US banking regulator authorizes federal banks to hold reserves for stablecoins
Per an interpretive letter from the U.S. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency released on Monday, national banks will be free to hold reserve currencies for stablecoins. The new guidance reads, "We conclude that a national bank may hold such stablecoin 'reserves' as a service to bank customers." Alongside the announcement, Acting Comptroller of the Currency Brian Brooks noted that stablecoin services are already a part of many banks' activities: “National banks and federal savings associations currently engage in stablecoin related activities involving billions of dollars each day.”
Binance, Huobi, OKEx Have FOMO for DeFi
Decentralized finance (DeFi) has been grabbing the headlines and capturing the imagination of traders in recent weeks and some of the biggest centralized cryptocurrency exchanges seem to be afraid they’re missing out. That’s why they are now trying to reposition themselves as integral parts of this exploding sector, particularly as traders in China grow more interested in DeFi. Huobi announced Tuesday it was adding 10 more members to its DeFi initiative, described as “a consortium of centralized and decentralized financial services providers.”
US legislators approve bills for study of blockchain in commerce
The two bills will now go to the House of Representatives for a vote. The Committee on Energy and Commerce has just approved two pieces of legislation to spur more in-depth analysis of blockchain technology in government, clearing the way for their vote in the House of Representatives.
How China Is Closing In on Its Own Digital Currency
While there’s no launch date yet, the People’s Bank of China is likely to be the first major central bank to issue a digital version of its currency, the yuan, seeking to keep up with -- and control of -- a rapidly digitizing economy. Trials have been held this year in a handful of cities and tests have started with some e-wallets and online apps, with the Covid-19 pandemic and need for social distancing providing a new sense of urgency. Unlike cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, dealing in the digital yuan won’t have any presumption of anonymity, and its value will be as stable as the physical yuan, which will be sticking around too. Behind China’s rush is a desire to manage technological change on its own terms. As one PBOC official put it, currency isn’t only an economic issue, it’s also about sovereignty.
UK Digital Bank Ziglu Launches P2P Payments for Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash
London-based challenger bank Ziglu said Monday that it has been licensed as an Electronic Money Institution (EMI) by the U.K.’s Financial Conduct Authority. After receiving the permit, the fintech start-up immediately launched peer-to-peer (P2P) payments for both crypto and fiat currencies.
Fishy Business: What Happened to $1.2B DeFi Protocol SushiSwap Over the Weekend
SushiSwap investors were handed a raw deal over the weekend after the pseudonymous founder of the $1.27 billion, 1.5-week-old decentralized finance (DeFi) protocol cashed out. A fork of DeFi darling Uniswap, SushiSwap is the brainchild of a pseudonymous founder, Chef Nomi, who took the former project an extra yard by adding rewards for providing liquidity to the exchange through a liquidity provider token (LP), called sushi (SUSHI), that earns a portion of the AMM’s revenue. In essence, AMM’s provide the infrastructure to match lightly traded tokens with liquidity. A variant of other decentralized exchange (DEX) experiments, Uniswap has grown to be the largest AMM with volumes nearing those of centralized exchanges such as Coinbase Pro.
Kazakhstan on track for $700M crypto mining investment goal, says minister
According to the Digital Development Minister of Kazakhstan, Bagdat Mussin, the country is in negotiations regarding investments in its cryptocurrency mining sector amounting to 300 billion tenges ($714 million). Earlier in June, another Kazakh minister, while arguing against the ban on cryptocurrencies during a parliamentary discussion, had claimed that the country may get more than $700 million investment for its cryptocurrency mining farms over the next three years.
South Korea’s Central Bank Starts Technical Phase for Digital Currency Ahead of…
The Korea Times reported Monday that the Bank of Korea (BoK) is now seeking a consulting partnership to bring the second phase of its CBDC plan to fruition. Once through the application process, the successful local company would assist the central bank in building the architecture for the CBDC, which is being prepared in the face of China's drive to be the first major nation to launch a digital version of its fiat currency.
DeFi explosion: Uniswap surpasses Coinbase Pro in daily volume
The volume of Uniswap has surpassed the daily volume of Coinbase Pro after the demand for DeFi has exploded. Uniswap, the most widely-used decentralized exchange (DEX) on Ethereum, surpassed Coinbase in daily volume on Aug 30. The explosive growth of the Decentralized Finance (DeFi) market has pushed many avid investors to DEXes over centralized exchanges.
How OSL Became the First Crypto Exchange to Win Over Hong Kong Regulators
Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) granted BC Group crypto subsidiary OSL an “approval-in-principle” for its license application for Type 1 (dealing in securities) and Type 7 (automated trading service or ATS), as it pertains to crypto and virtual assets. The bigger picture is that Asian crypto hubs like Hong Kong, Singapore and Japan have a clearer regulatory stance going forward and are progressing faster than the U.S. and Europe. Perhaps this should be expected, given that Asia remains the global leader in terms of crypto trading volumes.
