17 July

“The “Bitcoin price prediction report,” published yesterday, canvassed 42 panelists from finance, technology and academia. Some respondents (15%) see that point, labeled “hyperbitcoinisation” in the study, occurring as early as 2035. The panel predicted bitcoin’s price will have climbed to $318,417 by December 2025.

Adoption by the developing world is seen as the key driver, with 33% of respondents saying bitcoin will become the currency of choice in developing nations within 10 years.

The momentum will only pick up. The beauty is also that these broken nations will transform faster than major nations as bitcoin undermines the nation state model.”

See Also: Bank of America Approves Bitcoin Futures Trading for Some Clients: Sources

As government officials continue to raise the alarm about stablecoins, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen will meet with regulators next week to “discuss interagency work” around the crypto niche, which is increasingly drawing attention in Washington. Government officials have been expressing concern about stablecoins, and Tether, in particular.

The President’s Working Group on Financial Markets will convene on Monday, July 19th. It comprises Yellen, Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Gary Gensler, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, and the Acting Chair of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission Rostin Behnam.”

See Also: Tether Hasn’t Printed New USDT in Weeks: 3 Possible Explanations

“Binance announced Friday that stock tokens are unavailable for purchase on its website effective immediately, and support for such tokens will end on Oct. 14, with all positions closed the following day. The embattled crypto exchange said the decision had been made to allow it to focus on other products.

Binance introduced its stock token service in April, allowing customers to buy fractions of shares in companies, starting with Tesla and followed quickly by Coinbase. MicroStrategy, Microsoft and Apple were added shortly after.

It did not take long for regulators to raise their eyebrows. The backlash against Binance has come to a head in recent weeks, with regulatory bodies around the world issuing warnings that the crypto exchange is not licensed to be offering regulated services in their markets, including the U.K. and Japan.”

16 July

“Lawyers and developers working in decentralized finance (DeFi) are asking for a new limited liability legal entity in Australia that would represent decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs). Such a move would give legal standing to the blockchain-based organizations, enabling DAOs to contract with other legal persons.

For the purposes of corporate governance, boards of directors would be replaced with internet communities. Having a limited liability structure would prevent every member from ‘being potentially liable for losses incurred by decisions made by a member of the community.’

See Also: Voorhees Applauds Crypto’s Hyper-Capitalism as ShapeShift Goes ‘Gray’
See Also: 1inch Foundation launches $3M grants program for DeFi developers

PayPal has raised cryptocurrency limits for its U.S. customers to $100,000 per week without an annual purchase limit.

The change will enable our customers to have more choice and flexibility in purchasing cryptocurrency on our platform.”

“The Lightning Network recorded its quickest 100 bitcoin capacity growth ever at only five days. This month alone, the network capacity has increased 20% to 1,821.29 BTC locked in across more than 56,000 channels.

This growth can be attributed, in part, to the recent news of bitcoin’s adoption in El Salvador as legal tender.With onchain fees going up with bitcoin appreciation cycle, it’s becoming an imperative to use Lightning as a low cost alternative to transfer smaller amounts of bitcoin.’ This use case is now being put to the test in areas like Bitcoin Beach and across El Salvador.

Another factor that could be motivating some users is the ability to earn yield from contributing liquidity to the network. Lightning Lab’s liquidity marketplace, Lightning Pool, launched in 2020, allows users to lease liquidity on payment channels.”

See Also: Las Vegas Strip Club Now Accepts Bitcoin Payments Over the Lightning Network

“Payments services company Square will create a new business focused on creating an “open developer platform” to make it easier to provide non-custodial, decentralized financial services.

Dorsey tweeted that the still-be-named division’s “primary focus” would be Bitcoin.”

The U.K. Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is launching an £11 million (US$15 million) marketing campaign to warn young people of the risks in investing in crypto.

Citing recent research that found almost 2.5 million Britons hold cryptoassets, Rathi highlighted the FCA’s concern that crypto holders are more likely to be younger and behave ‘less rationally and more emotionally, egged on by anonymous and unaccountable social media influencers.'”

See Also: US Establishes Ransomware Task Force, Considers $10 Million Bounties
See Also: Bipartisan US Bill Would Define Digital Assets, Emerging Technologies

15 July

“QETH11 won approval from Brazil’s Securities and Exchange Commission and will use institutional custody provided by crypto exchange Gemini. It is Latin America’s first ethereum ETF.

Last month, QR Capital’s bitcoin ETF began trading on B3, itself the first bitcoin ETF to be approved in Latin America.”

See Also: Vitalik Buterin Is Involved in a New Documentary About Ethereum

Optimistic Ethereum – How To Use Uniswap V3 Tutorial

See Also: DeFi Startup Optimism Launches Alpha of Its Uniswap Layer-Two Solution

ShapeShift announced today it will begin winding down its operations as a formal company. Currently employing 65 people, ShapeShift will have no employees, no bank accounts and no CEO in somewhere between four and 12 months’ time.

