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Vanguard Hires Former BlackRock iShares Exec Salim Ramji as CEO

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BlackRock’s former global head of iShares and index investments, Salim Ramji, is joining Vanguard as its new CEO and board of directors from July 8.

In an announcement, Vanguard said Ramji will take over from the current CEO Tim Buckley, who announced he would retire and step down from the firm in February this year.

Ramji departed from his position at BlackRock in January 2024 where he was responsible for managing the majority of the firm’s client assets and overseeing the iShares platform. He joined BlackRock over a decade ago and under his tenure, the asset management firm launched the first spot Bitcoin exchange-traded fund for retail investors.

Vanguard is the second largest asset management firm after BlackRock.

BlackRock’s Spot Bitcoin ETF ‘IBIT’

Commenting on Ramji’s appointment, Bloomberg Intelligence senior ETF analyst Eric Balchunas said the former BlackRock executive oversaw the filing and logistics of the IBIT ETF and he is known to have an interest in the digital assets space. Vanguard on the other hand is anti-crypto.

See Also: Former FTX Executive Ryan Salame Asks for Lenient 18 Months in Prison

Before joining BlackRock Ramji held the position of senior partner at McKinsey and was responsible for the firm’s asset and wealth management practice. Ramji started his career as a lawyer at Clifford Chance in London and Hong Kong.

“He [Ramji] cares about advancing the interests of individual investors, has a strong fiduciary ethos, and thinks strategically about solutions,” said Buckley, in a press release.  

“Salim understands our organization’s deep sense of purpose and commitment to put clients first, which is a hallmark of Vanguard’s leadership team and culture,” added Buckley.

“The current investor landscape is changing, and that presents opportunities for Vanguard to further its mission of giving people the best chance for investment success, which is more relevant today than at any time in the firm’s five-decade history,” said Ramji.

Vanguard’s Anti Crypto Stance 

In January, Vanguard said it had no immediate plans to add a spot Bitcoin ETF to its platforms despite the introduction of such ETFs generating headlines and buzz in the industry.

See Also: Michael Novogratz Says Bitcoin (BTC) Will Consolidate Between $55,000 and $75,000

“Given the current state of crypto as an asset class, Vanguard does not have plans to launch its own bitcoin ETF or any crypto-related products. When deciding what investment products to offer, we consider a range of factors, including whether we believe they have enduring investment merit and meet our client’s needs,” wrote Janel Jackson, Vanguard’s head of ETF Capital Markets and Broker and Index Relations in a note.

“While the discussion about bitcoin and cryptocurrencies, in general, has increased recently, we do not currently believe that there is an appropriate role for them to play in long-term portfolios,” adds Jackson.

Disclaimer: The information provided is not trading advice. Bitcoinworld.co.in holds no liability for any investments made based on the information provided on this page. We strongly recommend independent research and/or consultation with a qualified professional before making any investment decisions.

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Press Release

Israel Starts Digital Shekel Challenge to Explore Payment Use Cases

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  • Israel will be starting a challenge to explore payment use cases of its digital shekel.
  • Payment service providers would get access to the system to provide advanced payment options to the general public.
  • The Bank of Israel has not decided on issuing a digital shekel, even as it continues its yearslong effort to explore its issuance.

Israel’s central bank is launching a Digital Shekel Challenge as part of an “action plan for a possible issuance of the digital shekel,” to develop uses in the world of payments, it announced Tuesday.

The Bank of Israel said it had built a technological prototype “simulating the heart of the digital shekel system.” 

Payment-service providers would get access to the system to provide advanced payment options to the general public. 

Among the payment types to be explored are micropayments, split payments and payments requiring multiparty signatures.

“In the challenge, for the first time, we allow the financial industry from Israel and abroad and a wide variety of stakeholders in the payments system to cooperate with us in a practical way in thinking, planning and designing the digital shekel,” said Andrew Abir, deputy governor of the Bank of Israel.

The Bank of Israel has not yet decided whether to issue a central bank digital currency (CBDC), even as it continues its yearslong exploration of the technology.

In 2021, it said it had already carried out a pilot test and last year it said it was monitoring scenarios – including whether stablecoins are widely used. 

It also conducted a project with Hong Kong and the Bank for International Settlement (BIS) to probe how the systems can be protected from hacks.

The challenge will kick off with an everything-you-wanted-to-ask webinar on June 6, and go through a process of applications and presentations before culminating at the end of September when results will be discussed. 

A date for final meetings and announcement of the results has not been set.

