NexChangeNOW Daily Briefing – Monday Dec 09, 2019

Listen to the audio:

What Moved Global Markets
– US-China trade deal: The trade countdown is on, and it’s up to the Trump administration to decide whether to slap new tariffs on China or extend its Dec. 15 deadline if it still has no trade agreement. Markets could be rocked by the outcome if it is not what most strategists expect—an extension of the deadline as talks continue. But strategists also note President Trump is often unpredictable and he could take an unexpected action. The Fed is also important in the week ahead, though it is not expected to take any interest rate actions Wednesday.  
China’s exports in November shrank for the fourth consecutive month, underscoring persistent pressures on manufacturers from the Sino-U.S. war but growth in imports may be a sign that Beijing’s stimulus steps are helping to stoke demand.
– The New York Stock Exchange filed for a rule change that would allow companies in a direct listing to raise capital. The SEC rejected the proposal Friday, Dec 6th. “We remain committed to evolving the direct listing product,” an NYSE spokesperson said in an emailed statement.
– Lebanon appealed to more friendly states on Saturday to help it import essential goods as it wrestles with an acute economic crisis and hard currency shortages, the office of caretaker Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri said. Hariri wrote to the leaders of Germany, Britain and Spain on Saturday to request help in securing credit for imports, having made the same appeal on Friday to Saudi Arabia, France, Russia, Turkey, the United States, China, and Egypt.

Crypto Prices (from CoinMarketCap)
Bitcoin: Up 0.34% to $7,530.01
Total trading volume (24h): $15.1+ billion USD

Ethereum: Up 1.36 to $150.87
Total trading volume (24h): $6.41+ billion USD

3 biggest movers 24 hours
Biggest Mover 1: Provovo Token (VOCO) is up 315.57% to $9.07
Biggest Mover 2: Simone (SON) is up 214.90% to $2840.76
Biggest Loser: Nexxo (NEXXO) is down 53.64% to $0.001509

What moved Crypto Markets (i.e. digital assets)
– Amsterdam-based Mining giant Bitfury announced the launch of their own enterprise blockchain – the first one that is secured by Bitcoin. The network is called Exonum Enterprise.
– Microsoft is also developing its enterprise blockchain service – Azure platform.
– Ethereum has successfully completed the Istanbul hard fork. Hitting at block number 9,069,000, the systemwide upgrade is the network’s third in 2019, following February’s St. Petersburg and Constantinople hard forks. The months-long process culminated at 0:25 UTC on Sunday.
– Bank of China, one of the four major commercial banks in China, has issued 20 billion yuan ($2.8 billion) in blockchain-based bonds for small and micro-sized enterprises with their own blockchain platforms. The bank announced Friday that it completed pricing and issuance of the bonds for the first period this week and the two-year bond will come to the market with 3.25% coupon rate, according to a statement. The bank aims to raise funds to support these businesses.

Other Specialties
Fintech: Deutsche Bank says crypto could replace cash by 2030 as fiat system looks ‘fragile’. In the “Imagine 2030” research report, the bank said cryptocurrencies may have been “additions” rather than “substitutes” in the finance world thus far, but the next decade could change that as regulatory hurdles get past.
Healthtech: The experts at Stanford and have announced a new type of clinical trial using artificial intelligence. The project’s goal is to help make the process more scientific using population data and less prone to lengthy individual trial-and-error. Researchers are analyzing medications, side effects, genomic information, environmental exposures, activity and even physical traits. This type of work produces vast amounts of information and requires so much processing power that it can only be performed by the latest AI systems. The trial is being sponsored by Silicon Valley health-tech start-up, which already has launched AI-based studies for Inflammatory Bowel Disease and Allergies.
Al: The artificial intelligence (AI) market in China is expected to reach 11.9 billion U.S. dollars by 2023. Driven by favorable policies, China’s AI market is expected to account for 12 percent of the global total in 2019, with an annual growth of 64 percent, making it the world’s second-largest AI market, according to the white paper released by the global market intelligence firm International Data Corporation (IDC) and QbitAI, a Chinese technology media outlet. The paper said Chinese enterprises increased their investment in AI technology this year, and the application scenarios of AI have become richer.
Smart cities: Amazon Web Services (AWS) has named the finalists for its 2019 City on a Cloud Innovation Challenge, highlighting how they use the services to benefit constituents and become innovation hubs. The finalists have been named in six categories: Constituent Services; Solving Persistent Problems; Sustainability and Equity; Powered by AWS; Dream Big; and Public Datasets. The winners will be awarded up to $20,000 in promotional credits, up to $20,000 in financial support and up to five employee AWS training vouchers.

NexChangeNOW Pick of the Day
From Visa to J.P. Morgan, blockchain for corporations and big enterprise has been quietly taking over a number of major global companies.