“Ether’s price, already up a dizzying five-fold this year, extended its climb early Monday, pushing past the psychological milestone of $4,000 for the first time. The year-to-date return is now around 435%, versus about 104% for bitcoin, the largest cryptocurrency.
Some investors are apparently paying up for ether, to the extent that a premium has appeared on the U.S.-based Coinbase exchange over prices quoted on other major exchanges. The premium was “significant” as ether climbed a staggering 72% over the two-week period from April 26.
The market for ether has become so ebullient that crypto derivatives exchange Deribit just listed an options contract expiring in March 2022 with a strike price of $50,000. The level is so far above the current price that the exchange later tweeted that there was “nothing frothy about us listing this strike” and that the decision fell within its ‘strict listing policy.’“
“It’s a shots-fired moment for decentralized finance, or DeFi. MakerDAO, a decentralized bank and one of the cornerstones of DeFi, made its first “real world” loan last month. It is lending to Americans who want to fix and flip residential real estate. Maker is now treading the same hunting grounds as not only banking behemoths such as Wells Fargo, but also A+ Federal Credit Union of Austin and thousands of other credit unions.
DeFi enthusiasts often laugh at the talk of regulation. Any bank regulator that attempts to exercise authority over the collection of smart contracts and stakeholders that calls itself MakerDAO will inevitably fail, they say. The whole point of being on a decentralized protocol, after all, is to avoid being controlled.
And there is certainly some truth to that. But even if a bank is decentralized enough to ignore a government order to get a bank charter, there’s a good chance it would comply anyway. Refuse and MakerDAO would be operating illegally. No more fix and flips. It would have to retreat back to the censorship-resistant safety of the blockchain and its relatively small clientele of pseudonymous cryptocurrency speculators. Submitting to regulation means a ticket to the biggest market in the world: Main Street America.
Other big DeFi applications such as decentralized exchange Uniswap or lending market Compound may soon face the same sort of difficult choice as MakerDAO. They can either stay safely rooted in their rules-free financial zone or get more real-world relevance, but at the price of regulation.
Significant amounts of electricity are being used to secure the Ethereum blockchain. That ensures that Ethereum, and everything built on it, remains open and censorship resistant. But if DeFi tools like MakerDAO choose to become regulated, censorship-resistance is pretty much cancelled. Is there a point to being a regulated bank on an open blockchain?
For now, MakerDAO will keep on pushing into real-world loans. But expect many of these complicated issues to bubble up in the next few years.”
“Swiss financial giant UBS Group is in the early stages of planning to offer digital currency investments to affluent clients.
More investment banks are making a push to offer cryptocurrency investments. For example, earlier this year, Goldman Sachs relaunched its cryptocurrency trading desk. Other banks, including BNY Mellon and Deutsche Bank, have entered the market. Citigroup is also considering launching crypto services amid a surge in interest from its clients.”
“Olaf Carlson-Wee, the first hire at cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase, says that shares of Coinbase would be worth more today if the company had chosen a crypto-native way of going public.
By “going public on Coinbase,” Carlson-Wee had in mind a USDC-style model, through which the company’s shares would be represented as ERC-20 tokens, allowing for trading in “the wild and wonderful world” of decentralized finance (DeFi).”
“Momentum for RLC kicked into high gear following the May 4 announcement that it would be listed on Coinbase. The project received another boost of attention following the May 6 announcement of the official start of the iExec developer rewards program.
iExec’s involvement in the ‘Trusted compute’ working group within the Ethereum (ETH) Alliance, Google’s confidential cloud computing program, the Confidential Computing Consortium and its collaboration with IBM further helped provide a further boost to RLC on May 10.
After securing partnerships with some of the biggest cloud computing providers in the industry and listing on the largest centralized exchanges in the cryptocurrency market, iExec RLC looks well-positioned for further growth as mainstream investors look for real-world blockchain use cases to invest.”
“While it’s still anyone’s guess whether the price of dogecoin is heading to the moon, a Canadian-based company is using the Shiba Inu-represented cryptocurrency to pay SpaceX to take a satellite there. Calling it the first-ever commercial lunar payload in history paid entirely with dogecoin, Geometric Energy Corp. said the DOGE-1 Mission to the Moon will launch aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket in Q1 2022.
We’re excited to launch DOGE-1 to the Moon!”
“It is believed that the hacker is using their servers to switch crypto addresses in transaction requests made by users and redirect their cryptocurrencies to their own wallets.
Over the past 16 months, the hacker’s servers have been shut down by Tor developers at least three times already, Nusenu explained. Notably, the malicious nodes accounted for roughly a quarter of the Tor network’s exit capacity on several occasions, peaking at 27% in February 2021.
However, the hacker is constantly rebuilding their network. By Nusenu’s estimations, up to 10% or even more of Tor’s exit relay capacity could still be controlled by the attacker to this day.”