November 30, 2022

Crypto Roundup by DJKupo


SEC Investigating UST Stablecoin Blowup in Fresh Threat to Terra (Bloomberg)

Terra's Luna Amid Its $60 Billion Implosion

“The US Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating whether the marketing of the TerraUSD stablecoin before it crashed last month violated federal investor-protection regulations, according to a person familiar with the matter. SEC enforcement attorneys are looking into whether Terraform Labs, the firm behind the coin also known as UST, broke rules for securities and investment products, said the person who asked not to be named discussing the confidential probe. The stablecoin was supposed to maintain a 1-to-1 peg to the US dollar through an algorithm and trading in a related token called Luna.”

Bloomberg Empowers Clients by Expanding Coverage to Top 50 Crypto Assets (Bloomberg)

“Bloomberg announced today an expansion of its market-leading coverage of cryptocurrency data on the Bloomberg Terminal to include the top 50 crypto assets, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Binance Coin, XRP, Solana and more. Clients can now monitor intraday pricing for an expanded universe of cryptos, indices and futures contracts in real-time for faster, data-driven investment decisions.”

Digital Currency Group Unveils Wealth Management Subsidiary (The Block)

“Digital Currency Group (DCG), a cryptocurrency investment firm founded by Barry Silbert in 2015, has officially launched its long-heralded wealth management subsidiary. Named HQ Digital, it will offer private investments, estate planning, risk mitigation and insurance, among other services, according to its website. It will complement DCG’s existing slate of businesses, which includes asset manager Grayscale, trading business Genesis Global and news site CoinDesk.”

Tether Launches Stablecoin on Tezos to Unlock New DeFi Products (Decrypt)

A stack of Tezos coins. Image: Shutterstock.

Stablecoin operator Tether today announced it is expanding the list of blockchain networks supporting its flagship stablecoin USDT to Tezos, a proof-of-stake (Pos) platform for creating smart contracts and decentralized applications (dApps). With the addition of Tezos, the USDT ecosystem is now available on 12 various networks, including Ethereum (ETH), Tron (TRX), Solana (SOL), Algorand (ALG), and the recently added Polygon (MATIC).”

Mastercard Announces New Crypto Partners for Its NFT Payments Service (The Block)

“Mastercard has announced plans to widen access to the non-fungible token (NFT) market through the use of card payments. In a blog post published on June 9, Raj Dhamodharan, an executive vice president at the company, said it had partnered with Immutable X, Candy Digital, The Sandbox, Mintable, Spring, Nifty Gateway and MoonPay to enable NFT commerce.”

New York’s Financial Regulator Issues New Guidance on Dollar-Backed Stablecoins (The Block)

“The New York Department of Financial Services (DFS) today became the first financial regulator in the US to issue guidance outlining compliance requirements for dollar-backed stablecoins. The guidance builds on informal policies used by the DFS since 2018, setting ‘baseline requirements’ for any stablecoin issuer currently subject to DFS oversight, and any firm that applies to be regulated in the future. It ‘creates clear criteria for virtual currency companies looking to issue USD-backed stablecoins in New York,’ according to Adrienne Harris, the state’s Superintendent of Financial Services.”

Ethereum’s Ropsten Proof-Of-Stake ‘Test Merge’ Goes Live (The Block)

“In preparation for the Ethereum merge happening later this year, developers have activated the merge on the Ropsten test network. The merge took place on Wednesday afternoon after the move was first announced on June 3. Ropsten’s proof-of-work chain was merged with its proof-of-stake beacon chain by combining their codes into one. Today’s merge is critical to check if client software using Ethereum nodes performs without any glitches. Client software teams participated in the merge including Lighthouse, Lodestar, Prysm, Teku, Besu, Erigon, go-ethereum (geth) and Nethermind.”

Arrington Capital Launches $100M Growth Fund for Moonbeam Ecosystem (CoinDesk)

CoinDesk - Unknown

“Crypto investment firm Arrington Capital, which has more than $1.6 billion in assets under management, has partnered with the Moonbeam Foundation for a new $100 million ecosystem fund for Polkadot’s EVM-compatible Moonbeam parachain. The Arrington Moonbeam Growth Fund will finance new companies and protocols on the Moonbeam network, aiming at a wide range of verticals, including decentralized finance (DeFi), marketplaces, non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and gaming. The fund has already deployed capital to two undisclosed projects.”

