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IMF wants to be part of world’s transition to a digital economy

The International Monetary Fund says it has a mandate to help countries around the world adopt and adapt to digital currencies, but only if the digital money is in the public interest — which Bitcoin is not, according to an IMF report published yesterday. Fast facts While the IMF recognizes the potential benefits of digital […]

Here are Japan’s crypto investing bottlenecks, according to new report

Japan’s crypto-asset business association published a report yesterday that highlights issues in crypto investing for the country’s institutional investors.  Fast facts This report is an update of the latest use cases and projects from the “Discussion Paper Interim Report on Cryptocurrency Use Cases” published on May 7, 2021, and is a supplementary material to the […]

Robinhood closes 8% down in underwhelming IPO

Robinhood’s hotly-anticipated market debut had an underwhelming start on Thursday, closing 8% down on its debut price of US$38, according to data from TradingView.com. Fast facts Trading under the ticker HOOD, Robinhood’s stock had an immediate rocky start, falling 10% before recovering slightly. But HOOD still ended the day at US$34.82. As Forkast reported recently, […]

Friends may forgive debts, but WeChat’s new blockchain IOU won’t let anyone forget it

China’s internet giant Tencent launched a blockchain-based digital IOU service on its flagship product WeChat, one of the nation’s most popular apps for messaging and payments.  Fast facts Aside from Wechat’s existing “mini receipt” and “mini contract,” Tencent says its new IOU function would allow friends to borrow money more easily from each other, according […]

Crypto retirement plans are on the rise. Are they a good idea?

Tokenization is creating new ways to invest. 3 crypto firms are partnering to also offer crypto retirement portfolios and inheritance planning.

India admits no crypto data; Korean crypto investor numbers plummet

Number of new South Korean crypto investors have tanked in the month of June as crypto mining investments boom outside China.

Is Bitcoin mining hot again? These crypto insiders think so

Despite China’s crackdowns on Bitcoin mining and growing consternation about crypto mining’s carbon footprint, some miners are betting big on a rosy future.

Iran’s electric utility issues warning about Chinese crypto miners

Iranian state electric company Tavanir has warned judicial officials about Chinese cryptocurrency miners coming to Iran, an influx that could worsen the country’s power outage problems, according to local media reports. Fast facts Tavanir CEO Mohammad Hussein Motevallizadeh said in a letter published by local news website Eghtesadnews that the Chinese government’s crackdown on crypto […]

PayPal unveils plan to greatly expand crypto services

PayPal customers will soon have access to a greater range of crypto services through the global payment platform, CEO Dan Schulman said during PayPal’s Q2 2021 investor update call yesterday. Fast facts Describing the upgrade as “code complete,” Schulman said the wallet should be fully available for customers in the Unite States in the next […]

Why blockchain technology is integral to a future of net-zero carbon emissions

Shifting to renewable energy is now a global goal. Using electric vehicles as an example, Author Joseph Jacobelli examines how digital technologies like blockchain will lead the way to a greener planet.

Battle for blockchain talent is heating up. What and where are the crypto jobs?

Flush with capital, blockchain and crypto firms are on a hiring spree. Here’s how the battle for crypto talent is playing out.

Amber Group launches CreatorFi NFT initiative to bridge traditional, crypto worlds

Hong Kong-based crypto financial services company Amber Group wants to bridge the gap between creators, collectors and platforms looking to get into NFTs and the crypto space.

Bitmain spins off Antpool; Binance CEO willing to step down

Binance CEO CZ confirms that a new executive may lead the organization. Meanwhile, Bitmain spins off one of the world’s largest mining pool Antpool.

Robinhood readies IPO as risks cast shadow over future earnings potential

The fee-free trading platform’s initial public offering promises plenty of action for retail investors, but pitfalls may lie in wait amid trading volatility and wider adoption of business model.

Amazon’s brush with Bitcoin. Robinhood IPO looms. Huobi backs out of Beijing.

Top blockchain and crypto news: Is Amazon taking up BTC? Robinhood’s share sale deserves scrutiny. Did Huobi jump or was it pushed?

