Scripting smart contracts for distributed ledger technology

December 2016 | Pablo Lamela Seijas, Simon Thompson, Darryl McAdams

We give an overview of the scripting languages used in existing cryptocurrencies, and in particular we review in some detail the scripting languages of Bitcoin, Nxt and Ethereum, in the context of a high-level overview of Distributed Ledger Technology and cryptocurrencies. We survey different approaches, and give an overview of critiques of existing languages. We also cover technologies that might be used to underpin extensions and innovations in scripting and contracts, including technologies for verification, such as zero knowledge proofs, proof-carrying code and static analysis, as well as approaches to making systems more efficient, e.g. Merkelized Abstract Syntax Trees.


Making Blockchain a Reality

August 2016 | Temenos

A radical change in culture is required to re-think banks’ business models in order to prosper in the future. So banks must devote adequate focus and manpower if they are to keep up pace with the market, but, once established, focus must be on the true benefit rather than just exploratory. So which areas do banks see the most opportunity?


The future of financial infrastructure: An ambitious look at how blockchain can reshape financial services

August 2016 | WEF

The World Economic Forum (WEF) published a comprehensive, 130-page report which aims to complement existing distributed ledger technology research by providing a clear view into how financial service functions can be reimagined.


Beyond the Buzz – Blockchain in capital markets and corporate banking

August 2016 | MISYS

The paper outlines an opinion on the real advantages of blockchain technology, and evaluates the use cases which Blockchain and distributed ledger technology have the ability to benefit in the short and medium term.


Credit Suisse analysis as to how blockchain can impact stocks

August 2016 | Credit Suisse

This report reassess the views on the extent to which bitcoin and its underlying technology, blockchain, present a disruptive threat and/or opportunity to global incumbents operating in the payments, capital markets, financial services and media ecosystems. The research leverages Credit Suisse’s global franchise to deliver the collective cross-sector and cross-border insights of 31 contributing analysts across 5 sectors and 5 key geographies, providing 14 key stock calls.


Blockchain Reaction – Tech Companies Plan for Critical Mass

July 2016 | Ernst & Young

EY’s analysis of blockchain suggests it may have the most impactful potential of the entire portfolio of disruptive technologies that are now emerging. But it also has the most obstacles to success, ranging from technical to cultural. Tech companies need to understand blockchain’s impact or risk being disrupted going forward.


Credit Strategy — Blockchain Technology: Robust, Cost-effective Applications Key to Unlocking Blockchain’s Potential Credit Benefits

July 2016 | Moody’s Investors Service (MIS)

This report explores how blockchain tech potentially can improve record-keeping and transactional efficiencies across many different processes and industries.


Unlocking Economic Advantage with Blockchain: A Guide for Asset Managers

July 2016 | Oliver Wyman, J.P. Morgan

In this joint report with J.P. Morgan, the authors argue that asset managers need to get off the sidelines and take the initiative to understand and embrace blockchain. The report is designed to serve as a guide to how the technology may evolve, the impact it can have on asset managers, and the action they can take.


Chain Reaction: How Blockchain Technology Might Transform Wholesale Insurance

July 2016 | PWC, Long Finance

The purpose of the study is to identify practical uses for blockchain technology in wholesale insurance. Practical means having high value to individual firms and relatively low barriers to implementation, without requiring widespread industry consensus or regulatory change.


The Macroeconomics of Central Bank Issued Digital Currencies

July 2016 | Bank of England – Staff Working Paper No. 605

This paper studies the macroeconomic consequences of a central bank granting universal, electronic, 24×7, national-currency-denominated and interest-bearing access to its balance sheet via the issuance, according to well-specified policy rules, of a central bank digital currency (CBDC). To study this issue we use a monetary-financial DSGE model, calibrated to match the United States in the pre-crisis period, that models CBDC as an imperfect substitute for bank deposits in the provision of monetary transaction services, and that models bank deposits as being created through loans or asset purchases as in Jakab and Kumhof (2015).


Distributed Ledgers in Payments: Beyond the Bitcoin Hype

July 2016 | Bain Brief – Glen Williams, David Gunn, Eduardo Roma and Bharat Bansal

The report spends time describing “established technologies,” that distributed ledgers combine. The block chain, Digital signatures, A consensus mechanism, and A digital currency.


