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August 2021

Taxing times for crypto. Ethereum hard fork takes knife to fees. Tencent bets on NFTs.

Top blockchain and crypto news: Is Ethereum’s price flatlining on eve of revolution? Uncle Sam wants pay to play. China’s Big Tech toes the line with NFTs.

Canaan grows crypto rig sales as Chinese miners tool up abroad

North America emerges as hardware demand hotspot amid Beijing’s regulatory onslaught against cryptocurrency sector.

Mastercard partners with Australian exchange for crypto card

In a further move towards cryptocurrency adoption, Mastercard has partnered with one of Australia’s oldest crypto exchanges, CoinJar, to launch one of the country’s first crypto payment cards. Fast facts The card became available on Tuesday in a digital form through integration with Apple Pay and Google Pay, and will be available in a physical […]

Bitcoin SV suffers a new 51% attack

Bitcoin SV has suffered another 51% attack beginning around 11:45 am EDT on Tuesday resulting in up to three versions of the chain being mined simultaneously, as initially reported by analytics firm CoinMetrics.io. It is the fifth such attack on the network since late June. Fast facts Further reporting by the firm reported all of […]

HSBC blocks UK customer payments to Binance

Binance’s woes continue to mount as global banking giant HSBC is now blocking its customers in the United Kingdom from making credit card payments to Binance, according to Yahoo News. Binance is the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange. Fast facts HSBC’s move follows similar actions taken by NatWest — a Scotland-based bank with 12.5 million customers […]

Ethereum addresses using DeFi soar 65% to over 2.9M

The Ethereum ecosystem is continuing to see strong growth, with institutional capital ‘flooding’ into decentralized finance and decentralized autonomous organizations flourishing.

Hong Kong crypto crime surges; Tencent launches NFT platform

Hong Kong crypto crime surges as Tencent launches NFT platform.

United Nations-associated NFT art project builds on Polkadot to fight climate change

The DigitalArt4Climate NFT initiative aims to promote art via blockchain technology to inspire environmental activism around the world.

Marathon Digital to buy more mining rigs from Bitmain

Nasdaq-listed Marathon Digital Holdings, one of the biggest Bitcoin mining companies in North America, has announced a deal to buy an additional 30,000 mining machines from Bitmain to boost its mining capacity. Fast facts Marathon has entered into a contract with Bitmain to purchase 30,000 Antminer S19j Pros worth a total of US$120.7 million, the […]

Tencent climbs aboard NFT bandwagon with new trading app

Chinese internet giant Tencent is making a foray in the world of non-fungible tokens, launching an NFT trading platform named Huanhe. Fast facts The tech conglomerate has rolled out the Huanhe app — built on the company’s own Zhixin chain — on its Android application platform. Its debut sales feature 300 audio NFTs created based […]

Crypto mining rig maker Canaan names new CFO

Cryptocurrency mining rig manufacturer Canaan has announced the appointment of James Jin Cheng as its new CFO, following the resignation of his predecessor in February. Fast facts Cheng was previously vice president of Chinese internet recruiting platform Zhaopin Ltd., which listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 2014 before being taken private in 2017. […]

Will Facebook’s metaverse future transform how we live online?

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has a vision for metaverses — online worlds that one day will replace big parts of our offline lives. But some say that future is already here.

Chinese central bank shows no sign of softening stance on crypto

People’s Bank of China vows to keep sector under ‘heavy pressure’ as it pushes digital yuan.

Binance in Malaysia ban as it ends derivatives trading in Germany, Italy, Netherlands

World’s biggest cryptocurrency exchange steps up compliance and cuts product offerings, with a ban in Malaysia and end of lucrative derivatives business in three EU nations.

Singapore crypto financial services unicorn Matrixport closes fundraise

Matrixport, a Singapore-based digital asset financial services platform, today announced the completion of a series-C funding round, bringing the company’s valuation to more than US$1 billion. Fast facts The funding round was led by partners of DST Global, C Ventures and K3 Ventures, with other investors including Qiming Venture Partners, CE Innovation Capital and Tiger […]

How NFTs can track patient consent for clinical trials and give you greater control over your own health data

A new NFT platform built on Hedera Hashgraph aims to give patients greater control over their health information. How does it work?

July 2021

Robinhood’s IPO is just the start of an investing class war

What is Robinhood really worth, now that it’s a public company? Perhaps its true value depends on who you are.

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 […]

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.

Crypto mining rig giant Bitmain divests from AntPool, the world’s biggest mining pool

Bitmain’s move comes amid China’s crypto mining crackdowns and AntPool’s shrinking hashrate. Is Bitmain gussying up for an IPO?

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.

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?

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.

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 […]

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.

