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Monday Markets Wrap-up: New U.S. SEC head and Its Global Crypto Implications

Republished by Plato

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Good morning. Today, apart from last week’s most important news, we bring you some information about the incoming chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Why does it matter? Read on.

Welcome to Monday Markets Wrap-up, part of our new series: BitPinas Daily. We will look back at all the major news and updates that happened this week. Crypto is global, but sometimes news that matters happens while we sleep. So we bring to you what’s happening in our space here and abroad. We highlight three to four important news of the past week and list down the rest. 

Market Price as of January 18, 2021:

Bitcoin $35,745.06 -1.41%
Ethereum $1,229.38 -0.43%
Tether $0.98 -1.01%
Polkadot $16.94 -7.33%
XRP $0.277046 -1.13%
SLP $0.012 -0.0%

Bitcoin closed January 17, 2021, at $35,745.06 per BTC. We’re down 6.8% in the last 7 days and up 23% since the year began. This is 14% below the previous all-time high of $41,940, which was hit on Jan. 8, 2021.

Bitcoin’s market capitalization stands today at $664,348,651,666 which is 65.27% of the entire cryptocurrency market. The entire crypto market, by the way, now has a market cap of $1,021,718,245,214 (-0.2%).

On the table above, there’s the cryptocurrency SLP. If you wonder what that is, check out this article: Playing Axie Infinity vs Minimum Basic Salary in the Philippines.

Table of Contents.

U.S. SEC

A blockchain expert might be the new U.S SEC head

A new U.S. administration, a new U.S. SEC chairman. A report from Reuters says MIT professor Gary Gensler will chair the powerful commission left vacated by Jay Clayton (who by the way left with a parting gift — a charge against Ripple).

Wall Street, according to Reuters, would be concerned by Gensler’s appointment. As the former chair of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), he had the reputation of advocating tougher regulation.

The Defiant looked at the Professor Gensler’s faculty profile at MIT, and it is certain that he’s someone very knowledgeable about blockchain and digital currencies. His research and teachings center on blockchain technology, digital currencies, financial technology, and public policy. He even teaches an online course on cryptocurrency. 

Bloomberg noted that previous talks and editorials of Gensler suggests he’s an advocate for a more nationwide way to register and monitor cryptocurrency exchanges, instead of leaving this oversight to the states. In a 2018 interview, Gensler said cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin needs to be “protected” if we really think it’s going to be part of our future. “That means we need to guard against illicit activity. And yes, we need to protect investors. The crypto exchanges, big exchanges like Coinbase, need to come within the SEC or the CFTC,” he said.

Whether Gensler’s appointment is good for the industry or not is anyone’s guess for now.

You might say that this is just a U.S. thing. But we should remember that our local securities laws are heavily patterned afterU.S. securities laws. So any re-interpretation over there could have some effects here. 

About Face

Goldman Sachs to enter crypto market ‘soon’ via custody play: source

A source inside Goldman Sachs has told Ian Allison of Coindesk that it will soon explore digital asset custody and that this plan would be “evident soon.”

The source said this is part of Goldman’s underlying strategy citing the recent missives from the U.S. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (more of this below). Goldman, apparently, is talking to JPMorgan, Goldman, and Citi regarding crypto custody.

Why not crypto prime brokerage? The Goldman source said it’s because Anchorage, BitGo, and Coinbase already have big plans in that space so they are not looking to duplicate those.

This is significant, considering that in May 2020, just after the Bitcoin halving, Goldman’s analysts said cryptocurrencies are not an asset class, saying “We believe that a security whose appreciation is primarily dependent on whether someone else is willing to pay a higher price for it is not a suitable investment for our clients.”

At that time, Bitcoin was around $10,000. The dominant cryptocurrency almost reached $42,000 last week.

Opinions change.

Cities and Bitcoin

Miami mayor wants to put some of the city’s treasury reserves into bitcoin

“If I would have done it last year, I would have made 200% plus return. So I would have looked like a genius,” Miami mayor Francis Suarez told Fox Business.

Mayor Suarez said Miami is creating a regulatory framework to make it the easiest place in the U.S. to do crypto business.

The mayor also thinks bitcoin’s price is only going into one direction. “It’s only going up,” he said, while acknowledging that it is volatile.