Research on Online Business Models Infringing Intellectual Property Rights

July 2016 | EUIPO

This new study aims to provide an overview of the different online business models infringing IPRs, assessing how they function, how they are financed, and how they generate profits for their operators. It will provide policymakers, civil society and private businesses with a better understanding of the landscape, and starts with a dozen explanations of terms used within the document.


Blockchain in insurance – opportunity or threat?

July 2016 | McKinsey & Company

This paper outlines the most promising insurance-related blockchain use cases in three categories: enabling growth, increasing effectiveness, and reducing cost by automating key processes.


Opportunity Now: Europe’s Mission to Innovate

July 2016 | European Political Strategy Centre (EPSC)

The 346-page e-book was co-authored David Ringrose, Acting Director at the EC Directorate General for Communications Networks, Content & Technology (DG CONNECT). The pair were commissioned by Juncker, in June last year, to conduct the EU policy review.


Shared ledger technologies and opportunities

July 2016 | Henry Stewart Publications

This paper sets out a simple shared ledger taxonomy and layered architecture designed to facilitate communication between technologists, businesses and regulators in the financial services world and explains why the various forms of shared ledgers might be attractive to financial services organisations, borrowing the phrase “ambient accountability” from architecture to suggest a new way to organise a financial sector.


Revised Uniform Fiduciary Access To Digital Assets Act

July 2016 | General Assembly of the State of Colorado

Colorado has recently enacted the Revised Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act (“RUFADAA”). This new act will be effective as of August 10, 2016 and can be found at C.R.S. § 15-1-1501 et seq.


Virtual currencies: Media of exchange or speculative assets?

June 2016 | SWIFT Institute

This paper uses a theoretical model to analyse the dynamic relationship of virtual currency with fiat currency. The model demonstrates that the price impact of potential users and speculators in virtual currencies adversely affects their property as a medium of exchange and renders a crowding out of existing fiat currencies such as the US dollar unlikely.


Consensus – Immutable agreement for the internet of value

June 2016 | KPMG

This paper aims to provide an overview of how Blockchain and other distributed ledgers, specifically their underlying consensus mechanisms, have evolved over time. This research paper will also review how various distributed ledger consensus mechanisms continue to evolve and are currently being tested and, in some cases, implemented.


Fast forward: Rethinking enterprises, ecosystems and economies with blockchains

June 2016 | IBM

Distributed ledgers like blockchains are shared and write business transactions to an unbreakable chain that is a permanent record, viewable by the parties in a transaction. Blockchains shift the lens from information held by an individual owner to the cross-entity history of an asset or transaction. This research shows that once that happens, five attributes that are fundamental to blockchains have the potential to vaporize the frictions that hold us back today.


Blockchain and the law – An uncharted landscape

June 2016 | Clyde & Co

The financial and technological industries are coming together to explore the possibilities in blockchain, or distributed ledgers, the technology underlying the digital currency bitcoin. Blockchain offers the potential to become an essential component of the infrastructure for the Internet of Things. This report explores some of the opportunities and challenges.


Blockchain and T2S: A potential disruptor

June 2016 | Standard Chartered

T2S has been subject to a number of delays over the last few years although deadlines are fast approaching. The ECB highlights migration of CSDs onto the T2S platform will occur in waves and has been doing so since June 2015. The final wave of CSDs located in countries including the Baltics, Finland and Spain will be migrated onto T2S on September 18, 2017. However, some hypothesise whether blockchain’s evolution and implementation in the securities services industry could threaten or even replace T2S.


Blockchain Reaction – Understanding the opportunities and navigating the legal frameworks of distributed ledger technology and blockchain

June 2016 | Allens

The authors of the report predict distributed ledger technology will fundamentally reorder the mechanics of both financial and other transactions. In the meantime, businesses will need to decide to what extent they will participate and invest in its ongoing development. Few can afford to sit on the sidelines waiting for total clarity as the technology evolves and is deployed by longstanding competitors and new entrants alike.


Is RegTech the new FinTech?

