Coinbase Partners with Chainlink Labs to Launch NFT Floor Price Service

Blockchain infrastructure protocol Coinbase Cloud and decentralized oracle network Chainlink Labs have teamed up to launch an NFT floor price feed service.

The partnership will introduce the NFT lowest pricing source in the Coinbase cloud service, allowing developers to access real-time NFT prices to build applications such as NFT lending marketplaces, such as NFT indices.

The floor price of NFT represents the lowest purchase price of NFTs in a collection. Its feed service utilizes Coinbase Cloud’s NFT pricing algorithm to scan every NFT transaction in major market collections, estimate the current floor price and update it in real-time as new transactions are recorded.

Chainlink is for solving the Oracle problem within blockchain projects. Chainlink is an external data provider to blockchain projects. There are many cases where the trigger and execution of smart contracts rely on conditions of external data, like climate data. The key is that external data is reliable and tamper-proof. Chainlink manages to provide a standard process and APIs for easy use of external data.

This function developed by Chainlink Labs can provide a price reference for personnel in today’s turbulent NFT market, allowing developers to understand the price of each NFT collateral.

“We’re bridging the gap between transparency and security in the NFT space by bringing reliable and timely on-chain NFT Floor Pricing Feeds for the top NFT collections to the Web3 world,” said Michael Li, the VP of Data at Coinbase.

The price feed service will initially support multiple blue-chip NFT series such as Bored Ape Yacht Club, CryptoPunks, CloneX and World of Women.

Today Chainlink, the pioneering oracle service provider in the blockchain industry, has introduced the Chainlink SCALE program to help boost the growth of its ecosystem users.

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SWIFT Works with Chainlink Labs to Develop Cross-chain Interoperability Protocol

Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) has entered into a partnership with the Chainlink Labs Cross-Chain Interoperability Protocol (CCIP) to improve the efficiency of traditional finance (TradFi) on the blockchain.

Chainlink co-founder Sergey Nazarov announced this Wednesday at the SmartCon 2022 conference in New York City on Sept. 29.

SWIFT provides global businesses with one of the most robust financial information infrastructures, an interbank messaging system that allows cross-border payments.

The platform helps encode information so that members who register on its platform can easily understand it. The SWIFT system currently has more than 11,000 users in 200 countries.

To improve the gap between traditional and digital assets of TradFi institutions and allow more traditional financial (TradFi) participants to access a variety of digital and traditional assets on a network that can connect different types of asset classes, this partnership will enhance interoperability to benefit capital markets institutions.

CCIP will enable SWIFT messages to indicate on-chain token transfers, helping interbank networks to communicate across all blockchain environments.

Jonathan Ehrenfeld Solé, strategy director at SWIFT, said that one of the reasons for the success of the partnership with Chainlink on CCIP is the “undeniable interest” in cryptocurrencies from institutional investors.

Chainlink is a decentralized oracle network built on the Ethereum network, founded by CEO Sergey Nazarov.

The Chainlink network has made a name for itself by providing reliable tamper-proof data for complex smart contracts on any blockchain.

Built using the Ethereum ERC-20 standard, LINK is the native token of the Chainlink ecosystem. Node operators are paid in LINK for securing the network by staking the token. This incentivizes honesty and integrity among the nodes as penalties are incurred for dishonesty.

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Crypto Adoption in Sub-Saharan Africa Rises, Study Shows

Crypto usage in Sub-Saharan Africa is becoming mainstream rather than speculation, according to a report by blockchain analytic firm Chainalysis.

The report dubbed “How Cryptocurrency Meets Residents’ Economic Needs in Sub-Saharan Africa,” disclosed that the number of small retail transfers has surged, despite the bear market occurring in May. On the other hand, transfers of different sizes have dropped.

Per the study:

“If many of the people carrying out small retail transactions are trading cryptocurrency out of economic necessity — especially in countries where the values of local fiat currencies are dropping, as we’ve seen in Nigeria and Kenya, for example — then those people may be more willing to continue trading despite price drops.”

