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Crypto buyers in emerging economies find themselves caught between a rock and a hard place

Cryptocurrencies can offer citizens in emerging economies a potential buffer against runaway inflation and financial mismanagement by governments. But buying them increasingly means navigating onerous regulations and punishing taxes.

RBI to gradually launch India’s CBDC in FY23: deputy governor

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is planning to introduce a central bank digital currency (CBDC) in stages this fiscal year, T Rabi Shankar, deputy governor of the central bank, said in a press conference on Wednesday.  See related article: RBI wants its CBDC to bring ‘little or no disruption’ Fast facts “Process of [the] […]

Steph Curry, Jaylen Brown NBA Top Shot NFTs to be on China public auction

Beijing Poly International Auction teased an online auction of 32 NBA Top Shot non-fungible tokens (NFTs), including collectibles of basketball stars Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, and Kyrie Irving, with starting prices ranging from 100 yuan (about US$15) to 50,000 yuan (US$ 7,471). See related article: NBA is taking the lead with blockchain, crypto Fast facts […]

Cryptocurrencies like ‘world of Caribbean pirates’: India chief economic adviser

India’s chief economic adviser V. Anantha Nageswaran compared cryptocurrencies to the “world of Caribbean pirates” in the absence of regulation where “winners take it all” from somebody else, local media reported.  Fast facts See related article: Coinbase blames India’s central bank for exit Cryptocurrencies fail to satisfy basic requirements such as having store value, widespread […]

Circle’s head of policy calls CBDCs a ‘Preposterous Idea’: Consensus

Head of policy for stablecoin issuer Circle Internet Financial, Dante Disparte, called central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) a “preposterous idea” during a panel Wednesday at Consensus 2022. See related article: CBDCs, stablecoins can coexist: Fed Vice Chair Lael Brainard Fast facts Disparte later added the Fed issuing its own digital dollar is “the equivalent idea […]

Fantom releases upgrades to enhance speed, scalability, and decentralization

Layer 1 blockchain Fantom has unveiled upgrades to boost settlement speed and platform efficiency, the Fantom Foundation announced on Thursday.  See related article: Fantom overtakes Binance Smart Chain in DeFi TVL Fast facts Fantom’s upgrades include the implementation of all London EIP-1559 changes and a new variation of the consensus mechanism called Lachesis Light Repeater, […]

Japan’s government approves policy to drive Web 3.0 adoption

The Japanese government on Tuesday gave the green light to a new policy that plans to develop and expand the Web3 environment in the country, including the use of cryptocurrencies, non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs). See related article: Japanese crypto firms team up to form a metaverse association Fast facts The approved […]

Short selling is good for any market, including crypto: Jim Rogers

With so-called stablecoins coming under a cloud from the multibillion-dollar collapse last month of the TerraUST stablecoin, Forkast spoke to Singapore-based investor and financial commentator Jim Rogers for his view on these types of coins as well as the relevance of short sellers in the cryptocurrency market. The former cofounder of the Quantum Fund and […]

Alibaba Cloud launches service to build NFT marketplaces

Alibaba Cloud on Wednesday said its service will help build NFT marketplaces in a fast and reliable way, without addressing compliance issues. See related article: Resist the temptation on NFTs, Chinese state-backed developer says Fast facts See related article: Move-to-earn app STEPN to limit service in China

Litecoin anonymity update gets it booted from South Korean exchanges

Litecoin (LTC), the 20th-largest cryptocurrency in the world, is being ousted from South Korean crypto exchanges after its Mimblewimble Extension Blocks (MWEB) upgrade allowed the token to be sent anonymously — which is against local anti-money laundering regulations. See related article: South Korea’s crypto crackdown: What you need to know Fast facts Upbit, Bithumb, Coinone, […]

India crypto tax cut to 0.1% was a ‘typo’; gov’t issues clarification

A typo error on the Income Tax Department’s website mistakenly altered a 1% tax-deducted-at-source (TDS) figure to 0.1%, and has since been rectified, the Income Tax Department said on Wednesday.  Fast facts See related article: India’s crypto tax will incur losses for government, says WazirX CEO “Some media reports have come to the notice of […]