June 2016 | Deliotte

This article is based on research and interviews Deiotte undertook with RegTech companies and seeks to explore how firms can benefit from regulatory technology and how they can leverage regulatory focused data to better understand and manage their compliance risks.


Discussion Paper: The Distributed Ledger Technology Applied to Securities Markets

June 2016 | ESMA

ESMA is seeking feedback from stakeholders on the possible use of DLT in securities markets, its potential benefits and the risks that such broader use may pose. In the Discussion Paper, ESMA analyses the potential benefits of DLT such as higher security, greater efficiency in clearing and settlement and reduced costs.


Bitcoin: Ringing The Bell For A New Asset Class

June 2016 | ARK INVESTCoinbase

ARK Invest and Coinbase explore the merit of bitcoin as the first of its kind in a new asset class—cryptocurrency—distinct from all other asset classes. Universally, we think traditional asset classes must meet the requirement of investability. However, traditional asset classes then differ in their politico-economic features, correlation of price movements, and risk reward profiles. In this paper, all four criteria are explored in the context of the major asset classes.


Blockchain Technology: Possibilities for the U.S. Postal Service

May 2016 | Office of Inspector General – United States Postal Service

This paper proposes that blockchain technology could impact the Postal Service’s business in several ways. For example, blockchain is already disrupting the global financial services industry — an industry the Postal Service is involved in through services such as money orders and international money transfers.


FinTech – Challenges and Opportunities

May 2016 | McKinsey & Company

The financial services sector in Germany is facing unprecedented change. Startups and other attackers are jostling for their place in the market, backed by new technologies. Known as FinTech (Financial Technology) companies, they provide alternative solutions and business models that could render traditional banking processes obsolete in many areas. This worldwide trend will become very evident. In Germany, it may jeopardize around a third of all bank revenues over the next few years.


Social KYC for Cryptocurrencies

May 2016 | Veridu – Rampants

This paper offers some ideas about identity verification in an online world. It explores some common challenges when using traditional methods, and will introduce a new approach — social KYC, using a person’s digital footprint and online social identities to instantly verify and authenticate their identity with a high degree of confidence. This approach can also be used to reduce fraud and to manage compliance requirements as a complementary approach with other forms of KYC and IDV as required.


Blockchain developments at ASX

May 2016 | Blockchain Summit

Blockchain developments at the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) have graced media headlines over the last year, with many covering the recent partnership with Digital Asset Holdings.


Blockchain Basics: A Primer

May 2016 | Pillsbury

Blockchain, the technology underlying the cryptocurrency Bitcoin, is poised to revolutionize how all commercial transactions are conducted.


Fujitsu European Financial Services Survey 2016

May 2016 | Fujistu

This report examines how banking and insurance are evolving and the impact on consumer channels, data sharing and personalization, as well as what all this means for customer loyalty.


The Impact and Potential of Blockchain on the Securities Transaction Lifecycle

May 2016 | Swift Institute

This paper reports the outcome of a series of interviews and focus group meetings with professionals working in post-trade processing and the provision of mutual distributed ledger services. The objective was to elicit and document views on three research hypotheses about the potential impact of mutual distributed ledger technology (‘blockchain’) on post-trade processing global securities markets.


GST Treatment of Digital Currency

May 2016 | Australian Treasury

The Australian Government has released a discussion paper entitled ‘GST treatment of digital currency’. This paper provides background and questions for consultation on the potential approaches available to identify digital currencies in the GST law and change their GST treatment to remove ‘double taxation’.


Improving Authenticated Dynamic Dictionaries with Applications to Cryptocurrencies

April 2016 | Leonid Reyzin, Dmitry Meshkov, Alexander Chepurnoy, Sasha Ivanov

We improve the design and implementation of two-party and three-party authenticated dy- namic dictionaries and apply these dictionaries to cryptocurrency ledgers.

A public ledger (blockchain) in a cryptocurrency needs to be easily verifiable. However, maintaining a data structure of all account balances, in order to verify whether a transaction is valid, can be quite burdensome: a verifier who does not have the large amount of RAM required for the data structure will perform slowly because of the need to continually access secondary storage. We use experiments to demonstrate that authenticated dynamic dictionaries can considerably reduce verifier load. On the other hand, per-transaction proofs generated by authenticated dictionaries increase the size of the blockchain, which motivates us to find a solution with most compact proofs.

