It’s not what we hoped for. We’re not happy about it But rather than rear up against the nightmare, we opt for an elegant solution to steer clear of incidences of fraud or misconduct.
At some point, news of brokerages engaging in appalling fraudulent behavior became too much to see as isolated slips by professionals who supposedly have their investors best interests at heart. There was the case of the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) fining HPI Forex Limited $255,000 for failing to adhere to client money segregation rules. The brokerage company had mishandled its customer of customer funds of over $1million over a period of 13 months. There was also the case of individual brokers like Christian Robert Mayer of Eden Prairie, Minnesota being fined $100,000 in penalties and banned by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) for fraudulent trading schemes.
High-frequency brokerage firms buy, sell or cancel financial instruments in a matter of seconds, making it hard for fraud to be detected. While such trading at large volumes grants greater liquidity to the markets, helps lower costs for all investors, it can also open up new opportunities for manipulating prices. These manipulative brokerages thrive by making a little bit of profit from lots of trades, unlike those trading on inside information who seek the big payoff through a quick strike before the information is disclosed. Many brokerages do not want to tip off the direction of their investments, nor do they disclose the best prices available to maintain competitive advantage. But this lack of transparency leaves investors anxiously sitting out in the dark.
Peter Lynch, the American investor, mutual fund manager, and philanthropist whose net worth is reported at US$352 million in March 2006, stated “It would be wonderful if we could avoid the common setbacks with timely exits.”
Now is the time for all investors to walk away from questionable brokerages who are not transparent in the dealings nor are they accountable. The age of the Internet has exposed a rich portrait of these brokerage-led psychological and economic vulnerabilities. Out of the depths of the distressing backdrop, investors have their eye on another boom that rose to stratospheric heights through the emergence of Cryptocurrency and Blockchain.
While Cryptocurrency is often associated with wild volatility, the base of its technology that is Blockchain will be the bedrock that will host new bluechip industries, because the technology itself is all about creating one priceless asset: trust.
The need for trust is why companies like Google, Facebook and Amazon turned into de-facto monopolies in the first place. Back then; we liked the idea that the Internet allowed us to remain neutral. But with the recent Facebook-Cambridge Analytica data scandal, suddenly we don’t like the idea of these giants having vast amounts of data of our habits, purchases, likes and dislikes. Now we are a little suspicious, we demand for the right to not have our data collected, we demand to know what they will do with the data, we demand for complete accountability and transparency.
As Internet 2.0, Blockchain records all of our activities and transactions on a distributed open ledger that is unalterable, and unbreakable. This technology reduces the cost of trust by means of a decentralized approach to accounting and gives a new way to structure economies of organizations and countries. Think about this. No one can hide his or her transactions. Not brokerages, companies or governments. Not even technological companies like Google or Facebook. This is groundbreaking.
New ways of investing, trading and businesses will develop, because people will demand trust and accountability at the base of all transactions. On Blockchain, the power to invest, trade or do business will flow back to the people and companies will have to evolve to meet that demand. One such example of a game-changing investment Blockchain platform is Level01, the World’s first Brokerless Derivatives Exchange in Partnership with Thomson Reuters.
What makes Level01 revolutionary is the fact that it can unite and grow the global derivatives exchange market, not by just mere millions, but by mind-blowing quadrillions in terms of investment assets. When people realize that this independent platform equips them with credible real time investment data, powerful big data analytics, trade matching capabilities, rated peer to peer trading, transparent and accountable transactions automated by digital smart contracts, they are going to drop those fraudulent brokerages, for a tool that gives them the freedom to make lucrative return on investments based on their own informed decisions, choice of trade partners and investment assets. In his song, “Power to the People” John Lennon aptly added “..say we want a revolution. We better get on right away”
Considering that almost all exchanges around the world draw large amounts of price differences, quantity differences, spread, exchange rate differences packaged with lengthy legal terms and conditions that hide large amounts of direct and indirect costs. Level01 stands out as every investor’s paradise because of its accountability, transparency, low cost to entry and dedication to circumvent all possibility of risk and fraud that can be caused by humans.
Level01 is an example of the unbreakable trust enabled by Blockchain. This is where we are protected by mathematical rules and impregnable cryptography, rather than trust in fallible humans or institutions. The code and structure of the Blockchain are what guarantees the integrity of the ledger. It’s a version of what the cryptographer Ian Grigg described as “triple-entry bookkeeping”: one entry on the debit side, another for the credit, and a third into an immutable, undisputed, shared ledger. There’s just no room for fraud, just a level open and fair playing field for all.
If all of this seems unfathomable, just remember that not very long ago when the Internet was first invented, no one could predict the rise of Google or Facebook. But that is what you get when you have platforms can enable scale and give power to the people. Blockchain’s core components of algorithmic consensus and distributed book keeping provides the base for platforms like Level01 to create a new paradigm shift that will disrupt financial institutions that currently dominate our centralized economy. In this case, we will be saying good-bye to manipulation and fraud in most derivatives exchanges.
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