Source: Chainalysis

The report pointed out that many young people in the region were taking the cryptocurrency route to build and preserve wealth despite low economic opportunities. 

Based on an interview with Chainalysis, Adedeji Owonibi, the founder of Nigeria-based blockchain consultancy Convexity, noted:

“We see a lot of daily traders who are trading to make ends meet.”

He added:

“We don’t have big, institutional-level traders in Sub-Saharan Africa. The people driving the market here are retail. Nigeria has a ton of highly educated young graduates with high unemployment rates, no jobs available — crypto to them is a rescue. It’s a way to feed their family and solve their daily financial needs.”

Chainalysis found out that the uniqueness of Sub-Saharan Africa was pegged on the high usage of peer-to-peer (P2P) platforms and the retail market based on the transaction volume witnessed. Per the report:

“Retail transfers make up 95% of all transfers, and if we drill down to just small retail transfers under $1,000, the share becomes 80%, more than any other region.” 

Source: Chainalysis

With P2P exchanges clocking 6% of the entire crypto transaction volume in Sub-Saharan Africa, they are a fundamental part of the ecosystem. This is double that of the Central & Southern Asia and Oceania region, which comes second.

Source: Chainalysis

Creativity played an instrumental role in enabling leading P2P platforms like Paxful set foot on African soil. For instance, connecting Chinese and Nigerian gamers with gift cards.

Ray Youssef, the Paxful CEO, added:

“We had to get Bitcoin into Africa, which was difficult because it’s so hard to get money out of Africa. We needed a clever hack to make that happen. That hack ended up being gift cards.That got Bitcoin into Nigeria, and then the rest of Western Africa.”

Meanwhile, crypto exchange Binance recently launched a crypto education tour in five French-speaking countries to propel blockchain adoption and financial accessibility, Blockchain.News reported. 

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BIS Launches Project Icebreaker with Central Banks to Explore CBDC

The Bank for International Settlements (BIS) has rolled out Project Icebreaker together with the central banks of Sweden, Norway, and Israel to see how CBDCs can be utilized for international remittance and retail payments.

Per the announcement:

“Project Icebreaker is a collaboration between the Bank of Israel, Central Bank of Norway, Sveriges Riksbank and BIS Innovation Hub Nordic Centre to develop a “hub” to which participating central banks will connect their domestic proof-of-concept CBDC systems.”

Since cross-border payments are accustomed to insufficient transparency, limited access, low speeds, and high costs, Project Icebreaker seeks to explore how central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) can bridge the gap.

Ideally, it will scrutinize the technological feasibility and specific key functions of interjoining various domestic CBDC networks. 

The project’s final report is scheduled for the first quarter of 2023, given that it will run till the end of the year.

Andrew Abir, the Bank of Israel Deputy Governor, noted:

“The results of the project will be very important in guiding our future work on the digital shekel.”

He added:

“Efficient and accessible cross border payments are of extreme importance for a small and open economy like Israel and this was identified as one of the main motivations for a potential issuance of a digital shekel.” 

According to a survey by Ripple, CBDCs have triggered overwhelming consensus among global finance leaders.

The study disclosed that more than 70% of them were certain that CBDCs would spur financial inclusion, Blockchain.News reported. 

Once rolled out, CBDCs are expected to drive the financial inclusion of nearly 1.7 billion people left out of the banking system. This is because CBDCs are digital assets pegged to real-world assets and backed by the central banks.

In May, 90% of apex banks have shown intentions of rolling out Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs), according to a study by the Bank for International Settlements (BIS). More than 110 countries are currently at one stage or another of the CBDC development process, and many more are poised to join the trend. 