Crypto trading pioneer ShapeShift is closing its doors, handing over its legacy to a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) controlled by holders of its FOX token. As it begins a months-long process of closing up shop, it will begin by airdropping $98 million in crypto to decentralized finance (DeFi) investors.

Many companies in crypto build a decentralized protocol but leave a business standing that takes part in creating profit atop their blockchain creation (case in point, Compound Labs just launched Treasury to do precisely that). Calling the move “true decentralization,” Voorhees said ShapeShift is going a step further.

A year ago I would have thought this was sort of fanciful, but at this point I’ve seen how this tool is getting built and I’ve seen how these communities get built around a token instead of an equity structure.”

See Also: FOX Token Up 77% on ShapeShift DAO, Airdrop News

“Visa has approved local Australian startup CryptoSpend to begin issuing debit cards for the startup’s users. Those using the CryptoSpend app can then pay using their bitcoin and other supported crypto at retail stores and hospitality venues.

CryptoSpend’s card will give Australians another “flexible way” to spend their crypto on everyday items. Instead of needing to convert from crypto to fiat, like some other offerings on the market, users of CryptoSpend’s app can make direct purchases.”

See Also: Global payments brand Skrill expands crypto wallet services

The ECB decided to start the investigation phase of a eurozone central bank digital currency (CBDC), which will last 24 months, an announcement Wednesday said. The move from discussion to exploration of a CBDC is one that numerous other central banks including those of the U.K. and Japan have made in the past year, while South Korea and Sweden both appear to have moved from exploration to testing in recent months.

We will commit the resources necessary to design a marketable product.”

See Also: Jerome Powell: CBDC Report Coming in Early September

Crypto in China might be under unprecedented government pressure, but the opposite is true of blockchain technology. The newest issue of China’s most important economic-planning document, the Five-Year Plan, named blockchain a nationally strategic technology for the first time, calling on local governments to spur innovation in the field.

Fourteen governments are offering financial rewards to companies that excel in blockchain innovation. Out of China’s 34 provinces and province-level cities, 33 have enacted policies to accelerate blockchain innovation. Shanghai is offering permanent residency to highly skilled workers who move there to work on blockchain, the report said. Permanent residency in Shanghai is a lifetime aspiration for many Chinese citizens.”

“Mallers said the product Barkley will be using to be paid in bitcoin will be rolled out to all users in the U.S. in the next 30 to 60 days.

You see how high [inflation] is and you learn you can’t save yourself through wealth.”

14 July

See Also: Uniswap on Optimism (Alpha launch)!

“Hop Protocol, a team working on interoperability within Ethereum’s layer-two ecosystem, has launched its Hop bridge for the first time. The bridge has been launched with limited functionality, currently supporting “instant” USD Coin (USDC) transfers between the Ethereum mainnet, Polygon and xDai Chain.

Hop plans to expand the number and assets it supports over “the next couple of weeks,” including crypto assets Ether (ETH), Polygon (MATIC), and Wrapped Bitcoin (WBTC), as well as stablecoins Dai (DAI) and Tether (USDT), and forthcoming layer-two networks Optimism and Arbitrum.”

See Also: Interoperability Project Connext Raises $12M From 1kx, ConsenSys

“The U.S. Consumer Price Index jumped by 5.4% in the 12 months through June, exceeding the 4.9% increase expected by economists. On a month-to-month basis, consumer prices rose 0.9%, higher than the expected 0.5%, and accelerating from May’s 0.6% pace. This was the fastest one-month increase since June 2008.

Many of the same indexes continued to increase, including used cars and trucks, new vehicles, airline fares and apparel.”

See Also: Fed’s Bullard Says Time Is Right to Scale Back Stimulus; Bitcoin Unmoved

The firm is looking to add around 100 staff in Dublin, Salt Lake City and Boston. The staff will be used to develop new products and expand beyond bitcoin into other cryptocurrencies.

We’ve seen more interest in ether, so we want to be ahead of that demand.”

See Also: BNY Mellon to Provide Grayscale With ETF Services After ‘Anticipated’ GBTC Conversion
See Also: Fourth-Largest South Korean Bank to Roll Out Crypto Custody Services

“It’s the first major expansion of S&P’s crypto benchmarking tools since entering the market in May. Headlining the tranche is a “broad digital market,” or BDM, index that includes over 240 coins.

The new subindices also provide different slices and dices of the BDM by market cap so that investors can track different segments of the market. The index is meant to reflect a broad investable universe.”

“Despite “spillovers to broader financial markets” from crypto being limited, the BOE said the growing interest in cryptoassets by institutional investors, banks and payments operators is a concern.

These developments could increase the interlinkages between cryptoassets and other systemic financial markets and institutions.”

See Also: Crypto crackdown targeting USD access points has begun: Caitlin Long

“The debut of Nifty’s social NFT platform came with much fanfare on Monday after the company announced a major partnership with Warner Bros. and $10 million in seed investments from some of blockchain’s biggest venture firms. The Space Jam NFTs were developed with the technology of Palm NFT Studio, which was developed by Ethereum software company ConsenSys.

