Russia Developing Sandbox for Cross-border Crypto Payments – Bitcoin News
An institute facilitating Russian exports is now working on the establishment of a sandbox for international crypto payments, local media reported. The goal is to identify potential regulatory and technological challenges for settlements with digital assets.
Russia Prepares to Test Crypto Payments for Exports in Dedicated Sandbox
The Russian Export Center (REC), which is a state-run institute tasked to support Russia’s exports, is now considering the employment of digital currencies as an alternative approach to international settlements under sanctions.
The organization believes that setting up a “cross-border digital sandbox” is a promising initiative. The project will aim to create opportunities for fintech companies to process payments using digital financial instruments on behalf of Russian exporters and importers.
Settlements in cryptocurrencies represent an alternative payment system, which will develop incredibly quickly now, according to Veronika Nikishina who heads the REC. Speaking at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, she elaborated:
As a development institution that captures all current trends, we are now closely studying the possibility of becoming a digital sandbox to pilot the use of cryptocurrencies in cross-border payments.
Quoted by Tass, Nikishina added that the institute has already gathered representatives of fintech firms and regulatory bodies and is closely collaborating with the Central Bank of Russia as well as with the country’s financial watchdog, Rosfinmonitoring. Without these participants, it would be impossible to create all layers of crypto payments, the official noted.
The REC director emphasized the importance of building a sandbox “in order to identify all possible risks in terms of regulation and technology.” Veronika Nikishina believes this would allow making such payments quickly and safely in the future.
The initiative comes after Bank of Russia, a firm opponent to the legalization of cryptocurrencies in the country, softened its stance on crypto payments in foreign trade deals, amid mounting Western restrictions on Russia’s finances imposed over its military invasion of Ukraine.
Most Russian institutions agree that the ruble should remain the only legal tender inside Russia as authorities prepare to adopt comprehensive crypto regulations. Earlier this week, members of the State Duma, the lower house of parliament, approved a draft law banning the use of cryptocurrency as a means of payment but left the door open for exceptions envisaged in other federal laws.
Tags in this story
Crypto, crypto assets, crypto payments, Cryptocurrencies, Cryptocurrency, Digital Assets, Digital Currency, Institute, Payments, REC, restrictions, Russia, russian, Sanctions, sandbox, Settlements, tests, trials, Ukraine, War
Do you think Russia will start using cryptocurrencies for international settlements? Share your expectations in the comments section below.
Lubomir Tassev is a journalist from tech-savvy Eastern Europe who likes Hitchens’s quote: “Being a writer is what I am, rather than what I do.” Besides crypto, blockchain and fintech, international politics and economics are two other sources of inspiration.
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Ethereum Pulls Darth Maul, ETH Price Recovers 10% In One Hour
Data from Coingecko, at the time of writing, records a slight recovery for Ethereum and large cryptocurrencies. The second crypto by market cap has been trending to the downside over the past weeks and was seeing briefly breaking below $1,000 on certain venues.
Related Reading | TA: Ethereum Could Resume Decline Below $1,100, Bears In Control
At the time of writing, Ethereum (ETH) trades at $1,180 with a 35% loss in the past 7-days. According to economist Alex Krüger, ETH’s price records a 20% loss and 20% profit during today’s trading session which could be a first in the cryptocurrency’s history.
$ETH has put in a 20% intraday round tripper today.
Similar to Bitcoin, Ethereum is reacting to the downside of the macroeconomic situation. As the U.S. Federal Reserve (FED) announced a 75 basis points increase in interest rates, preceded by a cascade of liquidations and negative news for the crypto market, BTC and ETH were able to regain some bullish momentum.
Potentially driven by overextended selling pressure, and panic amongst crypto investors, ETH’s price bounced back from around $1,000 to its current levels. Krüger believes the current price action is part of a well-established market pattern:
(…) since December. Hawkish market expectations => prices tank in anticipation => hawkish FOMC => assets rally. Partially priced in something. Not a meme. This has been so consistent it’s developed into a pattern. It won’t last forever.
The market could see more volatility in the coming days. Krüger believes the market could continue to positively react to the FED’s announcement as it was within expectations. Thus, the bounce could see some continuation. He added:
Market liked hawkish Powell. Short rates higher (in response to increased hawkishness), long rates lower (in response to increased credibility in the Fed’s ability to reign in inflation). Hoping this sticks and we get continuation.
Ethereum Sees Short-Term Buying Pressure
Data from Material Indicators (MI) records an increase in buying pressure for ETH on crypto exchange Binance. In lower timeframes, almost all invertors classes shifted from selling to buying the current price action.