-With assistance with Annie Li-


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Bitcoin Could ‘Double in Price’ Under CFTC Regulation, Says Chairman Behnam

Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) Chairman Rostin Behnam said Wednesday that regulations oversight under the CFTC could have significant benefits for the crypto sector, including a potential boost to Bitcoin price.


“Growth might occur if we have a well-regulated space. Bitcoin might double in price if there’s a CFTC-regulated market,” Behnam told attendees during a fireside chat at NYU School of Law.

Behnam said a clear regulatory framework could pave the way for institutional investors to enter the market.

“These incumbent institutions in the crypto space see a massive opportunity for institutional inflows that will only occur if there’s a regulatory structure around these markets. Non-bank [crypto] institutions thrive on regulation, they thrive on regulatory certainty, and they thrive on a level playing field. And they may say otherwise,” Behnam further elaborated.

Behnam stated that he supports the bipartisan bill introduced by the leaders of the Senate Agriculture Committee, which would grant the CFTC the primary regulator for the crypto industry.

The executive also supported a bill provision allowing the cash-strapped agency to levy fees on regulated institutions. Behnam considers such fundraising efforts as crucial if CFTC is to tackle the challenge of regulating the crypto industry. The executive pointed out that the agency’s small operating budget has impacted its ability to deal effectively with crypto crimes.

A bipartisan bill recently sponsored by the Senate Agriculture Committee supports the need to give the CFTC “exclusive jurisdiction” over crypto trades that meet commodities law, but not anything that may be a security.

The crypto industry has been pushing for either a federal agency or Congress to create a clear definition of “digital commodity” or digital security, which could give companies greater clarity on when and how they must register with the CFTC or the SEC (the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission).

The bill seeks to bestow crypto oversight to the CFTC, which the crypto industry sees as friendlier than the SEC. By giving primary responsibility for crypto oversight to the CFTC, the bill sidelines the SEC, whose chairman, Gary Gensler, has taken aggressive actions toward cryptocurrency interests.

Gensler considers most digital assets in the roughly $1.2 trillion market to qualify as securities, similar to stock in publicly traded companies, giving his agency the responsibility to oversight them and their issuers. But the bipartisan bill rejects such a claim and considers most digital assets much more similar to commodities than securities.

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Crypto Gets Resilience in the Past Month as Forced Selling Exit

The exodus of forced selling made cryptocurrencies partly resilient in the last month, according to Galaxy Digital Holdings founder Mike Novogratz.

Speaking at a conference in Singapore, Novogratz pointed out:

“We’re in this weird equilibrium where there are a few buyers, there are a few sellers, and there’s not that energy in the market like you’re seeing in the equity market or the bond market where you have to sell, right?”

Significant leverage has engulfed the crypto market, triggering a bearish run.

Nevertheless, Novogratz acknowledged that cryptocurrencies would take off again once the Federal Reserve (Fed) eased the aggressive monetary tightening, but this would not happen in a sustainable way until Web3 projects experienced mass adoption.

He added:

“Many crypto hedge funds won’t survive 2022’s rout in virtual coins. The implosion of Do Kwon’s Terraform Labs project was ‘heartbreaking’ and a lesson for the crypto industry.”

South Korean authorities have asked Interpol to issue a red notice for his arrest after Kwon denied being in hiding from law enforcement.

The crash of TerraUSD (UST) and Luna, which triggered the loss of $60 million of investor funds following the bearish outlook in the market, has made cryptocurrency platforms witness the least amount of engagement in two years based on the departure of weak hands. Market insight provider Santiment explained:

“If it feels like there are less people commenting and showing interest in crypto these days, your intuition is correct. Commentary hasn’t been this scarce since the end of 2020. Twitter has especially taken a hard fall in the past month.”

Meanwhile, Santiment acknowledged that profit-taking tendencies surfaced after Bitcoin closed the $20,000 mark and said:

“Many traders were apparently awaiting the $20k threshold to begin selling their bags. As Bitcoin crossed back above this psychological level, mass profit taking ensued.”