Nifty’s first announced its NFT-focused social media platform in March of this year, touting big names like Mark Cuban and Joseph Lubin as investors. The project’s ultimate vision is to create a social media community for digital collectibles that supports the new art scene while boosting personal interactions.”

See Also: Damien Hirst’s NFT Experiment Explores Burning Question

The Disrupt Weekend

The Ethereum blockchain is often conceptualized as a shared world computer. This computer is agnostic about what happens on it. Ethereum says we are just the infrastructure and how you organize yourselves is up to you.

But to be the neutral infrastructure is deeply political because it expands Ethereum from an economics experiment, like Bitcoin, into an experiment in public goods provisioning. Providing and maintaining infrastructure is central to the Ethereum mind-set, to the Ethereum cryptoculture.

Ethereum is not in the business of confronting the state, but I do believe it proposes a version of latent minarchism where it provides better infrastructure than the state can. These services would slowly replace their centralized analogues in the traditional world. They cover the broad areas of community well: organizational (decentralized autonomous organizations, or DAOs), financial (decentralized finance, or DeFi), cultural (non-fungible tokens/social tokens).”

“At the moment, cryptocurrency markets are a long way from supporting anything close to the $6 trillion-plus a day that changes hands every day in traditional foreign exchange.

But glimpses of recent growth in euro-backed stablecoins have some token issuers thinking of a future where digital versions of national currencies easily flow on blockchain-based markets between cryptocurrency exchanges and the fast-developing trading and lending platforms of decentralized finance (DeFi).

Forex is by far the largest financial market in the world, according to Investopedia, where trades take place on an over-the-counter (OTC) marketplace. It is also considered more opaque than other traditional financial markets, and large institutions tend to play a significant role in determining prices.

One of my biggest hopes for the crypto market is to disintermediate this forex market going forward because it’s one of the most untransparent and shady markets left in the whole financial market space.

I think once the EUR-denominated DeFi springs up, there’ll be a lot of people looking towards automation to take advantage of the forex opportunities.”

See Also: BIS, IMF, World Bank Say Central Banks Must Consider Cross-Border Implications of CBDCs
See Also: UN commission serves new warning against BTC adoption in El Salvador

“After many months of hard work and collaboration between Chainlink, Optimism and Synthetix we are extremely excited to announce exchanges on OΞ will be enabled the week of July 26th, with a final deployment date pending Spartan Council approval.

The initial Synths supported will be sETH, sBTC and sLINK. Once the initial group of Synths are deployed the path to expanding the number of Synths and functionality will open, this includes a MUCH wider range of assets, with natural shorts on all Synths and soon Synthetic Futures.”

Osprey is part of a crop of new bitcoin funds aimed squarely at the market-leading GBTC before a bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) is approved by the SEC. This includes offerings from Bitwise Asset Management, BlockFi and CrossTower that look to give traditional investors exposure to bitcoin without having to touch the asset itself.

The Osprey registration would increase transparency and liquidity for the trust, requiring it to file audited financial statements with the SEC. It would also reduce the holding period for OBTC shares from 12 months to six months, putting it on par with GBTC.

OBTC boasts a 0.49% management fee compared to GBTC’s 2% annual fee, but the Osprey fund also has 0.3% in other expenses from services such as crypto custody.”

See Also: Capital International purchased $600M in MicroStrategy stock

“The game blew up toward the end of June, and now boasts more than 250,000 daily active players. The most expensive Axie ever sold came to 300 ETH, or about $633,000 in today’s prices.

The game rewards players with governance rights for their in-game questing and AXS HODLing. Axie Infinity’s AXS token rose by 45% overnight, hitting an all-time high price of $18.34.”

The new guidelines on the social video posting site will specifically inhibit users from posting promotional content about financial products, regardless of the poster’s geographic location. TikTok was a hotbed for Dogecoin (DOGE) hype in 2020, when users shared related videos in an effort to get more folks to jump on the bandwagon.

My interpretation of this is [TikTok] are clamping down on directly or indirectly sponsored content which leads to an affiliate link, for example to sign up to a trading platform and get free stocks.”

9 July

“Circle will go public by way of Concord Acquisition Corp (NYSE: CND), a publicly traded special purpose acquisition corporation (SPAC).

Circle going public puts both members of USDC’s Centre Consortium on the public markets. USDC, the stablecoin jointly administered with Coinbase, has surged in popularity in the stablecoin sector with a circulating supply of nearly $26 billion. A company presentation on the SPAC deal listed an expected USDC circulation of $190 billion by 2023 – sevenfold growth from its current $26 billion.

As we look at what we’re building we just see an incredible opportunity to grow, to grow rapidly and to grow around the world. We’re investing heavily in product development and engineering as blockchain finance becomes the backbone of the global financial system.”