Related Reading | Tron Falls Sharply As Sun Scrambles To Save Stablecoin
This could contribute to ETH’s current momentum and possibly push the cryptocurrency to previous levels. However, ETH whales (in brown on the chart below) sold into today’s price action and could get in the way of any sustainable recovery.
Web3, unpacking regulations, and optimism for crypto’s future
“Everything is bigger in Texas” proved to be true during Consensus 2022. The crypto conference took place June 9–12 in Austin, Texas, this year, attracting 17,000 people from across the globe, despite the 100-degree plus weather. According to the event sponsors, Consensus 2018, which was held at the Hilton Hotel in New York, had previously drawn in almost 9,000 attendees.
Caitlin Long, CEO of Custodia — the Wyoming-based digital asset bank — told Cointelegraph that the event this year speaks volumes. “New York has sent a lot of this industry fleeing to places like Austin, Wyoming and Miami. It will be interesting to see if New York makes a comeback.”
Aside from its new location, current market conditions were another defining factor of the event. However, attendees remained optimistic about the crypto ecosystem as a whole. In general, new projects and the rise of Web3 were the main discussion points rather than cryptocurrency prices. Ray Youssef, founder and CEO of Paxful — a peer-to-peer cryptocurrency marketplace — told Cointelegraph that crypto winters allow for building phases to start, which he fully supports. “We are now seeing projects build platforms that are real and empowering.”
Building the crypto ecosystem in a bear market
To Youssef’s point, Web3 and new tools to advance crypto ecosystems were hot topics of discussion. For example, Meltem Demirors, chief strategy officer of CoinShares — a digital asset investment firm — told Cointelegraph that despite the bear market, she has seen an increase in people interested in different facets of the crypto industry:
“There are different niches and pockets of crypto I’m now seeing, some of which I haven’t even heard of. For example, the STEPN group is here, which is a whole move-to-earn movement. The music NFT and fashion NFT scene is also big here. These are newer communities I’ve read about and have engaged with, but seeing them congregate and host their own events has been really fun.”
Demirors gave a keynote at the event on cults and how the crypto community is currently creating shared identity, belief systems and lifestyle rituals around emerging projects. “Cults usually have a negative connotation, but there is a massive crisis of meaning in our world today. People no longer focus on their occupation, religion or nationality. Crypto is filling this interesting role, bringing together people through memes, capitalism and community values,” she explained. As such, Demirors noted that she believes “crypto cults” are attracting many people because it provides a sense of purpose, along with capital. “There is an interesting convergence happening,” she said.
While the crypto space continues to attract more participants, Staci Warden, CEO of the Algorand Foundation, told Cointelegraph that Alogrand views this crypto winter as an opportunity for building. “We think that there will be some shakeout in the industry and we are ready to innovate,” she remarked.
Specifically, Warden explained that one area the Algorand community is focused on is what Web3 means for financial inclusion. “With Web2, everything went back to huge platforms, but with Web3, creators and contributors receive incentives and benefits for their participation.” With the rise of Web3 on the horizon, Warden shared that Algorand is “laser focused on real world use cases of financial inclusion and the monetization of creators for the work they do.”Web3 is also impacting a number of mainstream industries such as fashion and the creator economy. Shedding light on this, Justin Banon, co-founder of the Boson Protocol — a decentralized network for commerce — told Cointelegraph that last year, the crypto sector witnessed the nonfungible token (NFT) craze, which has prompted the fashion industry’s participation.
“Physical fashion isn’t going away, but digital is arriving. It’s become obvious that the two will combine and become facets of the same thing,” he said. Banon also mentioned that a majority of the world’s population will undoubtedly spend more time in the digital world, which is why he believes there will be a need for digital fashion. “This will allow us to identify and differentiate ourselves,” he said.
Regarding the creator economy, Solo Ceesay, co-founder of Calaxy — an open social marketplace for creators — told Cointelegraph that Calaxy recently raised $26 million in strategic funding to expand its operations and development efforts.
While the emergence and growth of Web3-focused projects are notable, it’s also important to point out that current market conditions have been challenging for other key players. Peter Wall, CEO of Argo Blockchain — a cryptocurrency mining company — told Cointelegraph that many Bitcoin miners raised equity in 2021, but this has become difficult for some, given the bear market.
“There are only two ways for miners to raise capital now, which is either through debt or by selling Bitcoin,” he said. Although this may be, Wall elaborated that only miners with a reputable track record will receive loans. “They need to be able to execute with clear plans, while not being over committed to machine purchases and bills they can’t pay.”
