Blockchain, the tech that underpins Bitcoin, is going mainstream. In a sign of just how far the technology has come, Spotify has acquired a blockchain startup—Mediachain—to handle its artist attribution problem. Sarah Perez (@sarahintampa) of TechCrunch reports. "With Mediachain, Spotify potentially has a solution on its hands – but instead of building out a centralized database with music rights information, it looks like it will build a decentralized one," Perez reports. Mediachain says it's this decentralized approach that's "key to solving attribution, empowering creators and rights owners, and enabling a more efficient and sustainable model for creativity online."
Fintech goes to Washington and gets caught in a regulatory tug-of-war. Central to the push-pull discussion is how fintech could—or should—be regulated. Nick Milanovic contributing for TechCrunch reports (@NikMilanovic). "This would essentially be a way for Washington to separate the well-run, "safe" fintech businesses of the world from the shady, exploitative ones," Milanovic begins. The detractors, however, "raised concerns about stifling innovation, overstepping the limits of federal authority and understanding the nuances of fintech, among many others."
Is Apple on the verge of extending its ApplePay capabilities to compete with money-transfer services like Venmo and Square Cash? So seems to be the murmurs surrounding Apple’s recent talks with banks and other industry partners. And what has all this talk amounted to? Jason Del Rey (@DelRey) of ReCode reports. "People would be able to use the Apple cards to spend money sent to them through the new service, without having to wait for it to clear to their bank account," Del Rey says. "Apple is looking for new ways to boost usage of Apple Pay, and the debit card could be one way to do that."
Will your IRA soon hold bitcoin? Runner-up cryptocurrency, Ether, is starting to line the portfolio of IRAs, as investment firm BitcoinIRA allows investment of this product. Alexander Lielacher (@AlexLielacher) of BTC Manager reports. "Investors can choose to hold bitcoin as an investment in a traditional IRAs, Roth IRAs, SEP IRAs or a 401(k)," Lielacher reports. "Enabling ordinary investors to add bitcoin exposure to their retirement fund portfolio without having to go through the technicalities of safely and securely purchasing and storing cryptocurrency over the long-term."
Much like the wisest investment advice championed by industry veterans, Goldman begins to diversify and embracing its future with fintech. Anthony Currie (@AntonyMCurrie) contributing for The New York Times reports on Marcus' initial success—Goldman's foray into consumer lending powered by fintech. Marcus is poised to "earn at least a 3 percent return on assets — triple what Goldman has been managing as a whole of late," Curries said. Unit boss Harit Talwar added accolades to Marcus' success, noting that its "demand [was] more robust than we thought."