Our improvements to the design of authenticated dictionaries reduce proof size and speed up verification by 1.4–2.5 times, making them better suited for the cryptocurrency application. We further show that proofs for multiple transactions in a single block can compressed together, reducing their total length by approximately an additional factor of 2.


Blockchain And The Law: Practical Implications Of A Revolutionary Technology For Financial Markets And Beyond

April 2016 | DLA Piper

This paper looks into how Blockchain Technology is affecting the financial landscape, and what should you know about the legal challenges surrounding it.


Disruptive Innovation: ‘New Markets New Metrics’

April 2016 | ARK INVEST

This paper explores some of the broad thematic research areas upon which ARK Investment Management is focused today. These subjects fit squarely in the macro realm that portfolio managers should understand when analyzing investment opportunities. Like changes in economic policy, nonlinear changes in technology can have dramatic effects on industries across the globe.


Banking in a world of programmable assets

April 2016 | Accenture

The Bitcoin cryptocurrency has been making headlines for several years. But in recent months the focus has widened to the broader potential of the blockchain technology that underpins it—including the creation of distributed consensus ledgers (DCLs). Now the focus has shifted again, to the implications blockchain brings for financial assets in general.


Distributed ledger technologies in securities post-trading

April 2016 | ECB

This paper analyses the main features of DLTs that could influence their adoption by financial institutions and discusses how use of these technologies could affect the European post-trade market for securities.


A brave new world? What impact will distributed ledger technology have on the financial industry?

April 2016 | ECB

One of the more recent technological developments that holds potential for the financial industry is distributed ledger technology, or DLT. This article looks briefly at what exactly this new technology is and what the potential implications are for Europe’s financial market infrastructure.


Securing Personal Genomic Data: The Potential of The Blockchain

April 2016 | Curlew ResearchRichard Shute

This paper by Richard Shute of Curlew Research is about securing personal genomic data, and the potential of the blockchain.


The Use of Distributed Ledger Technologies in Payment, Clearing, and Settlement

April 2016 | US federal Reserve – Lael Brainard

This paper will focus on newly emerging distributed ledger technologies and related protocols, which were inspired originally by Bitcoin, and their potentially important applications to payment, clearing, and settlement in the wholesale markets.


SWIFT and Accenture outline path to Distributed Ledger Technology adoption within financial services

April 2016 | SWIFT – Accenture

This paper investigates how Distributed Ledger Technologies (DLTs) could be used in financial services. Published in collaboration with Accenture, the paper is based on an in-depth technology assessment by SWIFT of DLT usage across financial institutions, highlighting the opportunities as well as the challenges for industry wide adoption.


Global Insight: Blockchain in Banking: Disruptive Threat or Tool?

April 2016 | Morgan Stanley

Blockchains could have widespread potential to disrupt financial intermediaries. This in-depth study suggests several misconceptions & identifies 10 hurdles to overcome to make blockchain a reality in banking. The opportunity is clear but the bluesky is too far off to impact our 2017/18e.


Financial Stability In The Digital Age

April 2016 | Banque de France

Innovation shapes the evolution of the financial system and plays a crucial role in economic development. Yet innovative technologies may also make more questionable contributions, like during the 2008 financial crisis.


Tech Trends 2016 – Innovating in the digital era

April 2016 | Deliotte

The 2016 report identifies eight trends that reflect macro forces fuelling innovation: digital, analytics, cloud, the renaissance of core systems, and the changing role of IT within the enterprise, balanced with the implications of cyber risk—security, compliance, regulatory and compliance, quality, and safety.


10th Advanced Payments Report 2016

April 2016 | Edgar, Dunn & Company

Edgar, Dunn & Company (EDC), the global strategy consultancy, released their 10th Advanced Payments Report 2016 (APR 2016), sponsored by Wirecard, the global financial services and technology company. It provides perspectives and insights from payment industry executives, analysts, and stakeholders obtained from interviews, discussions, and EDC’s annual online advanced payments survey of over 500 industry professionals.


