September 24, 2022

Crypto Roundup by DJKupo

US House Democrats Call for Scrutiny on Crypto Mining as Environmental Threat (CoinDesk)

“U.S. Rep. Jared Huffman (D-Calif.), who leads a subcommittee within the House of Representatives’ Natural Resources Committee, has recruited almost two dozen Democratic colleagues to urge federal environmental officials to devote further scrutiny to the consequences of cryptocurrency mining. ‘We have serious concerns regarding reports that cryptocurrency facilities across the country are polluting communities and are having an outsized contribution to greenhouse gas emissions,’ according to the letter, signed by lawmakers including Brad Sherman and Jamaal Bowman of California; Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York; and Jesús G. ‘Chuy’ García and Marie Newman of Illinois.”


Justin Sun to Launch Algorithmic Stablecoin Usdd on Tron, Will Use $10 Billion of Crypto as Collateral (The Block)

Tron CTO Chuen

”Tron will have its own native stablecoin called USDD from May 5, Tron founder Justin Sun announced on Thursday. The stablecoin won’t operate like traditional ones do, such as Tether (USDT) and Circle’s USD Coin (USDC), which keep dollars (and other assets) in bank accounts as backing. Instead USDD will be an algorithmic stablecoin like TerraUSD (UST) and Frax Finance (FRAX).”

Justin Sun Blog Post


0x Protocol’s Token Jumps Over 50% After Coinbase Partnership (Bloomberg)

“The native token of 0x protocol, ZRX, rallied over 50% after the Coinbase crypto exchange announced a partnership with the decentralized exchange infrastructure provider. Coinbase’s nonfungible token marketplace, a beta version of which went live on Wednesday, will be powered by 0x. ZRX rallied to $1.09 per token, its highest level since December, CoinMarketCap data showed. Trade volumes for the token spiked over 3000% in the last 24 hours.”


Kadena Establishes $100M Grant Program For Web3 Development (Decrypt)

Source: Kadena Twitter

“Kadena, founded by JP Morgan blockchain alumni Stuart Popejoy and Will Martino, has announced a $100 million grant program for Web3 developers to build projects on its blockchain. While Martino worked as JP Morgan’s lead engineer for its open-source blockchain product, Juno, Popejoy was JP Morgan’s executive director of new products. They left JP Morgan in 2016 to start Kadena together.”


OCC Finds Anchorage Digital Failed to Maintain Proper AML Rules (CoinDesk)

“The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), a federal banking regulator, and Anchorage Digital, a trust company operating with an OCC trust charter, agreed to a consent order Thursday in which the regulator said Anchorage failed to meet Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) requirements for its internal controls. According to the order, in which Anchorage neither admits nor denies the OCC’s findings, Anchorage didn’t have an anti-money laundering/Bank Secrecy Act program that met federal requirements regarding customer due diligence. The company now has 15 days to create a compliance committee where a majority of members aren’t Anchorage employees. That committee will oversee Anchorage’s compliance with the consent order.”

Office of the Comptroller of the Currency Cease and Decease Order


UK’s Top Regulator Appoints Interim Digital Assets Head (The Block)

“The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has appointed an interim lead for its efforts to regulate digital assets. Victoria McLoughlin will take up the charge, according to a LinkedIn post, having worked at the FCA for more than a decade. She was previously a supervision manager for cryptoassets and digital markets.”


Bitcoin ETFs to Roll Out in Australia to Test Crypto Demand (Bloomberg)

“The Bitcoin exchange-traded fund bandwagon is coming to Australia as regulators finalize approvals for products offering direct exposure to digital assets. Cosmos Asset Management said it’s preparing to launch the Cosmos Purpose Bitcoin Access ETF in coming days. It will invest in the Purpose Bitcoin ETF, a Toronto-listed fund with assets of about C$1.6 billion ($1.3 billion).”


Binance.US Quits Blockchain Association, Forms In-House Lobbying Shop (CoinDesk)

“Binance.US, the American arm of the world’s largest crypto exchange by trading volume, is leaving noted crypto lobbying group Blockchain Association after less than two years due to a difference in ‘values, goals and standards,’ a person close to the company told CoinDesk. ‘Binance.US made a major investment last year in the Blockchain Association,’ said the person. ‘Our executives recently negotiated in good faith with Blockchain Association executives in an effort to grow Binance.US’ role within the group. But after multiple conversations we ultimately determined that our values, goals and standards were not fully aligned.’”