Bitcoin mining difficulty adjusts up 1.3%

Bitcoin mining difficulty recovered slightly on Wednesday, recording a 1.3% increase from the previous downward adjustment two weeks ago, according to data from BTC.com. See related article: Beijing banned crypto mining, so China miners went underground Fast facts The mining difficulty reading is now at 30.28 trillion at a block height of 739,872, according to […]

Ethereum one step closer to Eth2 with Ropsten testnet merger

Ethereum’s successful merge of the Ropsten testnet overnight Wednesday Asia time brought the world’s largest smart contract blockchain closer to becoming a proof-of-stake (PoS) network. See related article: Vitalik Buterin: Why Eth2 will propel Ethereum’s use in enterprise Fast facts One of Ethereum’s oldest testnets, Ropsten, successfully merged the proof-of-work (PoW) execution layer with the […]

Nansen strikes deal with Google Cloud to provide real-time market data

Blockchain data analytics platform Nansen has struck a multi-year collaboration deal with Google Cloud to provide crypto investors with real-time access to market intelligence, the Accel and GIC-backed firm announced on Thursday.  See related article: Foxconn’s Taiwan subsidiary receives investment from Google for metaverse projects Fast facts Running its platform on Google Cloud’s open and […]

Binance comes out swinging as report links it to money laundering

Top blockchain and crypto news: Binance BNB slips amid allegations. STEPN marches through attacks. Is China’s slowdown straining crypto prices?

Hold onto your crypto bags, the regulators are coming

Falling prices, an imploding stablecoin, and more reports of hacks have occupied the cryptocurrency headlines in recent weeks, so it’s perhaps no surprise that regulators have noticed and they intend to do something about it.

Hyundai Card building its first NFT marketplace and wallet service

Hyundai Card, Hyundai Motor Group’s credit card arm, announced a joint venture with South Korean tech startup Like Lion to launch a non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace in the second half of this year. See related article: Hyundai Motor drives into metaverse branding with Meta Kongz NFT project Fast facts The joint venture, coined Modern Lion, […]

Only the big fish will survive as India cracks the whip on crypto: Binance-backed WazirX

High taxes and lack of support from traditional finance make it difficult for smaller crypto operators to survive in India, a senior executive at one of the country’s largest crypto exchanges said.

Ethereum merge dress rehearsal to take place tonight

Ethereum’s move to proof of stake (PoS) is inching closer as the network’s oldest testnet Ropsten is expected to transition to PoS on Wednesday night Asia time. See related article: Ethereum PoS move is now being tested on a mainnet shadow fork Fast facts Ropsten’s proof-of-work (PoW) chain will merge with its PoS Beacon Chain […]

University of Hong Kong develops blockchain-based system to monitor construction quality

An architecture research team at the University of Hong Kong (HKU) developed a blockchain-based system to remotely track the quality of construction of student residences, according to a press release. See related article: Blockchain-powered air quality sensor test launches in Hong Kong Fast facts The system, named E-Inspection 2.0, helps manage construction quality inspection documents, […]

Illuvium elevates Immutable X NFT sales

Immutable X, a layer-2 scaling solution on Ethereum, has exploded onto the scene, with secondary non-fungible token (NFT) sales volume doubling in the past month as it expands into new partnerships and collaborations.  See related story: NFT startup Immutable valued at $2.5 billion in Temasek-led financing Fast facts The Immutable X blockchain has exceeded US$100 […]

FTX, OpenSea make the cut to Forbes Fintech 50

Nine cryptocurrency and blockchain companies, including crypto exchange FTX, made it to the 2022 list of the Forbes Fintech 50 released Tuesday, with all nine raising a total of US$6.5 billion in venture capital, according to the business magazine. See related article: FTX.US forays into stock trading Fast facts The latest list features private companies […]

Singapore’s ADDX to include crypto assets in determining eligibility for private market investments

Before the development, only traditional assets like stocks, bonds, cash and real estate could be used for an individual to have access to complicated investment options in private markets, ADDX said.  See related article: ADDX, Fullerton partner to tokenize PE fund of funds Fast facts ADDX’s move signals crypto’s status as an asset class in […]

With Artaverse, Hong Kong seeks to regain global arts influence

In hosting one of Asia’s largest outdoor NFT art exhibitions, the city — battered by lengthy quarantines and protests — is seeking to revolutionize the way art is presented.

