1 March

“‘Coinbase will not institute a blanket ban on all Coinbase transactions involving Russian addresses,’ despite a request from a Ukrainian government official to do so. Coinbase joins a list of other cryptocurrency exchanges that have declined to meet the Ukrainian government’s request.

A unilateral and total ban would punish ordinary Russian citizens who are enduring historic currency destabilization as a result of their government’s aggression against a democratic neighbor.

Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by trading volume, told CNBC on Monday: ‘Crypto is meant to provide greater financial freedom for people across the globe. To unilaterally decide to ban people’s access to their crypto would fly in the face of the reason why crypto exists.’

Kraken CEO Jesse Powell wrote on Twitter, ‘Our mission is better served by focusing on individual needs above those of any government or political faction. The People’s Money is an exit strategy for humans, a weapon for peace, not for war.

Instead, Coinbase and others are pointing toward their compliance with international sanctions.

We will continue to implement all sanctions that have been imposed, including blocking accounts and transactions that may involve sanctioned individuals or entities.”

See Also: Ukraine Asks Binance, Coinbase, 6 Other Crypto Exchanges to Block Russian Users
See Also: Russia Sanctions Present ‘Dramatic Testing Moment’ for Crypto Exchanges
See Also: US Treasury Department Formally Adds Crypto Rules to Russian Sanctions Guidance

“American entities and citizens are prohibited from engaging in transactions with the Central Bank of Russia, the National Wealth Fund of the Russian Federation and the Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation, the Treasury’s OFAC announced Monday.

Furthermore, the OFAC has sanctioned the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), which has exposure to the U.S. financial system. The moves helped send the ruble tumbling 40% earlier today, forcing the Russian central bank to try and defend the currency by hiking its benchmark interest rate to 20% from 9.5%.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and his inner circle of cronies have long relied on RDIF and Dmitriev to raise funds abroad, including in the United States.

Talks are underway between Russia and Ukraine in Belarus with the aim of bringing an end to the hostilities.”

See Also: Russian Banks Raise Key Rates to 20% in Desperate Measure to Save Ruble
See Also: Central Bank of Russia Braces for Turmoil With Nonresident Trading Ban

“Trading volumes between the Russian ruble and bitcoin increased to a nine-month high as the country’s fiat currency plunged to record lows due to the fallout from the invasion of the Ukraine. Similar trends were observed in tether-ruble and tether-hryvnia trading volumes.

The spike in the ruble-based crypto trading volumes came as investors scrambled to move out of the ruble. The Russian currency plunged over 8% to 90 per U.S. dollar last week and extended the slide by another 28% early today, reaching a record low of 118 per dollar. Gold, U.S. Treasurys, the U.S. dollar and the Swiss franc have [also] been the beneficiaries of the flight to safety.”

See Also: Bitcoin Rises Despite Geopolitical Tensions
See Also: The Petroyuan Is No Russia Sanctions Buster; Bitcoin and Other Cryptos Soar as Investors See Opportunity
See Also: Bank of America Sees No Crypto Winter Given User Adoption, Developer Activity Growth

The Ukrainian government is purchasing critical supplies, including gas, food and military equipment, using cryptocurrencies donated as the country stands against a Russian invasion. Around $10 million has already been spent.

CoinDesk has been tracking the inflow of more than $16 million of cryptocurrencies into three digital wallets associated with Ukraine’s defense against the Russian invasion. One wallet, set up by a local nonprofit, had raised over $7 million in bitcoin at publication time. The two others (one bitcoin and another ether) set up by Kuna on behalf of the Ukrainian government on Friday, had raised more than $8 million by Sunday.

Chobanian says vendors are stepping up to accept crypto in exchange for supplies and crypto is proving to be more efficient than traditional payment methods.We’re managing to buy all of this stuff in Europe using crypto.’

Meanwhile, Ukraine’s central bank has suspended the country’s currency market and limited cash withdrawals.”

See Also: FTX Pledges Up to $1 Billion for Philanthropic Fund to ‘Improve Humanity’

The internet marketplace is among the oldest e-commerce platforms, now looking to become the go-to platform for Gen Z and Millennials. The CEO said in an interview with The Street that the firm has been looking to integrate crypto payment options for quite some time and an official announcement could be made during the upcoming investor’s day on March 10.

Talking about eBay’s stance on emerging technology such as blockchain and cryptocurrencies, Iannone pointed toward the growing popularity of nonfungible tokens trading on its platform without making any official announcement.

Iannone said that the company changed its policies last year to make the e-commerce platform a place to buy and sell anything, be it a physical or digital commodity.”

“The consulting giant said the impetus of the NFT purchase was to better inform how it advised clients looking to enter the space.

NFTs unlock a new channel for organizations to engage with their customers, while also underpinning innovation through the secure digitization of assets. Having now gone through the process, we are well-positioned to guide our clients around building a corporate NFT strategy, including acquiring and safeguarding NFTs.

The company also revealed it owns kpmgca.eth, the Ethereum Name Service (ENS) domain name meant for making wallet addresses easier to use. The move follows the firm’s announcement that it had added ether (ETH) and bitcoin (BTC) to its balance sheet earlier in February.”

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