Therefore, time will tell how cryptocurrencies continue shaping up amid a tightened macroeconomic environment. 

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Case against Do Kown is “highly politicized”: Terraform Labs

Terraform Labs believes South Korean prosecutors have “highly politicized” the case against founder Do Kown after he was issued an arrest warrant, the firm told the Wall Street Journal (WSJ).

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A spokesman for the Singapore-based firm told the WSJ, “we believe that this case has become highly politicized and that the actions of the Korean prosecutors demonstrate unfairness and a failure to uphold basic rights guaranteed under Korean law.”

The company – which introduced failed cryptocurrencies TerraUSD and Luna – also believes the prosecutors are overreaching their authority as Luna wasn’t legally secure, which would mean that South Korea’s capital-markets law does not cover it.

“We believe, as do most in industry, that Luna Classic is not, and has never been, a security, despite any changes in interpretation that Korean financial officials may have recently adopted,” the spokesman told the WSJ.

According to Blockchain.News, Kwon and five other Terraform Labs executives faced allegations that they breached capital markets laws in South Korea. They were issued an arrest warrant on Sept 13 from the court in Seoul for allegedly violating the nation’s capital markets law after the highly-publicized collapse of its algorithmic stablecoin UST and its associated token Luna in May.

Almost two weeks later, a red notice from Interpol was issued for his arrest after a request from prosecutors in South Korea.

Kwon, however, said on Twitter that he was “making zero effort to hide” following the red notice reports for his arrest. But Singapore police issued a statement saying Kwon was not in its jurisdiction, Reuters reported on Sept 17.

The spokesman from Terraform Labs – which oversees the development of the Terra blockchain protocol – declined to provide Kwon’s location. “Do Kwon’s location has been a private matter for months due to ongoing physical security risks to him and his family.” He added that there had been attempted break-ins to his South Korea and Singapore residences.

The price of Luna plunged more than 99% over a few days in May, and with the collapse of TerraUSD, the crash erased some $40 billion of value from digital-currency markets. Furthermore, it wiped out the savings of thousands of investors worldwide.

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Brazil’s Securities Market Regulator Targets Mercado Bitcoin over Token Sale

The Brazilian Securities and Exchange Commission (CVM), the securities market regulator in Brazil, has ordered Mercado Bitcoin, the largest cryptocurrency exchange in Brazil, to provide information on fixed-income tokens the exchange has issued over the last two years.

According to reports by Estadão newspaper, the capital markets regulator wants to know the amount Mercado Bitcoin raised with the tokens and see a list of investors who participated.

While the report did not reveal the names of the tokens, it confirmed that they were issued on a blockchain and allegedly backed by real-world assets. The report further said the tokens were “low risk and high yield” in “consortium, energy, writs of payments and receivables.”

Mercado Bitcoin has responded to the matter, saying that its token sales fully complied with Brazil’s regulatory framework. The exchange further said it “actively” works with the securities market regulator and Brazil’s central bank to “contribute to the construction of regulations for the sector.”

“We do not make public offerings of securities outside the scope of the authorizations we hold as an authorized crowdfunding platform and investment manager,” Mercado said.

In early this month, the CVM banned the Singapore-based crypto exchange Bybit from brokering securities in the country. On September 5, Bybit was booted out of the Brazilian market over its alleged unregistered securities offering. The country’s securities watchdog ordered the Singaporean exchange to cease operations immediately or face a daily fine.

The CVM alleged that Bybit was seeking to raise funds from Brazilian investors for investments in securities without the company having the authorization to act as a securities intermediary. The regulator argued that only Brazil’s stock exchange B3 is allowed to offer securities in the country.

This month, 2TM Group, Mercado Bitcoin’s parent company, criticized Brazilian regulators for not being clear about regulating cryptocurrency. The company said the current environment in Brazil is unfair and has not yet developed a clear regulatory framework for crypto-activities.