MakerDAO to Integrate Starknet to Cut DAI Transaction Costs (The Block)

“MakerDAO, one of the oldest and largest DeFi protocols and the creator of the DAI stablecoin, is set to integrate the Ethereum Layer 2 network StarkNet on April 28 as part of its multichain strategy. Deploying MakerDAO on StarkNet will allow users to mint and trade DAI faster and at a cheaper cost. ‘It’s going to be about 10x improvement in cost compared to Ethereum,’ Louis Baudoin, facilitator for the StarkNet core unit at MakerDAO, told The Block.”


Coinbase NFT Marketplace Goes Live In Beta For Select Customers (The Block)

“Coinbase NFT has gone live in beta form. It currently supports Ethereum-based NFTs and payments in ETH. Coinbase’s VP of Product Sanchan Saxena told The Block that ‘full fiat on-ramps will be coming soon.’”


Julian Assange’s Brother: AssangeDAO Helps Wikileaks Founder Take Legal Fight to US (The Block)

“A DAO set up to provide funds for Julian Assange to fight American espionage charges is helping him take “aggressive” legal action in the US, according to Assange’s brother, Gabriel Shipton.”


US Treasury Sanctions Russian Crypto Miners, Its First Sanction On Mining (The Block)

Front page | U.S. Department of the Treasury

“Today, the US Treasury took aim at Russia’s cryptocurrency mining industry. On April 20, the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control added Russia-based cryptocurrency miner BitRiver as well as 10 subsidiaries to its Specially Designated Nationals list.”

U.S. Treasury Press Release


IMF Calls for Coordinated Effort, Capital Controls for Crypto (The Block)

“The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is encouraging global policymakers to develop standards for crypto in response to growing concerns highlighted by the war in Ukraine. In its Global Financial Stability Report published Tuesday, the IMF directly addressed crypto’s potential use in sanctions evasion by Russia and its potential to threaten the stability of existing financial systems through the changing banking landscape.”

IMF Global Financial Stability Report


SoftBank-Backed Sandbox Said to Seek Funds at $4 Billion Value (Bloomberg)

relates to SoftBank-Backed Sandbox Said to Seek Funds at $4 Billion Value

“The Sandbox, a platform that allows users to trade and monetize virtual assets in the Ethereum blockchain, is considering raising fresh funds at a valuation of more than $4 billion, according to people familiar with the matter. The company is looking to raise about $400 million from both new and existing investors, the people said, who asked not to be identified as the information is confidential. Sandbox, which is majority-owned by blockchain gaming developer Animoca Brands Corp., is in talks with potential investors for the funding round, the people said.”


Crypto Firm Blockchain.com Is Planning IPO as Soon as This Year (Bloomberg)

“Cryptocurrency startup Blockchain.com is interviewing banks for an initial public offering that could take place as soon as this year, according to people familiar with the matter. An IPO might not happen until next year and the company’s plans could change, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the discussions were private.”


Framework Ventures Unveils $400 Million Fund With a Special Focus On Blockchain Gaming (The Block)

Framework Ventures

“Framework Ventures, a crypto-focused venture capital firm, said Tuesday that it has raised $400 million for a new fund. In a statement, Framework said that half of the new capital, some $200 million, would be deployed to the ‘burgeoning blockchain gaming space.’ That specific focus on gaming builds on the momentum seen across deals in the industry in recent months. As The Block noted in November, the gaming space — the intersection of decentralized technology and peer-to-peer engagement — has drawn notable investments, including the $725 million raised by Forte and the $150 million raised by Mythical Games, among others.”


Crypto Exchange Okcoin Launches Fee-Free NFT Trading Marketplace (Bloomberg)

Thee Okcoin website.

“Okcoin, a cryptocurrency exchange, is starting a marketplace for nonfungible tokens, seeking to extend its reach by allowing free trading in the digital artworks.  The San-Francisco based site, which was founded in 2013, is the latest to shift into NFT trading, following similar announcements by rivals including Coinbase Global Inc., Kraken and Gemini.”


Terra’s Stablecoin UST Becomes Crypto’s Third-Largest (Decrypt)

Terra is a crypto network built using the Cosmos developer kit. Image: Shutterstock.

“First DAI, now BUSD. Terra’s UST is on a tear. Today, the fast-growing TerraUSD (UST) stablecoin from the Terra ecosystem has hit another key milestone. With more than $17 billion in market capitalization, it’s become crypto’s third-largest stablecoin. Terra’s stablecoin overtook Binance USD (BUSD) to grab third place, but the gap is thin: roughly $68 million.”


Moonbirds NFTs Fly on Debut, Clocking $200M in Sales (CoinDesk)

“Non-fungible token (NFT) project Moonbirds captivated the crypto-sphere this weekend on its way to record-setting trading volume, becoming the latest collection to garner blue chip status just days after its mint on Saturday. The collection of 10,000 PFPs (profile pics) has racked up 69,000 ETH (roughly $207 million) in total sales, boasting a floor price of 21.3 ETH (roughly $64,000) at the time of writing.”