Crypto’s regulatory landscape in the United States
Regulations were also heavily discussed at the conference. This shouldn’t come as a surprise, as a number of key regulatory events took place leading up to the event. For example, the bipartisan crypto bill, also known as the “Responsible Financial Innovation Act,” was introduced in the United States Senate on June 7, 2022. According to a statement, the bipartisan bill sponsored by senators Cynthia Lummis of Wyoming and Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, “addresses CFTC and SEC jurisdiction, stablecoin regulation, banking, tax treatment of digital assets, and interagency coordination.”
Senator Pat Toomey, the ranking member of the Senate Banking Committee, told Cointelegraph that he thinks the bipartisan bill is “terrific,” further noting that the bill contains modest differences in how stablecoins are treated compared with his stablecoin approach, which was drafted in April this year. Toomey added that while he has not released a bill yet, there are “bridgeable differences” between his draft and the legislation from Lummis and Gillibrand:
“Kirsten Gillibrand said on our panel that we can bridge those differences on some of the things I said, but it’s also very constructive to have a Democrat and Republican senator introducing a pretty comprehensive bill that sensibly creates a regulatory framework that is meant to allow this space to thrive. From that point of view, I think it’s very constructive.”
Echoing Toomey, Long mentioned that the bipartisan bill is an important advancement for the crypto sector, stating, “This is the bill to watch in Washington. There are now 50 different crypto bills that have been introduced in Congress and there is only one that is bipartisan sponsored by the powerful senator from New York State, along with the powerful senator on senate banking from Wyoming, which is the state leading digital assets. That is quite a combination.”
Long added that stablecoin regulations and central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) will be major topics of discussion this year. For instance, although President Biden released an executive order in March 2022 calling for the research and development of a potential U.S. central bank digital currency, Long remarked that she does not believe the U.S. will issue a CBDC. “The Federal Reserve will put out the FedNow Service by the end of this year, which is only six months away. However, no rules have been revealed yet, so we don’t know what this will look like.”
Moreover, Long predicts that stablecoins will be a main focus for regulators, pointing out that Wyoming’s special purpose depository regime falls into this category, alongside The New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) regulatory guidance for U.S. dollar-backed stablecoins issued by DFS-regulated entities. Yet, Long explained that “it will be a couple of years before we realistically see what happens in terms of a law that actually passes” regarding stablecoins. She further remarked that regulators have had the opportunity to create regulations around stablecoins but have yet to act. She said:
“Regulators have sat on legitimate applications of parties that have sought permission, while the scams have proliferated in this industry. It’s tough, but I firmly believe the regulators could have acted sooner. A lot of people wouldn’t have been hurt if they had done so.”
To Long’s point, Toomey said that he thinks there is now pressure and momentum to pass stablecoin legislation. “U.S Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen said in front of the banking committee that we should do it this year and I think that is realistic,” said Toomey. He added that the pressure has become greater due to the recent collapse of the Terra ecosystem.
“I think it influences legislation in the sense that it has drawn attention to the crypto space, and it’s a wake up call to the federal government. My own view is that algorithmic stablecoins should be treated separately from fiat/asset backed stablecoins,” he said, adding, “But let’s be clear: Terra was very large, and when something that large can collapse, the natural inclination of a regulator is to look out across the field to see what other similar instruments and products are there, and the dangers that may arise.”
Given the current state of cryptocurrency markets, it’s notable that many ecosystem participants remained optimistic about the future. In particular, Austin’s cryptocurrency community appears to be thriving, as it has become a hot spot for crypto mining companies and a number of Web3 projects.
Patrick Stanley, core contributor to City Coins — the cryptocurrency project that has been implemented in New York State and Miami— told Cointelegraph that AustinCoin (ATX) can be activated at any time, noting that there is a group currently working on a proposal for getting new CityCoins up and running.
“We want to be more deliberate about launching AustinCoin. We already have people on the ground in Austin, we have the capital, and there is clear commitment. We just want to ensure all of this before activating AustinCoin.” Stanley added that Austin Mayor Steve Adler is a “cryptocurrency progressive,” noting that he understands that CityCoins leaves less of a footprint than having big tech companies move to Austin. “CityCoins is like getting the tax revenue of a large company without the footprint and real estate going up. This has been very compelling to Mayor Adler,” he shared.
Demirors also pointed out that she is excited about the advancement of crypto infrastructures, such as new data centers, semiconductors and the overall “plumbing” that makes cryptocurrency and any technology function properly. “We need to make sure the U.S. is a friendly jurisdiction for people to develop not only software, but also hardware to deploy at scale,” she said.