See Also: Circle CEO Says USDC to Take High Road, But It’s a Long Road
See Also: First Midwest Bank Trust Division Holding 29.5K Shares of Grayscale Bitcoin Trust

“The senator, who chairs the Senate Banking Committee’s Subcommittee on Economic Policy, said in a letter to SEC Chair Gary Gensler that she needs answers by July 28.

A lack of common-sense regulations has left ordinary investors at the mercy of manipulators and fraudsters. The SEC must use its full authority to address these risks, and Congress must also step up to close these regulatory gaps.

Warren has long been critical of bitcoin, describing the crypto as “speculative in nature and going to end badly” during a CNBC interview in March.”

See Also: EU to Propose New Agency for Crypto Crackdown

Ethereum Upgrades Incoming

“The Banque de France (BdF) has tested a cross-border central bank digital currency (CBDC) transaction with Singapore, marking the first use of a smart contract-based, automated liquidity pool for the digital EUR/SGD currency pair. It was executed using a permissioned version of Ethereum called Quorum, developed by JPMorgan.

The CBDC automated liquidity pool and market-making service for EUR/SGD currency pairs could be scaled up to support the participation of multiple central banks and commercial banks in different jurisdictions, BdF said. The use of smart contracts automatically managed the EUR/SGD exchange rate in line with real-time market transactions and demands, it said.”

See Also: Crypto usage in Turkey increased elevenfold in a year, new survey shows

“The Graph, a decentralized indexing protocol for querying networks like Ethereum, has launched The Graph Explorer decentralized application (dapp) along with Subgraph Studio. The launch, announced earlier today, fully publicizes curation and finalizes decentralization for The Graph Network.

Hundreds of dapps use The Graph. The Graph surpassed 30 billion queries, or bits of information gathered, in June alone.

The launch of The Graph Explorer dapp and Subgraph Studio allows anyone to deploy and curate subgraphs on Ethereum and earn migration rewards paid in its native GRT token. With subgraphs, users of dapps can be sure the data being provided is decentralized rather than being provided by a third-party indexer.

We believe that permissionless, open curation beats extractive algorithms and centralized decision making every time.”

See Also: Balancer launches stable pools for like-kind swaps

“In recent months we have seen a large increase in U.K. customers becoming the victims of cryptocurrency fraud. Keeping our customers safe is a top priority, so we have decided to prevent payments to Binance following the FCA’s warning to consumers.”

See Also: Fiat-to-crypto onramp Simplex integrates SEPA Instant for European partners

“Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce has joined a new blockchain-based marketplace for carbon offsets to help clients balance their emissions with investments in green projects. CIBC has partnered Brazil’s Itaú Unibanco, National Australia Bank, and British banking and insurance company NatWest Group on the new marketplace, which is set to be launched as a pilot next month.

Buying carbon offsets has surged in popularity as a growing number of companies set net-zero targets in response to investor demand for greener assets. However, the strategy has faced criticism over its real-world effectiveness and the transparency of transactions.

CIBC says Project Carbon is built on the private ethereum platform to provide a digital ledger that will record all transactions, record ownership and avoid double counting. The bank expects it will increase investment in green projects by demonstrating demand and communicating the trade sizes and prices of offsets.”

“On Wednesday, platform reviewer DeFi Safety published a report on ShibaSwap, scoring the protocol at just 3%, far below the 70% level the site considers a pass. Describing the score as “a devastating fail,” DeFi Safety failed ShibaSwap on all but two of its 22 review criteria.

The review highlighted ShibaSwap’s anonymous team, lack of transparency and documentation and pointed to the fact there is no public software repository, development history, or way to test the code. Schiarizzi emphasized the risks associated with the staking contract’s migrate function being under the control of a single entity.

Within 24 hours of launching, the protocol had amassed a total value locked (TVL) of more than $1 billion.”

8 July

U.S. multinational investment bank Goldman Sachs thinks the native crypto of the Ethereum blockchain has what it takes to unseat bitcoin as the dominant store of value crypto.

The bank believes ether’s use cases currently possess the highest “potential,” being the most popular development platform for smart contracts.”

“Former CFTC Chairman Timothy Massad said in a Bloomberg op-ed that a bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) would be good for investors and regulators, but the likelihood of that happening in the near future is low.

Massad said a bitcoin ETF would enable retail investors to invest in cryptocurrency without having to purchase it and deal with the complexities of custody. Massad highlighted that crypto exchanges are unregulated and investor protection is weak.

Many crypto market participants expect new SEC Chairman Gary Gensler, a former MIT professor who taught classes about bitcoin, to approve a bitcoin ETF later this year.”

“It’s the latest outcome from Visa’s partnerships with more than 50 crypto firms that have launched cards with the payment giant. The company’s crypto card program is part of a larger push that Visa is making to merge the crypto world with traditional banks that includes adding stablecoins to Visa’s payments network and plugging banks into cryptocurrency buy and sell features.

