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October 2021

What is Hong Kong’s future as a crypto hub?

Hong Kong, a hotbed for crypto startups and exchanges, is at a crossroads, writes Jeremy Ng of Gemini. Here’s how the industry can better secure its future.

What are stablecoins, and why are some governments so afraid of them?

Stablecoins combine the portability of crypto with the price stability of fiat currencies. But are they all that stable?

September 2021

Why China’s latest stomp on crypto is turbo-charging DeFi growth

DeFi tokens like dYdX soared after China’s latest move to throttle crypto. Is this a short-term spurt or decentralized finance shifting into high gear?

Who in the world should worry about China’s new crypto ban?

As Chinese authorities take aim at crypto violations outside mainland borders, Forkast.News asks lawyers in the know: Who is in China’s line of fire?

How China’s crypto clampdowns could reshape the rest of the world

Against the global tide of digital asset adoption, China’s harshest crypto ban yet heralds golden opportunities, writes Richard Byworth of EQONEX. Other governments should take note.

Unmade in China: Beijing’s crypto cold war turns hot

Top blockchain and cryptocurrency news: Beijing’s crypto crusade comes to a head. Chinese mining caves in. Mr. Goxx reaps robust returns.

The curious timing behind China’s thunder and lightning at crypto

China assaulted crypto with a new ferocity just as Bitcoin options expired and Evergrande escaped death. Coincidence? Ben Caselin of AAX lays out the clues.

Binance to restrict Singapore users from buying crypto and spot trading on Binance.com

Amid growing regulatory heat, Binance — the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by trading volume — will restrict users in Singapore from buying cryptocurrencies using fiat, spot trading and liquid swaps on its main Binance.com platform starting Oct. 26, according to a company announcement. Fast facts Binance is advising Binance.com users in Singapore to cease all […]

China’s crypto ban: what you need to know

How is China’s latest clampdown on crypto different from its previous bans — and how do authorities plan to catch the scofflaws? Henri Arslanian of PwC breaks it down.

Crypto markets shrug off China’s latest saber-rattling

Is China’s influence over Bitcoin and the global crypto market waning? Chinese exchanges get a thrashing as decentralized exchanges get happy on clampdown news.
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What does China’s crypto ban really mean? Insights from the ground

China’s hardline stance against crypto is already rippling beyond its borders. A mainland crypto insider explains the global shakeup yet to come.

Fewer South Korean crypto exchanges remain in business under new industry regulations

Around 35 virtual asset exchanges will vanish as of midnight Friday, as the country imposes new rules designed to protect consumers.

D-day for Korean crypto exchanges; e-CNY project speeds up

D-day for Korean crypto exchanges meanwhile e-CNY project speeds up

Crypto unicorn Amber Group eyes listing in U.S. despite lack of regulatory clarity

Amber Group, a Hong Kong-based crypto financial services company, is eyeing a direct listing in the U.S. within the next two years, Amber Group co-founder and CEO Michael Wu told the South China Morning Post in an interview. Fast facts Founded in 2017, Amber Group propelled to unicorn status this year following its US$100 million Series […]

South Korea’s crypto crackdown: What you need to know

The country’s crypto industry has been turned upside down with stricter operating rules that take effect tomorrow.

Investors get ready, India crypto tax in the works

The Indian ministry of finance has formed a panel to examine how income from crypto investments can be taxed, according to a report by Inc42. Fast facts The panel will evaluate whether crypto income can be taxed as capital gains or if it requires the formation of a new category. The committee is required to […]

Why decentralization can help solve the content moderation problem | Ep. 3

Why is content moderation a cosmically huge problem, do humans need to be involved and how can the decentralized web ensure it’s a place for everyone.

India may not be ready to follow El Salvador’s lead, but don’t rule out cryptocurrency, finance minister says

Nirmala Sitharaman says ‘a futuristic thing can’t be shut out’ as the country considers crypto regulation, including a possible blanket ban.

Upbit passes Korea crypto race post; P2P transactions surge in India

Upbit passes Korea crypto race post meanwhile P2P transactions surge in India

Black Friday in South Korea as crypto exchanges announce shutdown

All but four platforms in South Korea obligated to announce the suspension of their services by today.

