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Hong Kong manga finds virtual home on blockchain as authorities silence publishers

NFTs offer haven as authors self-censor amid intensifying crackdown on free expression.

Special series: ‘Let’s get serious’ — how blockchain is revolutionizing payment systems

Though Dogecoin and NFTs dominate headlines, their underlying technology — blockchain — is transforming our world in more meaningful ways, according to authors Kosrow Dehnad and Joe Duncan.
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Bitcoin parallel currency plan proves a hard sell in El Salvador

El Salvador’s government may face challenges in making Bitcoin legal tender, as more than three-quarters of the country remains skeptical of the plan, according to a report by Reuters. Fast facts A survey of 1,233 people across El Salvador earlier this month found that 54% of people said Bitcoin adoption was “not at all correct.” […]

SEC says Ripple not entitled to testimony on XRP from ex-director

Is William Hinman a former ‘high-ranking’ SEC official exempt from disclosing his prior communications on XRP, or must he provide testimony to Ripple?

Penalties for kimchi premium abusers; Digital yuan on trial again

Korea issues penalties for kimchi premium arbitrage as China holds its 15th digital yuan pilot trials.

US$1.5B South Korean ‘kimchi premium’ crypto scheme prompts 33 arrests

Customs officers use foreign exchange law to shut down cycle of foreign remittances and arbitrage.

Key takeaways from FATF’s latest report on virtual assets

The Financial Action Task Force — the global anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing standards-setter — this week released its second 12-month review on virtual assets and virtual asset service providers, and called on countries to implement the revised FATF standards, including travel rule requirements “as soon as possible.” “The global nature of the underpinning technology […]

Stablecoins could pose risks to global financial system, Chinese central bank official says

Warning comes as Beijing ramps up efforts to internationalize China’s currency through launch of digital yuan.

Robinhood sees near-threefold rise in women users, COO says

Trading app Robinhood has seen a 369% increase in the number of women using its services in the past year, according to COO Gretchen Howard. According to a report by Business Insider, women now make up 30% of its customer base. Fast facts The result comes following Howard’s setting up of a task force to […]

Jamaican state digital currency set for launch next month

The Bank of Jamaica’s much-anticipated central bank digital currency will launch next month, according to a report by the Jamaica Observer. Fast facts Previously due to launch in May, the CBDC will initially be implemented through the National Commercial Bank — the biggest financial institution in the country — before being expanded to other banks […]

Israel authorities order seizure of cryptocurrencies from Palestinian resistance group Hamas

Israel’s National Bureau for Counter Terror Financing has issued a seizure order against 84 cryptocurrency addresses associated with Palestinian resistance group Hamas as it looks to confiscate holdings of Bitcoin, Tether, Dogecoin and other cryptos. Fast facts “This action comes after a sizable uptick in cryptocurrency donations to Hamas in May following increased fighting between […]

Spending on crypto-linked Visa cards exceeds $1B in first half of 2021

More than US$1 billion was spent on crypto-linked Visa cards in the first six months of 2021, according to a Visa blog post this week. Fast facts Apart from enabling customers to buy cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin using its cards, Visa has partnered with 50 crypto platforms on card programs — such as Coinbase, the largest […]

How is blockchain going to disrupt capital markets?

In the first of a special two-part report, Lucas Schweiger of Blockdata explores what the future of capital markets could look like with blockchain-based infrastructure.

Ethereum: London calling. Will the SEC ever approve Bitcoin ETFs? Foreign miners reap rewards amid China crypto crackdown.

Top blockchain and crypto news: Ethereum upgrade, torque of the town. SEC in snafu over Bitcoin ETFs. Crypto miners flourish amid China fallout.

Meitu to lose big on BTC investments; SK banks warned over crypto laws

Chinese tech giant forecasts a US$17.3 million loss in its BTC investment as more musicians in Asia lean towards NFTs.

Iran crypto mining remains suspended amid blackouts

Iran has continued a suspension of cryptocurrency mining, with Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri urging all licensed miners to stop operating as the country continues to suffer power outages, according to a report by U.Today that cited a Farsi-language tweet by the Tasnim News Agency. Fast facts Jahangiri said the ongoing electricity supply problems could last […]

Chinese firm shut down by central bank for trading cryptocurrencies

China’s central bank has reiterated its ban on cryptocurrency trading and yesterday said it had ordered a company in Beijing suspected of offering software services for crypto trading to shut down as part of an ongoing nationwide crackdown on the crypto industry. Fast facts A Beijing office of the People’s Bank of China and a […]

Software firm Meitu loses US$17.3M on Bitcoin

Higher value of Ether investments softens blow to value of Bitcoin holdings.

Binance suspends SEPA euro deposits as CZ calls compliance a ‘journey’

Facing an onslaught of regulatory scrutiny, Binance CEO calls crypto regulations ‘positive sign’ of a maturing industry and announces new hires in compliance.

