TL;DR: Welcome to In Case You Missed It (ICYMI), a daily crypto news update. Jobless claims skyrocket in US. Kraken continues hiring spree despite coronavirus outbreak. UK cash usage halves during quarantine. Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) could launch crypto mining business. Binance presents new debit card, and Block.one invests $150 million in Voice.
Jobless Claims Skyrocket in US
The number of jobless claims in the US skyrocketed, showing the deep impact coronavirus pandemic is having on the economy. According to the numbers, 3.28 million citizens filed for unemployment insurance last week, a number 15x higher than the previous rate. Pennsylvania was the state with most jobless claims filed, while New York claims also grew. “This morning’s data leaves no doubt that the economy is currently in a recession,” declared Matthew Luzzetti, chief US economist at Deutsche Bank AG.
Kraken Keeps Hiring Despite Coronavirus Pandemic
Kraken, a US-based cryptocurrency exchange, continued hiring people to operate its platform despite the coronavirus outbreak. Kraken has a distributed work policy and is now looking to include more than 60 employees to revamp their platform to support the surge in trading. This seems to be the case with blockchain industries, as Indeed.com showed a growing demand of crypto-related jobs, increasing 3% from December 2019 to February 2020.
UK Cash Usage Halves During Quarantine
The usage of cash has been slashed by 50% in the UK, according to numbers offered by Link, the operator of the biggest ATM network in the country, likely as the result of the closure of stores in the wake of quarantine restrictions and the possibility of bills carrying coronavirus. Some stores operating refused to accept cash as a payment form, a phenomenon that has officers concerned. Some parts of the population don’t have access to banking resources and this could affect their ability to satisfy basic necessities.
CME Could Start Mining Cryptocurrencies in the Future
The Chicago Mercantile Exchange, a legacy derivatives market, could invest in crypto mining in the near future. A letter from Dante Federighi, a nominee for the CME board of directors, proposed a shift of “investments to companies focused on creating value for all their stakeholders.” Federighi states the best way of accomplishing this is to create green power plants (solar/wind/hydro) and divert the excess of energy to mine cryptocurrencies. “We’d immediately converted any newly minted crypto into fiat,” he concluded.
Binance Presents New Cryptocurrency Card
Binance, the biggest cryptocurrency exchange in the world, introduced its first Binance debit card in partnership with Visa, the credit giant. The Visa Binance card will function as a normal payments card, letting users connect their Binance accounts to spend cryptocurrencies on the go. It will be first launched in Asia, in countries like Malaysia and Vietnam, and will expand later. It will be free of monthly and yearly fees, and users will have to pay $15 upfront to receive the card.
Voice to Receive Injection of $150 Million by Block.one
Voice, the EOS based social media app, received a new investment of $150 million coming from Block.one, the company behind the creation of EOS. This adds to the millions spent earlier on its costly domain and development of the platform, according to The Block. The $150 million investment consists of $100 million in cash and $50 million in intellectual property. This money will allow Voice to “deploy the $150 million in capital to expand its operations and build out the company’s workforce.”
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