Animoca Brands investments have crossed US$1.5B

Hong Kong-based Animoca Brands, which invests in non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and metaverse projects, has invested over US$1.5 billion across more than 340 investments as of April 30, according to its unaudited financial results released on Monday. See related article: Animoca Brands’ new Japan arm aims to connect fans in Web 3.0 world Fast facts Between […]

Binance claps back at Reuters money laundering allegations

Binance has fought back on a Reuters investigation that accused the crypto exchange of serving as a conduit for at least US$2.3 billion worth of illicit funds, calling the report a “breathless pearl clutching” piece. See related article: SEC probes Binance’s BNB for initial coin offering in 2017: report Fast facts “We’re aware of Angus […]

Hong Kong says NFTs on certain assets may class as regulated securities

Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) can be regulated if they represent similar characteristics to securities, particularly in the category of “collective investment schemes,” Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) said on Monday.  See related article: Hong Kong retail investors blocked from Bitcoin spot ETFs Fast facts See related article: Hong Kong to propose bill to license […]

Canada’s 3iQ launches Bitcoin and Ethereum feeder ETFs in Australia

Following Australia’s recent approvals of crypto-based exchange-traded funds (ETFs), Canada’s 3iQ Digital Asset Management launched two crypto feeder ETFs on the Cboe Australia Exchange on Tuesday. See related article: Canada’s 3iQ could be first to launch Australian crypto ETF Fast facts The two feeder funds, one in Bitcoin and another in Ether, track the asset’s […]

Majority of ApeCoin token holders vote to stay on Ethereum

A proposal by the ApeCoin (APE) decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) to stay on the Ethereum (ETH) blockchain is winning majority support from token holders, despite the efforts of some crypto whales to migrate the coin to its own chain.  See related article: Otherdeeds NFT sale puts Ethereum scalability in glaring spotlight Fast facts The proposal […]

How the bear market could accelerate the Web2 to Web3 migration

The downturn is forcing Web3 firms into a reset — and opening opportunities for Web2 entrepreneurs to enter the playing field, writes Lily Z. King of Cobo.

SEC said to probe Binance for rule violation in 2017 initial coin offering: report

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is reportedly looking into whether Binance violated any rules regarding the sale of securities when its BNB token was sold through an initial coin offering (ICO) in 2017. See related article: Binance’s venture arm raises US$500 mln to invest in Web3, blockchain Fast facts The world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange […]

Bitcoin passes half-billion mark in YTD inflow: CoinShares

Bitcoin’s total year-to-date inflows passed the half-billion mark at US$506 million after adding US$126 million last week, digital asset manager CoinShares reported.  See related article: Crypto market reverses course after strong start to the week Fast facts Ethereum, on the other hand, saw outflows totaling US$32 million, enduring negative investor sentiment with nine straight weeks […]

Google approves South Korea’s Cyworld metaverse app

Cytown, the metaverse currently being developed under South Korean software developer Hancom and local social media service Cyworld Z, recently received the green light from Google to launch a mobile app on the Playstore. See related article: Be kind, rewind! South Korea’s Cyworld is back in Web 3.0 avatar Fast facts Hancom will launch the […]

Gemini sued over US$36 mln Bitcoin and Ethereum hack

IRA Financial Trust announced a lawsuit against cryptocurrency exchange Gemini Trust Company on Monday for alleged failures in safeguarding IRA’s crypto assets in the exchange. See related article: Binance users burned by outage band together to take legal action Fast facts IRA manages self-directed retirement accounts in non-traditional assets such as Bitcoin which were held […]

China’s zero-Covid policy realigning global economy, financial markets

Beijing’s official GDP growth target is 5.5% this year, but some analysts don’t see how that makes sense in the face of Shanghai-size lockdowns. Could a China slowdown be good news for central bankers trying to tame inflation?
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Chongqing joins China’s digital yuan tax pilots