We think the first piece of this is being the bridge between the crypto wallets and our existing network of merchants. The next part is making it easier for our clients to issue and interact with those cards with things like being able to settle USDC. Then we’re starting to spend a lot of time around how Visa can be a bridge between our existing network of financial institutions and the crypto ecosystem.”

“Bollinger bandwidth, a measure of volatility calculated by dividing the spread between the Bollinger bands by the 20-day average of the cryptocurrency’s price, has declined to a 2 1/2-month low of 0.15. The cryptocurrency saw big moves in December and April after the bandwidth fell to 0.15. The cryptocurrency saw big moves during the 2017 bull run each time the bandwidth narrowed to 0.15.

Moves signaled by Bollinger bandwidth are direction-agnostic, as history shows. It means the anticipated change can be bullish or bearish.

The forthcoming Grayscale unlockings and blockchain data pointing to renewed buying by wealthy investors indicate that this time the move is likely to be bullish. The upside is expected to gather steam above the 50-day moving average (MA) resistance, currently at $36,000.

We expect buyers to step in above the 50-day MA.”

“In an open letter on Wednesday, CZ said the adoption and development of crypto contained many parallels to regulations around automobiles in that “laws and guidelines were developed along the way.”

We are seeing wider adoption of cryptocurrencies globally and the need for clearer regulatory frameworks in different countries.

Compliance is a journey – especially in new sectors like crypto. We also recognize that with growth comes more complexity and more responsibility.”

See Also: Russia to Introduce Rules for Confiscating Crypto: Report

“Congressman José Luis Ramón presented a bill to allow employees and service exporters to receive their full or partial salary in cryptocurrencies on Monday. According to Ramón, the idea behind his project is that ‘Argentines can strengthen their autonomy and preserve the purchasing power of their remuneration.

Argentina currently sees its native peso suffer from 50% inflation per year. Argintines are only permitted to buy up to $200 a month in dollars through official channels with an additional tax of 65% over the official quote. Because of these restrictions, many Argentines have started to adopt stable cryptocurrencies such as DAI, whose volume has already grown at least sixfold this year.

Bitwage, a platform that converts fiat into crypto, recorded a 300% growth in monthly transaction volume of Argentines during the last year, while it saw a 500% growth in the number of Argentines registered on the platform.”

“Chinese banks have begun a hard sell of digital yuan wallets. Six of China’s top banks have tasked their employees with promoting digital yuan wallets to 200 to 300 people a year.

To entice new users, employees are able to offer an odd variety of small gifts, such as “laundry detergent, data cables, card holders, Chinese knots, umbrellas and tissues.” The banks have included the task of promoting the central bank digital currency (CBDC) on employee evaluations, with the number of CBDC wallet recruits determining each branch’s end-of-year bonuses.”

The casting director specifically asks crypto users if they’re willing to use all remaining attempts to access their funds in front of the camera.

The series offers consultations from cryptocurrency and cybersecurity experts to help users recover access to their funds. However, it seems participants must be prepared to lose access to their coins if the attempted recovery is not successful.”

See Also: Crypto.com Extends Sponsorship Drive With UFC Partnership

7 July

Allied Payment Network, a digital payments provider for financial institutions, plans to allow clients to buy, sell and hold bitcoin through a new partnership with NYDIG. Customers of Allied Payment Network’s clients will be given access to NYDIG’s platform when making bill payments through online or digital banking.

The partnership also allows Allied Payment Network to make a bitcoin allocation for its corporate treasury, it said.”

“After successful activation on the Ropsten and Goerli testnets, the final hard fork release date was decided.

The protocol update includes five Ethereum Improvement Proposals (EIPs), most notably EIP 1559. EIP 1559 introduces a new fee structure to make Ethereum less inflationary.”

GME to Launch a Crypto-based Dividend as an NFT on July 14th?

“As of 8 am UTC on Wednesday, Binance users will no longer be able to make euro deposits through their bank. However, they can still fund their accounts with credit cards and debit cards. Specifically, euro deposits via the Single Europe Payments Area, or SEPA, have been put on hold indefinitely.

Due to events beyond our control, we are temporarily suspending EUR deposits via SEPA Bank Transfers from 8 am UTC on July 7, 2021.”

See Also: Bybit to Introduce Stricter Customer-Identification Procedures Next Week
See Also: Coinbase Extends Esports Push With ESL Sponsorship

“Following their longest streak of selling since February 2018, institutional managers became net buyers of digital asset funds last week, offering cautious optimism that the worst of the market selloff has passed. Inflows into digital asset funds devoted to Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH) and others totaled $63 million in the week ended July 2.

Funds devoted to Bitcoin saw $38.9 million in weekly inflows, bringing the year-to-date total to $4.186 billion. Ether funds registered $17.7 million in weekly inflows, bringing their year-to-date total to $960 million.”

