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The Brief for September 28, 2020

By MarkHelfman | Crypto is Easy | 29 Sep 2020

Is this market finished crashing or what? Premium subscribers, I’ll have a video update within a few days. Everybody else, scroll down for some news.

  • Why Germany's Largest Bank Closes 20% of Branches

    • Bottom line: a big bank is seeing a lot of people switch from brick and mortar to digital financial services.

    • My take: more people realize how antiquated and unnecessary so much of our traditional financial system has become now that we have digital alternatives. This is a process that will continue to accelerate.

    • Why we care: as more finance goes digital, cryptocurrency will continue to seem less and less exotic for many people. As a result, they’ll find it easier to make the leap from traditional banking infrastructure to cryptocurrency-based infrastructure.

  • Kraken Is the First Cryptocurrency Exchange to Become a US Bank

    • Bottom line: crypto exchange Kraken won a bank charter from the US state of Wyoming.

    • My take: huge, but most people have probably forgotten about it already. Now Kraken can offer crypto bill payment, debit cards, merchant services, and custody services. I can’t wait to see what the US government does once Kraken uses a USD stablecoin as its settlement layer and reserve currency. Do USDC deposits qualify for FDIC insurance?

    • Why we care: banks make it easy to hold and moving money and they have access to the US Federal Reserve, our central bank. If Kraken can make it as easy to hold and move crypto as a bank does for money, not only will more people find it easier to enter the market, they will also feel better about it. “It’s ok—even banks are using crypto now.”

If you have two hours to kill and you’re interested in the legal impacts of DAOs, watch this video from the Government Blockchain Association.

Watch the Video

Decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs) will revolutionize business and capital formation. When combined with DeFi, DAOs let anybody codify articles of incorporation, raise funds, borrow money, issue tokenized securities, organize workers, reward participants, and manage workflows—in an open, permissionless, borderless, censorship-resistant way.

Imagine a day when social clubs, small businesses, and political parties can start up and scale within weeks, not years.

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Mark Helfman publishes the Crypto is Easy newsletterHe is also a top writer on Medium for bitcoin. His booksConsensusland and Bitcoin or Bust: Wall Street’s Entry Into Cryptocurrency, explore the social, cultural, and business challenges of cryptocurrency. Learn more about him in his bio.

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I publish the Crypto is Easy newsletter. I also wrote "Consensusland: A Cryptocurrency Utopia" and "Bitcoin or Bust: Wall Street's Entry into Cryptocurrency." Find me on Quora, Medium, Hacker Noon, Blockchain News, Hive. Learn more at

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