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UNICEF invests in blockchain startups for financial inclusion

UNICEF Venture Fund is awarding up to $100,000 to blockchain startups, including India’s GovBlocks, in its latest funding round. Here are the other projects.

Hong Kong eyes digital currency as part of new fintech plan

Hong Kong will be initiating a study on a digital Hong Kong dollar as part of its plans to “future proof” the city for central bank digital currencies.

World Economic Forum offers DeFi ‘toolkit’ for policymakers

In collaboration with Wharton business school, WEF releases a toolkit for governments to consider the opportunities and risks of decentralized finance.

Taiwan boy band star Van Ness Wu praises NFTs, prepares for charity selfie sale

California-born singer looks to rekindle relationship with his fans as he pledges to donate the proceeds from his NFT sale to a Taiwan-based NGO.

Ripple asks court to ignore 70+ SEC actions against cryptos before XRP

Did Ripple have ‘fair notice’ that SEC might deem the XRP a security? Ripple calls report on SEC’s prior anti-crypto enforcement actions ‘misleading.’

Indian crypto exchanges form self-regulatory body

Crypto exchanges in India have partnered with the Internet and Mobile Association of India to form a self-regulatory body.

Bitcoin worth millions recovered from Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack

Millions of dollars worth of Bitcoin paid to ransomware hackers who shut down the main fuel pipeline on the U.S. East Coast last month has been recovered.

Take that, Miami: Hong Kong hosts its own Bitcoin meet-up

As 50,000 Bitcoiners and crypto superstars whoop it up at Miami’s Bitcoin 2021 fest, a smaller group of BTC fans hold their own at the Fringe in Hong Kong.

Crypto exchange Fasset expands to Southeast Asia

Cryptocurrency exchange Fasset has received three licenses from the Labuan Financial Services Authority in Malaysia for business operations in the country.

Bitcoin mining rig maker Canaan to open service center in Kazakhstan

Canaan, one of the largest crypto mining rig makers in the world, is opening its first-ever service center outside China—in Kazakhstan.

Chinese crypto social media crackdown; Seoul tightens rules on crypto | The Daily Forkast

Chinese social media Weibo bans crypto accounts as employees of South Korean crypto exchanges can no longer trade on their own platforms.

Ripple accuses SEC of ‘noncompliance’ in sharing XRP, Bitcoin and Ether communications

Ripple is also asking court to order SEC to reveal the agency’s internal employee policies on trading cryptocurrencies and other digital assets.

CoinShares lists Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin ETPs on Germany’s Börse Xetra

CoinShares has announced that its Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin physically-backed exchange traded products have cross-listed on Germany’s Börse Xetra exchange.

Binance launching NFT platform with ‘100 Creators’ campaign

Binance today announced a “100 creators” campaign featuring creative talents from around the world as part of the launch of its non-fungible token marketplace on June 24.

Smartphone giant Huawei doubles down on blockchain technology

Following blockchain’s mention as a next-wave technology in China’s five-year plan, Huawei unveils applications for government and in-house services.

South Korean crypto exchange executives face ban from own platforms

South Korea’s Financial Services Commission has announced plans to ban executive employees and exchange operators from trading on their own platforms, prompting a chorus of complaints. Fast Facts: The FSC’s Financial Intelligence Unit recently met with officials from cryptocurrency exchanges to explain upcoming amendments to the Act on Reporting and Use of Certain Financial Transaction Information, […]

NortonLifeLock bids to turn users into home Ethereum miners

Users of cybersecurity product NortonLifeLock will soon be able to mine Ethereum on their home computers through a new feature named Norton Crypto.

Weibo blocks crypto accounts as Chinese clampdown continues

Microblog platform Weibo has blocked more than 30 influential Chinese cryptocurrency-related accounts amid a series of actions by Beijing against crypto mining and trading.

What blockchain games like Alien Worlds say about life outside metaverses

In a special Q&A, Sarojini McKenna of Alien Worlds discusses play-to-earn gaming, digital assets like Trilium, and lives increasingly lived inside virtual worlds.

How serious is the threat of Bitcoin mining to the environment?

Is Bitcoin’s carbon footprint a growing risk to Earth, or is it a red herring? On this year’s United Nations World Environment Day, crypto mining is a hot topic.

HK’s Bitcoin Meetup ahead of Bitcoin 2021; Banksy work offered for crypto | The Daily Forkast

Hong Kong arranged a Bitcoin gathering ahead of Bitcoin 2021 Conference in Miami as Phillips auction house offers Banksy’s work for crypto.

Criticisms of Tether’s reserves are unfounded, says Bitfinex CTO

After Tether’s legal settlement with New York, USDT’s growth is exploding—dispelling concerns over Tether’s reserves, says Bitfinex CTO Paolo Ardoino.

