Bitcoin rose to a record high above $6,400 after CME announced plans to launch bitcoin futures in the fourth quarter of 2017, pending all relevant regulatory review periods.
The move by the world’s largest futures exchange boosts the prospects of the crypto-currency being widely accepted by major exchanges globally, says Shane Chanel, equities and derivatives adviser at ASR Wealth Advisers:
I feel it’s just a matter of time before cryptocurrency becomes the norm. The disruptive technology currently has the big banks concerned about remaining relevant. Governments are making policy to protect their self-interests.
However, Themis Trading’s Joe Saluzzi warned the move could trigger a financial crisis, as CNBC reports:
“I have no problem with bitcoin. I like the concept. I have a problem that on Wall Street the innovators are trying to package something up and put a derivative label on it when they really don’t know what’s underneath. It reminds me of the financial crisis all over again.”
E-commerce giants Alibaba and JD.com are aggressively expanding their activities into real estate by developing online property marketing platforms. As the South China Morning Post reports, traditional property agents in China are beginning to feel the pressure:
“They [Alibaba and JD.com] are certainly a threat,” said Andy Lee Yiu-chi, chief executive of Centaline Property Agency for southern China.
“Internet companies are penetrating every aspect of the business; it is an inevitable trend, so we must react to it, and embrace it.”
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s newly elected center-left government will ban almost all foreign investors from buying houses by early next year, the Wall Street Journal reports:
“We are determined to make it easier for Kiwis to buy their first home so we are stopping foreign speculators buying houses and driving up prices,” Ms. Ardern said in a statement. “Kiwis should not be outbid like this.”
According to the most recent government data from 2016, about 3% of New Zealand homes are purchased by buyers who are tax residents of other countries, led by the Chinese.
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