This week in the world of cryptocurrency, the Ethereum transaction volume rivaled that of Visa as blockchain transaction surged. In other news, Tether’s market capitalization hit a new record high, while an Ethereum ICO wallet that had laid dormant for eight years surfaced with a staggering $15 million worth of funds. Furthermore, Saifedean Ammous was appointed as an economic advisor to El Salvador’s National Bitcoin Office.
Binance dominated the headlines with news that Bitcoin traded at a discount on Binance Australia due to a payment cutoff, and Binance’s plans to delist certain privacy coins for users in four countries. Additionally, Binance was considering a proposal allowing institutional clients to keep their trading collateral in a bank, transitioning Japanese users to a local platform, and welcoming Richard Teng as head of all regional markets outside the US. Following the resolution of the Tornado Cash heist, Binance reopened TORN deposits and moved Tornado Cash into the Innovation Zone.
In the realm of Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDC) and regulation, the European Central Bank released two reports on a potential digital euro, and the Bank of Japan shared findings from a report on CBDCs. At the same time, controversial MiCA rules were signed into law by European officials. Concerns over the US’ approach to crypto regulation were voiced by Coinbase CEO, who warned that innovation is moving offshore. Russian authorities took a mixed stance on crypto, deeming it risky but suitable for professional investors and ultimately abandoning plans for a national cryptocurrency exchange. In the US, the debt ceiling deal left out the cryptocurrency mining tax, while Japan lifted its stablecoin ban, and Bali tightened rules on crypto payments for tourists.
On the global front, Hong Kong and the UAE Central banks teamed up on crypto regulations, and Gemini headed to the UAE. Deutsche Telekom announced plans to support the Polygon blockchain infrastructure, and Sony revealed its intentions to invest in Web3, NFT, and metaverse firms. Meanwhile, Bybit decided to exit the Canadian market, and Ledger’s CEO claimed their newly-launched ‘Recover’ product would make self-custody more accessible.
In legal matters, Sam Bankman-Fried prepared a defense against fraud charges, involving the advice of a Silicon Valley law firm. In a major development, Gemini filed a motion to dismiss the US SEC’s lawsuit over securities violations. Lastly, the Trust Reserve stablecoin team was detained by police in China.
In South Korea, two suspected crypto scams worth a combined $350 million were shut down by police. A civil servant who had stolen public funds to pay for crypto investments received a suspended jail sentence. Additionally, there was a spike in crypto scams targeting young women on social media platforms.
Overall, the week saw a mix of exciting developments and potential concerns in the world of crypto. Market trends and regulations will continue to feature prominently in discussions among enthusiasts and market analysts alike.