Prominent Chinese economist urges public to ‘avoid confusion’ between digital currency and cryptocurrencies

It is important to distinguish between developing a digital currency for currency digitalization and digitalization of assets or cryptocurrencies so that China can be more focused on preventing risks in the financial sector, said Fan Gang, a Peking University professor and a prominent advocate in China for economic reform. Fast Facts: In a keynote speech […]

Regulators in Hainan warn of illegal crypto fundraising schemes

Regulators Hainan province have issued a warning against illegal fundraising schemes using crypto or blockchain..

UK watchdog: Crypto firms fall short on anti-money laundering rules

Many of Britain’s crypto firms are failing to meet required anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing laws, says the country’s watchdog.

BitFlyer to launch Bitcoin-Japanese yen pair for U.S. traders

BitFlyer announced today that it is launching a Bitcoin-to-Japanese yen pair for currency traders in the U.S.

NFT sales slump amid May crypto crash

The market for non-fungible tokens took a beating in May amid turmoil in the cryptocurrency sector, according to industry data.

Ripple execs seek info to defend XRP trades from 16 foreign crypto exchanges

To defend themselves against SEC lawsuit, Ripple’s CEO and chairman ask court for help getting XRP info from a who’s who list of offshore crypto exchanges.

DBS Bank tapping on tokenized bonds as a new way to invest

From digital bonds to real estate, blockchain-enabled security token offerings and tokenization are redefining corporate fundraising and investing.

Ethereum is rocketing out of this world with SpaceX and SpaceChain

Can Ethereum, also known as the ‘World Computer,’ function outside this world — in space? A SpaceX rocket launch today will put that to the test.

Google to lift ban on ads for crypto wallets, exchanges

Google has announced plans to lift a ban on advertising cryptocurrency wallets and exchanges that has been in place for almost three years. A ban on advertising initial coin offerings will remain, however. Fast Facts: An advertising policy update on the company’s main webpage states that advertisers of crypto wallets and exchanges targeting the US […]

Bitcoin mining rig maker Canaan reports huge jump in overseas sales

Chinese Bitcoin mining hardware maker Canaan says overseas sales accounted for almost four-fifths of its revenue during the first quarter of 2021.

‘Green’ crypto mining should be spared crackdown, Canaan chief says

Green crypto mining operations should be spared China’s recent crackdown on the sector, according to the CEO of Canaan Inc.

SpaceChain shoots blockchain to space; Cardano’s bridge to China | The Daily Forkast

SpaceChain shoots blockchain to tech to the International Space Station aboard Falcon 9 as Cardano announces first cross-chain bridge with Nervos.

Is India’s central bank greenlighting crypto? Bitcoin fees fall to new lows. Cardano rolls out Alonzo upgrade for DeFi.

Other top blockchain and crypto news: Thailand’s SEC tries to rein in DeFi via regulation. Will China’s future DCEP digital yuan offer smart contracts?

WazirX launches India’s first NFT marketplace

WazirX launched the country’s first NFT marketplace on Tuesday, featuring artists from India and other South Asian nations.

China to give away digital yuan worth US$6.3M in latest e-CNY test

China is set to hand out 200,000 virtual red envelopes, each containing 200 yuan (US$31.30) of the country’s prototype digital currency, to Beijing residents.

Cryptocurrency behind spike in illegal gambling, Asian racing body says

Illegal gambling in Asia is on the rise, facilitated in part by sites accepting bets in cryptocurrency.

Dogecoin to list on Coinbase Pro

Dogecoin has gained an additional measure of credibility, with crypto exchange Coinbase announcing that it will add DOGE to its professional trading platform.

Ethereum investment products hit market-share high of 27%, report says

Ethereum has hit a market-share high of 27% of all digital asset investment fund products following recent price corrections.

Thailand warns over DeFi; India green lights cryptos | The Daily Forkast

Thailand becomes one of the first governments to attempt DeFi regulation as India’s RBI clarifies that banking ban no longer exists.

What’s up with Taproot, the biggest proposed change to Bitcoin since 2017?

Bitcoin’s proposed Taproot update for smart contracts and privacy has wide verbal support from miners, but will they put their crypto where their mouth is?

S. Korean banks process US$57B linked to crypto exchanges

South Korean banks processed over 64 trillion won (US$57 billion) of deposits and withdrawals linked to crypto exchanges in the first quarter.

Robinhood’s Chinese rivals to launch crypto services abroad

China-based trading apps Futu and Tiger Brokers have announced plans to move into crypto to compete outside China with apps such as Robinhood and eToro.

Financial Stability Board seeks faster, cheaper cross-border payments

The Financial Stability Board has launched a public consultation on global targets for cross-border payments.

How blockchain technology is revolutionizing KYC in financial services

‘Know your customer’ is key to anti-money laundering efforts. Isabelle Corbett of R3 explains why blockchain is uniquely suited for KYC/AML.

Thailand’s DeFi sector targeted for regulation over coin offerings

Thailand’s Securities regulator has announced that digital tokens issued and offered for transactions must have its approval.

Bitcoin suffers second-biggest monthly price drop in May

Bitcoin dropped by 37.5% in May after hitting a low of US$34,195 yesterday, the second-largest drop on record after it fell 40% in September 2011.

