Bybit Launches Futures Contracts Settled in USDC Stablecoin

The Singapore-based digital asset exchange Bybit has expanded the variety of its crypto options trading services to its customers with a launch of new futures contracts settled in USDC stablecoins.

Bybit announced on Monday that it has launched futures contracts settled in the stablecoin USD Coin (USDC), rather than Bitcoin.

This is the first time Bybit is offering futures settled in USDC, as part of an effort to give users stable prices for the duration of contracts.

The new product allows users to trade futures contracts using their balance on Bybit’s derivatives exchange. Bybit’s new options contracts enable experienced traders to use their balance as collateral and place long or short contracts with up to 100x leverage, depending on their expiration dates.

While Bybit’s portfolio margin account currently supports USDT, USDC, BTC and ETH as collateral, the firm plans to add more assets soon.

The new service enables customers to trade options through portfolio margin, which employs a risk-based model for sophisticated investors to increase fund utilization on the underlying price and volatility.

The service enables Bybit’s users to speculate on the future price of an underlying digital asset and settle trades in USDC.

Ben Zhou, co-founder and CEO of Bybit, commented about the development: “We have been very pleased by the roll-out of our options trading product. We have received excellent feedback from our users too — they love our user-friendly products. Coupled with our 24/7 multilingual customer support, we have been able to help all traders take trading to the next level with a wide range of financial products.”

According to data from CoinMarketCap, Bybit is the fourth largest crypto exchange in futures trading volume in April, data compiled by Skew, a major real-time analytics for the crypto market showed that Bybit, a crypto exchange with more than 2 million registered users, overtook the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) as the second-largest Bitcoin futures exchange by open interest (OI).

Bybit executed $2.48 billion in BTC futures open interest, CME had $2.3 billion, while Binance is still the lead institutional and retail investors to prefer exchanges such as Binance, Bybit, and others because of their outstanding reliability, low spread, and high liquidity when the battle between shorts and longs heat up.

Open interest refers to the total number of outstanding derivative contracts, such as options or futures held by market users at the end of a day. Open interest is measured by the total level of activity in the futures market.

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FIS Worldpay Partners with Circle for Merchant Payment Settlements in USDC Stablecoin

FinTech FIS announced Wednesday that its Worldpay business will be the first payment firm to give global merchants the ability to receive settlements in USD Coin (USDC stablecoin cryptocurrency).

That means merchants (crypto-native and traditional businesses) that use fintech company FIS can now receive settlement directly in USDC, thanks to a partnership with stablecoin’s issuer, Circle.

Businesses will no longer be constrained by payment service providers that only provide fiat settlement services. Instead, global businesses can leverage an innovative adoption of crypto payment methods to directly receive, hold, and transfer stablecoins in a fast and efficient manner, without having to cash out to fiat. USDC is pegged to the value of $1 and backed by reserve assets.

FIS’s move to add the ability to receive settlements in stablecoins is set to help businesses to drive the adoption of digital assets by allowing them to enter and experiment with crypto in a less volatile and lower-touch space.

Nabil Manji, SVP, Head of Crypto and Web3 at Worldpay from FIS, talked about the development and said: “Cryptocurrencies, for the most part, tend to be quite volatile and lack the ability to redeem at a predictable exchange rate in large quantities. That is why USDC is so popular among consumers who use crypto exchanges, and why it is so appealing to traditional merchants and other corporates. Making it easier and more efficient for crypto-native companies and other corporates to receive and manage stablecoins will further drive corporate innovation in payments and benefit the consumer ecosystem.”

According to a statement made on Wednesday,, a rapidly growing cryptocurrency exchange, will act as a pilot customer for the USDC settlement initiative.

Driving Competitive Advantage in Financial Services

Last month, Worldpay collaborated with Shyft Network, a blockchain-based digital identity firm, to help merchants comply with crypto-related regulations to bolster a secure transaction ecosystem.

Through the partnership, Worldpay enables its merchants to use Shyft’s Veriscope solution to meet multi-jurisdictional requirements set out by the FATF (Financial Action Task Force) Travel Rule. The FATF rules target the anonymity of crypto transfers and aim to fight money laundering and other financial crime in the crypto industry.

In October last year, WorldPay partnered with Microsoft to provide online debit and credit card processing for Microsoft online storefronts, including Xbox, Microsoft Azure, Microsoft Advertising, and other Microsoft brands in the Asia Pacific, Europe and the Americas.