Disguised crypto exchange bank accounts exposed by South Korean regulator

South Korea’s Financial Services Commission revealed today that it had discovered 14 bank accounts used by virtual asset exchanges that had been registered in names that were not those of the exchanges themselves. Fast facts It is not legal for crypto exchange bank accounts held under other names to accept customers’ funds on behalf of […]

Bank of Thailand promotes blockchain in new guidelines

Thailand’s central bank yesterday published guidelines to regulate and promote the use of blockchain technology in the financial sector.  Fast facts Released by Siritida Panomwon Na Ayudhya, assistant governor of the payment systems policy and financial technology group at the Bank of Thailand, the guidelines provides principles for blockchain technology adoption by financial services providers.  […]

Ripple partners with SBI Remit, Coins.ph to use XRP for Japan-Philippines remittances

San Francisco-based payments technology company Ripple has partnered with SBI Remit, Japan’s largest money transfer provider, mobile payments service Coins.ph and digital asset exchange platform SBI VC Trade to use XRP for remittances between Japan and the Philippines, according to a company statement. Fast facts The partnership — Ripple’s first on-demand liquidity service implementation in […]

Binance CEO reiterates willingness to replace self, beefs up KYC

Binance also tightens withdrawal limits and unveils new tax reporting tool, to counter recent flurry of government investigations and bad publicity.

Big Indian banks take stakes in trade finance blockchain firm

Fifteen of India’s largest banks have invested in a fintech firm that aims to use blockchain to speed up domestic letters of credit, a first in domestic trade finance, regulatory filings to the National Stock Exchange of India show. Fast facts Named the Indian Banks’ Blockchain Infrastructure Co., the firm uses blockchain technology to verify […]

Dogecoin for dog food at Brazil’s Burger Kings

In the latest effort of crypto cross-promotion, Burger King Brazil is now accepting the memecoin Dogecoin as payment for a “Dogpper” — a special edible doggie treat for customer’s pets and a play on words of the fast-food chain’s famous burger, the Whopper. Fast facts The doggie treat is not new to Latin America. Burger […]

Mastercard launches new crypto startup accelerator program

In an effort to “expand and accelerate innovation around digital asset technology”, Mastercard is launching a new global program to support cryptocurrency startups by giving them access to Mastercard’s business network and technology. Fast facts Announced yesterday, Mastercard’s Start Path program already has signed up seven crypto-related startup companies: GK8, Mintable, Stacs, Supraoracles, Taurus, Uphold […]

Robinhood seeks to protect traders from crypto price volatility

Zero-fee trading app Robinhood is looking to introduce features to better protect users against the price volatility of crypto trading, according to a report by Bloomberg based on an analysis of the platform’s code by iOS developer Steve Moser. Fast facts According to a message in the code, a new feature called “price volatility protection” […]

What’s Ethereum price outlook for the rest of 2021?

Ethereum’s future is top of mind for a group of fintech experts polled by Finders. Where do they think Ethereum prices are headed, and will Ethereum overtake Bitcoin?

OKEx parent’s USDK stablecoin revenue dives almost 90%

OKG Technology Holdings, the parent company of crypto exchange OKEx, suffered an 89.8% year-on-year slump in revenue from operating Ethereum stablecoin USDK, its FY 2021 annual report shows. Fast facts Its USDK revenue was just HK$159,000 (US$20,470). Currently, USDK, which launched in 2019, has a market cap of US$28.68 million and a circulating supply of […]

Thailand telecoms firm to expand into Bitcoin mining

Jasmine Telecom Systems, a publicly-listed unit of Thai telecoms operator Jasmine International, is set to ride the Bitcoin mining wave, with plans to install tens of thousands of mining machines over the next few years. Fast facts JTS is kicking off plans to deploy 500 mining machines in a data center in the third quarter […]

Tesla reports $1.3B in Bitcoin holdings in Q2 2021

Electric carmaker Tesla on Monday reported that it held US$1.3 billion of Bitcoin, according to the company’s Q2 2021 financial results update. Fast facts There was no change to Tesla’s Bitcoin holdings from the previous quarter, but the company took a Bitcoin-related impairment hit of US$23 million due to the fall in Bitcoin prices, according […]

Huobi’s stock plunges in Hong Kong as it shuts Beijing unit

Closure of blockchain business may be related to regulatory concerns, but unlikely to hit crypto industry hard, observers say.

