On Jan. 24, tZero, a subsidiary of a major U.S. online retailer, went live with its long-awaited secondary trading platform for so-called security tokens. According to reports, the tZero platform is now open to accredited investors for the secondary trading of blockchain-based tokens issued in so-called security token offerings (STOs). Also this week, a new cryptocurrency custody solution, Anchorage, was launched with backing from several major U.S. tech investors and venture capital funds. According to an article posted on Medium, Anchorage will offer an innovative cryptocurrency custody platform that "combines multi-person integrity with hardware-based systems, allowing us to build a platform that is more secure than cold storage, but has the benefits of keeping the assets accessible." On the same day, Symbiont.io Inc., a New York-based startup focused on applying blockchain to the capital markets, announced a major funding round from two major U.S. financial institutions and a well-known blockchain investor. In a third announcement, Templum Markets, a blockchain-based platform for issuance and secondary trading of so-called smart securities, and IPwe, Inc., launched a "patent finance market" that seeks to enable companies to "efficiently finance their patented intellectual property."

According to a notice published by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), a proposed rule change seeking to launch a physically backed bitcoin ETF was withdrawn this week. According to reports, the withdrawal is temporary and was due in part to delayed discussions with the SEC resulting from the ongoing partial government shutdown. Outside the U.S., the Jamaica Stock Exchange and Canadian fintech firm Blockstation recently announced completion of a "live digital currency trading pilot with selected regulated market participants including broker-dealers, market makers and the Jamaica Central Securities Depository (JCSD)." According to the press release, the platform eventually will seek to list security tokens.

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