While Demirors recognizes that most legislation currently isn’t being drafted around this aspect, she is hopeful that Texas and other states continue to take a welcoming approach to initiatives such as mining. Demirors also noted that the right to consumer and financial privacy isn’t being considered in crypto regulations, remarking that most of these bills want more financial surveillance. “I think as an industry, it’s important for us to push back on that, particularly in a world where CBDCs are being explored.”
Finally, it’s important to point out that the crypto industry is continuing to bring on key players to help with advancements. For example, Grayscale Investments recently hired Donald B. Verrilli, a former U.S. Solicitor General, to join the firm to help push for a spot Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF). Verrilli mentioned during a press conference at Consensus last week that he is trying to take public policy and move it in a constructive direction.
As such, Verrilli aims to convince the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to convert Grayscale’s Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) into a spot-based ETF. In order to accomplish this, Verrilli explained that it’s “arbitrary and capricious” to treat cases that are alike in a different manner, in which he referenced the SEC’s approval of a Bitcoin futures ETF, but not a Bitcoin-spot ETF. “It seems like this is a common sense point. I am new to this, but looking at it so far, it’s very hard to see what argument there could be for treating these things differently.”
Trading for EGLD, FARM, FORTH and More Starts June 16 – Deposit Now!
We’re thrilled to announce that Kraken now supports Elrond (EGLD), Harvest Finance (FARM), Stafi Protocol (FIS), Ampleforth Governance Token (FORTH), Gitcoin (GTC), Liechtenstein Cryptoassets Exchange (LCX), MXC (MXC), NEAR Protocol (NEAR) and Swipe (SXP)!
Funding and Trading
Funding is live, and trading will begin on June 16 at approximately 14:30 UTC. Keep an eye on the status page for updates.
You can add these tokens to your Kraken account by navigating to Funding, selecting the asset, and hitting Deposit. Deposits require 20 confirmations (~5 minutes) for all, except for EGLD and NEAR (under 2 minutes).
All tokens are tradeable against USD and EUR on Kraken and the Kraken Pro interface with the following price precisions and minimum deposits:
Min order size
EGLD and NEAR are the native tokens of the Elrond and NEAR Protocol blockchains.
Trading is not available to residents of Japan.
Harvest Finance (FARM) trading is not available to residents of the United States, Canada and Japan.
Trading via Kraken App and Instant Buy will be available once the liquidity conditions are met (when a sufficient number of buyers and sellers have entered the market for their orders to be efficiently matched).
Here’s what you need to know about the assets:
Elrond is a scalability focused blockchain network that is building a new internet economy. The network utilizes a blockchain scaling approach called sharding to split the network into smaller pieces in order to address the latency issues that have affected other blockchains as they grow. EGLD is Elrond’s native token, which allows users to pay for network transaction fees and to earn rewards for helping to secure the network via staking. Check out the Kraken Learn Center guide, What is Elrond? to learn more.
Harvest Finance (FARM)
Harvest Finance is a decentralized finance (DeFi) platform and automated yield farm. Harvest Finance stakes user tokens en masse, auto-compounding them for improved returns. The FARM token allows holders to vote on the direction of the protocol and can also be used to provide liquidity to the platform.
Stafi Protocol (FIS)
Staking Finance or StaFi is one of the first DeFi protocols to unlock the liquidity of staked assets. Users can stake their Proof-of-Stake tokens and receive equivalent amounts of rTokens (reward tokens). Users can trade these rTokens on decentralized exchanges and also use them to earn staking rewards. FIS is the governance token for the StaFi protocol and helps to secure the StaFi ecosystem through staking.
Ampleforth Governance Token (FORTH)
Ampleforth is the first rebasing cryptocurrency. AMPL follows the value of the U.S. Dollar by changing the circulating supply of AMPL on a daily basis. FORTH is the governance token of the Ampleforth protocol. FORTH holders can vote on changes to the Ampleforth protocol and influence the direction of the platform.
Gitcoin is a community focused blockchain project and quadratic funding solution laying out the future infrastructure of Web3. Gitcoin plans to fund and provide support to Web3 developers building the decentralized internet. GTC is Gitcoin’s governance token, which lets holders vote in the GitcoinDAO and help plan the future of the platform.
Liechtenstein Cryptoassets Exchange (LCX)
Liechtenstein Cryptoassets Exchange is a cryptocurrency trading platform offering advanced trading tools, token sales and security token offerings. LCX also offers a decentralized exchange aggregator that allows users to compare and execute trades across multiple platforms from a single interface. The LCX token can be used to pay for services offered, such as LCX terminal subscriptions, custodial services and exchange transactions.