Meanwhile, reports indicate that the CVM is preparing to release an official crypto guide soon but encourages companies to consult the commission before issuing any token that may be considered a security.

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QQL Mint Pass Earns $17 Million Upon Launch

Generative art algorithm QQL Mint Pass earned around $17 million following its launch on September 28.

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The generative art algorithm project is co-created by Fidenza creator Tyler Hobbs and Dandelion Wist. According to the QQL site, the project has 999 total NFTs, but 99 are reserved for “special purposes.”

A user who owns a QQL Mint Pass token will gain access to mint official art from that algorithm.

However, the wallet address for X2Y2 has been blacklisted by the code in QQL Mint Pass, which negates any attempts in transactions with the marketplace.

This move by QQL has come following last month’s debate over whether NFT platforms should enforce artist royalties. Protocols such as X2Y2, as well as SudoAMM, have chosen not to.

“That’s a wrap! The #QQL auction almost finished at 14.0 ETH. Congratulations to all the purchasers – we can’t wait to see the beautiful art you create,” QQL tweeted after the sale.

QQL also created history by contributing more than 1,000 Ethereum in one hour. They tweeted, saying, “tonight we created history… Contributed more than 1k ETH in an hour!”

Hobbs is a visual artist who works with algorithms, plotters, and painting. His Twitter description says, “sometimes I write about art on my site. Creator of Fidenza, co-creator of QQL.”

Fidenza sold for up to 1,000 ETH ($3.5 million at the time) on the secondary market, according to The Block. 

To enter the QQL Mint Pass website, a user will first have to connect their wallet, without which they are unable to explore the page.

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GSBN Adopts Blockchain to Share Shipping Data with Financial Insitutiotns

Within 20 minutes, Global Shipping Business Network (GSBN) is able to undertake a pilot transaction of unifying the consent collection and sharing of shipping data using a blockchain-powered application, enhancing the speed of transactions.

As an independent and not-for-profit blockchain consortium founded by major global terminal operators and shipping lines, GSBN seeks to enhance trade finance accessibility, especially for SMEs, through its blockchain-enabled data-sharing management application.

Per the announcement:

“By supplying banks with trusted shipping data, the consortium’s solution aims to facilitate approval process and make trade finance more accessible to corporates.”

GSBN’s CEO Bertrand Chen believed that the pilot transaction painted a positive in the trade finance arena and said: 

“This pilot solves a major bottleneck in the industry and is a testament to the efficiency of the network in enabling trusted data sharing.”

He added:

“Trade finance is the lifeblood of global trade, and we hope this milestone can further break down the silos between market participants and financial institutions to benefit all parties while supporting the overall growth of the industry.”

The statement reads that financial institutions can enjoy accessing a basket of trusted and immutable shipping data in a standardised and structured format. In addition, financial institutions can benefit from accurate and complete shipping data to make informed decisions and better manage risk with higher visibility.

By sharing data in a structured format, and the foundation for automated checking which can reduce approval times from days to minutes.

Therefore, this partnership has become an industry-first milestone in the global trade finance sector. 

The pilot transaction was undertaken in partnership with A & W Food Service (Hong Kong) Ltd, Hapag-Lloyd, and Bank of China (Hong Kong) (“BOCHK”).

GSBN sees blockchain technology as a stepping stone toward bridging the gap in the global trade finance space, which is estimated to clock $2.5 trillion by 2025.

James Ho, the Deputy General Manager of the Transaction Banking Department of BOCHK, pointed out:

“BOCHK has been a long-term partner of GSBN, striving to help bridge the trade finance gap. We are very proud to be one of the pioneers completing this pilot transaction and contributing to the global economy by making trade finance more accessible to corporates, especially for SMEs.”

Meanwhile, India’s largest shipping port operator, Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone (APSEZ) adopted a blockchain-based platform jointly developed by IBM and Maersk to enhance verifiability, Blockchain.News reported. 

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