A Chongqing-based company became the first in the city to pay taxes with China’s central bank digital currency (CBDC), the digital yuan, according to local media. See related article: China to issue free digital yuan to boost locked down economy Fast facts See related article: What I learned from my role in digitizing the yuan

Prosecutor OKs arrest of Chinese executive accused of embezzling US$8 mln to mine Bitcoin

A prosecutor in Beijing has reportedly approved the arrest of a director of a Shanghai-listed Chinese big data company on suspicion of misappropriating the firm’s funds to mine Bitcoin, exchange filings showed. See related article: Beijing banned crypto mining, so China miners went underground Fast facts Li Qunnan, a director of the board of Zhongchang […]

GST slips as STEPN’s update tripped by DDOS attacks

STEPN, the move-to-earn blockchain game, suffered a distributed denial-of-service (DDOS) attack during an “anti-cheating” update over the weekend, leading to network issues and user frustrations.  See related article: Move-to-earn app STEPN to limit service in China Fast facts During the update, an attack of 25 million messages led to hours of server shutdowns, with some […]

To improve focus on studies, South Korean students turn to the metaverse

Studying in the metaverse is picking up steam among students in South Korea, who feel it helps them concentrate better and keep pace with peers akin to studying together at a library or at a cafe. See related article: South Korea places $185M bet on the metaverse Fast facts Students preparing for school or national […]

Bitcoin payments for local taxes in the works, Gold Coast mayor says

The mayor of Australia’s Gold Coast, Tom Tate, has suggested that city residents could be paying council rates, or local property tax, in Bitcoin. See related article: Aussie watchdog obtains cold wallet holding US$20M in Bitcoin involved with alleged scam Fast facts “It sends a signal that we’re innovative and bring in the younger generation,” […]

Cool with the rules: Why the crypto sector should embrace regulation

The prospect of tighter codes for the crypto industry has given some players the jitters. Others, such as Crypto.com’s Eric Anziani, see it as an opportunity.

‘Buckle up’ for downsizing crypto market as employees laid off

The industry should fasten its seat belt, an industry watcher told Forkast, as the largest of crypto firms headline widespread layoffs amid the 2022 market crunch.

Singapore warms up to crypto industry — on its own terms

Crypto companies have voted with their feet in response to the city-state’s restrictions on their business. But they are still keeping an eye on opportunities.

CoinSwitch Kuber launches rupee index for Indian crypto market

Indian cryptocurrency exchange CoinSwitch Kuber launched CRE8 on Thursday, a rupee index tracking the Indian crypto market. See related article: India gets second crypto unicorn within two months Fast facts CRE8 claims to give traders real-time information on the Indian rupee-based crypto market, based on trades on the CoinSwitch exchange. “Until now, investors in India […]

Solana hangs on in crypto top 10 after major outage; DOGE, DOT hot on its heels

Following another system outage on Thursday, Solana’s (SOL) market capitalization has continued to fall as Dogecoin (DOGE) and Polkadot (DOT) are hot on its heels to possibly bump it out of the crypto top 10 by market cap. See related article: Solana loses consensus after bots flood network, SOL takes hit Fast facts While the […]

Singapore’s crypto warning; Bitcoin takes a tumble

Singapore issues a crypto warning for retail investment. Meanwhile, Bitcoin took a tumble sparking market concerns

Kanye West changes anti-NFT stance, files to trademark YEEZUS name

The rapper, record producer and fashion designer is seeking trademark protection for his YEEZUS name, signaling an intent to launch namesake amusement parks, non-fungible tokens (NFTs), toys and more. See related article: UK regulator slams Kim Kardashian for endorsing speculative token Fast facts Applications for 17 NFT and metaverse experience trademarks were made to the […]

Fidelity’s crypto arm wants to add Ethereum trading, plans hiring spree

Fidelity Digital Assets, the crypto-focused subsidiary of Fidelity Investments, has planned a hiring spree to extend services to include Ethereum trading and custody. See related article: Fidelity allows retirement investments in Bitcoin Fast facts Fidelity Digital Assets was founded in 2018 to enable institutional investors to store and trade Bitcoin — its parent company announced […]