Machine eXchange Protocol (MXProtocol) is building a decentralized global network of devices that enables a more efficient transfer of data around the world. MXProtocol uses the distributed architecture of blockchain to create data-sharing efficiencies across internet of things (IOT) networks. MXC tokens allow users to pay for network transaction fees and earn rewards for helping to secure the network via staking.
Swipe offers a technical infrastructure for payment networks including credit card providers, fintech services and cryptocurrency-linked debit cards. By offering a robust set of APIs, businesses are able to offer fully customized and compliant cryptocurrency offerings within their traditional financial products. SXP is used to pay for transaction fees across the various Swipe product offerings.
Near Protocol (NEAR)
NEAR Protocol is a Proof-of-Stake layer-one blockchain with support for smart contracts. Using a technique called sharding to overcome scalability challenges, it aims to provide a user-friendly platform for decentralized apps (dApps). The NEAR cryptocurrency allows users to pay fees for transactions, run applications and pay for storage. Check out the Kraken Learn Center guide, What is NEAR Protocol? to learn more.
Will Kraken list more assets?
Yes! But our policy is to never reveal any details until shortly before launch – not even which assets we are considering. All of Kraken’s listed tokens are available on our website, and all future tokens will be announced on Kraken’s blog and social media profiles. Our client engagement specialists cannot answer any questions about which assets we may be listing in the future.
Trade with caution
There is no guarantee that a limit order will execute. There is also no guarantee of executing at a certain price for a market order. The availability and liquidity of the particular digital asset will impact these types of orders.
Listing an asset or token for trade is not a recommendation to buy, sell, or participate in the associated network. Do your own research and invest at your own risk.
Ternoa, First NFT-Centric Blockchain, Releases Mainnet Setting to Disrupt NFT Economy – Press release Bitcoin News
PRESS RELEASE. Paris, France, 15 June 2022: Ternoa is a layer 1 open-source blockchain ecosystem that facilitates the adoption of utilitarian NFTs by giving developers full technological stack, access to independent infrastructure, nodes, developers’ community, and funding. The project is guided by principles of security and ownership, made possible with a combination of decentralization and encryption.
Since 2021, the role of NFTs has transformed dramatically: from mere cultural assets to building blocks that allow developers to incorporate utility in the next generation of decentralized applications and Web3 NFT-based projects. As exciting as this evolution is, it also comes with challenges for programmers such as the need to learn a new language, high infrastructure costs, and difficulties accessing relevant information for newcomers. These obstacles are particularly prominent for NFT utility-based projects, as most blockchains rely upon complex smart contracts to build standalone use cases.
“On most blockchains, building NFT dapps can prove at best cumbersome, at worst complex. Ternoa is designed to break barriers for developers and empower them to save time and money. Mass adoption of NFTs is only possible with a fundamental tech evolution,” Mickael Canu, Co-Founder & CEO of Ternoa.
Ternoa just deployed Mainnet as a ready-to-use version of the blockchain network with an NFT-first mindset. The first-phase of Mainnet marked successful implementation of native CAPS, nodes, and governance features to the multi-chain network. With this foundational step, developers can already experiment with concepts using the JS SDK, allowing them to build dapps and scale their Web3 projects using Ternoa to cut costs and save time.
In addition, an entire range of tools has been developed and launched over the last few months to help user adoption: an explorer for users to monitor transactions, a status page to watch real-time status of Ternoa networks, a wallet to interact with native Capsule Coins and NFTs, and a Token bridge for erc20 holders to swap their CAPS to native and use the blockchain. To ensure a maximum security to users, the infrastructure was successfully pentested by Hacken, and the Token bridge has been audited by Chainsulting.
“Reaching this milestone is a crucial step for Ternoa and all teams working tirelessly to make Mainnet happen. We’re proud to offer an open-source specialized NFT infrastructure and easy-to-use JS SDK to accelerate adoption of NFTs by developers across the world,” Mickael Canu, Co-Founder & CEO of Ternoa.
Now, blockchain developers can save time and program faster, leveraging Ternoa’s highly secure, scalable, Metaverse-ready infrastructure. With more developer-friendly features to be released in the subsequent phases, Ternoa actively expands their community of builders. This fast-growing project is set to disrupt the NFT economy by making next-generation NFTs easy-to-build on the blockchain. Early contributors who joined the Ternoa ecosystem already started developing first dapps with many going live on Mainnet in the upcoming months.