Laos backpedals on crypto ban, looks to trading, mining pilot program

The government of Laos has authorized six firms to trade and mine cryptocurrencies, ending a ban imposed in 2018, according to a recent notice from the prime minister’s office.  Fast facts Laos had implemented a complete ban on cryptocurrencies three years ago, including on trading and mining activities. As recently as last month, the country’s […]

South Korean exchanges close cash-to-crypto trading services as new rules loom

Mid-sized crypto exchange Foblgate announced the closure of its Korean won (KRW) trading functions in advance of a government mandate banning digital asset platforms from operating cash-to-crypto services without a local bank partnership. Fast facts Foblgate announced it is temporarily suspending its KRW withdrawal, deposit and trading market between cryptocurrencies and the Korean won. Instead, […]

South Korea’s crypto ‘death note’ updated; 7 more exchanges to survive

Financial authorities reveal an updated list of virtual asset platforms that have complied with new regulations.

Australian banks defend decision to shun business with crypto providers

Two of Australia’s “Big Four” banks — National Australia Bank and Westpac — have hit back at criticism they are suppressing competition by refusing to do business with cryptocurrency providers in the country, according to a report. Fast facts While neither of the banks have formal policies excluding crypto businesses, NAB chief executive Ross McEwan […]

Mark Cuban to Coinbase: ‘Go on the offensive’ against SEC over high-yield product

Billionaire investor Mark Cuban says Coinbase should “go on the offensive” against the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in its feud over high-yield savings account Lend. Brad Garlinghouse, CEO of Ripple — which is itself embroiled in ongoing litigation with the SEC — quipped “Welcome to the party” in a GIF tweet. Fast facts In […]

SEC pushes back on Ripple’s legal questions over XRP

Ripple wants to know how SEC regards Bitcoin, Ether and XRP, but SEC says Ripple is repeating the same questions as ‘they do not like the answers they received.’

El Salvador wowed the world by adopting Bitcoin as legal tender. Other countries are taking note

Following crypto’s adoption in one struggling economy, nations in Latin America and elsewhere are now weighing the pros and cons of digital currency

What decentralization means for internet censorship | Ep. 2

What was internet censorship like in the early days, how has it changed, and what role does decentralization play.

South Korean crypto exchanges in ‘purgatory’ plea for survival

Smaller virtual asset exchanges ask for mercy as a deadline looms to commit to Korea’s new standards.

Bitcoin price plunges; Metaverse actions heats up in China

Bitcoin price plunges however Metaverse actions heats up in China

SEC threatens to sue Coinbase over high-yield savings account

Crypto platform CEO claims regulators use ‘intimidation tactics behind closed doors’ by refusing to provide clarity.

Hong Kong regulator: ramp up oversight of virtual assets

An official from Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission said on Tuesday that the regulator wants to increase oversight of virtual assets because scams related to them have emerged in the market, according to a report by local media etnet. Fast facts Julia Leung, deputy chief executive officer at SFC, said Tuesday at a webinar […]

South Korea expected to allow more crypto exchanges to survive do-or-die regulations

Only 21 out of 60 exchanges are expected to continue their services in Korea.

How aggrieved traders are uniting against Binance after the crypto crash

Too small to fight as individuals, Binance users are now banding together to take on the world’s largest crypto exchange in arbitration. David Kay of Liti Capital explains how it’s done.

So, no ban? India’s crypto bill will treat virtual currencies as commodities in the asset class

The veil of uncertainty that has shrouded crypto regulatory discussions seems to be lifting, but how the government will regulate and tax digital money remains to be seen.

Exchanges in South Korea race toward last chance of survival

Crypto trading platforms rush to meet a Sept. 24 deadline, hoping to comply with new rules designed to protect investors.

SEC charges BitConnect founder with $2B ‘textbook Ponzi scheme’

The founder of the now-defunct crypto exchange BitConnect is being sued for a US$2 billion “textbook Ponzi scheme” by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, according to a Reuters report. Fast facts The SEC alleges BitConnect’s founder Satish Kumbhani, an Indian citizen, lied about the exchange’s ability to earn 40% returns on investments of BitConnect’s […]

Australian consumer protection body issues warning to crypto investors

The Securities and Investments Commission warned against investing in digital-asset financial products. Some say the warning lacks specifics.

August 2021

SEC wants to watch videos of Ripple’s company meetings

The battle over discovery escalates between SEC and Ripple over what might have been said about the XRP at Ripple’s all-hands meetings since 2014. Will there be popcorn?