See Also: $55 Billion UK Hedge Fund Marshall Wace Plans Move Into Crypto
See Also: BarnBridge unveils application to maintain portfolio weightings of ERC-20 tokens

“In a Tuesday joint statement, the Beijing Financial Supervision and Administration Bureau and the Business Administration Department of the People’s Bank of China issued a warning to all financial institutions and payment service providers to not provide any crypto-related services to customers. This includes businesses not advertising or providing office space for any “virtual currency-related business activities.”

As part of a regulatory crackdown, the two groups announced they had ordered the shutdown of Beijing Tongdao Cultural Development, a company which allegedly provided software services for crypto transactions. The Beijing Tongdao firm used to be involved in the entertainment industry, with its own virtual currency Mao Li Coin, or “cat coin.”

The shutdown may suggest China’s regulators are not restricting themselves to solely monitoring mining firms and financial institutions for their involvement in the crypto space.

See Also: Licensed Iranian crypto miners ordered to halt production ‘altogether’

Sales in Q2 were $1.24 billion, in line with $1.23 billion in Q1. The figures dwarf those of first-half 2020, when NFT sales totaled $13.7 million.

This surge represents the explosion in interest around NFTs in the last 12 months, buoyed by platforms such as NBA Top Shot, which have enjoyed considerable popularity.”

5 July

“In response to “extensive demand from various institutions,” Aave’s permissioned deployment will go live this month. The platform provides a rail for institutions to begin deeply engaging with decentralized finance.

At launch, Aave Pro will only support four assets — Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH), Aave and USD Coin (USDC), with its pools segregated from Aave’s other deployments.

The platform will add a whitelisting layer onto its v2 smart contracts to ensure that only “institutions, corporates, and fintechs” that have passed Fireblocks’ Know Your Customer verification can access Aave Pro. Fireblocks will also be tasked with implementing Anti-Money Laundering and anti-fraud controls for Aave Pro.

The email also notes plans to decentralize governance for Aave Pro in the future.”

See Also: SNX hits multi-week highs as total value locked on Synthetix approaches $1 billion

The American CryptoFed DAO received notice from the Wyoming Secretary of State’s office on Tuesday recognizing it as a legal entity. The Merchant Advisory Group (MAG), which represents 165 of the largest merchants in the U.S., expressed its support of the filing.

Wyoming is the leading digital assets jurisdiction in the USA, and now with this DAO law, Wyoming is arguably the top blockchain jurisdiction in the world.

The American CryptoFed DAO was established by mobile banking solutions provider mSHIFT on July 1, 2021. The project describes its mission as promoting a two-token economy that is immune from inflationary or deflationary influences.”

“With effect from today, Barclays intends to stop credit and debit card payments to Binance.

The decision follows shortly after the U.K. Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) announced that Binance was not allowed to conduct any regulated activities in the country.”

“The experiment was conducted with the European blockchain firm LiquidShare and involved the issuance and settlement of both unlisted and listed securities using blockchain technology.

This experiment made it possible to test the integration of issuance and settlement activities, including exchanges on the secondary market.

In June, the bank announced a new CBDC experiment with the Swiss National Bank dubbed “Project Jura,” involving the bank-to-bank wholesale lending market.”

Decentraland: 2nd Annual ‘Art Week’ Announced – July 8-18th

Decentraland Art Week | Decentraland Events

“One of the most widely used charts for predicting massive future bitcoin (BTC, -3.8%) price gains is showing the largest divergence since January 2019. The bitcoin stock-to-flow model currently suggests that the price of bitcoin should be around $77,900.

‘PlanB’ said that the next six months will “make or break” the stock-to-flow model.

The stock-to-flow model is generally applied to natural resources like gold or silver. The commodities are often referred to as “store of value” resources that, in theory, should retain their value over the long term due to their scarcity and low flow.”

“REvil had targeted software supplier Kaseya and used its network-management package to spread the ransomware via the cloud. Over 1 million machines are said to be infected.

Biden said that he’d ordered U.S. intelligence agencies to investigate the attack and he would take measures if Russia was behind it.”

The Disrupt Weekend

Recommended read.

Researchers have been hard at work on the blockchain scalability problem. The key tenet to a decentralized, permissionless and trustless network is to have a culture of users verifying the chain. Some, like EOS, Solana or Polygon PoS aren’t interested in this, and go for a centralized network where users have to trust a smaller number of validators with high-spec machines. There’s nothing wrong with this – it’s simply a direct trade-off. Some, like Bitcoin, have given up on the problem, presumably deeming it unsolvable – instead relying on more centralized entities outside the chain.

The first obvious solution was to simply break the network up into multiple chains, with communication protocols between them. This will give you high scalability, as you can now can spread the load across multiple chains. You also maintain a higher degree of decentralization as each of these chains will still be accessible for verification or usage by the average user. However, you significantly give up on security, as your validator set is now split up into subnets between multiple chains. More naïve variants of this simply have different validator sets for the different chains (sidechains). More sophisticated variants have dynamic subnets. Either way, the point is – the split validator set is inherently less secure.

