“We are Big Believers in Ethereum” – J.P. Morgan

Ethereum’s price was little changed on Tuesday, reflecting sluggish market conditions following a sizable drop during the previous session. Negative price action notwithstanding, Ethereum is picking up powerful use cases as major institutions look to capitalize on enterprise blockchain solutions.

ETH/USD Price Update

The ether price saw limited upside Tuesday, with values hovering within a narrow range on major exchanges. At the time of writing, ETH/USD was valued at $198 on Bitfinex. The daily peak-to-trough was a mere $3 difference, highlighting tepid trading conditions.

Prices fell a low of around $195 on Monday from a high near $206. Prior to yesterday’s skid, ether had spent the better part of two weeks north of $200. Immediate support is located at $197.

More than $1.3 billion in ETH traded hands on virtual currency exchanges Tuesday, little changed from 24 hours ago. DOBI Trade, Bithumb and LBank were the largest markets for ether transactions.

Ether’s tepid movement reflects a broad cooldown in the wider market. The total cryptocurrency market capitalization continues to hover near $203 billion with daily trade volumes just above the $10 billion mark.

J.P. Morgan To Tokenize Gold Bars Using Ethereum-Backed Blockchain

Wall Street banking giant J.P. Morgan Chase & Co (JPM) is looking to revolutionize commodities trading through Quorum, an enterprise blockchain solution built on top of Ethereum. The Financial Review reported Monday that the mega bank is preparing to tokenize gold bars through smart contracts embedded in Quorum, thereby enabling fractional ownership.

By digitizing commodities, gold miners will have the opportunity to earn larger premiums on global markets. The tokenized gold bars will be governed by smart contracts, which means traders can buy and sell from one another without the need for a costly intermediary such as a broker or exchange.

“We are the only financial player that owns the entire stack, from the application to the protocol,” said Umar Farooq, J.P. Morgan’s head of blockchain initiatives, as quoted by the Financial Review. “We are big believers in Ethereum.”

Farooq said Quorum is already being used outside his organization to tokenize gold.

“They wrap a gold bar into a tamper-proof case electronically tagged, and they can track the gold bar from the mine to end point – with the use case being, if you know it’s a socially responsible mine, someone will be willing to pay a higher spread on that gold versus if you don’t know where it comes from. Diamonds is another example.”

J.P. Morgan has big plans for Quorum as the bank looks to embed blockchain technology across the value chain. In addition to tokenization, Quorum is being considered for custody, capital markets issuances and secondary markets.

Disclaimer: The author owns bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but does not engage in short-term or day-trading.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Chief Editor to Hacked.com and Contributor to CCN.com, Sam Bourgi has spent the past nine years focused on economics, markets and cryptocurrencies. His work has been featured in and cited by some of the world's leading newscasts, including Barron's, CBOE and Forbes. Avid crypto watchers and those with a libertarian persuasion can follow him on twitter at @hsbourgi