Ternoa looks forward to working alongside early adopters of the NFT-first blockchain and invites developers to join their Discord community, contribute, and build upon its open-source infrastructure.
If you want to learn more about this fast-growing project, attend Ternoa CEO Mickael Canu’s keynote at NFT.NYC 2022 for more big announcements.
Ternoa is a layer 1 open-source blockchain ecosystem that facilitates the adoption of utilitarian NFTs by giving developers full technological stack, access to independent infrastructure, nodes, developers’ community, and funding.
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Bitcoin Crash Sends Institutional Investors Running For The Hills
Small and retail investors are not the only ones getting hit hard by the Bitcoin crash. Institutional investors are also feeling the heat of the market crash. This has sent the institutional investors running as inflows had halted for the last week. Outflows from crypto and blockchain-related investments grew steadily over the course of the weeks, totaling more than $100. million.
Institutional Investors Stay Away
The institutional outflows for last week have been concerning for crypto investors but in no way surprising. With the emergence of the ‘crypto winter’, it has signaled that the bear market is in full force. Thus, investors are forced to react accordingly.
Outflows had climbed throughout last week and had come out to a total of $102 million. It culminates a long-running outflow trend that had mostly stayed in the altcoins. However, this time around, bitcoin has been drawn into this trend.
Related Reading | Bitcoin Drops To 18-Months Lows, Has The Market Seen The Worst Of It?
The pioneer cryptocurrency saw outflows totaling $57 million last week alone. This was the case across the short-bitcoin investment products which had also recorded outflows. For bitcoin, these weekly outflows bring its month-to-date outflows to $91 million. Short-bitcoin investment products are now only seeing $55 million of total assets under management (AuM) compared to $27 billion for its longer-term bitcoin investment products.
Ethereum had been recording consistent weeks of outflows over the past several months and this past week was no different. The second-largest cryptocurrency by market cap saw $41 million in outflows this past week. This brought its year-to-date outflows to $387 million, only now making up 4.4% of the total crypto-assets under management.
Blockchain quiddities have also joined the league of outflows with a total of $5 million in the past week. As well as multi-asset investment products which saw $4.7 million of outflows. The majority of the outflows recorded for last week have been from the Americas, making up more than $98 million outflows. Their European counterparts only recorded $2 million in outflows for the same time period.
Related Reading | Exchange Inflows Ramp Up As Crypto Investors Clamor To Exit Market
What this shows is the general sentiment of investors towards the crypto market no matter what avenue they have invested through. The bear market is expected to last for at least another year and as such, investors have begun to plan accordingly.
The crypto market cap has now fallen below $1 trillion for the first time since January 2021. With sentiment skewing powerfully into the negative, there is no sign of recovery or relief for investors.
Featured image from The Financial Express, chart from TradingView.com
SEC reportedly launches investigation into insider trading on exchanges
The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has reportedly launched a probe to discover how crypto exchanges are working to prevent insider trading.
FOX Business reported on Wednesday that a person with direct knowledge of the SEC’s activities said that the commission had sent a letter to a major crypto exchange requesting information about how the platform protects users from insider trading. The source believes the same letter has been sent to multiple exchanges.
It is not clear which exchange or exchanges have received the request, but the news outlet said Coinbase, Binance, FTX and Crypto.com all declined to comment. The SEC also declined to confirm the probe.
The nature of the inquiry is also unclear. The SEC could be seeking out leads to litigate against an exchange’s potential legal violations via the enforcement division, or it could be a routine compliance check through the Office of Compliance Inspection and Examinations.
Allegations of insider trading at the largest nonfungible token (NFT) marketplace, OpenSea, have caught the attention of the SEC in recent weeks. Cointelegraph reported on June 3 that the commission could ultimately label NFTs as securities after charges of insider trading to OpenSea’s former product manager Nathanial Chastain surfaced.
Partner at the Hogan & Hogan law firm Jeremy Hogan told FOX Business that the SEC’s current interest in exchanges may stem from the allegations of insider trading on tokens that were scheduled for listing and were likely to see a price gain. Hogan said, “it’s that sort of trading that the SEC might be forewarning the exchange they need to get control of.”
The proposed Digital Commodity Exchange Act of 2022 would see the SEC have its presumed jurisdiction over crypto exchanges rescinded. If it passes, the bill will give the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) authority over crypto exchanges and stablecoin providers.
Current market conditions and ongoing scandals in the crypto industry may have catalyzed the SEC’s decision to start the inquiry. Early last month, the Terra ecosystem collapsed after the TerraUSD Classic (USTC) stablecoin depegged and the Luna Classic (LUNC) cryptocurrency plunged 99.9% in value.