Andre’s Rant

Yearn Finance founder continued his rant about why building in DeFi sucks. According to him:

  • “Your value is only as good as your token, token go up? You built an amazing protocol, it’s the future of finance, blah blah. Token goes down? You are a scammer, fake project, bad coder, blah blah,”
  • “Your success belongs to your “community”, but your failure is 100% your own. Token goes up in value? No one is going to be giving profits to you or thanking you for their profits. Some exploit occurs? You are 100% to blame and need to refund or figure out ways to make them whole again. You have 0% of the reward, 100% of the risk.”
  • “When I decided to distribute YFI 100% it was because I believed it would allow me to exit to the community. However, I am still blamed if the price goes down, I am still constantly plagued by “when next release”, “when update”, etc messages. I still have all the responsibility and expectation, except I have 0 of the reward or upside. Don’t do this, I was an idiot.”

Check Andre’s post here.

Owen Fernau from The Defiant wrote about other DeFi founders sympathizing with Andre and or offering possible solutions or alternatives.

  • Kain Warwick, Synthetix: “You are always going to have pressure from stakeholders. It’s important to filter it though. And one of the best ways is establishing good community norms early.”
  • Stani Kulechov, Aave on funding alternatives: “DeFi community should look more into DAICOs, a model that Vitalik Buterin proposed where the governance goes directly to the community without unfair advantage where whales are receiving free tokens.”

By the way, there’s a proposal to mint 1000 more YFI tokens. The current max supply of YFI is 30,000 tokens. This new proposal and the ensuing community discussion appears to be the motivation for the “rant”

DeFi

OCC Chief on DeFi: Get ready for self-driving banks

In an op-ed for The Financial Times, Brian Brooks, the acting (and outgoing) chief of the U.S. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), the country’s currency regulator, has warm words about how DeFi could change how banks work in the future, attributing to its greater efficiency.

Comparing it to self-driving cars, Brooks said DeFi is paving the way for self driving banks (Banks without bankers). Still, he doesn’t think there are regulations currently in place that can be interpreted to work for DeFi. After all, bank regulation is more about regulating bankers actually. 

Here are some of his thoughts:

  • Federal regulators could ensure fair treatment of customers by self-driving banks. 
  • Regulators could properly examine a bank that exists only as software. (“It may be easier than supervising banks today,” he said.)
  • Regulators could ensure self-driving banks properly serve their communities. (“Their greater efficiency would free significant amounts of capital that is lost to operating costs today or slowed by decisions dependent on human grey matter.”)

But can self-driving banks — banks without officers and directors — become banks under current regulations? Brook’s said not yet. Bank charters, for now, can only be issued to human beings. “But those antiquated rules should be revisited just as regulations that still mandate the use of fax machines should be,” he concluded. 

Bitcoin Core

New improvements and changes to the Bitcoin Core

Not headlines grabbing, but Colin Harper of Coindesk detailed out some of the improvements to the Bitcoin Network in his latest article. 

First, Taproot, which will allow for more complex smart contracts, is now fully live on Bitcoin’s signet, a sandbox for testing before they get pushed to the mainnet.

Users can also now set manual fees denominated in satoshis. “Before, Bitcoin Core relied on a fee estimator for transactions, and these fees were set by specifying a bitcoin amount (say, 0.00001 BTC) instead of satoshis (1000 sats),” Harper explained.

Other changes or improvements include:

  • Support for privacy browser Tor’s V3 address
  • New block-filtering system for “light clients” — wallets that do not keep a full history of Bitcoin’s transaction ledger, only those that are needed.
  • Signet – the new testing network

Read more here.

#CryptoPH

Colin Goltra’s Year in Review

“Overall, I think I am just more excited about the home grown PH crypto scene really coming into its own this cycle and having a much more collaborative tone than in prior bull market years.  It’s a great community and I think it can do a great job spreading the word about crypto throughout the Philippines.” 

Check out Colin’s Year in Review here.

Spotlight on KooKoo

KooKoo, who provided his expertise in our “How to Trade SLP/AXS to PHP” article, is one of the most popular Axie YouTubers and one of the leaders in Yield Guild Games  who has helped onboard many new players to Axie Infinity and to the “Play to Earn” ecosystem. KooKoo’s interview, now live on Axie Infinity’s “The Lunacian” talks about his life story, why education is important and the true benefit of play-to-earn. 

“It’s time for players to get rewarded by playing blockchain games that they can have ownership and enjoy the benefits of blockchain technology. Turning gamers into investors.” 

YGG x NFT

To commemorate reaching 1000 members on the Yield Guild Games Discord server, did a free NFT giveaway. The YGG Founders’ Coin is a limited edition NFT meant to reward the earliest backers of our guild.

