IMF Urges Countries to Consider Banning Cryptocurrencies

During a meeting of the Group of Twenty (G20) that took place on February 25, United States Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen emphasized how important it was to develop a robust regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies.

Yellen stated it was “essential to put in place a solid regulatory framework” while she was speaking to Reuters. In addition to this, she emphasized that the United States is not advocating for a “absolute prohibition on crypto activity.”

Yellen’s comments follow earlier ones made by the managing director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Kristalina Georgieva, who stated that prohibiting cryptocurrencies should be an option: “There has to be very strong push for regulation… if regulation fails, if you’re slow to do it, then we should not take off the table banning those assets, because they may create financial stability risk.” Yellen’s comments follow Georgieva’s earlier statements.

In addition, Georgieva emphasized to the media that it is essential to distinguish between stablecoins and cryptocurrencies, which are issued by private enterprises, and central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), which are issued by central banks.

Nirmala Sitharaman, who serves as India’s Minister of Finance, has advocated for a unified approach to be taken at the international level to deal with the widespread economic effects of crypto assets. Throughout her time in office, Sitharaman has been a proponent of developing cryptocurrency legislation in collaboration with other governments. For a number of years, the government of India has been debating whether cryptocurrencies should be regulated or outright prohibited.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) on February 23 issued a plan of action on crypto assets, in which it urged governments to remove cryptocurrencies from their status as legal cash. A framework of nine policy principles that addresses macrofinancial, legal and regulatory, and international coordination challenges was detailed in the study that was named “Elements of Effective Policies for Crypto Assets.”

Following a visit to El Salvador earlier this month, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) made a recommendation to the nation that it reconsider its plans to increase its exposure to Bitcoin. The IMF made this recommendation citing the risk that cryptocurrencies pose to El Salvador’s ability to maintain its fiscal sustainability, protect its consumers, and maintain its financial integrity and stability.


Tagged : / / / / / / /

Blockchain Association Rejects Court’s Securities Ruling on Private Blockchains

Following the decision of a federal judge to allow a lawsuit against Dapper Labs’ NBA Top Shot nonfungible tokens (NFTs) to go forward, the chief legal officer of the Blockchain Association stated that “it would be absurd” for a United States court to rule that digital assets on private blockchains are securities. This statement was made in response to the judge’s decision to allow the lawsuit to go forward.

U.S. attorney Jake Chervinsky issued a statement after a federal court refused a move to dismiss a 2021 lawsuit claiming Dapper Labs of marketing NFTs as unregistered securities. The ruling prompted Chervinsky’s comments.

Chervinsky was one of a number of attorneys who posted on Twitter to repeat that the judge’s rejection of the motion does not indicate that a decision has been reached about the complaint; rather, it just indicates that the lawsuit was “facially plausible.”

“The judge didn’t make any decisions at all. Because the securities allegations were at least “plausible,” an exceedingly low standard and not at all a final determination, he permitted the case to go beyond a request to dismiss it. He noted that this decision was not a final judgement at all.

“Putting this debate to the side for a moment, it would be completely ridiculous if every valuable digital object held on centralized databases was a security.”

According to his explanation, this would force every major video game producer, event ticketing site, travel rewards program, and so on to become publicly traded companies that are subject to regulation by the SEC.

Jesse Hynes, an additional attorney in the United States, weighed in on the move in a tweet on February 22. He said that motions to dismiss are “rarely ever successful” due to the fact that the plaintiff just has to allege sufficient evidence for the case to continue.

“The court concluded in the Dapper case that the plaintiff presented sufficient evidence showing, IF ALL THE ALLEGATIONS ARE TRUE, then there is a securities breach,” the judge said.

“Now we enter the phase of discovery in which we seek to uncover what the actual facts are. The attorney continued by saying that after that is finished, Dapper would most likely submit a move for a summary judgment.

The charges that Dapper Labs distributed the NBA Top Shot Moments NFTs on a privately-run blockchain were a “fundamental” component for the court’s decision to deny the motion to dismiss, according to another United States attorney by the name of James Murphy, also known as “MetaLawMan.”

As a result of this, MetaLawMan proposed that the fact that XRP (XRP) is issued on a public blockchain “could be considered a net positive” for Ripple in its case against the U.S. Securities Exchange Commission (SEC). This was prompted by the fact that this “could be considered a net positive” for Ripple.

Plaintiff Jeeun Friel initiated the class-action lawsuit against Dapper Labs in May 2021. In the complaint, Ms. Friel said that the defendant offered NFTs in the capacity of unregistered securities.