Since 2014, Microsoft has been working with Worldpay in Latin America. The expanded relationship has enabled Worldpay to process online payments for the tech giant globally.

Worldpay is a global merchant service that supports more than 300 payment types in 145 countries. It was acquired by Fidelity Information Services (FIS) in 2019. It is one of the largest payment processors globally and integrates with hundreds of third-party applications for payment processing of all kinds.

Headquartered in Florida, FIS is a major technology solutions provider for merchants, banks, and capital markets companies globally.



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Moneygram Partners with Stellar Blockchain Network to Enable Instant Crypto-To-Fiat Settlements Using USDC Stablecoin

MoneyGram International Inc has partnered with the Stellar blockchain network to enable instant money transfers using Circle’s USDC stablecoin.

Traditional cross-border payments giant MoneyGram announced on Wednesday, October 6, that it is working with the Stellar Development Foundation to launch the new service.

Denelle Dixon, CEO and Executive Director of the Stellar Development Foundation, talked about the development and said that MoneyGram’s network would integrate with the Stellar blockchain to enable cash payments and funding in multiple currencies such as Japanese yen, US dollar, and others, using USD coin (USDC) stablecoin governed by Circle.

Dixon mentioned that cash users would be able to access crypto services that have been out of reach in the past.

“Working with MoneyGram allows end consumers to have on- and off-ramps everywhere that MoneyGram’s vast agent network supports this. So, this is just transformational in terms of being able to exchange crypto for fiat and fiat for crypto,” 

The firms have scheduled to launch the services in select markets by the end of this year, with further international rollout expected to happen in 2022.

Meanwhile, Alex Holmes, Chairman and CEO of MoneyGram International, also talked about the partnership and stated: “We’re enabling consumers to bridge crypto assets and fiat currency.”

More than MoneyGram’s 150 million customers will be able to convert cash in and out using USDC stablecoin for instant ATMs or bank facilities at MoneyGram locations.

While several banks have been wary of getting hands-on with cryptocurrencies, United Texas Bank will facilitate settlement between MoneyGram and Circle.

“Texas has a fairly proactive stance on crypto, and the governor has made a few comments. United Texas Bank is an established bank here and very focused on the opportunities in the crypto space. Not every bank is willing to step into the crypto world, and I think it says a lot about how progressive that bank is trying to be,” Holmes noted.

The partnership is a blow to Ripple, the crypto payments network, whose longstanding relationship with MoneyGram ended after the US SEC filed a lawsuit against Ripple in December 2020, stating that the company violated federal securities laws.

Holmes stated that the collaboration with Stellar is completely a different relationship from the partnership that MoneyGram had with Ripple. Leaving out the question of whether Ripple’s cryptocurrency XRP is a security or not in the perspective of law, he said that the vision that MoneyGram and Ripple were working on had certain limitations.

Holmes revealed the challenges that Moneygram faced during its partnership with Ripple. He identified the first challenge involved MoneyGram trying to create an FX market in a different world, and it really required a lot more time to bring that to life and make it work. Holmes mentioned the other challenge – MoneyGram was trading XRP, which, unfortunately, became so volatile because of the legal issues facing the parent company Ripple Labs.

Ripple’s SEC Lawsuit Impacting Crypto Sector

The bad blood between the US SEC and Ripple started in December 2020 when the SEC filed a lawsuit claiming that Ripple Labs had violated securities laws by failing to register its XRP cryptocurrency as a security.

During that time, Ripple used its XRP cryptocurrency as a vehicle to finance its core business of seamless cross-border transactions for financial institutions and had been doing so for seven years since it created the cryptocurrency in 2013.  

The lawsuit has adversely affected Ripple and created more confusion to the already complex regulatory discussions over whether crypto-assets should be regarded as commodities or securities or something else.

If cryptocurrencies are securities, as defined by court precedent, then they must be regulated and approved by the SEC, which demands disclosures from various crypto firms.

However, Ripple maintains that XRP is not a security and therefore does not need approval from the SEC. Ripple also argued that the SEC currently allows other crypto tokens like Ethereum and Bitcoin to be traded like commodities and therefore not required to register as security.

However, the SEC argues that RiRipple’sase is different because the firm has been actively using XRP to fund its core business and essentially represents an investment in the company itself.  The regulator, therefore, considers XRP as security and not a commodity and therefore falls under the SESEC’surisdiction under court precedent known as the Howey Test.

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