Related: SEC chair warns about ‘too good to be true’ returns amid market downturn
More recently, the decentralized finance (DeFi) staking and lending platform Celsius has come under fire for freezing user withdrawals as rumors swirl around its potential insolvency amid huge transfers of crypto into FTX exchange.
The total crypto market cap has dropped below $1 trillion for the first time since February 2021. It is currently down 1.1% over the past 24 hours to $977 billion, according to CoinGecko.
ETH, BTC Remain Lower Ahead of Federal Reserve Rate Decision – Market Updates Bitcoin News
ETH was close to falling below $1,000 on Wednesday, as markets began to prepare for the latest Fed policy meeting. Many expect that the FOMC will opt to hike interest rates today, as inflation continues to peak. BTC was also lower, hovering slightly above $20,000.
BTC was hovering marginally above $20,000 in today’s session, as markets were anticipating the latest FOMC policy meeting.
Following a high of $22,729.56 yesterday, BTC/USD sank to an intraday low of $20,178.38 earlier in the day.
As a result of this latest low, bitcoin has now fallen for nine straight days, losing over 30% of its value within that time period.
This latest drop now sees BTC hit a fresh 19-month low, as prices dropped to their lowest point since December 2020.
Looking at the chart, the RSI is now at 22, however should this fall to the 20 level, we might see BTC hit a floor of around $19,000.
Some believe we may see this happen today, depending on what the Fed decides to do, as far as changes to its monetary policy.
ETH was close to falling below $1,000 on hump-day, as traders of the world’s second-largest crypto token were also awaiting the latest Fed decision.
On Wednesday, ETH fell to an intraday low of $1,025.68, which is its lowest point since January last year.
Like bitcoin, today’s move saw ETH fall for a ninth consecutive day, with traders still scrambling to find a solid price floor.
Some still believe that this floor could be below $1,000, with $800 a strong target for current bears in the market.
Overall, ethereum is down nearly 40% in the last seven days, with today’s drop taking relative strength to its lowest point on record.
Should the RSI continue to slide, we may see ETH very well break below $1,000, with a good chance of it moving towards $800.
Will an interest rate hike help or hinder crypto prices? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.
Eliman brings a eclectic point of view to market analysis, having worked as a brokerage director, retail trading educator, and market commentator in Crypto, Stocks and FX.
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Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not a direct offer or solicitation of an offer to buy or sell, or a recommendation or endorsement of any products, services, or companies. Bitcoin.com does not provide investment, tax, legal, or accounting advice. Neither the company nor the author is responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in this article.
A Case Study of CET’s Repurchase & Burning Mechanism
In the crypto market, though most cryptocurrencies share similar underlying technologies, they are designed based on different economic models known as tokenomics. To be more specific, some cryptos feature a supply that increases over time, while some others have a fixed supply. Yet, a minority of cryptos come with a diminishing total supply that looks deflationary. Such tokens are referred to as deflationary cryptos.
We all know that some cryptos with a fixed supply, such as Bitcoin, are generally deflationary by default. Most members of the Bitcoin community reject inflation because it often represents a loss of value. For instance, a real-world currency issued by the government often controls the entire financial system of the country. If a government frequently issues a large supply of currency via the central bank while setting low interest rates and buying a huge amount of foreign bonds, the country will be prone to a credit crisis and even worse an economic depression.
Before publishing the BTC whitepaper, Satoshi Nakamoto had noticed that real-world currencies issued by the government are subject to inflation, which inspired him to develop an alternative store of value that’s similar to precious metals but is achieved digitally. Bitcoin’s flexible mining difficulty and mining reward mechanisms help it suppress inflation. Meanwhile, the unique design of Bitcoin continues to drive up its value. It should be noted that Bitcoin is deflationary not only because of its fixed supply but also because the block reward is halved about every four years.
Deflationary cryptos like Bitcoin represent not only innovative blockchain architectures and cutting-edge consensus mechanisms but also a broader experiment of moving the deflationary long-term stores of value from the real world to the crypto space.
Normally, the perk of having a deflationary cryptocurrency lies in the fact that as the total supply and the circulating supply decrease, the crypto will become more valuable, and more crypto users will pay attention to the crypto and invest in it.
We could make a token deflationary by burning a certain percentage of the supply, repurchasing and burning some of the tokens, or repurchasing and holding the tokens. The most common method is to burn tokens manually. For instance, CET, the platform-based token of the global crypto exchange CoinEx, is a token that becomes deflationary via repurchasing and burning.