On February 22, Judge Marreo ruled against the plaintiff’s petition to dismiss the complaint. He said that the method through which Dapper Labs provides the NFTs has the ability to establish a suitable legal connection between investors and themselves, which fulfills the investment contract conditions outlined in the Howey test. This is the case because the Howey test was developed.

However, given that Marreo said that not all NFTs would constitute securities and that each case will need to be evaluated on a case-by-case basis, it is very doubtful that the eventual result of this case will set a precedent for NFTs.

In the 15 minutes after the termination, the price of the Dapper Labs-issued Flow (FLOW) token dropped by 6.4%, moving from $1.24 to $1.16. According to CoinGecko, the FLOW token has recently made a comeback and is now trading at $1.29.


Tagged : / / / / / / / / / /

Circle Plans to Increase Workforce by 15-25%

According to a report from The Wall Street Journal, the issuer of USD Coin (USDC), Circle, intends to boost its employment by 15–25% in 2023 despite the widespread trend of layoffs throughout the sector.

Circle is going against the grain of the business landscape by increasing its headcount at a time when the majority of companies in its sector are reducing their workforces in an effort to improve their financial situations.

The bitcoin business was responsible for 41% of all job losses that occurred in 2023. Polygon, Chainalysis, Bittrex, Huobi,, Coinbase, Gemini, Genesis, and Wyre are a few examples of major cryptocurrency companies who have reduced their workforce by a large amount.

The protracted crypto winter and various crypto implosions, which wiped billions of dollars off the balance sheets of several connected firms, were important contributors to the decision made by cryptocurrency corporations to reduce their workforces. However, these massive layoffs in the cryptocurrency business were not an isolated event. In the month of January, almost 48,000 employees were let off amongst just four companies: Google, Amazon, Microsoft, and Salesforce.

After postponing the launch of Circle to the public for a few months, the company has decided to hire more people to work on the project. In December of 2022, Circle and Concord Acquisition came to an agreement to mutually cancel their intentions to go public together. Concord Acquisition is a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC). The transaction was first reported to be worth 4.5 billion dollars back in July 2021, but it was then revised to be worth 9 billion dollars in February 2022 when Circle’s value increased significantly.

According to Jeremy Fox-Geen, Circle’s chief financial officer, the company has not abandoned its plans to go public; nevertheless, they are holding off until market circumstances improve. He went on to say that in order for public-market investors to reevaluate the prospects of companies dealing in digital assets, the cryptocurrency sector needs more time to pass after the collapses of Terra and FTX.

The stablecoin issuer had around 900 workers at the end of 2022, and there are plans to grow the number of staff by 135–225 in 2023. On the other hand, the expansion of the personnel is happening at a slower rate than it did in 2022, when the headcount more than doubled from 2021.

The USDC token, which is produced by Circle and presently has a market valuation of $42 billion, is the second biggest stablecoin behind Tether’s (USDT) token.


Tagged : / / / / / /

Solana Spaces to Close Down Stores

Solana Spaces has decided to close its two Solana (SOL)-themed, community-oriented retail shops in New York City and Miami at the end of this month. These stores are situated in both cities respectively. This decision was taken as a result of the fact that the physical shops did not bring in as many new users as was first anticipated when they were first opened.

Solana Spaces announced the news through a tweet on February 21, which also contained a message from the shop’s founder, Vibhu Norby, explaining the many factors that contributed to the decision to close the stores.

Norby, who founded Solana Spaces in the early part of 2022, explained that the company had reached a “inflection point” with the stores, which prompted them to shift their investment focus to “DRiP,” the firm’s brand-new nonfungible token artwork airdrop platform. This move was prompted by the fact that the company had reached a “inflection point.” Norby also said that he was the one responsible for establishing Solana Spaces in the first place.

“While our stores onboard between 500 and 1,000 people per week, DRiP onboards that same number EVERY DAY,” Norby noted, explaining why the firm opted to shift its investment priority. “While our shops onboard between 500 and 1,000 people per week, DRiP onboards that same number EVERY DAY.” “While our shops bring on between 500 and 1,000 customers every week, DRiP brings on that same number every single day,”

Norby stated that the decision to close the stores, which are located in the Wynwood neighborhood of Miami and the Hudson Yards neighborhood of Manhattan, was made “a few weeks ago,” and that they would “sunset” at the end of the month of February. Both of these neighborhoods are in the city of New York.

Because the two stores in New York and Miami did not open their doors to the general public until the end of July and August, respectively, the ambitious endeavor was only operating for a relatively little period of time.


Tagged : / / / / / / / / / /

LinksDAO and Spey Bay Golf Club

LinksDAO, a golf business run by a decentralized autonomous organization, is considering making a bid to buy the recently placed up for sale Spey Bay Golf Club in Scotland, which is estimated to be worth approximately $900,000.