The next idea was to take the multiple chains approach, but enable shared security across all chains by posting fraud proofs from each shard chain to a central security chain. This is sharding, and each shard chain is backed by the full security of the network. You’ll remember the old Ethereum 2.0 roadmap followed this approach, with a central chain (beacon chain) connecting multiple shards. Polkadot started with this model, but made two changes – make the beacon chain much more centralized (and rename it relay chain) and open up the shards.

Rollups take this to the next level. Now, what were essentially shards or parachains are completely decoupled from the network, and protocol developers have a wide open space to develop the chain however they want. They can use L1’s security by simply communicating through arbitrary smart contracts developed in a way that is best optimized for their specific rollup, instead of in-protocol clients. Decoupling the rollup chains from the protocol has two further advantages over shards: if a rollup fails, it has no impact on L1; and most importantly, the L1 protocol doesn’t have any need to run a rollup full node. With sharding, there are still validators per shard which need to hold the full nodes for the shard (Polkadot calls them collators) in-protocol. If a shard fails, it can have ramifications for the shared consensus and other shards.

Rollups offer similar scalability to shards by themselves, but this is where the final piece of the puzzle comes in: data shards. One of the biggest challenges to executable shards was interoperability. While there are schemes for asynchronous communication, there’s never been a convincing proposal for composability. In a happy accident, shards can now be used as a data availability layer for rollups. A single rollup can now remain composable while leveraging data from multiple shards. Data shards can continue to expand, enabling faster and more rollups along with it. With innovative solutions like data availability sampling, extremely robust security is possible with data across upto a thousand shards.

The bazaar will take some time to standardize on solutions, but these solutions will certainly end up being more innovative than hardcoded in-protocol solutions. The end result here is: rollups + data shards are the best solution we have. The blockchain world finally has converged on a solution that will enable mass adoption.”

See Also: Beyond L1 and L2: a new paradigm of blockchain construction

The Curve, Yearn, Convex saga may be the highest stakes battle in crypto. Why? Over 15% of all value locked in DeFi is within these 3 protocols. And a majority of that relies on Curve’s yield as its foundation. Could this yield war make CRV one of the most important assets in DeFi??

The competitive landscape of DeFi is in a constant state of flux. The permissionless and composable nature of money legos has created a never-ending explosion of innovation and excitement. This is fully on display with the recent race between staple yield protocol Yearn Finance, and newcomer Convex Finance, to lock up Curve’s CRV token, in what has been dubbed as “The Curve Wars,” or “The Lockening.”

Convex’s meteoric rise, along with a 78% increase in the price of CRV, has sparked discussion as to if it is a “Yearn killer.” However, like with nearly everything in crypto, the answer is not so clear. Curve is one of DeFi’s largest decentralized exchanges, with over $10 billion in value locked and facilitating hundreds of millions in daily volume across their Ethereum and Polygon deployments.

Both protocols are trying to get their hands on as much CRV as possible to lock it for veCRV, so they can earn the largest possible boost, and therefore the highest yield, for their depositors. This has been the driving factor behind the sudden dramatic increase in the amount of CRV locked, with now over 63% of the supply taken out of circulation.

Yearn has a boost, and thus APY, advantage across a majority of the different pools. This creates an interesting situation in which Convex vaults are earning a higher overall APY due to CVX rewards, while Yearn is providing depositors with a better return on their CRV.

One interesting factor to consider are the two protocols’ governance power within Curve. As we know, veCRV holders can determine the allocation of CRV inflation across the different pools. As Convex now holds the greatest number of votes, they’ll be able to have considerable say in where newly issued CRV is directed. We could see a scenario in which Convex votes to allocate CRV to pools which would maximize their boosts rather than Yearn’s.

All these factors indicate that the protocols are both complementary and competitive. Yearn benefits from Convex locking CRV because it boosts their yields as depositors, while Yearn locking CRV is beneficial to Convex, as higher Yearn yields can lead to an increase in Yearn deposits, and therefore an increase in Convex TVL. As with much of DeFi, money legos blur the line between friend and foe.

Aside from users of both protocols, there is one obvious beneficiary from the whole situation: CRV holders. As more CRV continues to be locked, a potential supply shock is looming as the token becomes more and more scarce.”

See Also: Are Productive DeFi Tokens Better?
See Also: ‘Weird DeFi’ Gets Weirder
See Also: Best DeFi Yields on USD | Q3 2021
See Also: How to earn high yields on BTC

“Stablecoins could encourage [international] use of the dollar by making cross-border payments faster and cheaper, and it potentially could be deployed much faster and with fewer downsides” than a central bank digital currency (CBDC).

That someone of [Fed Chairman] Quarles’ influence is thinking along these lines is significant. If the U.S. were to follow his advice, it could mean that, rather than the dollar losing its world reserve currency status as some scholars of monetary and geopolitical trends foresee, it could expand its influence.