What else is happening

Bitcoin

  • The planets can predict the price of Bitcoin according to this astrologer
  • Bitcoin miners saw 33% revenue increase in December
  • Famed value investor Bill Miller says bitcoin becomes less risky the higher the price goes
  • ‘Bitcoin is Amazon’ in early 2000s, says former Trump advisor
  • Hold your horses! $9K Bitcoin price drop not a trend change, data says
  • Top 100 Bitcoin addresses accumulated $11B more BTC in the past 30 days

Ethereum

  • Exchanges are running out of ETH
  • Institutions are coming to Ether – but for real this time
  • Ethereum feels cheap during a bull run – Tyler Winklevoss
  • Beyond the Beacon Chain: what’s next for Eth2?

DeFi

  • Maker’s daily transfers hit all-time high as price surges by 50%
  • Sushiswap reveals ambitious 2021 roadmap
  • $300M Whale spotted in DeFi’s turbulent seas

Corporate

  • Eye-popping projection for $3T crypto market underpins Bakkt deal
  • MicroStrategy plans to get more corporations buying Bitcoin
  • Mark Cuban is more into crypto than he’s previously let on
  • Coinbase implied IPO valuation is now $75 billion
  • EToro warns users it’s running out of crypto to trade due to ‘unprecedented demand’
  • 8 public companies with the biggest Bitcoin portfolios
  • Ledger owners report chilling threats after 20K more records leaked

Institutions

  • Profit taking? Institutional crypto fund inflows drop 97% in three weeks
  • Grayscale to dissolve XRP Trust due to U.S. SEC’s Ripple lawsuit
  • Institutions buy while Bitcoin dipped this weekend

Regulation

  • Bitcoin must be regulated globally, says European Central Bank President
  • Japan’s top securities regulator says XRP is not a security 
  • OCC to unveil bank charter for crypto financial services
  • (U.S.) Anchorage becomes the first federally-chartered Bitcoin bank

This article is published on BitPinas: Monday Markets Wrap-up: New U.S. SEC head and Its Global Crypto Implications

Please share and grow the BitPinas community.

Source: https://bitpinas.com/price-analysis/monday-markets-wrap-up-new-u-s-sec-head-and-its-global-crypto-implications/

Blockchain

Coin Metrics Report Details Surges in ETH, Doge Trading

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Digital currency research firm Coin Metrics has released a new report claiming that bitcoin is beginning to lag when compared with the likes of competing altcoins such as Ethereum and Dogecoin.

Coin Metrics: Altcoins Are Taking Over

While bitcoin is still the world’s number one digital currency by market cap (it is currently trading for about $35,000 per unit), the asset has experienced some serious dips over the past month, while by contrast, Dogecoin and Ethereum have exhibited gains and are regularly moving up the digital ladder.

Coin Metrics garnered much of the information for its report by looking at data from Binance, arguably the largest and most popular crypto exchange on the planet in terms of daily trading volume. Additional statistics were gathered from exchanges such as Coinbase and FTX. Coin Metrics points out that thus far, 2021 has been the year for “smaller altcoins,” suggesting that a great many of them have surged heavily between the months of January and early May. From there, however, a serious crypto crash has taken precedence, with Coin Metrics unable to pinpoint what, exactly, might have been the cause.

For the most part, numerous altcoin pairs are offered on Binance, which explains why the company’s trading volume for many of the world’s smaller assets likely overtook that of bitcoin. The report says:

ETH volume surpassed BTC volume on Coinbase by a wider margin than on Binance. Coinbase did not offer Dogecoin trading in May (although they introduced it in early June), so it did not have a Doge rush similar with Binance, but it did have a relatively high amount of volume for some other altcoins, led by MATIC, ADA and Ethereum Classic (ETC)… Continuing the trend, ETH volume edged out BTC on FTX, although not by much, but comparatively, the top altcoins made up a lower percentage of total volume on FTX than on Binance and Coinbase.

Some of the world’s smaller exchanges – such as Huobi – also saw Ethereum and Dogecoin trading surge to levels beyond what people were doing with bitcoin. The report continues to say:

Similar with Binance, DOGE volume surged on Huobi, taking the spot as the third most traded currency by volume.

