Carstens also recently revealed that the central bank has been running “very low scale” tests with Bitcoin to learn how it works, Forbes reports. He explained that prior to regulating Bitcoin, the bank needs to familiarize itself with the digital currency and its technology. In addition, the publication wrote:

The objective of the operations is also to outline an eventual regulation of virtual currencies, for which Banxico will take its time and find the best international practices.

Mexico’s Government Officials Discuss Plans to Regulate Bitcoin
Agustin Carstens

The governor has some concerns, however. “The worrying thing is that periodically there are technological, hacking and theft problems, and that makes us very nervous. Yes, we have to be fully assured of technological integrity, well armored, and not expose the public,” he conveyed.

Moreover, he detailed how the central bank will make sure that financial authorities are properly set up to observe and ensure that “the technological support is solid and robust, in order to avoid risks for users.” Nonetheless, more testing is needed first, he told Forbes.

What do you think of Mexico’s plans to regulate Bitcoin? Let us know in the comments section below.Screenshot_7

Nexxus Ecosystem to Create Density of Adoption with Token Sale

Screenshot_5Plano, TX: Nexxus announces its ecosystem to address one of the biggest challenges for bitcoin identified by Andreas Antonopoulos at the 2017 Blockchain Africa Conference, as the Density of Adoption. Andreas stated “You can’t do most of the things, yet, that might be very interesting markets and the reason you can’t do them is because there’s not enough liquidity, there’s not enough users, there’s not enough adoption”.

Nexxus is promoting mainstream public adoption by introducing bitcoin and cryptocurrency to local communities worldwide with physical cryptocurrency cafes, a network of cryptocurrency ATMs, an innovative shopper rewards program, and cryptocurrency education and certification.

The Nexxus ecosystem technology includes the Nexxus Rewards global rewards community and bartering program at, the Nexxus University cryptocurrency education and certification program at, the Nexxus corporate strategy and executive management team at, and the internal currency and digital token of the Nexxus ecosystem at
The Nexxus go-to-market strategy includes viral marketing revenue sharing, a certified direct sales force, a community outreach program, and a critical mass strategy to create a significant concentration of merchants and shoppers in local communities worldwide.

Nexxus founder and CEO, Bob Wood states, “Nexxus is facilitating bitcoin and cryptocurrency as a huge movement that is bigger than all disruptive technologies in modern history combined, because we’re now disrupting the power structure of the political and financial establishment – the people’s money”.

Nexxus is also conducting a digital token sale on May 8, 2017 at The Nexxus digital token is the internal currency used for value exchange within the Nexxus ecosystem of cryptocurrency products and services, similar to the Ether token on the Ethereum platform. Nexxus digital tokens are used as the cash-back reward points given to shoppers by merchants for every transaction in any currency including local fiat currencies, credit/debit cards, cash, bitcoin and other top cryptocurrencies. Every purchase in any currency causes Nexxus digital tokens to be purchased from the open market to fulfill the granted reward points. Nexxus digital tokens have automated buyer demand from the Nexxus ecosystem.

About Nexxus Partners: Nexxus Partners is a services company for the bitcoin and cryptocurrency industry, and is the developer of the Nexxus ecosystem, which includes the Nexxus Global Rewards Community that is the first local bitcoin loyalty rewards program taking cryptocurrency mainstream, the Nexxus University that provides the education and certification for people to benefit from the new peer-to-peer electronic cash system, the Nexxus Bartering program for local users to trade their unwanted or surplus products and services with each other in cryptocurrency, and the Nexxus HandUp program to assist the less fortunate with the benefits of cryptocurrency.