The challenge is inspired by the BIS Innovation Centre’s “Rosalind Project,” which looked at how application programming interface (API) functionalities could support a retail CBDC and facilitate safe and secure payments, the announcement said.

“This initiative is a significant step for the Israeli ecosystem, potentially bridging the gap between the web3 industry and government, even though DeFi, ZK and permissionless solutions are not yet being considered,” said Saul Rejwan, managing partner at Masterkey VC.

Disclaimer: The information provided is not trading advice. Bitcoinworld.co.in holds no liability for any investments made based on the information provided on this page. We strongly recommend independent research and/or consultation with a qualified professional before making any investment decisions.

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Crypto Trader Turns $800 Into $657,000 In 5 Hours With Mother Iggy

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With the continuous growth and evolution of the cryptocurrency industry, it has proven to be a profitable environment to be a part of, as one crypto trader recently witnessed, turning a mere $800 investment into a mind-blowing $657,000 in just a few hours with Mother Iggy.

Specifically, this particular investor sold 5.14 Solana (SOL) tokens worth $861, with which they purchased 86.55 million of Mother Iggy (MOTHER) or 8.66% of its total supply, then sold 80.41 million MOTHER for 3,035.5 SOL ($509,000), according to the observations by Lookonchain in an X post on May 29.

Furthermore, the blockchain analyst pointed out that the said crypto trader now had 6.14 million MOTHER left, worth $148,000, and that they “had traded nearly 700 coins before buying MOTHER and was losing, with a win rate of less than 25%,” adding that they “should not be an insider.” 

MOTHER Price Analysis

Meanwhile, the meme coin Mother Iggy, a less-known and very recent addition to the crypto industry on the Solana chain, was at press time changing hands at the price of $0.01959, recording accumulating a 0.20% gain since its launch, as per the latest chart data retrieved by Finbold from CoinMarketCap on May 29.

MOTHER Price Chart | Source: Coinstats

 

Notably, the token’s website listed on CoinMarketCap leads to an X profile IGGY AZALEA, which has existed since June 2010, has around 7.6 million followers, and alludes to the popular Australian rapper and model, as the said X profile contains a number of memes referring to her.

All things considered, careful and planned timing of investments, in addition to carrying out detailed research and keeping up with any relevant developments related to the assets in question, can bring significant profit in the crypto sector, as the above crypto trader proved.

Disclaimer: The information provided is not trading advice. Bitcoinworld.co.in holds no liability for any investments made based on the information provided on this page. We strongly recommend independent research and/or consultation with a qualified professional before making any investment decisions.

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PayPal’s Stablecoin, PYUSD, Goes Live On Solana

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PYUSD, the stablecoin launched by PayPal, has become available on Solana. Users can onramp PayPal’s stablecoin to Solana using Crypto.com, Phantom and Paxos, which is also the issuer of PYUSD. 

Jose Fernandez da Ponte, PayPal’s senior vice president of blockchain, crypto and digital currencies, told Blockworks in an interview that the payments giant is interested in Solana’s potential for enabling payments and peer-to-peer money movements with PYUSD, as opposed to the popular stablecoin use case of trading, for instance.

PYUSD debuted in August as an Ethereum-based stablecoin backed 1:1 with assets including dollars and US Treasury. 

Sheraz Shere, general manager of payments at the Solana Foundation, told Blockworks that it’s common for projects to deploy on Ethereum mainnet, but once “there’s a desire to figure out how to scale [the assets] and have them work in a multitude of use cases, we see people coming on Solana.” 

Shere noted that Visa took a similar path when it launched its stablecoin settlement program on Ethereum before adding Solana capability.

Relative to Ethereum, Solana boasts cheaper transaction fees and higher throughput, making the chain potentially more efficient for payments.

There are no new products being announced with the Solana launch, but the firm has already started exploring PYUSD’s payments use cases. 

PayPal’s cross-border payments service Xoom lets users transfer PYUSD for things like remittances. 

Still, PYUSD is relatively small as far as its usage in the stablecoin sector. 

PYUSD ranks as the 13th-largest stablecoin by market capitalization, per CoinGecko. It’s entering a market dominated by two incumbents. Roughly 97% of Solana stablecoin activity is currently accounted for by USDT and USDC, according to DeFiLlama.

PayPal is playing the long game when it comes to crypto adoption, its crypto and blockchain SVP says. 

“We are probably in year four of a 10-year process,” Fernandez da Ponte said of PayPal’s crypto plans.

Disclaimer: The information provided is not trading advice. Bitcoinworld.co.in holds no liability for any investments made based on the information provided on this page. We strongly recommend independent research and/or consultation with a qualified professional before making any investment decisions.

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