Goblintown NFTs notch up over US$10 mln in sales over 24 hours

Goblintown NFTs, a new meme-adjacent collection, surpassed the likes of Bored Ape and Mutant Ape Yacht Club, according to CryptoSlam.  See related article: Azuki fortunes reverse as sales soar after floor price drop Fast facts Launched on May 22, Goblintown NFTs are unapologetically crude drawings of goblin-like creatures, with a culture built around poor grammar, […]

Binance’s venture arm raises US$500 mln to invest in Web3, blockchain

Binance Labs’ fundraise comes as venture capital investments face headwinds from expectations of interest rate increases. See related article: Binance’s investment in Forbes is a wake-up call for the crypto industry Fast facts See related article: Binance, a16z among investors backing Musk’s Twitter bid with US$7B

Why blockchain gaming needs more rules and regulations

The right balance of regulations can better protect gaming companies’ intellectual property as well as players’ assets, writes Henry Chang of Wemade.

South Korea arrests man for allegedly stealing crypto based on personal data

South Korean police said Wednesday they arrested a man in his 30s on fraud charges for allegedly stealing about US$658,000 in cryptocurrencies based on personal data leaked on local social media platform Naver Band. See related article: Guilty verdicts handed down in S.Korea’s biggest crypto scam Fast facts The man allegedly stole cryptocurrencies from 90 […]

Retail investors shouldn’t invest in crypto: Singapore’s deputy PM

Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat cautioned retail investors to steer clear of investments in cryptocurrencies, saying the nascent asset class “is a highly risky area.”  See related article: Singapore wants to bring some adult supervision to crypto Fast facts Many investors suffered losses and even lost their life savings in the recent meltdown […]

Former OpenSea employee arrested amid insider trading allegations

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has charged Nate Chastain, a former employee of the non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace OpenSea, with wire fraud and money laundering for allegedly using confidential information from the platform to trade NFTs. See related article: Insider trading scandal rocks world’s biggest NFT platform OpenSea Fast facts The DOJ alleges Chastain, […]

Terra’s LUNA moonshot can’t escape gravity of market misgivings

Top blockchain and crypto news: Investors shun LUNA 2.0. Ethereum gains amid relief rally. China’s stimulus goes digital.

Philippines gets new government, will new crypto taxes follow?

Cryptocurrency companies in the Philippines await legislation from the new Ferdinand Marcos Jr. administration on how the government will tax the industry. Some are worried.
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South Korea to launch crypto oversight committee after Terra crash

In its urgency to reign in the cryptocurrency industry in the wake of the Terra collapse, South Korea will launch a “Digital Asset Committee” by the end of June, according to a local news report. See related article: South Korean authorities cite LUNA debacle to call for speedier crypto oversight  Fast facts The committee will […]

Sophia the Robot launches ‘Baby Singularities’ NFT collection on OpenSea

The “social” humanoid developed by the Hong Kong-based Hanson Robotics released her non-fungible token (NFT) collection, Baby Singularities, on OpenSea on Wednesday, according to a statement on her verified Twitter handle.  See related article: Meta showcases focus on AI, announces new voice assistant program Fast facts Sophia, who gained fame for being the world’s first […]

Macao needs China’s heft in tech to introduce CBDC, official says

Lei Wai Nong, Macao’s secretary for economy and finance, said China’s expertise in developing its digital yuan could help the specially administered region introduce a central bank digital currency (CBDC), according to local media reports. See related article: China to issue free digital yuan to boost locked down economy Fast facts Lei said he will […]

Dunamu denies making US$100 million off of LUNA

Dunamu, the South Korean fintech company and operator of the country’s largest crypto exchange Upbit, rebutted claims that it profited by over 130 billion Korean won (US$105 million) off of LUNA Classic last year. See related article: S.Korea eyes restraints on crypto unicorn Dunamu over monopoly concerns Fast facts Last week, multiple local media reports […]

