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Bitget invests US$30 mln in BitKeep wallet, becomes controlling shareholder

Seychelles-based cryptocurrency exchange Bitget said it has invested US$30 million in decentralized multi-chain wallet BitKeep to become its controlling shareholder. 

Bitcoin rises above US$28,000; XRP biggest gainer in top 10 cryptos

Bitcoin continued to trade above US$28,000 on Wednesday afternoon in Asia. Ether also rose, along with all other top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies with XRP and Cardano leading gains.
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Internal Revenue Service in U.S. solicits public opinions on proposed NFT taxes

The IRS intends to tax NFTs as collectibles in the U.S. and is soliciting public opinions on the proposal through June.

K-pop star G-Dragon launches NFT on OpenSea with Fandom Studio, BNB Chain

South Korean singer G-Dragon has launched an NFT collection on OpenSea in collaboration with Fandom Studio.

Indian crypto exchange WazirX blocks over 2,400 accounts in 6 months

WazirX, India’s largest crypto exchange by trade volume, has blacklisted over 2,431 accounts between October 2022 and March 2023, based on its internal monitoring process as well as under the direction of law enforcement agencies (LEA). 

Bitcoin, Ether extend losses; all eyes on U.S. interest rates

Bitcoin and Ether fell in Tuesday afternoon trade in Asia after rallying through the past week, while financial authorities injected cash into markets to ease liquidity pressures and took other steps to address concerns over a banking sector crisis in the U.S. and Europe. 
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Crypto needs to look abroad as US exchanges go unbanked

The fall of Silvergate, SVB and Signature has left crypto firms scrambling for new banks. Will crypto banking head offshore for the long term?

Singapore to publish crypto, stablecoin consultation feedback by mid-2023

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) aims to publish cryptocurrency and stablecoin consultations feedback by the middle of this year, it said Monday.

Over 80 Web3 firms in line to set up shop in HK, ahead of crypto regulations taking effect in June

Over 80 foreign and Mainland China companies have expressed their interest in establishing a Web3 company in Hong Kong, ahead of new crypto regulations that will take effect from June

Bitcoin rises past US$28,000, most other top 10 cryptos gain

Bitcoin traded above US$28,000 on Monday afternoon in Asia, a gain of 25% over last week, as a banking crisis in the U.S. and Europe prompted traders to see Bitcoin as a safe haven.
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Singapore-based Crypto.com gets preparatory license to expand services in Dubai

Singapore-based cryptocurrency exchange Crypto.com will soon be able to extend its services in Dubai, after it received a Minimal Viable Product (MVP) Preparatory License from Dubai’s Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority (VARA). 

Taiwan’s financial supervisory commission will oversee crypto, chair says

Crypto in Taiwan remains largely unregulated, but lawmakers have requested the cabinet to appoint a regulator by May 16 to oversee all things crypto.

Crypto data provider Kaiko to move Asia HQ to Hong Kong from Singapore: Bloomberg

Paris-based Kaiko will move its Asian headquarters to Hong Kong as it sees growing crypto-related opportunities in the city.

Bithumb executive faces investigation over alleged bribery in South Korean crypto listing

South Korean prosecutors are investigating Lee Sang-jun, the CEO of Bithumb’s holding company, for alleged bribery in listing certain tokens on the platform.

New York Community Bancorp unit to assume Signature Bank deposits, FDIC says

New York Community Bancorp will assume all deposits and certain loan portfolios of the failed Signature Bank, the FDIC said on Sunday.

Signum Digital says it won first approval to offer security tokens in Hong Kong

Signum Digital said it’s the first company to win preliminary approval in Hong Kong to operate a platform to trade security tokens.

Who should be held responsible for the Silvergate Bank and SVB crises?

As bank after bank topples, fingers are pointing everywhere. But crypto is not to be blamed for this unfolding crisis, writes Winston Hsiao of XREX.

Thailand Turns to Crypto

Thailand’s recent crypto tax waiver announcement could be a gamechanger in boosting Thailand’s economy.

India, UAE to collaborate on cross-border central bank digital currencies

The Indian central bank and the UAE will jointly run pilot programs on their central bank digital currencies, according to the Reserve Bank of India. 