In this scenario, the dollar would go beyond its current role as the unit of account for global trade and a key reserve asset for capital markets and become prevalent outside of the U.S. in everyday transactions. U.S. industry would derive great benefit from the ubiquity of dollar usage, but it might also ultimately diminish U.S. government control over the international monetary system – or at least radically change the nature of that control.

If so, that would be a good thing. Less hardline surveillance and less Wall Street gatekeeping of the world’s transactions is precisely what’s needed to boost monetary innovation and improve financial inclusion.”

The “supercycle” thesis is the bold but vague idea that crypto is on the verge of mass adoption because of a series of technical and exogenous factors. Peter Thiel has said bitcoin is the new FANG because the digital asset will be macro driven (as are most things) in the next few years. I would extend the thesis to crypto as an asset class.

The bull market of 2016-2017 led to a mass of startups in crypto. The four years since has transformed nebulous white papers into products that we can deploy, test and use. There are users and products and product market fit is being formed.

In 2017, we had one product; a global permissionless fundraising mechanism (also known as initial coin offerings, or ICO). In 2021, there are many more including permissionless trading and lending, the ability to create derivatives and, more generally, an ability to deploy financial instruments and be a banker from one’s bedroom.

Both macro and micro factors play into crypto’s hands. Speculation is eating the world and the Gamestop vs. Wall Street saga shows us the new dimension of democratizing finance. People want capital and they’re finding new ways of accessing it.

The way forward is to innovate in the devices of economic decentralization so that more people can have more access to more markets in more ways.

For the Revoluts and Robinhoods of the world, tapping into decentralized finance is just a matter of integration. Their back ends will be upgraded from the old economy to the DeFi stack. This is how financial institutions will adjust to the new paradigm. This is the supercycle.

Crypto becoming the new FANG is a real option. The birth of a new asset class represents an opportunity to transition into a new economy. The conclusion to the supercycle is unpredictable, with either a dystopia or a utopia awaiting.”

“Using ZK-Optimistic Rollups, Nightfall 3 can achieve a cost of approximately 8,200 gas per transaction, while also maintaining privacy. This is almost one-eighth of the cost needed to make a conventional, public ERC20 token transfer. Nightfall 3 is also designed to reduce the learning curve required by developers to implement privacy by giving developers a standardized application programming interface (API) that appears similar to other token transfer tools.

Based on EY experience, ZK-Optimistic roll-ups are currently among the most effective in balancing security incentives and mathematical efficiency for running private transactions on the public Ethereum network. As we have in the past, we are again contributing this code into the public domain to speed up enterprise adoption of this technology.”

“Cronje announced the project, called Fixed Forex, in a Friday blog post. It lets users mint and exchange various fiat-pegged stablecoins, including the U.S. Dollar (USD), Euro (EUR), South African Rand (ZAR), Japanese Yen (JPY), Renminbi (CNY), and others.

If successful, Fixed Forex may be one of the first projects to overcome the challenges of implementing a large-scale decentralized forex exchange on Ethereum.

Contrary to decentralized stablecoin issuers, Fixed Forex has incorporated “gentle liquidations,” a mechanism that ensures a users’ collateral does not get fully liquidated during a market drawdown. The final release of the project will be deployed on top of Curve Finance.”

See Also: Introducing Perpetual Protocol V2 — “Curie”
See Also: Element Finanace is Live

Next Sunday at 6PM UTC, crypto’s Second Life sim will host TO THE MOON, a music and arts festival. The festival will be hosted at KnownOrigin’s virtual headquarters within Decentraland and will feature performances by electronic music acts including Ookay, SNBRN, Fred Thurst (aka Dr. Fresch), Autograf, and Win and Woo.

The organisers promise exclusive NFT goodies. Attendees receive a virtual POAP (Proof of Attendance Protocol) token to brandish on their Decentraland profile, and can buy exclusive (virtual) clothes, including a bomber jacket and hat.”

“The Bitcoin blockchain has undergone its biggest-ever drop in mining difficulty, as the network’s automatic stabilizing mechanism kicked in following a strict crackdown by China.

At 6:25 UTC Saturday, mining difficulty plunged by nearly 28% at block 689,471. The steep decline in difficulty led to corresponding plunge in transaction fees, which in turn may have contributed to a $1,000 surge in the price of the leading cryptocurrency on anticipation of a spurt in transactions.

The adjustment marks the third straight decline in mining difficulty, the first time such a trend has happened since December 2018. During this most recent difficulty period, the mean hashrate, a measure of total computational power contributed to the blockchain through mining, stood at 87.7 exahashes per second, the lowest since December 2019. That’s down from about a peak of about 180 exahashes per second in mid-May.

Though a decline in Bitcoin’s hashrate means it is slightly less resilient against attacks, the news bodes well for active miners.”

WatchTheBurn.com – EIP 1559

Wu Blockchain on Twitter: "According to https://t.co/pjMqnPbS6F, the  Ethereum Ropsten testnet has destroyed approximately 88,483 ETH through  EIP-1559 in less than 24 hours.… https://t.co/jaS5av4ZYZ"