Bitcoin Investment Trust (GBTC)

March 2016 | Needham & Company, LLC

The Bitcoin Investment Trust is a private open-ended Trust that invests exclusively in Bitcoin, and consequently the value of shares in the Trust is driven primarily by the price of Bitcoin.


De Nederlandsche Bank N.V. 2015 Annual Report

March 2016 | De Nederlandsche Bank

The 2015 Annual Report from De Nederlandsche Bank.


Blurred lines: How FinTech is shaping Financial Services

March 2016 | PricewaterhouseCoopers

This PwC report assesses the rise of new technologies in the financial services sector across the globe, the potential impact of FinTech on market players and their attitudes regarding the latest in technology developments. Additionally, it offers insight as to the responses of the sector to this ever-changing environment.


Money Of The Future: Results of 2015 / Trends for 2016

March 2016 | Life.SREDA

Annual fintech research by Life.SREDA VC. In collaboration with INSEAD business school and Deloitte.


Backing Australian FinTech

March 2016 | Australian Treasury

At the recent World Economic Forum it was noted that 90 per cent of the data we use today has been created in the past two years. The ability of new technology to capture and process big data is changing how we do business and the way consumers use products and services.


Bitcoin Investment Trust – 2015 Annual Report

March 2016 | Grayscale Investments, LLC

Bitcoin Investment Trust – 2015 Annual Report by Grayscale Investments, LLC


Banking Industry Outlook: Banking reimagined

March 2016 | DeliotteVal Srinivas

In this special report, we examine how various disruptive trends we are seeing today in areas such as artificial intelligence and machine learning, blockchain technology, collaborative ecosystems, cryptocurrencies, demographics, and customer experience are coming together to influence the future of banking. This outlook is part of Deloitte’s Financial Services Industry Outlooks series, which provides disruptive trends and bold predictions over the long term for banking, insurance, investment management, and commercial real estate.


Central banks and digital currencies – Speech by Ben Broadbent

March 2016 | Bank of EnglandBen Broadbent

Speech given by Ben Broadbent, Deputy Governor for Monetary Policy, Bank of England at the London School of Economics on Wednesday 2 March 2016.


Israel – A Hotspot For Blockchain Innovation

February 2016 | Deliotte

This report is the first of its kind, offering a laterally overview of the blockchain technology – the ecosystem, benefits & challenges and the blockchain startup landscape in Israel.


How blockchain-timestamped protocols could improve the trustworthiness of medical science [version 1; referees: 2 approved]

February 2016 | F1000 Research – Greg Irving, John Holden

Trust in scientific research is diminished by evidence that data are being manipulated. Outcome switching, data dredging and selective publication are some of the problems that undermine the integrity of published research. This report is a proof-of-concept study using a ‘blockchain’ as a low cost, independently verifiable method that could be widely and readily used to audit and confirm the reliability of scientific studies.


Draft Report on Virtual Currencies – Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs

February 2016 | European Parliament – Jakob von Weizsäcker

This report, authored by European Parliament member (MEP) Jakob von Weizsäcker of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, calls for the creation of a horizontal Task Force DLT to be set up under the leadership of the Commission.


FinTech 2.0: Creating new opportunities through strategic alliance

February 2016 | Deutsche Bank

How financial technology firms and digital ecosystems can leverage banks’ core competencies through equal partnerships, to innovate and grow in the B2B space.


Distributed Ledger : The technology behind the virtual currency on the example of the blockchain

February 2016 | BaFin

This article explains how DLT works, how it can be applied and what effect it may have on the financial market.


Eurosystem’s vision for the future of Europe’s financial market infrastructure

February 2016 | European Central Bank

The launch of TARGET2-Securities (T2S) as a new platform for securities settlement provides an ideal opportunity for the Eurosystem to develop a vision for evolving its market infrastructure services.


Five Things Blockchain Must Get Right to Realize Its Full and Transformative Potential

February 2016 | DH Corporation

D+H outlines key considerations blockchain technology must achieve to fully capitalize on its potential to revolutionize payments.