Bitcoin, Ether, Forkast 500 NFT index fall; euros rises amid Credit Suisse’s loan

Bitcoin and Ether declined by the end of Asian trading hours on Thursday afternoon, with all the top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies also falling, apart from Binance’s BNB.

US accuses exiled Chinese tycoon Guo Wengui of $1 billion crypto-linked fraud

Guo Wengui, an exiled Chinese billionaire, was arrested in New York on Wednesday for allegedly orchestrating a more than US$1 billion fraud conspiracy that included cryptocurrency, according to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). See related article: U.S. banking regulators warn against cryptocurrency fraud, contagion risks Fast facts […]

Japan’s Web3 Era

Japan’s been a little behind in the Web3 space, but their new Metaverse Economic Zone could be a game changer.

Voyager-Binance.US’ $1 bln deal should be put on hold, says U.S. Department of Justice

A deal valued at over US$1 billion between Binance.US and Voyager should be put on hold while key legal objections are worked out, says U.S. government.

Bitcoin, Ether, Forkast 500 NFT index extend gains; U.S. banking crisis concerns ease as inflation slows to 6%

Bitcoin and Ether rose on Wednesday afternoon in Asia, along with all other top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies by market capitalization. Solana and Polygon were the biggest gainers, both rising above 5% in the last 24 hours.
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New York regulator says Signature Bank closure ‘nothing to do’ with cryptocurrencies: Reuters

The decision to shut down Signature Bank at the weekend was not related to cryptocurrencies, the New York regulator told Reuters on Tuesday.

India imposes money laundering regulations on crypto industry

India’s crime fighting agencies have been investigating crypto exchanges and individuals on money laundering charges and have now put the onus on exchanges to report suspicious transactions.

Bitcoin, Ether extend gains as U.S. regulators take charge of banking industry turmoil

Bitcoin and Ether rose the most in the top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies by market capitalization on Tuesday afternoon in Asia. Cryptocurrencies have been on a rebound since U.S. regulators took charge of the failures in the banking industry and moved to protect deposits across crypto-linked banks.
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Crypto banking crisis?

As the U.S. tries to head off a bank run, crypto is quickly running out of places to bank with.

Bitcoin, Ether gain after U.S. regulators take charge to shield deposits across crypto-related banks

Bitcoin and Ether gained in Monday afternoon trade in Asia, along with all other top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies by market capitalization, after U.S. regulators took charge of Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank, both with exposure to crypto industry, protecting deposits and confirming that no losses will be borne by the taxpayer. 
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Circle’s USDC stablecoin regains parity as regulators act to stop bank run risk

Circle said its $3.3 billion of USDC cash reserves at the collapsed Silicon Valley Bank will be available Monday after regulators stepped in to backstop deposits.

New York attorney general sues KuCoin for ‘falsely representing itself as an exchange’

The NY State Attorney General is suing crypto exchange Kucoin for not registering as a securities and commodities broker-dealer and calling itself an exchange.

Biden administration proposes 30% crypto mining tax, closing wash-trading loopholes

The U.S. has proposed an excise tax on cryptocurrency miners equal to 30 percent of the cost of the electricity they use.

Bank bust

Contagion, regulation worries grow after crypto bank’s demise

Bitcoin, Ether fall amid interest rate hike fears, Silvergate liquidation; Forkast NFT 500 index slips 0.79%

Bitcoin and Ether fell in evening trading in Asia Thursday, with XRP the sole gainer in 24 hours among the top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies by market cap.

South Korea pours US$51 million into metaverse projects

South Korea is investing 27.7 billion Korean won (US$21 million) into local services looking to utilize the metaverse, the ministry of science announced Wednesday, following Tuesday’s news that it would establish a US$30 million metaverse fund to help startups expand their businesses. See related article: Japanese tech, finance firms sign pact to build metaverse economic […]

How Singapore’s crypto ambitions are taking shape and what other nations can learn

Unique in the world, Singapore is a big investor and player in digital assets while advancing regulations that favor institutions over individual crypto users, writes Danny Chong of Tranchess.