Hong Kong CBDC project looks to commercialize for cross-border payments

Eddie Yue, CEO of Hong Kong Monetary Authority lays out the future of the territory’s digital currency at a Hong Kong Academy of Finance event.

Will Basel Committee’s proposed rules for crypto banking fly?

The standards-setter for banks around the world wants to subject crypto like Bitcoin to higher capital requirements. What do industry players think?

Hackers demand $70m in Bitcoin ransom from US software company Kaseya

A ransomware attack on U.S. software company Kaseya has likely affected between 800 and 1,500 businesses around the world, the company said in a statement on Monday, as the group claiming responsibility for the attacks demands US$70 million in Bitcoin to release user’s data. Fast facts Cybercrime group REvil, which is linked to Russia, claimed […]

Ethereum’s London hard fork to launch Aug 4

Ethereum’s long-awaited London hard fork — which earlier was expected to go live this month — is now going to launch on August 4 between 13:00 UTC and 17:00 UTC with block 12,965,000, Ethereum developer Tim Beiko said in a recent blog post. Fast facts Following the successful release of its three testnets, Ropsten, Goerli and […]

Huobi’s public blockchain expands with Animoca, CoinMarketCap and DeFi projects

Huobi Eco Chain, an open-source, decentralized public blockchain, today announced 11 new partners, including Hong Kong-based blockchain gaming company Animoca Brands and crypto data website CoinMarketCap — which is owned by Huobi rival Binance — that will run validating nodes to improve the stability and decentralization of the network. Fast facts Other new validators include […]

IBC Group moves out of China; Pavilions Hotels to accept crypto

IBC Group becomes the latest to seize Bitcoin and Ethereum mining operations in China as crypto gets the nod from Pavilions Hotels and Resorts.

Why decentralization is essential for protecting user data and privacy

Centralized data management is outdated and vulnerable to hacking, says Li Jun of Ontology. Here’s how blockchain can make data more secure.

Pavilions hotel chain to begin accepting crypto as payment

Global resort group Pavilions Hotels & Resorts will allow its customers to use crypto to book stays as of tomorrow, its managing director for Asia has told Forkast.News. Fast facts Scot Toon said Pavilions had partnered with British payment service Coindirect to allow guests paying in more than 40 cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin and Ethereum, to […]

Bitcoin and Ethereum see positive institutional investment flows as Grayscale adds Cardano to large cap fund

Institutional sentiment appears to be shifting back to being positive toward crypto as crypto investment products saw inflows of US$63 million for the first time in five weeks, according to a report by CoinShares, Europe’s largest digital asset investment firm. Previously, there were four straight weeks of crypto fund outflows. Fast facts: “For the first […]

Aussies look to crypto for retirement; Vietnam embracing crypto?

Aussies may be leaning towards crypto for retirement funds while Vietnamese Prime Minister greenlights pilot crypto program.

Ether hits two-week high as Ethereum’s London upgrade nears

The price of Ether has jumped to a fortnight high as Ethereum’s London EIP-1559 upgrade draws close and investors look to get back into alt-coins.

South Korean crypto exchanges tighten personal trading rules for employees

Three of the biggest cryptocurrency exchanges in South Korea have tightened restrictions on virtual currency trading by their employees in a move designed to comply with the nation’s crypto regulations. Fast facts Bithumb announced that starting this month, it had banned its employees from trading cryptocurrencies using Bithumb accounts. The exchange has made employees sign […]

Wuhan incubator plan aims to boost blockchain sector

The Bureau of Economics and Information Technology in the Chinese city of Wuhan plans to cultivate more than 100 blockchain companies within three years. Fast facts Authorities in Wuhan issued a document outlining the blueprint, according to which rewards of up to 2 million yuan (about US$309,000) and blockchain technology research program subsidies of 500,000 yuan (US$77,250) […]

Crypto ‘Michelin Guide’ to rate tokens in South Korea

The Korea Institute of Virtual Asset Valuation, launched last month, is set to release its first report in July 15, evaluating 10 domestic cryptocurrencies. The new non-profit organization is aiming to provide information to help protect investors from buying crypto coins based on misleading disclosures. Fast facts At the end of every month, 10 domestic […]

Vietnam to launch cryptocurrency pilot

Vietnamese Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính has asked the country’s central bank to pilot a cryptocurrency program from 2021 to 2023, English-language newspaper Việt Nam News reports. Fast facts The plan was signed off in Prime Minister’s Decision No. 942/QĐ-TTg on the country’s broad development strategy of moving towards digital government. It also encompassed artificial […]

How blockchain is giving rise to a growing ‘Crypto Nation’

Being a ‘crypto native’ involves much more than using Bitcoin and DeFi, writes Alvin Lee of DeGate DAO. It’s sharing core values like freedom and inclusion.