How Can Cryptocurrency and Blockchain Technology Play a Role in Building Social and Solidarity Finance?

February 2016 | United Nations Research Institute for Social Development

This paper provides a primer on the basics of Bitcoin and discusses the existent narratives about the technology’s potential to facilitate remittances, financial inclusion, cooperative structures and even micro-insurance systems.


CAPITAL MARKETS UNION: The Road to Sustainable Growth in Europe

February 2016 | Nasdaq

In February 2015, the European Commission launched a consultation on the measures needed to unlock investment in the EU and create a single market for capital. More than 700 responses were received reflecting broad support for the Capital Markets Union (CMU).


Blockchain in Capital Markets – The Prize and the Journey

February 2016 | Euroclear

This joint report by Euroclear and Oliver Wyman aims to help leaders in capital markets to understand the potential of blockchain technology while laying out the paths for its adoption, and presenting the decisions that are required by capital markets firms today.


Payment Survey 2016-2 Distributed Director and Technical Status and implications of the digital currency

February 2016 | Bank of Korea – Payment Systems Research Team

Status and implications of the distributed ledger technology and digital currency.


Virtual currencies: what are the risks and benefits?

January 2016 | European Parliament

Are virtual currencies an opportunity to transfer money more cheaply or just a way for criminals to trade in illegal goods? The Parliament’s economic committee held a hearing in January to discuss the issues involved with experts, who told them EU regulation should not go beyond preventing and fighting crime. Parliament is currently working on a report on virtual currencies, which the economic committee is expected to vote on in April.


Perspective on the structure of the Dutch banking sector

January 2016 | DeNederlandscheBank

This vision paper focuses on the structure of the Dutch banking sector, within the context of the European banking union.


Virtual Currencies and Beyond: Initial Considerations

January 2016 | International Monetary Fund (IMF)

This document provides an overview of virtual currencies, how they work and how they fit into monetary systems, both domestically and internationally.


Blockchain. Enigma. Paradox. Opportunity

January 2016 | Deliotte

There are new and emerging opportunities for organisations in all sectors to create and deliver compelling services for their customers using the power of disruptive innovation. As organisations formulate their plans for the coming months, this paper aims to help business and public sector leaders understand the cultural and organisational challen
ges that are inevitably brought by the use of blockchain technologies, and provides them with the insights they need to overcome them.


The promise of Bitcoin and the Blockchain

January 2016 | Consumer Research – Bretton Woods

This paper identifies and explains the opportunities presented by blockchain technologies, the challenges faced by those opportunities, and potential ways to address those challenges.


Q & A – What’s next for blockchain in 2016?

January 2016 | PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PWC)

Blockchain technology is being adopted at unprecedented speed. Financial institutions are realizing the potential of this next-generation business process improvement software to alter shared practices between customers, competitors, and suppliers.


Opportunities and risks associated with the advent of digital currency in the Caribbean

January 2016 | Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean

This report examines the usage of digital currency technology in the Caribbean subregion with a view to drawing attention to the opportunities and risks associated with this new phenomenon. It discusses the broader context of an emerging activity at the global level and considers how this technology could address subregional deficiencies in the electronic payment infrastructure.


Embracing Disruption: Tapping The Potential Of Distributed Ledgers To Improve The Post-trade Landscape

January 2016 | DTCC

This paper calls for industry-wide collaboration in leveraging distributed ledger technologies to modernize, streamline and simplify the siloed design of the financial industry infrastructure and address certain limitations of the current post-trade process.


Economy in the digital transformation

January 2016 | Deutsche Bundestag

This paper “Wirtschaft im digitalen Wandel” is in German language.


A Strategist’s Guide to Blockchain

January 2016 | John Plansky, Tim O’Donnell, and Kimberly Richards – Strategy& by PWC

The distributed ledger technology that started with bitcoin is rapidly becoming a crowdsourced system for all types of verification. Could it replace notary publics, manual vote recounts, and the way banks manage transactions?


Distributed Ledger Technology: beyond block chain

January 2016 | UK Government Chief Scientific Adviser

This report makes a number of recommendations which focus on ministerial leadership, research, standards and the need for proof of concept trials.


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