Thailand to offer tax breaks to firms issuing investment tokens

The Thai Finance Ministry will waive corporate income tax and value-added tax for firms that conduct initial coin offerings (ICOs), according to a spokesperson.

Bitcoin, Ether fall amid U.S. Fed chair warning of more interest rate hikes; Forkast NFT 500 index slips 0.65%

Bitcoin and Ether fell in afternoon trading in Asia on Wednesday, with XRP the sole gainer among the top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies by market cap.

Fed’s Powell says stablecoins could have role in financial sector if properly regulated

Stablecoins could have a place in the U.S. financial services sector if appropriate regulation is put in place, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said on Tuesday at a hearing before Congress.

Bitcoin, Ether inch up as investors await U.S. Fed chair’s comments; Forkast NFT 500 index dips 0.44%

Bitcoin and Ether gained in Tuesday afternoon trade in Asia, along with most other top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies. Polygon’s Matic token led gains followed by XRP and Dogecoin.
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Hong Kong’s crypto scam losses in 2022 more than double from 2021: SCMP

Crypto scams accounted for over half of Hong Kong’s losses from computer-related crimes in 2022.

South Korea reports US$4.3 billion in illegal foreign transactions involving cryptocurrencies

The Korea Customs Service has identified US$4.3 billion worth of illegal foreign currency transactions last year involving cryptocurrencies.

Singapore police begin probe linked to Do Kwon’s Terraform Labs: Bloomberg

Singapore’s police have begun investigations linked to Terraform Labs that was co-founded by fugitive Do Kwon, according to a Bloomberg report.

Bitcoin ATM firm accused of profiting from crypto scams via unlicensed machines: U.S. Secret Service

A crypto tech firm and three of its executives have been indicted for allegedly operating unlicensed Bitcoin ATMs in the U.S. that profited from scams.

Bitcoin gains, all other top 10 cryptos in the red amid Silvergate fallout

Bitcoin gained in Monday afternoon trade in Asia while all other top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies by market capitalization posted losses.
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Australia’s central bank identifies CBDC use cases as it prepares pilot launch

Australia has outlined potential use cases and providers for a central bank digital currency (CBDC), with a pilot program to be launched in the coming months.

Japanese banks to launch, test stablecoins on ‘Japan Open Chain’

Three major banks in Japan will issue stablecoins on an Ethereum-compatible blockchain created by the blockchain-related tools developer G.U. Technologies.

China’s digital yuan initiative gets cold reception from Hong Kong visitors

China is promoting digital yuan to Hong Kong visitors, but has not received much enthusiasm so far.

South Korea financial regulator to clamp down on voice phishing involving cryptocurrencies

South Korea will expand the existing law on voice phishing to include crypto related phone scams.

Singapore’s DDEx eyes security token offerings, mulls adding more cryptocurrencies

DBS bank’s digital exchange, which serves institutional clients, said macroeconomic conditions last year were not suitable for security token offerings (STO), but it will explore opportunities for such listings in 2023 and plans to add more crypto tokens.

Indonesia’s Crypto First

Indonesia’s crypto coming of age could help them become a blockchain superpower

Creation of U.S. digital dollar would ‘crowd out’ crypto: ex-Biden adviser

A U.S. central bank digital currency would “crowd out” the cryptocurrency ecosystem and protect national security, according to an ex-top presidential adviser.

Blur NFT wash trading soars, fueling market distortions

Top blockchain and crypto news: Blur wash trading explodes. Coinbase extends developer foray with Base test. Hong Kong crypto embrace gets Beijing’s nod.

Bitcoin, Ether rise along with most top 10 cryptos, amid ‘bull trap’ warning

Bitcoin and Ether gained in Wednesday afternoon trading in Asia, along with most other top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies by market capitalization. Asian equities mostly rose on Wednesday as investors digested economic recovery indications as Hong Kong ended its mask mandate.
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Bitcoin, Ether prices fall; Solana biggest loser in top 10 cryptos

Bitcoin and Ether fell in Tuesday afternoon trade in Asia, along with all other top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies by market capitalization, despite U.S. equities rising on Monday after last week’s selloff. Asian stock markets mostly rose on Tuesday as investors absorbed key economic indicators across the region.  
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BitFlyer founder eyes CEO comeback, share sale amid boardroom conflicts: Bloomberg

Yuzo Kano, co-founder of Japan’s largest cryptocurrency exchange bitFlyer Inc., said he plans to return as CEO, sell shares to public.