Singapore’s DBS Bank launches its first digital bond

Singapore’s DBS Bank has announced its first security token offering on the DBS Digital Exchange.

Indian central bank in climbdown over crypto ban

India’s central bank has said that banks and other finance sector businesses should not adhere to a prohibition it imposed on lenders dealing in cryptocurrencies.

Gold vs. Bitcoin: Which one is better as a safe-haven asset?

Gold prices are rising again and at a three-month high. How does gold — a store of value for over 2,500 years —  compare to Bitcoin as a refuge from market turmoil?

Taxing crypto down under; Privacy coins spike in value | The Daily Forkast

Tax season is here and the ATO wants to make sure Aussies pay their taxes for crypto earnings. Also, Privacy coins have surged over the past weeks.

South Korean finance watchdog set to take over crypto regulation

South Korea is in the process of tasking a branch of the Financial Services Commission with regulating cryptocurrency exchanges.

Digital yuan is not a surveillance tool, says Chinese ex-central bank director

Former People’s Bank of China Director Yao Qian says that the country’s digital yuan is not a surveillance tool for the government.

Cardano rebounds 15% as Alonzo smart contact testnet launches

Following the launch of Cardano’s first testnet for its smart contract platform, Alonzo, ADA’s price rebounded by 15% on Monday morning to reach US$1.65.

Bitcoin mining difficulty drops 16% amid Chinese regulatory headwinds

The latest Bitcoin mining difficulty adjustment, made at 1 a.m. UTC on May 30, saw the difficulty of Bitcoin mining drop 15.97%.

Turkey’s crypto clampdown underwhelms as investors claim ‘business as usual’

Turkish regulators have tightened their grip on cryptocurrencies, but small traders and investors appear to have barely noticed.

Crypto crimes surge in Asia; Bitcoin cause for divorce in S. Korea | The Daily Forkast

Crypto crime is surging in Asia while Bitcoin is being blamed for splitting up married couples in South Korea.

How FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried navigates crypto trading’s new normal

From mass liquidations to meme trading, the characteristics unique to the crypto market can now be seen in traditional markets, says FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried.

Are 73 SEC actions against crypto enough warning to Ripple about XRP?

SEC says Ripple had plenty of ‘notice’ that XRP transactions could be violating the law via its many enforcement actions against other crypto companies.

Cardano launches first Alonzo smart-contract testnet

Input Output Hong Kong, one of the companies behind the Cardano blockchain, today announced the launch of the first testnet for Cardano’s Alonzo upgrade.

Bridging the DeFi data gap with indexing blockchain data

Blockchain technology has massive data requirements, but the data can be difficult and costly to access. What are some of the solutions?

Hong Kong crypto exchanges seek to wash hands of dirty power problem

Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency exchange Crypto.com has announced that it is committed to becoming carbon-negative within 18 months, following carbon-neutral initiatives launched by other Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency exchanges FTX and BitMEX.

Chinese province’s hydropower gives hope to crypto miners following crackdown elsewhere

Energy regulators in the southwestern Chinese province of Sichuan, which has abundant hydropower resources, will hold a seminar on June 2 to assess the province’s cryptocurrency mining industry, fanning hopes among miners that the beleaguered sector may be given a reprieve from its recent hardships in China.

U.S. securities watchdog looks to regulate crypto trading like stock exchanges

Gary Gensler, chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, has said he wants to see regulation to protect consumers built into the operations of cryptocurrency exchanges.

Almost four in ten consumers have bought cryptocurrencies, study finds

Consumer adoption of cryptocurrencies has grown, with 38% of respondents to a survey saying they have either invested in or bought a cryptocurrency, according to digital wallet provider Skrill, part of payments provider Paysafe.

Ethereum 2 to set green future; Koreans demand regulator steps down | The Daily Forkast

Vitalik Buterin sets a green future for the Ethereum network while Bitdeer becomes the latest to block Chinese miners.

Will China become the new digital currency superpower?

The U.S. dollar reigns supreme as the current world reserve currency. Could the USD’s status change with the rise of CBDCs like China’s DCEP digital yuan?

Tokenization to transform financial system, DBS Bank CEO says

The power of tokenization can fundamentally transform the fabric of the financial system, Singapore’s DBS Bank CEO Piyush Gupta told the Consensus by CoinDesk 2021 conference taking place this week.

How Ripple found new ways to grow XRP business despite SEC lawsuit

Ripple’s CEO Brad Garlinghouse says Ripple was hit hard financially after SEC filed its lawsuit, but the company is now expanding uses for XRP’s technology.

Hong Kong treasury chief says new rules will boost crypto despite investment threshold

A proper regulatory system for cryptocurrencies and virtual assets can facilitate development, protect investors, and adhere to international regulatory standards, says treasury chief Christopher Hui

Vitalik Buterin speaks: What lies in the future of Ethereum?

Breaking into occasional Mandarin at a Hong Kong conference, Ethereum’s visionary creator tells all — including why Ethereum 2.0 is taking so long.