Philippines may classify Axie Infinity as a company running a payment system

The hot play-to-earn token game Axie Infinity is under increased scrutiny from Philippines tax  authorities. The country’s central bank said it is closely monitoring how players use game tokens to decide whether to classify and regulate Axie’s parent company as an entity that runs payment systems. Fast facts The central bank, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, […]

More teens in South Korea buy crypto despite strict pending regulations

New data shows increasing deposits made by teens in virtual currency despite new rules that may close down many platforms in less than a month.

Cardano Foundation partners with Coinfirm for AML/CFT compliance

In the latest from the world’s third-largest cryptocurrency, which has gone from strength to strength this month, the Cardano Foundation is partnering with blockchain analytics provider Coinfirm.io to ensure the network complies with the Financial Action Task Force’s guidelines. Fast facts In a company announcement this week, the Cardano Foundation said it would be using […]

How regulators should consider the future of DeFi | Ep. 1

What is DeFi, why it’s poised to enable financial inclusion, and how the showdown between decentralized finance and regulators is taking shape.

Crypto bank in South Korea says it aims to comply with strict but unclear new law

Sandbank, a South Korean bank for virtual assets, says it is in the process of acquiring the necessary certification needed to legally operate in the country. However, the financial authorities have yet to decide whether their requirements apply to crypto banks. Fast facts In an announcement, Sandbank told its customers it has put acquiring the […]

Court in China says trading in cryptocurrency ‘not protected by law’

The ruling by Shandong’s High Court backs up China’s official stance against trading in cryptocurrencies. What does this mean for investors?

Ripple: SEC ex-chief Hinman’s views on XRP are ‘dubious’

Ripple also challenges SEC’s use of ‘deliberative process privilege’ to prevent agency documents on Bitcoin, Ethereum and XRP from disclosure.

Canadian regulator seeks enforcement action against crypto exchange OKEx

The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) is seeking to bring an enforcement action against Aux Cayes Fintech Co. Ltd., which operates the OKEx platform, for allegedly violating Ontario securities law, according to a statement. Fast facts According to the statement of allegations filed by the OSC’s enforcement team on Aug. 18, Seychelles-incorporated Aux Cayes — which […]

China shuts down website and social media of high-profile blockchain center

China continues its crackdown on certain illegal social organizations, as authorities shut down the website and social media accounts of the China Blockchain Application Center — a organization once led by some of the nation’s most prominent crypto industry leaders, state media China National Radio reported yesterday. Fast facts The China Blockchain Application Center was […]

Binance users burned by outage band together to take legal action

Crypto traders who suffered losses on Binance due to tech outages are turning to arbitration and crypto litigation finance.

Shanghai court rules Bitcoin is virtual property, not currency

A district court in Shanghai has ruled that Bitcoin is virtual property, not a currency that is allowed to circulate, according to a statement released earlier this week. Fast facts A Minhang district court in Shanghai stated this week that it heard a case in which a plaintiff purchased Bitcoin mining machines from a defendant […]

Netherlands warns Binance is illegally offering crypto services

The central bank of the Netherlands has issued a warning that Binance — the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world by trading volume — is illegally operating in the country. Fast facts Binance is providing crypto services in the Netherlands without the required legal registration with De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB), according to the regulator. “This […]

El Salvador’s finance minister says Bitcoin is ‘totally optional’

In what will likely be a relief for many Salvadorans, El Salvador’s finance minister said the use of BTC will remain “totally optional” and businesses will not be sanctioned for not using it when the country’s controversial BTC law comes into effect on Sept. 7, reports Yahoo News. Fast facts The country’s adoption of BTC […]

India’s crypto sector on edge as bill that may lead to ban awaits cabinet approval

If cabinet approves crypto bill by November, it could be introduced as early as parliament’s winter session.

Ripple decries SEC’s demand for employee Slack messages on XRP

Ripple claims the SEC’s request for 1 million more of the company’s internal messages is costly and unlikely to resolve disputes at the heart of the litigation.