Japanese tech, finance firms sign pact to build metaverse economic zone

About 10 Japanese companies, including Fujitsu, Mitsubishi and Sumitomo Mitsui, have agreed to advance Japan’s metaverse plans with the establishment of the “Japan Metaverse Economic Zone”.

Markets: Bitcoin, Ether gain; Polygon, XRP biggest losers

Bitcoin and Ethereum rose in Monday afternoon trade in Asia along with most of the top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies by market capitalization. Asian markets dropped on Monday, following last Friday’s Wall Street selloff, as investors brace for more interest rate hikes in the U.S. due to persistently high inflation. 

Janet Yellen urges strong regulatory framework for crypto as India leads G20 push for regulation

U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen told Reuters after the G20 meeting in India on Saturday that while the U.S. has not indicated any outright bans, it is critical to put in place a strong regulatory framework for the cryptocurrency industry. 

Asia’s Opportunity to Lead Crypto Regulations

Crypto industry’s interaction with regulators is important and quite common in Asia but missing in the US, says Brooks Entwistle of Ripple Labs.

South Korea’s Lotte Group partners with Polygon for global NFT drive

Lotte Group plans to expand its non-fungible token (NFT) business onto the global market through a partnership with the Polygon blockchain.

Hong Kong’s Crypto Dream

Hong Kong’s economy is shrinking, but a recent budget draft published by the government lists some changes that could help the city recover – and crypto is at the center of it all.

Taiwan must mandate a central authority to oversee crypto by May 16, says lawmaker

A Taiwanese lawmaker has reiterated that the cabinet will have to mandate an acting central authority to shape regulatory frameworks and development roadmap for the cryptocurrency industry by May 16, a move that would push Taiwan closer to adequate crypto regulation.

NBA partners Chinese fintech giant Ant Group to launch NFTs in China

NBA will partner Ant Group – Chinese tech giant Alibaba’s fintech affiliate – to issue NBA-themed NFTs and create content on Alipay.

SEC has to clarify what’s permissible for staking, former CFTC chair says

It remains unclear whether the U.S. SEC’s enforcement action against cryptocurrency exchange Kraken represents a broader crackdown on staking, according to Timothy Massad, former Commodity Futures Trading Commission chairman.

Gate Group set to enter Hong Kong

Gate Group announced on Wednesday that it is applying for a new cryptocurrency license in Hong Kong, joining a growing list of Web3 firms entering the city.

Hong Kong’s new crypto regulation may lure Web3 firms back, experts say

Hong Kong’s proposed crypto licensing regime received Huobi Global’s pledge to return to the city, and more companies may follow, industry experts told Forkast.

Binance, Ingenico begin crypto payments in France

Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, has partnered France-based global payments giant Ingenico to offer in-store crypto payments in France using Binance Pay.

Blur lives up to name as its trading volume surpasses OpenSea

Top blockchain and crypto news: Blur’s success spurs changes at OpenSea. Is Binance eyeing US exit? Taiwan asset disclosure rules may include crypto.

Markets: Bitcoin, Ether extend losses; Polygon, Solana biggest losers

Bitcoin and Ether fell in Wednesday afternoon trade in Asia, along with all other top 10 non-stablecoin cryptocurrencies by market capitalization.
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Hong Kong to invest US$6.37 million to spur Web3 growth

Hong Kong is allocating HK$50 million (US$6.37 million) to develop its Web3 sector, the Financial Secretary Paul Chan announced Wednesday.

FTX Japan resumes withdrawals through Liquid Japan web platform

FTX Japan, the Japanese subsidiary of Sam Bankman-Fried’s bankrupt FTX, resumed withdrawal of customer holdings on Tuesday.