1. Tom Lee Will No Longer The Price Of Bitcoin

Prolific bitcoin bull and leading Fundstrat analyst Tom Lee has announced he’s no longer going to predict the price of bitcoin. It seems the year and the endless crashes it’s brought have seemingly been too much for his team to handle. Tom Lee has always been there voicing positivity in the name of bitcoin. No matter how much it’s fallen or how badly it’s done over the past year, Lee has always been in the background assuring enthusiasts and die-hard fans that their favorite cryptocurrency would eventually step back into the light. Read more at LiveBitcoinNews.

2. Diminished Profits for Ebang Mining Equipment Maker

Crypto mining equipment maker Ebang has refiled its draft IPO prospectus with the Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKEX), stating it has seen “significant decreases” in revenue and gross profit in Q3 2018. According to the HKEX filing database, Ebang submitted the new draft application on Dec. 20 with disclosures of its financial information up until June 30 of this year, after its first application to sell shares on the exchange had lapsed. Read more at CoinDesk.

3. Bermuda Issues Draft Cryptocurrency Custody Rules

The financial services regulator of Bermuda, the Bermuda Monetary Authority (BMA), is inviting comments on a draft Code of Practice for Digital Asset Custody that it has released. The purpose of the code of practice is to offer protection to the public while clarifying the expectations of the authority with regards to digital assets custody. The financial services regulator has set January 18, 2019 as the deadline for receiving feedback. Read more at CCN.

4. ConsenSys is Eyeing Further Layoffs Amid Bear Market

ConsenSys, a blockchain software technology company founded by Joseph Lubin, is eyeing even further layoffs, a report from The Verge published on Thursday has revealed, citing unnamed sources at the company. As no one could predict the price of bitcoin and a bear market, the company had laid off over 100 of its employees in December – roughly 10 per cent of the Brooklyn-headquartered firm’s workforce. And now, it seems, that ConsenSys is gearing up for even more culling. Read more at FinanceMagnates.

5. Coinbase Aggressively Expanding

On Thursday the company said it had expanded into several new countries. Many of them are in Europe and recent new markets for the crypto firm include Iceland, Lithuania, Andorra, Gibraltar, Guernsey and the Isle of Man. Coinbase recently opened an office in Dublin amid fears of a negative outcome from Brexit negotiations. Read more at NewsBTC.

6. Facebook to Develop its Own Stablecoin

Social media giant Facebook is reportedly looking to develop its own stablecoin for money transfers. Citing anonymous sources familiar with the plan, a Bloomberg report on Friday said the company will first focus on the Indian market to let users transfer money via a dollar-pegged cryptocurrency on WhatsApp, the messaging app Facebook acquired in 2014. Read more at CoinDesk.

7. Bitcoin Difficulty Drops Over 7%

Bitcoin’s mining difficulty has dropped more than 7 percent over the past 24 hours as the fallout of the prolonged market rout continues. Despite a recent recovery that has taken the price of bitcoin above $4,000, many miners are still finding it difficult to remain profitable or break even. CCN reported in November that any cryptocurrency miners in China are dumping their mining rigs or re-purposing them for non-blockchain uses like video rendering and cloud computing. Read more at CCN.

8. Pan-African Bitcoin Exchange Kubitx Goes Live

Kubitx, a pan-African digital asset exchange, went live on Dec. 20 after completing its beta test. The Malta-registered trading platform has also released what it calls a “hybrid over-the-counter (OTC) wallet” allowing users to buy and sell cryptocurrencies including BTC and BCH as well as to pay bills. Read more at Bitcoin.com.

9. Pending Approval: Bakkt’s Futures Contract Is Set to Be Launched

Bakkt‘s Bitcoin (USD) Daily Futures Contract, is quite close to getting the green light from the authorities. The exchange has been working with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) to ensure its business plan is compliant with the agency’s regulatory framework. A couple of areas that stood out are the exemptions for the exchange to keep customer’s bitcoins, cybersecurity issues that could crop up and the financial liability, in the event of a hack. Once the CFTC decides to approve the project, the public has 30 days to weigh in with comments. Read more at CCN.

10. Only 14% of Bitcoin’s Addresses Belong to Private Investors

A recently conducted study has recently shown that out all of bitcoin’s 460 million addresses created so far, only 14% belong to private investors, meaning the vast majority belong to cryptocurrency-related services. The study, conducted by blockchain analytics firm Chainalysis, found that 25 million addresses are held by investors. It also found that out that out of all of BTC’s addresses only 172 million are seen as economically relevant, as they belong to users or firms that own the cryptocurrency. Read more at CryptoGlobe.

Other headlines: 

70% of Respondents Prefer Being Gifted Money in Digital Currency, Survey (CoinTelegraph)

Court Approves Alleged Bitcoin Fraudster Alexander Vinnik’s Extradition To France (CrytoGlobe)

China: Media Alliance to Use Blockchain Technology for Copyright Protection (CoinTelegraph)

Bitcoin Hashrate Stabilizes after Mining Difficulty Adjusts to Lower Price (Bitcoinist)