Small exchanges and independents in bitcoin are about to get steamrollered by well-financed big players. Nobel, which has tentacles from our favorite vampire squid deep within it, will be powered by NASDAQ technology. Another deep-pockets exchange, Coinbase, is partially backed by NYSE and is the first regulated US bitcoin exchange. I’m guessing neither exchange will allow money to mysteriously vanish, as has already happened on too many other bitcoin exchanges and marketplaces.
However, regulation and anonymous transfer of money do not play well together. At some point governments will demand a transparent bitcoin paper trail so they can monitor and prevent money laundering and sales of illicit goods. When that happens, how does cryptocurrency continue being truly anonymous?
When I first heard the news that Nasdaq technology will be powering the Noble bitcoin exchange, which was founded by former Goldman Sachs head of electronic trading platforms John Betts, my immediate reaction was, “This is big.”
Coinbase announced in January that it had raised a massive $75 million round of funding that included the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) among the investors. Two weeks later, the company launched the first regulated US bitcoin exchange with NYSE as a “partner.”
Once the banksters get into bitcoin in a big way, it’s game over for the small fry.