BLOCKCHAIN BATTLES

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MID-SIZED CITIES LEADING CRYPTO HIRING. The largest percentage of crypto expertise hires in 2021 have been happening in regional mid-sized cities.

That’s according to a study by professional networking website Linkedin, commissioned for Bloomberg.

Some of the noted trends involved cities like Austin, TX and Salt Lake City, UT.

At least two persons were employed for crypto positions in Austin, Denver, Raleigh, and Salt Lake City for every 100,000 LinkedIn users. Texas, hired three people for the same size despite having a 2% market share.

What about the capital of traditional finance, New York City? Though it leads in terms of crypto related business market share, its hiring didn't reflect it. New York employed an average of 2.8 employees for every 100,000 LinkedIn users.

In other words, while the expected metros like NYC, tech leading San Francisco, Los Angeles, Miami and Chicago did lead in terms of overall hiring numbers, smaller cities were hiring even more aggressively.

More positively for the Big Apple, new mayor-elect Eric Adams is an unequivocal advocate for the crypto sector. He has pledged to make the city more welcoming to crypto businesses, and to take his first several paychecks in bitcoin.

Adams has also signaled he would follow Miami’s lead in creating a crypto token. Right now Miami has used Stacks, a smart contracts and application layer built on Bitcoin, to mine “MiamiCoin.” A 30 percent portion of revenue from mining goes back into the city to fund public projects.

“He has MiamiCoin that is doing very well,” Adams said of Miami mayor Francis Suarez. “We’re going to look in the direction to carry that out.”

COVID fueled moves from large cities and toward remote working, meanwhile, have definitely played a role in the wider dispersal of crypto talent and projects.

“This means cities and states with lower taxes, great infrastructure, and quick access to an international airport will benefit from fully remote work,” commented Diogo Mónica of Anchorage Digital, a crypto technology services company.

DEFI SET TO DISRUPT MORE THAN BANKING. DeFi, or Decentralized finance, which basically involves platforms where software (in the guise of “smart contracts”) directly mediates borrowing and lending between crypto holders, is still just a few years old.

But already in 2021, DeFi has grown to be a 150 billion dollar sector, according to CoinMarketCap.com. And predictions for next year have DeFi growing to something closer to a trillion dollars.

Early entries like Uniswap and Curve have positioned themselves as market-leaders in the space. Platforms which operate with more centralized aspects, like Compound, Aave, Nexo and others, have also flourished.

So what traditional financial areas are next for smart contract makeovers?

How about the insurance industry?

Administrative and commission fees currently account for almost one-third of the worldwide insurance premium. That leaves a lot of room for end users to save money by dispensing with those costs via smart contract innovation.

Smart contracts can make it possible to execute insurance procedures from underwriting through claims at a low cost, quickly, and accurately, according to Artem Tolkachev, founder and CEO of BondAppetit, a decentralized lending protocol.

Tolkachev wrote a recent article that point to Capital Markets as another area where crypto DeFi innovations were likely to transform ways of doing business:

“Global equity market capitalization is estimated at over $100 trillion, compared to only over $243 billion total value locked (TVL) in decentralized finance. Security tokens are an inevitable trend that regulators will eventually need to approve and construct the regulatory framework, and centralized and decentralized exchanges that adhere to the know-your-customer (KYC) requirement can tap into this trillion-dollar equity market in TradFi.”  

BondAppetit is notable for being the first decentralized lending protocol with a stablecoin that is 100 percent backed by yield‑generating bonds.

Tolkachev said that DeFi solutions are only set to spread in the next few years. He has made the startling prediction that in five years the sector could be 100 times larger than it is currently.

“More programmers from traditional startups and big tech [are] joining the blockchain and DeFi scene, and this can only mean we have more resources than ever to grow the space and technology.”

FORBES NAMES TOP CRYPTO ASSETS TO HOLD AS OF NOVEMBER 2021. No surprise about the top coins on a list of top cryptos to invest in, according to a recent Forbes report.

Bitcoin, Ethereum and Binance (BNB) placed one, two and three on the list.

XRP, despite continued uncertainty revolving around an SEC suit which has yet to be settled, also was a top 10 pick, along with Solana and Polkadot.

Blockchain Battles chooses to focus on crypto projects with promising utility and real world use cases. But it’s hard to argue with the speculative gains of meme coins like Shiba Inu and Dogecoin, which also made the Forbes list.

Our Trends Journal article of 16 March 2021, “BEYOND BITCOIN: OTHER CRYPTOS MIGHT BE FUN IN ‘21” listed altcoins like Binance and others that were likely to see huge gains in 2021. 

NFTS CONTINUE TO ROCK GAMING LANDSCAPE. Blockchain-based “play-to-earn” games are continuing to explode, and the networks running them, from Ethereum to Solana to Polkadot, are benefitting.

More conservative investors in the still overall cutting edge crypto sector can find the general ecosystem coins that are fueling NFT gaming on major exchanges like Coinbase and Kucoin.

Those on the cutting edge of investing in new gaming and other projects, might use services like Metamask, Uniswap or Sushiswap to trade into crypto coins associated with projects.

The website playtoearn.net is a good place to get acquainted with what’s trending in the blockchain gaming space.

The Trends Journal pointed out the likelihood of NFTs gaining much larger traction, in “TIPPING POINT: AWARENESS” (22 Jun 2021) and other articles.

Note: nothing written here should be construed as investment advice, and is focused solely on news and trend reporting.


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