25 March

Russia, sanctioned because of its invasion of Ukraine, can sell gas to the West for rubles and gold, and to “friendly” countries such as China or Turkey for either national currency or bitcoins, said Duma deputy Pavel Zavalny.

If they want to buy, let them pay either in hard currency, and this is gold for us, or pay as it is convenient for us. The set of currencies can be different, and this is normal practice, [so] you can also trade bitcoins.”

Larry Fink, the CEO of BlackRock (BLK), has confirmed that the world’s largest asset manager is exploring how to serve clients with digital currencies.

Fink cited increasing interest from clients around digital currencies in a letter to shareholders Thursday. Fink also wrote that the Russia-Ukraine conflict will push countries to reassess currency dependencies and look to means of payments that can bring down the costs of cross-border transactions.

A global digital payment system, thoughtfully designed, can enhance the settlement of international transactions while reducing the risk of money laundering and corruption. Digital currencies can also help bring down costs of cross-border payments, for example when expatriate workers send earnings back to their families.”

“Helping the mood for the bulls was that Pavel Zavalny, chairman of Russia’s congressional energy committee, earlier Thursday suggested bitcoin could work as the country considers hard currency alternatives for oil sales. An analyst from Split Capital took note of not just the price spike following those comments, but a big jump in bitcoin open interest.

GlobalBlock also said that the accumulation of bitcoin by large investors bodes well for the cryptocurrency. That includes Luna Foundation Guard’s plan to purchase $3 billion of bitcoin in the short term and $10 billion long term.

That’s a lot of buy pressure, GlobalBlock said, explaining that it expects seller exhaustion and a run above $45,000 as long as oil prices don’t reach new highs.”

See Also: Bitcoin Strengthens Above $43K; Resistance at $46K-$51K

A proposed change that would require crypto exchanges to register with the SEC may be key to future approvals, two analysts wrote.

Expanding the definition of an exchange could eliminate the agency’s primary objection to the products by bringing cryptocurrency platforms under the SEC’s regulatory framework. Once crypto exchanges are compliant, the SEC’s primary reason for denying spot Bitcoin ETFs would no longer be valid.

The two expect the change to be finalized sometime between November of this year and May of 2023.”

“Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ) has teamed up with crypto custodian Fireblocks to mint a stablecoin pegged to the Australian dollar.

The bank created the stablecoin for Victor Smorgon Group, a large family office based in Australia, which plans to use it to trade on the Melbourne-based exchange Zerocap. The CEO of Fireblocks said in a statement he expects more banks to follow ANZ’s lead.

An ANZ-issued Australian dollar stablecoin is a first step in enabling our customers to find a safe and secure gateway to the digital economy.

ANZ’s A$DC will initially be marketed toward institutional clients, with retail availability on an Australian crypto exchange coming later. A$DC is currently based on the Ethereum blockchain, but ANZ said it plans to expand it to Hedera and other chains in the near future.”

See Also: ‘Correctly’ Was Wrong: Circle’s Accountant Tweaks Fine Print of USDC Attestation

Global sailing league SailGP – founded by Oracle Chairman Larry Ellison – and the Near Protocol are creating a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) to enable fans to be owners of sports teams. Members of the DAO will be able to determine athlete selection, team management and team strategy. The DAO team could join the SailGP lineup as soon as Season 4 in 2023.

We are ushering in a brand-new era of entertainment by combining sports and technology to elevate the fan experience to a level that has never been seen before.”

International securities regulators are setting up a new task force to probe any regulations needed for decentralized finance (DeFi), saying it poses risks and its logic doesn’t add up. In practice, DeFi often involves central actors who retain control, the report said.

The new task force will be chaired by Singapore official Tuang Lee Lim. A better understanding of the market will help show what regulations are needed, IOSCO said.

IOSCO members regulate more than 95% of the world’s securities markets in around 130 jurisdictions, and include the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and U.K. Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).”

See Also: UK Regulators Say Crypto Adoption Poses Financial Risk, Call for More Oversight
See Also: Synthetix commence debt pool merger to enhance liquidity and staking capabilities