WazirX, Binance boost compliance procedures; Forkast speaks to FTX CEO

Crypto exchanges WazirX and Binance look to implement stronger compliance measures. Forkast News speaks with FTX founder and CEO Sam Bankman-Fried about crypto regulatory measures in Asia. Chinese district rewards residents with e-Yuan for counting footsteps. We’ll have more on these stories and other news shaping the cryptocurrency and blockchain world in this episode of […]

Mintable closes $13M series-A, set to integrate Ripple XRP Ledger

Mintable, a Singapore-based non-fungible token platform, this week closed a US$13 million series-A funding round, with U.S. payments technology company Ripple Labs investing. Fast facts Mintable, currently built on the Ethereum and Zilliqa blockchains, enables users to create, buy and sell NFTs using fiat or cryptocurrency. Mintable intends to use the fresh capital to scale […]

Crypto exchange Binance in regulators’ crosshairs as scrutiny mounts

As countries step up their implementation of the Financial Action Task Force’s standards, the list of regulators that have Binance in their crosshairs just keeps growing longer. Fast facts Thailand’s Securities and Exchange Commission today filed a criminal complaint against Binance — the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by trading volume — for operating a digital asset […]

Will court let Ripple force ex-SEC director to testify about XRP?

Ripple says William Hinman holds important insights into SEC’s stance on Bitcoin, Ether and XRP. How is Hinman’s 2018 speech on crypto relevant to the lawsuit?

Musk sells memecoin fans another pup with Baby Doge

Elon Musk has once again sent a coin’s price skyward with a simple tweet; this time more than doubling the price of the memecoin Baby Doge by inserting its name into the lyrics of popular children’s song, “Baby Shark”. Fast facts Replacing the title of the song with the name of the coin, the tweet […]

Coinbase’s high-interest savings account rollout raises questions over returns

Deposit account bears closer comparison to distressed debt fund than to mainstream bank account, expert says.

South Korean finance watchdog warns banks over crypto AML compliance

The chief of South Korea’s main finance sector regulator has said that no banks will be exempted from anti-money laundering and counter-financing of terrorism compliance when they sign contracts with virtual asset trading platforms. Fast facts According to South Korea’s crypto exchange regulations, crypto trading platforms must acquire contracts with local banks to provide their […]

Huobi to impose tighter OTC trading restrictions

Crypto exchange Huobi yesterday issued an announcement in simplified Chinese saying that it would implement a “T+1” withdrawal freezing time for all over-the-counter trades, meaning that traders can transfer cryptocurrency out only 24 hours after depositing it. In some cases, the freeze will last up to 36 hours.  Fast facts At present, the announcement appears […]

A letter from the Editor-in-Chief

Dear Reader,  Welcome to the next phase of Forkast.News!   Our newly redesigned website is live, and we hope that it is faster, better to navigate, and easier for you to read, watch, and consume all things blockchain.  When we founded Forkast in late 2018 in the height of crypto winter, we envisioned this day was […]

Trading platform Robinhood fined US$70M over outages, false information

Trading platform Robinhood has been fined some US$70 million in a case involving system outages and allegedly misleading information.

Bye-bye, Binance. Elon Musk spawns Floki Shiba Inu craze. Tickets for tokens in China.

Top blockchain and cryptocurrency news: Binance bounced out of Britain. Musk moves Shiba Inu prices again. China’s digital currency gets ready to roll.

How to assess the maturity of a network and DeFi ecosystem

What does a fully functioning network with DeFi applications look like, and why is it important to assess? Garrette Furo of Cosmos explains.

FTX signs deal with Tom Brady; blockchain startup Nansen raises US$12M | The Daily Forkast

Demand for blockchain analytics is on the rise as FTX partners up with NFL superstar quarterback Tom Brady and supermodel Gisele Bündchen.

Chinese cities roll out digital yuan to public transport networks

Adoption of e-CNY for urban transport networks marks first step in wider introduction of state-backed digital money.

Wealth managers need to create digital asset offerings, Capgemini says

Wealth management firms need to develop new offerings around emerging trends such as the rise of digital assets and sustainable investing, according to Capgemini’s World Wealth Report 2021.

Exchange Crypto.com revs up sports sponsorships as Formula 1 partner

Formula 1 has announced that Hong Kong-based Crypto.com will be an inaugural global partner for the new F1 Sprint series in 2021.

Taiwan to introduce new AML rules for crypto exchanges on July 1

Taiwan is set to enact new anti-money laundering rules that take effect July 1 to further boost AML requirements for crypto exchanges.

Mining rig maker Bitmain inks purchase deal with TeraWulf

Bitmain has signed a deal to sell 30,000 of its Antminer machines to TeraWulf, a U.S. crypto miner that claims to use mostly clean energy.