Tether rejects claims of renewed scrutiny over suspected bank fraud

World’s largest stablecoin dismisses report suggesting possibility of U.S. investigation, despite claims of recent Justice Department interest and track record of legal woes.

Goldman applies to launch decentralized finance ETF

As regulation permitting the establishment of Bitcoin exchange-traded funds remains stalled in the U.S., Goldman Sachs has officially applied for an ETF offering exposure to companies in decentralized finance and blockchain. Fast facts In a recent filing to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the bank said its fund — the Goldman Sachs Innovate DeFi […]

Amazon denies Bitcoin payment rumors

Amazon is quickly putting to rest rumors the online retail giant plans to offer crypto payment services for its customers, as reported by British newspaper CityAM, which claimed to have spoken to a company insider. Fast facts To shoot down the rumors and conjecture, an Amazon spokesperson told Coindesk.com on Monday: “Notwithstanding our interest in […]

Facebook digital currency wallet Novi looks to add staff in Philippines

Facebook’s Novi, a digital wallet designed for its digital currency, Diem, is in hiring mode in the Philippines. Fast facts Facebook’s careers page currently shows five openings in the country for positions dedicated to Novi, including help operations investigator, onboarding coordinator and learning business partner. It has only one other opening in the entire Asia-Pacific […]

Singapore crypto license applications in final stages of review

Singapore’s central bank is in the final stages of reviewing applications for licenses to provide crypto services, including payments and the operation of cryptocurrency exchanges, according to Tharman Shanmugaratnam, minister in charge of the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), which regulates financial institutions in Singapore. Fast facts To date, Singapore has received over 480 crypto […]

Bit Mining pivots overseas; Ethereum creator joins ‘Stoner Cats’ cast

Bit Mining pivots overseas as Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin joins animated crypto series ‘Stoned Cats’ cast.

Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin to star with Mila Kunis in NFT-based show

As non-fungible tokens make their way into TV with a new funding model and method of building community, who better to lead a project than the head of Ethereum himself?

The many benefits that blockchain can bring to the internet of things (IoT) | Part 3

Blockchain technology can make a big impact on the world we live in, according to authors Kosrow Dehnad and Joe Duncan. A prime example: Tesla’s driverless vehicles.
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Chinese crypto firms donate millions of yuan to flood-hit Henan

Three blockchain and crypto-related companies have donated hundreds of millions of yuan to China’s Henan Province, which has suffered deadly floods since last week. Fast facts Bitmain, a crypto mining firm was the first to announce a donation of 10 million yuan (US$1.54 million) on July 23 to a charity federation in Zhengzhou, the provincial […]

Bitcoin price surges to almost $40K as Asia wakes to Amazon crypto reports

Led by traders in Asia, Bitcoin saw its biggest one-day gain in over a month amid speculation that Amazon is getting into crypto.

Bitmain joins hands with Kazakhstan mining farm Enegix to host rigs

Chinese cryptocurrency mining rig maker Bitmain has partnered with Enegix, which runs one of the biggest crypto mining data centers in Kazakhstan, to host its Antminer machines in the Central Asian nation. Fast facts Bitmain said in a statement on Friday that it had joined hands with Enegix, a data center operator in Kazakhstan, to […]

BIT Mining to exit lottery business for crypto mining expansion

BIT Mining — a New York Stock Exchange-listed company that only months ago became a big investor in Chinese cryptocurrency mining — has decided to exit its Chinese lottery-related business and focus more on mining outside the country. Fast facts BIT Mining, formerly known as 500.com, has operated online sports lottery services, but announced on […]

Singapore crypto take-up reaches 43% of adults

Cryptocurrencies are gaining traction in Singapore, especially among younger investors. A survey of 1,000 Singaporeans carried out by Toluna, a consumer insights provider, has shown that 43% of Singaporeans own crypto and that 74% of them have increased their wealth by using it as an investment.  Fast facts The survey is said to have been […]

Binance and FTX slash leverage limit from 100x to 20x amid crypto regulations heat

FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried says it’s time to move on from high leverage in crypto trading. Binance also seeks new CEO with a stronger regulatory background.