According to the value agreement of CET, CoinEx will repurchase CET every day with 50% of its trading fee income and burn all CET repurchased at the end of each calendar month until the total supply of CET reduces to 3 billion. In the next stage, the exchange will continue to spend 20% of its trading fee income upon CET repurchase and burning until the remaining CET is completely burned.
The total supply of CET is 10 billion, and through continuous efforts, CoinEx has repurchased and burned about 6.3 billion CET, and the current total supply stands at approximately 3.5 billion, according to the data on its official website as of May 19, 2022. As more tokens are repurchased and burned, the CET price had been growing throughout 2021, which attracted the attention of many crypto users. As CoinEx continues to repurchase and burn CET, the circulating supply of this deflationary token will keep dropping, and the value of CET as an ecosystem-based token will also rise over time.
Generally speaking, crypto users prefer deflationary tokens. In the long run, the value of deflationary tokens will increase as their circulating supply continues to drop, or in other words, the net worth of deflationary tokens held by their owners will be on the rise.
Is the bottom in? Raoul Pal, Scaramucci load up, Novogratz and Hayes weigh in
Some of the highest-profile investors in crypto believe that a crypto market bottom is fast approaching and the timing is right to buy — although one still warns of catastrophic outcomes should prices fall below established support levels.
Billionaire Mike Novogratz, founder, chairman and CEO of digital asset merchant bank Galaxy Digital Holdings, told a Morgan Stanley conference on Monday that cryptocurrencies may be close to a bottom, with Ether (ETH) likely to hold at $1,000 and Bitcoin (BTC) at around $20,000 to $21,000.
The bottom for crypto would be realized faster than that of United States stocks, which could fall a further 15% to 20%, he said:
“Ethereum should hold around $1,000 and it’s $1,200 right now. Bitcoin is around $20,000, $21,000 and it is $23,000, so you are much closer to the bottom in crypto than you are where I think, stocks, are going to have another 15% to 20% decline.”
Hayes warns of sell-off risk
Arthur Hayes, co-founder and former chief of BitMEX, took a similar view, acknowledging on Twitter on Monday that on-chain data for wrapped Bitcoin (wBTC) and Ether indicated that “liquidations have mostly happened.”
However, Hayes warned that should support levels break for BTC and ETH at $20,000 and $1,000, respectively, we could expect “massive sell pressure in spot markets.”
If these levels break, $20k $BTC & $1k $ETH, we can expect massive sell pressure in the spot markets as dealers hedge themselves. We can also expect that there will be some otc dealers and that will be unable to hedge properly and might go belly up.
Macro investor Raoul Pal is taking the recent market downturn as an opportunity to add to his crypto positions. On Tuesday, Pal told his 956,000 Twitter followers that “we are in a buy zone” for Bitcoin, adding he was getting ready to “significantly” add to his crypto positions “probably starting next week and into July.”
The former Goldman Sachs executive explained that the imminent Bitcoin bottom can also be signaled by the weekly Relative Strength Index (RSI), which is at 31, edging closer to its lowest ever at 28.
With the weekly RSI at 31 and the lowest ever at 28, that too suggests the low is within striking distance. Don’t ever expect to nail the low however…
RSI is a metric used by investors to measure the speed and magnitude of price changes, which can indicate overbought or oversold conditions. According to Investopedia, an RSI reading of 30 or below indicates an oversold and undervalued condition.
Pal said his framework frequently expects 60% drawdowns over the long-term time horizons, adding:
“In fact, the best way to optimize returns is to add significantly when the market tests the key trend.”
Anthony Scaramucci, founder of Skybridge Capital, told CNBC’s Squawk Box on Monday that investors should “stay disciplined” amid the crypto slump, noting that his fund has continued adding Bitcoin and Ether into its portfolio.
“With incremental cash coming into our fund we have bought more Bitcoin and Ethereum […] So yes, truth be told, people will look back on this debacle and say I wish I had fresh cash to buy into that.”
Related: ‘Too early’ to say Bitcoin price has reclaimed key bear market support — Analysis
Novogratz was less gung-ho about investing right now, taking a more conservative approach and telling attendees that it may not yet be time to “deploy lots of capital,” as the economy may have further to fall.
“Until I see the Fed flinch, until I really think, OK the economy is so bad, and the Fed is going to have to stop hiking and even think about cutting, I don’t think it is time to really deploy lots of capital.”
Other metrics that could shed light on whether crypto is nearing its market bottom is the Fear and Greed Index, which as of June 15, is currently sitting at eight, under “Extreme Fear,” which was last seen on May 17, around the time of Terra’s collapse.