Institutional investors appear to cool on Bitcoin, data suggest

Institutional demand for cryptocurrency appears to be slowing, according to a report by analytics company Glassnode.

South Korean crypto exchange Bithumb dismisses ‘listing fee’ claims

Bithumb — South Korea’s second-largest crypto exchange — has rubbished claims that it is charging token issuers fees to list their coins on its platform.

Crypto exchange Coinbase to launch crypto app store in international strategy

Nasdaq-listed Coinbase, the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the United States, announced today its plans to expand its business internationally as it seeks to improve its asset-listing process and build a crypto app store. Fast facts: “We’re seeing crypto quickly mature from its initial use case of trading bitcoin to the trading of thousands of new […]

What is Theta blockchain, and how might it revolutionize online streaming?

With Theta’s new mainnet 3.0, the network aims to be the go-to blockchain-powered content delivery platform for online streaming. Will Theta succeed?

Special Series, Part 3: Digital dragons and digital dollars

In the last installment of a 3-part series on blockchain in Asia, Forkast.News examines: Everyone knows money has value. But does it also have ‘values’?
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A portfolio balanced by digital assets

Do cryptocurrencies follow broader market trends? Cryptocurrency has long been perceived as a hedge against the fluctuations of the broader equities market. The idea of cryptocurrency as an alternative investment has taken off during the Covid-19 pandemic as equity prices rose to stratospheric highs despite the fundamentals of the economy significantly weakening.  An example that […]

Evangelizing to different investor profiles

Millennials and Gen Z Millennials have earned the reputation of disrupting or killing traditional industries, and the financial sector is no exception.  The disconnect between millennials and traditional investments is the result of various factors, such as their firsthand experience with the long-term effects of the 2008 global recession on assets and investments, as well […]

Tokenized asset market sizing and analysis

How value is created Our methodology for calculating the value of this market includes tokenized commodity, energy, currency (i.e., stablecoins), gold and real estate projects. Calculations include publicly listed projects found via Blockexplorers. It excludes cryptocurrency, as it’s a native digital asset, as well as DeFi projects because of their extreme volatility. All tokenized assets […]

NFL star Tom Brady, supermodel Gisele Bündchen take stakes in FTX crypto exchange

Cryptocurrency exchange FTX today announced that American football star Tom Brady and his wife, Gisele Bündchen, are taking equity stakes in it, in a multi-year partnership.

Building liquidity

Although institutional interest in Bitcoin is rising, there is still the volatility conundrum to consider. Bitcoin’s market fluctuations, however, make it a poor store of value. But, at the same time, there is an advantage to keeping capital stored in crypto: cashing out crypto into fiat is almost always a taxable event and not ideal […]

Family offices are turning to digital assets

Interview with Trent Barnes, Principal at Zerocap Tokenization brings new models for raising capital, as well as institutional-grade opportunities Forkast.News: How does a digital asset become “institutional-grade”? What sort of criteria are institutional-level traders looking for? TB: The criteria would include clear guidelines and regulatory frameworks as to how digital assets are treated, deepening pools […]

Metaverse hot in South Korea; Decentralized theme park hits HK | The Daily Forkast

South Korea’s top asset managers are racing to get into the metaverse game while Forkast.News visits a decentralized theme park in Hong Kong.

Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission’s new crypto rules will hinder opportunity

Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission chief, Ashley Alder, kicked off a firestorm during Hong Kong FinTech Week 2020 by announcing a plan to regulate all cryptocurrency exchanges that operate in the city or target its citizens.  These new proposed rules would replace a voluntary framework introduced in 2019 that allowed exchanges to opt in […]

Trends and opportunities

Top three digital asset market trends shaping the future Three key trends in the digital asset market are: Tokenization of widely traded traditional assets, such as stocks and bonds; Tokenization of previously untraded or under-traded assets, such as real estate and fine art; Institutional adoption and trading of digital tokens. During the past year the […]

Singapore crypto exchange Coinhako sees trade soar 500%, eyes IPO

Singapore cryptocurrency exchange Coinhako today announced a 500% increase in trading volume during the first five months of 2021 compared to the whole of 2020.

Huobi bans users in China, Taiwan from crypto derivatives trades

Chinese cryptocurrency exchange Huobi has stopped providing crypto derivative trading services to users in China and Taiwan.

Why big investors are pouring money into blockchain data analytics for crypto

Nansen, a Singapore startup, is the latest darling of venture capitalists like Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) bullish on the growing field of crypto analytics.

Ethereum’s institutional outflows hit record US$50M, CoinShares data says

Ethereum is bearing the brunt of negative sentiment on crypto, with net outflows from institutional products related to the token hitting a record of US$50 million last week.

Samsung Asset Management launches metaverse fund

Samsung Asset Management, South Korea’s biggest asset manager, has launched a fund tied to a virtual world known as the metaverse.