Bitcoin ETF applicant is not surprised by US delays

Valkyrie is among a growing number of asset managers at the SEC’s door, seeking approval to offer a Bitcoin ETF. Will a Bitcoin ETF ever get the green light in the United States?

India issues CBDC update; Korea threatens to block exchanges

India updates its CBDC plans and Korea threatens to block exchanges

Binance chief ‘CZ’ seeks regulatory expert to lead as exchange looks to boost image

Speaking at an SCB 10X DeFi virtual summit, Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao says an IPO is not out of the question, but that the exchange first needs to set up corporate structures as it navigates increased regulatory scrutiny.

Ethereum in spotlight as prices recover, London hard fork looms and Paris conference closes

The cryptocurrency community is watching Ethereum closely, with the EthCC event in Paris having wrapped up, Ether prices showing new strength and the London upgrade just around the corner.
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SEC: Commissioners’ statement not relevant to Ripple’s XRP lawsuit defense

US Securities and Exchange Commission staffers say their appointed leaders’ views do not reflect the agency’s stance on Ripple and XRP.

Thai crypto miner found dead after suspected electronics accident

Case could be first fatality associated with mining, although hot-running equipment has history of starting fires.

DeFi puts down roots in the Bitcoin network

Despite Ethereum being the blockchain of choice for smart-contract capabilities, there has been a recent push to bring decentralized finance to the Bitcoin network. Fast facts One such project looking to do so is layer-one protocol Stacks (STX), whose introduction of its programming language Clarity has allowed the development of smart contracts on the Bitcoin […]

India central bank plans digital Rupee rollout

India plans to implement the country’s digital currency in phases, Reserve Bank of India’s deputy governor Shri T Rabi Sankar said at a webinar organized by the Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy, New Delhi.  Fast facts “CBDC (central bank digital currency) will be in the arsenal of most if not all central banks in the […]

Indonesian regulators play catch-up as crypto investment soars

Indonesia has seen red-hot growth in the crypto asset market, but the country’s regulators are just beginning to get to grips with burgeoning industry and formulate policy responses.

How Asia is leading the way for digital currencies

Despite growing global interest, CBDCs are not all at the same stage of development. Amit Ghosh of R3 explains how countries in Asia are paving the way.

Ping An trials e-CNY; Core Scientific to go public

Ping An trials e-CNY while Core Scientific is the next to get on the SPAC train.

NFT platform Mintable to auction collection of comics legend Stan Lee

Mintable — a Singapore-based, Mark Cuban-backed non-fungible token platform — today announced the launch of a limited-edition NFT collection featuring comic book legend Stan Lee. Fast facts The collection, which includes three paintings by artist Rob Prior and a selection of photographs and videos of Lee taken by his friend and later caretaker, will be […]

Vitalik Buterin: Ethereum is more than DeFi. Is social media its next big use?

At EthCC in Paris, Ethereum’s boyish creator lays out a vision for the blockchain’s non-finance uses — like ridding social media of bots and fake news.
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NFT buzz continues as OpenSea raises US$100M

OpenSea, the world’s second-biggest non-fungible token marketplace by trading volume, has raised US$100 million in a series B funding round led by venture capital firm A16z, the company has announced.  Fast facts The new funding raises the company’s value to US$1.5 billion, making it a unicorn — a start-up with a valuation of more than […]

Shipping network launches blockchain-based cargo app in China

Trade platform the Global Shipping Business Network has launched its first blockchain-based application in China to reduce paper usage and enhance efficiency and transparency in the shipping industry. Fast facts Named Cargo Release, the new blockchain-based app will connect the whole shipping supply chain, including shipping lines, consignees, their agents and terminals.  The app promises […]

