Jun 7, 2021

New educational platform helps new investors navigate crypto

SchoolofBlock
Cryptocurrency
Blockchain
Bitcoin
Ledger
2 min
School of Block is an online resource that is helping to demystify cryptocurrencies and blockchain for new investors. Find out how it could help you here

Crypto has become a widely accepted investment case with 100 million holders and a market cap that has recently surged to US$2trn. School of Block aims to help new private investors navigate in this highly volatile blockchain-based economy. 

It took quite a while before Bitcoin received any kind of interest from the mainstream. A few readers might remember a guy at work telling stories about a friend who invested in some kind of internet money. The same few readers probably also felt like missing out when that same kind of internet money absolutely took off.  

 

In the light of the last few weeks of Bitcoin reaching its new all-time high, and shortly after catalysing a remarkable correction of the market making finance experts discuss crypto bubbles, it is kind of odd to look back to when almost nobody knew of this decentralised finance. Today, the crypto market is far from niche – this growing economy has an estimated 100 million holders around the world. Back in April, Bloomberg reported that the crypto market cap had surpassed $2trn – that is less than a trillion from leveling with the UK - and around the same time, the Coinbase crypto exchange went trading on NASDAQ.

Needless to say, this ongoing saga of crypto has been dragging quite some attention the past years, leaving big corporations and private investors intrigued by the chances of taking profits from this fast-developing new economy.

If you are more than just slightly interested in cryptocurrencies, you might know of a few other coins and tokens beside BTC and ETH, but maybe still little about wallets, exchanges, blockchain, miners, storage, decentralised finance, KYC, proof of work, proof of stake, finality, and tokenomics. Being new to this field, there is a ton of new information that might seem overwhelming and, let’s be fair, it definitely is.

School of Block

To ease the entry of new private investors, Ledger has initiated an educational online platform, School of Block, providing viewers with fundamental knowledge and information on a weekly basis to make the world of crypto and blockchain easier to navigate.

Warren Buffet advised that one should never invest in a business you cannot understand. Even though crypto and stocks are not quite the same, it’s wise to conduct research; some of these fundamental terms and concepts are key in understanding events that might define the turnout of an investment.

School of Block can be accessed on YouTube and will sufficiently educate viewers while also providing the necessary answers to questions most holders will surely run into after the first investment

Share article

Jun 19, 2021

AI and the future of global trade

AI
Tradeteq
trade
Finance
Michael Boguslavsky, Head of A...
3 min
Boguslavsky explores AI's potential in trade finance; could it overcome traditional barriers and usher in a new era of financial transformation?

Artificial intelligence (AI) is becoming entrenched in our daily lives, but the technology is still surrounded by misconceptions and skepticism. Ask the public and they may jump to dystopian scenarios where robots have taken over the world. 

While this makes for a good sci-fi blockbuster plot, the reality is different and more benign. Those products that Amazon suggested you buy? AI. That TV series you were recommended to watch on Netflix? AI. That self-driving Tesla car you crave to take for a spin? You guessed it: AI.

There is no single industry that is not being re-shaped by technology. Until recently, however, there was one noteworthy exception: global trade. Fortunately, that is slowly changing.

The mechanism that underpins global trade – trade finance – is an industry that remains largely paper-based and reliant on manual processes. This US$18tn a year industry is now being influenced by a new wave of technological innovation, including AI.

Exploring the potential of AI in Trade Finance

AI refers to the use of computer-aided systems to help people make decisions or make decisions for them. It relies on large volumes of data and models to make sense of information and draw intelligence. 

In trade finance, AI is helpful in analysing quantitative data, and the repetitive nature of trade finance means that there is a lot of non-traditional data at our disposal. 

This means that when trade finance providers need to assess the risks of funding a transaction, AI models can be a very efficient tool for data analysis and reveal intelligence and risks relating to small companies.

AI helps the industry move beyond traditional credit scoring processes, which are often outdated and remain reliant on historical accounting entries – a barrier that prevents small companies from accessing trade finance and has resulted in a $1.5tn global shortfall. 

Overcoming the barriers

AI can tackle this shortfall by creating accurate credit scoring models. This can include a company’s payment history, measure the risks of funding a transaction, identify supply chain risks, and benchmark them against their peer group.

Trade finance providers can use this information to communicate effectively with their SME clients, ultimately helping establish better business relationships.

Towards a technological utopia?

The adoption of AI has the potential to do a lot of good in the industry, and the industry is in the early stages of radical transformation.

Advances are driven by fintechs as well as a willingness to change. The industry is working together to create new infrastructure for distributing trade finance assets to other investors in a transparent, standardised format. 

The creation of infrastructure is possible due to improvements in technology and integrated across the trade ecosystem in cooperation with banks, insurers, and other industry participants. 

It’s collaboration at its best: together, the industry is using technology to re-shape global trade as we know it.

This article was contributed by Michael Boguslavsky, Head of AI at Tradeteq

Share article