Attacker Snipes 20 Million Op Tokens Intended for Wintermute Loan (The Block)

“Ethereum scaling startup Optimism said Wednesday that an attacker interfered in a token recovery process involving Wintermute, resulting in the loss of some 20 million OP governance tokens. As previously reported, the OP token went live at the end of May as part of a plan by Optimism — a Layer 2 network — to decentralize how the protocol is governed. An airdrop was held on May 31, and some of the total OP tokens were set aside to provide to supportive outside parties.”

Salesforce Pilots NFT Service as Token Trading Is Down 90% (Bloomberg)

“Salesforce Inc., the leading maker of customer relations software, is introducing a cloud-based service for creating and selling NFTs even as sales of the digital assets have plummeted. The service announced Tuesday is designed for consumer brands that want to sell NFTs for special access, such as admission to an event, rather than art or trading value, said Adam Caplan, who oversees emerging technology at Salesforce. ‘The art should look great. But that’s not really the point.’”

Citadel Securities Is Building a Crypto Trading Marketplace With Virtu Financial (CoinDesk)

CoinDesk - Unknown

“U.S. electronic trading giant Citadel Securities is building a ‘cryptocurrency trading ecosystem’ with the help of high-frequency trading and market-making firm Virtu Financial, as well as venture capital firms Sequoia Capital and Paradigm, according to a source familiar with the plans. Citadel Securities is the sister company to hedge fund giant Citadel. The firms in Citadel Securities’ initial consortium will be joined by additional wealth managers, market makers and other industry leaders that are expected to join the marketplace ahead of launch, the source added.”

Solana Ventures Raises Fund to Help Battered Korean Crypto Scene (Bloomberg)

“Solana Ventures and the Solana Foundation said Tuesday that they’ve launched a $100 million investment and grant fund to support crypto projects in South Korea, a country whose digital-currency scene has been ravaged by the collapse of the Terra blockchain that had operations there. The fund is mainly meant to help projects in the country based on Solana. But it will also support crypto projects based on Terra that were stranded by the blockchain’s collapse, according to Johnny B. Lee, general manager of games for the Solana Foundation. Some platforms once based on Terra are now migrating over to different blockchains like Solana.”

Ethereum’s Ropsten Test Merge Expected to Initiate in Next 48 Hours (The Block)

“Ropsten, Ethereum’s oldest testnet, is about to undergo its transition to proof of stake — as one of the final tests ahead of the merge on the main Ethereum blockchain. While the exact timing for the Ropsten merge will fluctuate depending on a few variables, it’s expected to happen on Wednesday, according to an official blog post from Ethereum.”

Grayscale Hires Top Obama White House Lawyer as It Seeks ETF Nod (Bloomberg)

Donald Verrilli 

“Grayscale Investment LLC has brought in a top legal mind from the former Obama administration as it weighs the possibility of the US Securities and Exchange Commission rejecting its application to convert its $20 billion Bitcoin trust into an exchange-traded fund. The crypto asset manager announced Tuesday that is has hired Donald Verrilli, who worked as US solicitor general from 2011 to 2016, as additional legal counsel. Grayscale’s decision to hire Verrilli comes after the firm’s CEO Michael Sonnenshein said ‘all options are on the table’ if the SEC rejects its proposal to turn Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (ticker GBTC) into a physically-backed ETF. The regulator has repeatedly denied similar applications. The SEC has until July 6 to make a final decision.”

PayPal Adds New Crypto Services Including Transfers to Other Wallets (The Block)

“Payments firm PayPal has rolled out new functionalities for users of its crypto app. The changes, announced this morning, allow users to transfer crypto between PayPal and other wallets, and come in response to customer demand. Users can now send supported tokens — bitcoin, ether, bitcoin cash and litecoin — to external addresses, including those linked to exchange accounts and hardware wallets. They can also now use PayPal to send crypto to other users of the app. The move is reminiscent of the way Revolut, the neobank, expanded its own crypto offering in May of last year.”

US Probes Binance Over Token That Is Now World’s Fifth Largest (Bloomberg)

“US regulators are investigating whether Binance Holdings Ltd. broke securities rules by selling digital tokens just as the crypto exchange was getting off the ground five years ago, according to people familiar with the matter. The Securities and Exchange Commission’s review pries into the firm’s origins and those of its BNB token, which is now the world’s fifth-biggest. Investigators are examining if the 2017 initial coin offering amounted to the sale of a security that should have been registered with the agency, said the people who were granted anonymity to discuss the confidential probe.”

BlockFi Is Raising a Down Round at $1 Billion Valuation (The Block)

“Crypto financial services firm BlockFi is in the process of closing a down-round — in which funds will be raised at a lower valuation compared to previous raises — according to three sources with knowledge of the process. BlockFi, which was reportedly raising funds at a valuation above $5 billion last year, provides one signal that the compression of valuations that have hit public markets for tokens and stocks is making its way to private markets.”

