Circle Invest, the cryptocurrency investment app from Circle – a firm that has been around since 2013 – announced support for the fungible altcoin, monero (XMR) on May 7.
Widening the Circle
Since Circle Invest joined the crypto bandwagon back in 2013, the firm has not stopped making it easy for its customers to invest in digital currencies. In a blog post on May 7, 2018, the company announced that users of its crypto trading app can now trade monero (XMR).
“Today, we continue to grow our coin collection by supporting monero as our new listed crypto asset,” declared the Circle Invest senior project manager, Rachel Mayer.
At a time when most regulated crypto exchanges are quite wary of listing privacy-centered digital currencies, in order not to get in the bad books of regulators, Circle Invest has no atom of fear in its heart whatsoever.
On April 30, 2018, Circle added zcash to the list of its supported cryptos. “You will now be able to enjoy instant purchases, no minimums and a seamless investing experience on zcash and our five existing crypto assets,” said Mayer back in April.
At current, the firm now supports a total of seven digital currencies; bitcoin, bitcoin cash, ether, ether classic, litecoin, monero, and zcash.
SEC is Coming
The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has classified most digital currencies as securities; therefore all crypto exchanges trading these tokens must get duly registered. An excerpt from a statement released by the regulatory watchdog on March 7, 2018, read:
“Online trading platforms have become a popular way investors can buy and sell digital assets, including coins and tokens offered and sold in so-called Initial Coin Offerings assets (“ICOs”). The platforms often claim to give investors the ability to quickly buy and sell digital assets. A number of these platforms provide a mechanism for trading assets that meet the definition of a “security” under the federal securities law. If a platform offers trading of digital assets that are securities and operates as an “exchange,” as defined by the federal securities laws, then the platform must register with the SEC as a national securities exchange or be exempt from registration.”
This could explain why Coinbase has been quite reluctant to add various established alternative cryptos such as monero, ripple, and others.
Although one might argue that Circle is not a full-fledged crypto exchange, moreover it already has the New York BitLicense as well as a virtual currency business license from the UK government, the firm could still get into the SEC ‘hot water’ if care is not taken.
Circle to the Moon
The listing of Monero could serve as a massive boost for Circle Invest as the fungible coin has quite a substantial daily trading volume, due to its ability to facilitate transactions on the dark web better than cryptos such as bitcoin and ether, and its rising popularity for allowing private transactions. Fungibility is considered an essential characteristic of money.
Back in March 2014, Poloniex exchange was hacked, which gifted cyberpunks with 97 BTC. The ill-gotten gains amounted to approximately 12.3 percent of the exchange’s total bitcoin holdings at the time.
However, in July 2014, the exchange announced in a press release that it had successfully reimbursed all its clients whose funds were stolen as a result of the attack on its platform. The founder of Poloniex, Tristan D’Agosta, did not fail to mention that the platform was only able to give investors a complete refund thanks to the popularity of monero.
In his words:
“If any coin should be singled out for helping to provide the boost in volume that enabled us to pay back customers quickly, it is Monero (XMR).”
By being the first to list Monero and other CryptoNight coins, the exchange benefitted from a large influx of volume, and Poloniex were able to pay their customers back quickly from the trading fees that come as a result. Circle acquired Poloniex as reported by BTCManager on February 27, 2018, and is backed by investment bank Goldman Sachs.
Will the listing of Monero (XMR) take the revenues of Circle Invest to new highs? Or will it only make the SEC hammer fall heavily on Circle? Only time will tell.