Andre Cronje: ‘Crypto Culture Has Strangled Crypto Ethos’ (The Block)

“The popular and controversial DeFi architect Andre Cronje has decried the nature of ‘crypto culture’ arguing that it stands in contrast to the ethos of the emerging ecosystem in a blog post published Monday. According to Cronje, crypto culture with its drive for wealth is stifling the more noble pursuits associated with crypto’s ethos.”


Republican Lawmakers Accuse SEC of Restricting Crypto Exchanges in Recent Rulemakings (The Block)

“Two Republican lawmakers have taken issue with the Securities and Exchange Commission’s recent rule changes. On April 18, Representatives Patrick McHenry (R-NC) and Bill Huizenga (R-MI) wrote to SEC Chair Gensler criticizing the commission’s recent rulemakings as they relate to crypto.”

Republicans Financial Services Press Release


US Government Warns of North Korean Crypto Attacks After Tying Nation to $625M Hack (CoinDesk)

“Several U.S. government organizations jointly warned on Monday of the threat posed by cryptocurrency thefts and tactics used by the North Korean state-sponsored group known as Lazarus Group. The FBI, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) and the U.S. Treasury Department said other names for the group include APT38, BlueNoroff and Stardust Chollima.”


Ethereum-Based Stablecoin Protocol Beanstalk Loses About $182 Million to Exploit (Bloomberg)

DeFi Project Beanstalk Loses $182 Million in Flash Loan Attack - Bloomberg

“Decentralized finance project Beanstalk Farms suffered one of the largest-ever flash-loan exploits on Sunday, sending its price tumbling. The credit-focused, Ethereum-based stablecoin protocol suffered a total loss of around $182 million and the attacker got away with around $80 million of crypto tokens, according to blockchain security firm PeckShield, which had flagged the incident on Twitter. The project’s native token BEAN fell about 75% from its $1 peg.”


Nexo Offers Payment Card Allowing Users to Retain Their Crypto (The Block)

Why Nexo: Bank Loans vs. Selling Crypto vs. Crypto-backed Credit • Nexo

“Crypto lender Nexo said it is working with Mastercard to offer a crypto-backed payment card, Reuters reported last week. The card is linked to a crypto-backed credit line, allowing investors to spend as much as 90% of the fiat value of their crypto assets, Nexo said, adding that the card allows users to spend without selling their digital assets.”


Louis Vuitton Releases New NFTs as Fashion Brands Continue Experiments in Gaming (The Block)

Screenshot from Louis: The Game.

“Luxury fashion brand Louis Vuitton is moving ahead with its experimentation with non-fungible tokens (NFTs) with the introduction of PFP-inspired NFT rewards in its stand-alone mobile app game Louis: The Game. The game was first introduced in August 2021. Players enter a world where they can dress up their brand-inspired avatar named Vivienne and run around collecting postcards that teach them about the brand’s 200-year history. The company has added new quests and new NFT rewards to the app, according to Vogue Business, who first reported the news.”


Central Bank of Portugal Grants Country’s First Crypto License to a Bank (CoinDesk)

“Bison Bank, a Portugal-based financial institution, has received a license from the Portuguese central bank (Banco de Portugal) to operate as a virtual asset service provider (VASP), Banco de Portugal announced Thursday. Bison Bank will create a special business division, Bison Digital Assets, to operate as a virtual asset exchange, according to Portuguese media outlet Sapo.”


Ethereum Mixer Tornado Cash Blocks Sanctioned Addresses From Its Frontend (The Block)

“Tornado Cash, a popular Ethereum mixer that helps obfuscate crypto transactions, has said that it will block crypto addresses sanctioned by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) — an enforcement agency of the US Treasury Department. The news means OFAC-sanctioned crypto wallet addresses will now not be able to use Tornado Cash. ‘Maintaining financial privacy is essential to preserving our freedom, however, it should not come at the cost of non-compliance,’ tweeted Tornado Cash on Friday.”


Last Week’s Most Read Articles

Crypto Lender Celsius to Stop Paying Interest on New Deposits From US Starting on Friday (The Block)

Ethereum Merge Pushed to Q3 as ‘Final Chapter’ of Proof of Work Looms (Decrypt)

Uniswap Labs Launches Venture Unit to Invest in web3 Projects (The Block)

Epic Games Raises $2B to ‘Build the Metaverse’—Will It Use Crypto or NFTs? (Decrypt)

OCC Chief Continues Push for Bank-Style Regulation for Stablecoin Issuers in the US (The Block)

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