Bitcoin Hasn’t Been Fully Cut Out Yet

The only place – according to the document – where bitcoin trading appears to remain dominant at the time of writing is the CME in Chicago, Illinois. The company delves in bitcoin futures trading and has recently opened the door to ETH futures, though this is still in its early stages. Coin Metrics writes:

The markets continued to move mostly sideways over the last week. Bitcoin and Ethereum usage both stayed relatively flat, with daily active addresses dropping 2.5 percent and growing by 3.3 percent, respectively. Ethereum daily transaction fees dropped by over 35 percent week over week as gas prices continued to fall, and bitcoin transaction fees followed a similar pattern, dropping by 40.5 percent.

Tags: bitcoin, Coin Metrics, dogecoin, Ethereum Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://www.livebitcoinnews.com/coin-metrics-report-details-surge-in-eth-doge-trading/

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Blockchain

Bitcoin Taproot upgrade finally achieves activation lock-in!

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The much-anticipated Bitcoin Taproot upgrade passed the Speedy Trial, which was a signaling period which gauged support for the upgrade from bitcoin’s mining sector. Since SegWit, Taproot has been touted as the next significant upgrade for Bitcoin.

Data from Taproot.watch, a webpage created by Bitcoin developer Hampus Sjöberg, released an interesting yet hilarious video to announce the completion of the lock-in stage.

On the official page, it read:

“This period has reached 1815 Taproot signaling blocks, which are required for lock-in.”

Different mining pools tweeted their support for the upgrade on their respective platforms with Slush Pool being the first to do so.

AntPool also supported the upgrade.

What’s next?

Bitcoin core developer Pieter Wuille further elaborated on the path leading to the full activation step for Taproot in a series of tweets. He stated:

“As of block 687284, Taproot signalling has reached 1815 blocks this period, guaranteeing that absent very deep reorgs, it is guaranteed to lock in. Following that, it will activate at block 709632, probably around mid-November 2021.”

He also addressed that ‘there is a lot of work left of course’, which included:

a) PSBT extensions to communicate Taproot keys/scripts/signatures,

b) MuSig2 standardization so the software can cooperate in signing,

c) Output descriptors,

Why is it so important?

Fred Thiel, CEO of Marathon Digital Holdings stated:

“With this upgrade, you’ll see Bitcoin to be the settlement network. Funds are transferred from one institution to another, say one bank to another.”

He added,

“The update would lower the data size of smart contracts, in turn lowering transaction costs. Taproot is also expected to enhance smart contract functionality and efficiency.”

Jeremy Rubin, a Bitcoin Core contributor and founder of Judica projected a similar optimistic narrative,

“With taproot, you get optimization of Bitcoin, much different from how people know Bitcoin today- little too inefficient or reveal too much information about what you’re trying to do. Taproot helps to be private and efficient.”


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Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://ambcrypto.com/bitcoin-taproot-upgrade-finally-achieves-activation-lock-in

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Next-Gen Decentralized NFT Platform, NEFTiPEDIA Announces Launch of its ICO In 3 Days

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Next-Gen Decentralized NFT Platform, NEFTiPEDIA Announces Launch of its ICO In 3 Days

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NEFTiPEDIA, a next-generation decentralized NFT platform that operates in a way that contributes to the elevation of digital artists, creators, and investors has announced the launch of its ICO which is set to happen in 3 days.

NEFTiPEDIA has designed a commission-free platform to enable its artists to maximize income, following its aim to help them increase revenue via NFTs.

Following NEFTiPEDIA’s plans to storm the marketplace while launching its ICO, it aims to serve the marketplace with different categories of products including cosmetics, vehicles and property.

“….we believe NEFTiPEDiA will become a community-run marketplace and the industry will make our project as a kind and remarkable one in the world,” the announcement reads.

The development will see the platform provide a decentralized marketplace for Artists, where they can sell and validate their NFT links to fans and interested buyers.

Advertisement &  & 

NEFTiPEDIA Offers Exciting Prizes to Users

The team behind the project have allotted a total of 250,000,000 $NFT tokens for its users to enjoy in the upcoming ICO.

To further celebrate the intended development, the platform has proposed a referral scheme where winners can enjoy amazing and exciting prices.

Users who wish to participate in the program are required to sign up for the platform’s ICO panel and get a referral code.

The code can as well be shared with friends, giving users the opportunity to win exciting prizes.

A minimum of 5 referrals is required for participants to be considered for winning.

“Only those referrals ended in purchase will be added to the count. After the completion of ICO in 30 days, winners will be announced. Notably, winners will bear all the applicable tax.” The team further elaborated on the conditions for winning.

Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://zycrypto.com/next-gen-decentralized-nft-platform-neftipedia-announces-launch-of-its-ico-in-3-days/

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