Bitcoin miners in China lose access to cheap electricity
Bitcoin miners in China's Inner Mongolia will no longer be provided subsidized electricity to run their operations, according to WuBlockchain. Northern China’s naturally cool climate, access to a cheap, able workforce, and government policies like subsidized electricity have historically supported the growth of mining businesses in the region. Bigwigs like AntPool, which make hundreds of millions in revenue each year, are situated in the region and are part of a mining cohort that contributes to China’s massive 60% share of Bitcoin’s total hash rate. But that might be about to change.
Market Wrap: Bitcoin Cracks $12.4K; DeFi Crosses $6B Locked
The world’s largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization opened the week with higher-than-normal volume pushing bitcoin to as high as $12,485. For some market observers it was only a matter of time before it happened. “Bitcoin has been trading in a $11,000-$12,000 range for two weeks or so,” said Darius Sit, managing partner of Singapore-based QCP Capital. “It has been consolidating, threatening to break past $12,000, so this is not too surprising,” he added.
Four of the Top Five South Korean Banks to Offer Crypto Services
South Korea’s Woori and Shinhan banks have just announced their intention to introduce “crypto-asset services”. That means that four of the country’s top five banks, holding a combined value of more than $1.2 trillion in assets, are now poised to introduce crypto services. Each of the banks aims to hold and manage cryptocurrencies for clients. Both Shinhan and Woori announced their plans in direct response to the amended Special Financial Transactions Information Act which will change legislation around crypto assets, coming into force next year.
Curve, One of Ethereum’s Top DeFi Protocols, Launches Governance Coin
Just minutes ago, the team behind Ethereum DeFi’s Curve Finance protocol made a massive announcement: developers are rolling out the native governance token, CRV. In the project’s Telegram channel, the pinned announcement reads: “The Curve team is proud to announce that Curve Finance native token CRV has officially launched. CRV will reward liquidity providers in Curve pools.” The launch of the Ethereum-based token is already controversial as the contracts for the cryptocurrency were technically deployed many hours ago. During this period between the public announcement of the token and the deploying of the smart contracts, those with knowledge of Solidity, Ethereum’s smart contracting language, could farm CRV without much competition. Admins of the project do not see this as a large problem because only two~three hours worth of CRV were issued over this period.
Why This Nasdaq-Listed Company Is Going All-In on Bitcoin
Bitcoin has become a popular investment vehicle amongst retail and institutional investors, but it is also becoming a reserve asset for some companies. Per an announcement from earlier today, a Nasdaq-listed business intelligence company is now turning to the benchmark cryptocurrency to store their capital reserves, calling it an asset that can be “superior to cash” while also providing them with some upside potential.
Bitcoin is Almost as Big as Bank of America
All the speculative capital invested in Bitcoin (BTC) at the moment totals just a few billion dollars shy of Bank of America's market valuation. Bitcoin's current market cap sits just over $217 billion, according to Cointelegraph data at press time, while Yahoo Finance shows Bank of America's market cap holding slightly over $226 billion — a comparison introduced in a recent article from The Next Web.
Goldman Sachs Eyes Own Token as Bank Appoints New Head of Digital Assets
Goldman Sachs is seriously considering its own cryptocurrency, possibly a stablecoin, as it significantly expands its digital assets team and appoints a new head to spearhead efforts.
Indian Government Actively Working Toward New Crypto Ban
An Indian government official has claimed that two ministries and the Reserve Bank of India are actively working on a legal framework to ban cryptocurrencies on the subcontinent. According to a Aug. 4 report from Indian news website Moneycontrol, authorities in India are making preparations to pass a law banning cryptocurrency trading. The site quoted an anonymous official as saying that consultations between the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, the Ministry of Law and Justice, and the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) had begun regarding the framework of such a law.
Here’s Why a Bouncing U.S. Dollar Is Bad News For Bitcoin
The dollar sank in July to the lowest point in two years in response to more stimulus money being printed to inflate the economy. At the same time, Bitcoin spiked to the highest level in over a year. The dollar has since bounced, and the leading cryptocurrency by market cap experienced its first powerful pullback since the recent uptrend began. Here’s how a bouncing dollar may just be the start of bad news for Bitcoin.
Putin Signs Law Giving Cryptocurrency Legal Status in Russia
Russian President Vladimir Putin signed into law Friday the bill that regulates digital financial asset (DFA) transactions, Russian media RIA Novosti reported. It was approved by the State Duma, the lower house of the Russian parliament, on July 22 and by the Federation Council on July 24. The law will come into force on Jan. 1, 2021.