U.S. Treasury eases concerns over crypto reporting requirements

In welcome news for the U.S. crypto industry, the Treasury Department is slated to clarify that only crypto companies that fit its definition of “brokers” will have to comply with new tax reporting requirements outlined in the country’s US$1 trillion infrastructure bill, Bloomberg reports. Fast facts Quoting an anonymous Treasury source, Bloomberg reported that crypto […]

Iran tax authority pushes to legalize crypto exchanges

In a position seemingly at odds with the remainder of the country’s government, the Iranian National Tax Authority has proposed legalizing digital asset exchanges in order to better collect tax from them, according to local media outlet Eghtesad News. Fast facts The INTA also warned that imposing overly stringent regulation on the sector could have […]

How to avoid the pitfalls of FATF’s crypto travel rule

Crypto exchanges, or VASPs, are coming under increasing regulation. Complying with the Financial Action Task Force’s travel rule will be one of them.

US Senate passes $1 trillion infrastructure bill with crypto tax requirements

Despite strong lobbying attempts from the crypto industry for last-minute amendments, the Biden administration’s US$1 trillion infrastructure bill passed the Senate last night with heightened tax reporting requirements for crypto “brokers” and possible ramifications for crypto miners, as Yahoo News reports. Fast facts A compromise amendment requiring unanimous consent to be added to the bill […]

Tencent blockchain applet IOU accused of breaking Chinese competition law

Chinese blockchain company RongxinChain has alleged that Tencent’s IOU applet is operating in breach of the country’s Unfair Competition Law, according to a report by the Shenzhen Baoan District Credit Promotion Association. Fast facts Tencent’s IOU blockchain applet went online in July on the company’s “super app,” Wechat, allowing users to issue legally valid IOUs […]

USDC issuer Circle to become full-reserve digital currency bank

Amid a period of increasing regulatory interest in stablecoins, Circle, the digital payment company that issues USDC, the world’s second-largest stablecoin , has announced plans to become a full-reserve national digital currency bank in the U.S. Fast facts In a company blog post, CEO and co-founder Jeremy Allaire said the company was prepared to operate […]

Unocoin now allows Indians to buy pizza, coffee with Bitcoin

Several cryptocurrency payment methods exist around the world, but new service is the first major one of its kind in India.

Crypto miners set to be snared by U.S. infrastructure bill

A landmark US$1 trillion infrastructure bill moved one step closer to becoming law on Sunday, notably without carve-outs for cryptocurrency miners and network validators. What does it mean for the industry?

First SEC DeFi bust made in US$30M fraud case

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has taken its first regulatory action involving decentralized finance in a case involving the “unregistered sales of more than US$30 million in securities,” according to an agency press release. Fast facts Gregory Keough and Derek Acree were charged along with their Cayman Islands-based company, Blockchain Credit Partners, over allegedly […]

What is the regulatory outlook for virtual asset exchanges in Hong Kong and Singapore?

Singapore and Hong Kong are at the forefront of regulations over crypto exchanges, writes Vince Turcotte of Eventus Systems. Here’s why trade surveillance and risk management will be critical.

Ripple expands XRP into NFTs amid escalating legal battles

As court grants CEO request to obtain info from Binance to bolster defense in SEC lawsuit, Ripple seeks to expand use cases for XRP Ledger.

Venezuela launches CBDC amid runaway inflation and currency redenomination

In an effort to curb runaway inflation, Venezuela’s central bank is removing six zeros from its currency and putting a digital bolivar into circulation on Oct. 1, according to reporting by Bloomberg. Fast facts An example of a central bank digital currency, the digital bolivar was announced by the Venezuelan central bank’s Twitter account yesterday […]

Ethereum rising: 3 reasons why Ether’s price could soon break $3,000

Will Google greenlighting US crypto ads, Ethereum’s London upgrade and clearer regulations pave the way for another Ether price rally?

U.S. infrastructure bill set for possible change following crypto industry backlash

An amendment has been introduced to the US$1 trillion infrastructure bill currently before the U.S. Senate that would exempt bitcoin miners and other validators from a provision seeking to raise funds for its fulfilment, according to a report by CNBC. Fast facts As Forkast.News has reported, the provision sought to raise US$28 billion over the […]

SEC chair labels crypto industry ‘Wild West,’ asks for more powers

The cryptocurrency trading industry has been labeled a “Wild West,” riddled with fraud and investor risk, by U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Gary Gensler, according to a Reuters report. Fast facts Calling on Congress at the Aspen Security Forum to give the SEC more power to regulate the industry, Gensler said many of the […]

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 […]

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.