U.S. crypto miner Core Scientific to list via SPAC merger

U.S. cryptocurrency miner Core Scientific Holding is set to list on the Nasdaq exchange through a merger with a special-purpose acquisitions company, boosting the value of the combined business to around US$4.3 billion. Fast facts Core Scientific, one of the biggest crypto mining companies in the U.S., announced yesterday that it had entered into merger […]

Chinese insurer Ping An seeks digital yuan payments for new Covid-19 policy

China’s trial of e-CNY, the digital version of the national currency, the yuan, has extended to the insurance industry, with conglomerate Ping An encouraging medical staff in the southern city of Shenzhen to pay premiums for a Covid-19 insurance plan using the new currency. Fast facts One Ping An branch in Shenzhen is offering insurance […]

SEC Chair Gensler: stablecoins could be treated as securities

Hinting at a potential future crackdown on stablecoins, Gary Gensler — the chair of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission — told the American Bar Association this week that cryptocurrencies whose prices are based on traditional assets could be subject to securities law enforcement. Fast facts Gensler’s remarks followed those of U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet […]

India’s crypto community plays for time as New Delhi dithers on regulation

The prospect of a ban on cryptocurrencies has haunted the industry for years, but it appears to be receding as delayed rules give policymakers time to think before they act.

Why Thailand’s oldest bank is investing US$110 million in DeFi

In a special Q&A, Mukaya ‘Tai’ Panich of SCB 10X, the venture arm of Siam Commercial Bank, marvels at decentralized finance innovations. ‘Whatever traditional finance has, there’s a parallel version in DeFi.’

FTX closes record fundraise; China Mobile gets hot wallet patent

FTX closes record fundraise. Additionally, China Mobile gets hot wallet patent.

FTX’s $900 million deal. Dogecoin in the doghouse. Digital yuan dragnet.

Top blockchain and crypto news: FTX swells to $18 billion valuation. Etherum and Dogecoin disowned by creators. US pols call for Olympics boycott of e-yuan.

Crypto miner ships China-based rigs abroad in deal with U.S. fossil fuels firm

Optimum Mining Host-Black Rock Petroleum plan comes as Canaan seeks greener operations through Czech partnership.

EU to ban anonymous crypto asset wallets in AML/CFT push

The European Commission intends to tighten anti-money laundering and counter-financing of terrorism rules by banning anonymous crypto asset wallets as it seeks to align European Union law with Financial Action Task Force standards, according to legislative proposals presented yesterday. Fast facts A key change is a proposed amendment to the 2015 EU regulation on transfers […]

Robinhood seeks market valuation of US$35B in upcoming IPO

Fee-free trading app Robinhood is seeking a market valuation of US$35 billion in its upcoming initial public offering, according to a filing to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Although the amount is significant, it is lower than the US$40 billion initially estimated, due in part to slow crypto trading in recent months. Fast facts […]

China Mobile discloses virtual currency system patent, joins e-CNY team

China’s largest telecommunications company, China Mobile, has disclosed a patent on a virtual currency management system that can prevent the theft of hot-wallet keys. Fast facts The system achieves theft-prevention by separating the hot-wallet server interacting directly with a public data server via a system wallet server. The patent disclosure shows that China Mobile filed […]

Bank of Canada makes case for CBDCs

The Bank of Canada has presented a positive case for issuing a central bank digital currency, saying it could be an effective competition policy tool and necessary to support innovation in the digital economy, as outlined in a recent report. Fast facts Current problems in Canada’s economy related to competition and wealth distribution were likely […]

FTX crypto derivatives exchange closes record $900M Series B with $18B valuation

Fast-growing FTX just pulled off the largest-ever fundraise for a crypto exchange to date. Will heightened regulatory scrutiny lie in its near future?

Clean-energy crypto mining ETF launches to put an ‘E’ in Bitcoin

As Bitcoin’s carbon footprint continues to make ESG investors uneasy, a new clean-energy crypto mining ETF aims to allay their environmental concerns.

Senators urge E-CNY ban; Russia woos crypto-miners

US Senators urge E-CNY ban while Russia woos crypto-miners