BNB Chain teases out roadmap to boost decentralization, support dApps

BNB Chain’s roadmap for the year will prioritize faster transactions and enhanced support for decentralized applications (dApps), the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by volume said. See related article: Binance rebrands blockchains for metaverse, DeFi expansions Fast facts In its 2022 technical roadmap released Tuesday, BNB Chain said it is working to offer end users more […]

Kassio launches crypto-based financial services in India

Global crypto asset management platform Kassio has launched its services in India to help its users extract value from their crypto holdings beyond just trading, the company said in a statement. See related article: CoinDCX offers to let Indians earn yield on crypto holdings Fast facts Kassio offers instant crypto-backed loans and interest earnings up […]

Singapore plans digital assets initiative with financial industry

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has announced Project Guardian, a collaborative initiative with the financial industry to explore the economic potential and value-adding use cases of asset tokenization, according to a statement from Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat on Tuesday. See related article: Singapore wants to bring some adult supervision to crypto Fast […]

Ethereum scaler Optimism airdrops OP tokens

Popular Ethereum layer-2 scaling solution Optimism airdropped its new OP governance token to nearly 249,000 eligible wallets on Wednesday morning Asia time. See related article: Vitalik Buterin: Layer 2 is the future of Ethereum scaling Fast facts The airdrop was first announced in an April blog post which outlined plans for the network to launch […]

South Korea’s Dunamu, Sooho.io to develop SWIFT-like bridge for Web3

South Korea’s smart contract auditing firm Sooho.io is partnering with Lambda256, the blockchain subsidiary of Upbit operator Dunamu, to develop a bridge layer connecting the country’s fragmented decentralized finance (DeFi) and Web 3.0 ecosystem. See related article: Two crypto exchanges reach unicorn status in South Korea Fast facts The new bridge will work as a […]

Memo to Crypto World: Wall Street is here to stay

Wall Street did it! At least that is one of the theories about the cause of the nearly US$50 billion meltdown of Terraform Labs stablecoin and LUNA cryptocurrency. How does that stand up?

Shiba Inu creator makes brief appearance, before disappearing again

The pseudonymous creator of Shiba Inu, Ryoshi, came online after a year on Monday only to delete all of its social media activity, and disappear again. See related article: Shiba Inu metaverse tease fuels 60% price boost Fast facts Ryoshi, who last tweeted on May 29, 2021, deleted all tweets and Medium blog posts, leaving […]

Sellers of Solana NFTs outpace buyers in May

With over 1 million vendors, unique non-fungible token (NFT) sellers on the Solana blockchain hit an all-time high in May, outpacing unique buyers, according to data tracker CryptoSlam. See related article: Solana NFT sales drop by 21% after OpenSea integration Fast facts From April to May, the number of unique sellers grew by almost 170%. […]

First Digital to launch Asia’s first secondary market for private crypto equity assets

The Hong Kong-based public trust company Tuesday announced a US$20 million funding round to build up a secondary market for private equity and digital assets, according to a press release. See related article: Singapore wants to bring some adult supervision to crypto Fast facts The venture for empowering startups Nogle and the Blockchain Technology venture […]

Terra’s Mirror Protocol fixes exploit that drained more than US$2 million

Whether the fixing of a pricing error by Mirror Protocol, the decentralized finance (DeFi) application built on Terra Classic, will help prevent a drainage of the pool similar to last year will only be known by the end of U.S. trading hours on Tuesday. See related article: Winning back the trust of the Terra community […]

India almost ready with crypto consultation paper: Official

The Indian government is studying how other countries have regulated the asset class before drafting laws for the industry, the secretary for economic affairs Ajay Seth told local media.  See related article: Crypto regulation has to ‘take its time’: India FM Nirmala Sitharaman Fast facts “Our consultation paper is fairly ready. We have gone into […]

Russian official calls for crypto mining regulation: Report

Russia’s Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Vasily Shpak called for regulating cryptocurrency mining as the industry has grown too big to ignore, Interfax news agency reported on Friday. See related article: Russia uncovers a crypto mining farm in its oldest prison: report Fast facts Shpak said that crypto mining activities took up over 2% […]