Indonesian Exchange Pintu Raises $113M to Be ‘Coinbase of Southeast Asia’ (Decrypt)

Photo by Bagus Ghufron on Unsplash.

“Overcoming recent headwinds in the crypto market, Indonesian cryptocurrency exchange and wallet Pintu announced today that it has raised $110 million in Series B funding from Lightspeed, Pantera Capital, Northstar Group, and Intudo Ventures. Pintu says it will use the newly-raised funds to further develop its product offerings and expand its educational arm, Pintu Academy.”

Blockdaemon Launches Liquid Staking Platform for Institutional Investors on Ethereum (The Block)

“Blockchain company Blockdaemon and liquid staking platform StakeWise have announced the launch of Harbour on the Ethereum mainnet on Monday. Harbour is a permissioned liquid staking protocol that caters to institutional investors that want to stake ether (ETH). Today’s launch follows successful testnet launches in March.”

Ethereum NFT Game Illuvium Sells Over $72M in Digital Land Plots (Decrypt)

Illuvium is an Ethereum-based role-playing game. Image: Illuvium

“Illuvium, an upcoming Ethereum-based role-playing game, sold more than $72 million worth of digital land plots as NFTs during a sale that ended on Sunday. The sale, which began Thursday, ultimately saw nearly 20,000 digital land plots sold to investors and prospective players. Illuvium’s land NFTs run on Immutable X, a layer-2 scaling solution for Ethereum that enables cheaper, faster, and more energy-efficient transactions.”

Crypto Miners’ Energy, Climate Costs Draw White House Scrutiny (Bloomberg)

“The Biden administration is teeing up policy recommendations to lower cryptocurrency mining’s energy consumption and emissions footprint, marking its first major foray into a poorly understood industry that critics say threatens U.S. climate goals and strains the power grid. ‘It’s important, if this is going to be part of our financial system in any meaningful way, that it’s developed responsibly and minimizes total emissions,’ Costa Samaras, principal assistant director for energy for the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, told Bloomberg Law.”

Crypto Scams Have Raked in More Than $1 Billion Since Beginning of 2021, FTC Says (The Block)

“About 46,000 people have reported losing more than $1 billion to crypto scammers since the beginning of 2021, the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) said in a report released on Friday. The median individual loss was $2,600 and the most common cryptocurrency used to pay scammers was bitcoin at 70%, followed by tether and ether.”

Bored Ape Yacht Club’s Discord Was ‘Briefly Exploited’ Resulting in 200 ETH in NFT Thefts (The Block)

“Blue-chip non-fungible token (NFT) project Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) said on Saturday afternoon that its Discord servers were subject to a ‘brief’ exploit, as 200 ETH ($357,000) worth of NFTs were ultimately stolen from users. Screenshots posted by a Twitter user with the screen name OKHotshot show that a project community manager’s Discord account appears to have been hacked, meaning scammers could carry out a phishing attack.”

Chainlink Price Feeds Now Live on Solana (CoinDesk)

CoinDesk - Unknown

“Chainlink is expanding to Solana. The blockchain oracle network said Friday that developers who build decentralized finance (DeFi) applications on the Solana mainnet can now incorporate seven of Chainlink’s price feeds into their products. Popular DeFi projects such as Aave, Compound and dYdX already use Chainlink’s data services. Chainlink’s launch on Solana, however, makes it the first non-Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) chain supported by the network.”

Terra Fiasco Triggers Bigger Backstop for Tron’s Stablecoin (The Block)

“Following the total collapse of Terra’s algorithmic stablecoin in May, TRON this morning announced a plan to significantly increase the amount of capital backing up its own stablecoin. USDD — at first a near-carbon copy of Terra’s algorithmic stablecoin UST — arrived on the TRON blockchain on May 5. Initially designed to maintain its peg to the US dollar algorithmically, albeit with some backing, USDD will now be overcollateralized, according to TRON founder Justin Sun.”

Last Week’s Most Read Articles

Crypto Giant FTX Ready With Billions of Dollars for Acquisitions (Bloomberg)

A $90 Million DeFi Exploit on Terra Went Unnoticed for Seven Months (The Block)

CFTC Sues Gemini Over Bitcoin Futures Case From 2017 (CoinDesk)

Terra Gets Second Life as New Blockchain Goes Live With Luna 2.0 Airdrop (The Block)

Chipotle Will Now Accept Cryptocurrency in Us Stores (The Block)

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