CoinShares: Multi-asset crypto investments see inflows amid outflows from Bitcoin and Ethereum

For the third consecutive week, digital asset investment products last week saw outflows — this time, to the tune of US$28 million, according to CoinShares, Europe’s largest digital assets fund manager. Bitcoin saw the majority of outflows, but multi-asset investment products remained positive with inflows of US$3.1 million. Fast facts Bitcoin investment products saw US$24 […]

Bybit contributes $19M to BitDAO in ETH, USDT and USDC to support DeFi growth

Singapore-based crypto derivatives exchange Bybit today announced it had made a US$19.3 million contribution in Ethereum (ETH), Tether (USDT) and USD Coin (USDC) to BitDAO, one of the world’s largest decentralized autonomous organizations, which it helped launch last month. Fast facts Many crypto projects, especially those in decentralized finance, have organized themselves as DAOs for […]

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 […]

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 […]

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.

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.

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.

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.

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?

Chinese e-commerce giant Taobao sells NFTs at annual shopping festival

Demand for non-fungible tokens appears insatiable as industry distances itself from crypto sector to avoid crackdown.

China’s digital yuan moves a step closer with smart-contract technology

Central bank in apparent push for adoption ahead of Olympics as it doubles up on warning over non-state cryptocurrencies.
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How blockchain can transform social media | Part 2

Why is social media’s current centralization problematic, and what would a decentralized Twitter or Facebook look like?
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Court grants Ripple bid to force ex-SEC director to testify in XRP case

Ripple scores major discovery win as judge rules ex-SEC official William Hinman must answer ‘central question’ on Ethereum in the globally-watched case about XRP.

UK finance watchdog to spend £11M to warn young people off crypto investment

Britain’s financial crimes enforcement agency is set to launch a campaign costing £11 million (US$15.2 million) to warn young people about the risks of investing in cryptocurrencies.  Fast facts Financial Conduct Authority CEO Nikhil Rathi said social media users aged 18 to 30 would be the target audience. “As with the GameStop episode, more people see investment as […]

Has the NFT bubble burst? The data says otherwise

Axie Infinity, Meebits and Bored Ape Yacht Club are some of those keeping the market for non-fungible tokens alive.

Ripple seeks to force ex-SEC director to testify on XRP next week

Despite opposition from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Ripple is pushing ahead with plans to question former SEC director William Hinman, the former head of the regulator’s Division of Corporation Finance, telling the judge overseeing discovery in the SEC v. Ripple Labs lawsuit that Hinman’s deposition has been rescheduled to July 19, according to a […]

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?

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.

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 […]

June 2021

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.

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.

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.

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.

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 […]

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.

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.

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.

Britain bans Binance UK, but users continue business on crypto exchange

FCA says Binance is not permitted to offer regulated activities in the UK, but users of the world’s largest crypto exchange remain unaffected — for now.

South Korean crypto exchange fee revelations deal blow to sector’s credibility

Payment for listings raises questions over integrity of cryptocurrencies’ credit scores as compliance deadline nears.

How enterprises are fueling blockchain adoption among SMEs

What is blockchain and how can it help smaller companies? A special panel sponsored by Blockchain-based Service Network explores the use cases.

Hong Kong to press ahead with digital dollar, e-CNY plans

Hong Kong’s financial secretary has reiterated the city’s determination to develop digital versions of the Hong Kong dollar and the mainland Chinese yuan.

Bitcoin not ideal for cyber crime, says Filecoin Foundation chair

Bitcoin was recovered by the FBI from the Colonial Pipeline ransomware cyber criminals DarkSide, sparking privacy concerns around cryptocurrencies.

Building construction meets blockchain, Binance launches NFT platform | The Daily Forkast

Construction meets blockchain in Australian and Binance’s NFT marketplace is open for business.

SEC seeks to stop Ripple from calling ex-SEC director for XRP testimony

SEC does not want its former head of Corporation Finance to testify or answer question about XRP. Who is William Hinman — and what might he tell Ripple?

China sets out stall with digital yuan. Here comes the sales pitch

Urged on by the authorities, banks have wasted little time in putting e-CNY infrastructure in place, but now comes the hard part — getting people to use it.

Crypto exchange Gemini buys carbon offsets, pledges carbon-neutrality

Crypto exchange Gemini has bought US$4 million in carbon credits to offset the environmental impact of its Bitcoin holdings

Mining rig maker Bitmain halts sales amid flood of second-hand machines

Chinese crypto mining rig maker Bitmain has decided to suspend global spot sales of its Antminer machines, as some of its clients are reselling their rigs.

Tesla, Facebook and Netflix stock tokens launch on Solana blockchain

Swiss-based Digital Assets AG, a firm focused on the design of tokenized stock infrastructure, has launched over 50 tokenized stocks on the Solana public blockchain.

Suspects arrested in US$500M ransomware crypto laundering case

Law enforcement agencies in several countries have arrested suspected members of a crypto-linked cybercrime group believed to be responsible for laundering more than US$500 million from ransomware attacks.

Blue House responds to petition; Bitmain offers relocation assistance | The Daily Forkast

South Korea’s Blue House responds to a national petition calling for the financial watchdog head’s resignation.

China’s Ant Group launches blockchain-boosting transmission network

Ant Chain, Ant Group’s technology brand, has launched a new blockchain communication technology at Ant Chain’s first developer conference.