After a few weeks of informal discussion, the proposal vote was officially opened on February 20 by LinksDAO, which describes itself as a “global group of golf enthusiasts” with the goal of building the “world’s greatest golf community.” This event followed the official opening of the vote on February 20.

It would be the very first time that the DAO has ever purchased a golf course.

At the time this article was written, more than 88 percent of the 4,100 LinksDAO tokenholders had already voted in support of the proposal. The voting period will officially end on February 22 at 12:00 p.m. Eastern Time.

The proposal stated that the LinksDAO acquisition committee will meet with the relevant parties required to construct a “compelling offer” for the purchase of the club “with the full intent of successfully purchasing the golf course” in the event that the final tally remains in favor of the purchase.

The authors of the proposal, who identified themselves as “Bez,” “Jim,” “cbruce,” and “nickwalkermsu,” explained that even though the majority of the DAO’s research efforts have been focused on locating an appropriate golf course purchase in the United States, “this listing was too special to ignore.”

“During the course of our hunt for a golf course to buy, we came across a potentially advantageous piece of real estate in Scotland known as the Spey Bay Golf Club. The purpose of this vote is to decide whether or not we should proceed with making an offer and working toward purchasing the course.

The writers also said that the course is “playable now,” and they mentioned that the course’s high ceiling in comparison to its inexpensive price makes it a worthwhile investment.

According to the authors’ explanation, “even a price that is quadruple the ‘recommended price’ would be lower than most subpar courses we have reviewed so far in the United States.” 


Tagged : / / / / / / / / / / /

The amount of ETH burned will continue to increase as transaction fees are burned

Since the completion of the Merge network upgrade six months ago, the quantity of ether (ETH), the second-largest cryptocurrency in terms of market value, has been steadily decreasing across exchanges. In September 2022, the Ethereum network went through a significant upgrade that consisted of switching from a proof-of-work (PoW) network to a proof-of-stake (PoS) network during an event that was referred to as the Merge.

The quantity of accessible ETH that is now languishing on exchanges continues to decrease, as shown by on-chain data that was published by the cryptocurrency analytics company Santiment. Since the Merge, the amount of ETH available on exchanges has decreased by 37%. It is a positive indicator when there is a consistent decrease in supply on exchanges. This is because there is less ETH accessible on the market for buying and selling.

Before the Merge, there were a total of 19.12 million ETH worth $31.3 billion trading hands on exchanges in the month of September. As of the second week of February, the number had dropped to 13.36 million ETH, which corresponds to a value of $19.7 billion.

A significant portion of the Ethereum supply is now being shifted into self-custody, while the Shanghai upgrade is drawing near and many traders choose staking as an investment strategy instead. The next version for Ethereum, known as Shanghai, is expected to release in the month of March. Stakeholders and validators will be able to remove their holdings from the Beacon Chain after the Shanghai hard fork, which will combine more upgrade suggestions for network advancements and enable for this functionality.

At the now, 14% of the entire supply, or 16 million ETH, is staked on the Beacon Chain. This amounts to nearly $25 billion at the prices that are currently in effect, and it is a significant quantity that will gradually become liquid following the Shanghai hard fork.

Since it became deflationary after the London upgrade, the total quantity of ETH on the market as a whole has also decreased, in addition to the ongoing decrease in the amount of ETH stored on exchanges. The fee-burning mechanism that was first implemented as part of Ethereum Improvement Proposal (EIP)-1559 is where the deflationary model can be found.

Since the London upgrade in August 2021, a total of 2.9 million ETH has been burnt, which would have had an equivalent value of around $4.5 billion in today’s currency.


Tagged : / / / / /

LidoDAO is considering selling or staking its $30 million

The decentralized autonomous organization that is responsible for Lido, which is the biggest Ethereum staking pool, is now debating whether or not it should stake the $30 million in Ether (ETH) that is currently in its treasury or sell it.

Steakhouse Financial, the financial arm of the DAO, put out a proposal on February 14 that examines four potential courses of action. One of these options is the possibility of the DAO staking some or all of its ETH to Lido in the form of Lido Staked ETH (stETH).

Another possibility involves the LidoDAO selling some or all of its 20,304 ETH in exchange for a stablecoin. This would be done with the intention of extending the DAO’s runway.

The suggestion comes at a time when ETH staking withdrawals will soon be possible via Ethereum’s Shanghai and Capella upgrades. According to the Ethereum Foundation, both upgrades are scheduled to take effect at some point in the beginning of this year.

Although changing the ETH to Staked ETH might result in an increase in the number of protocol awards, the DAO is mindful of the possibility that excessive staking could result in the organization not having sufficient Ether on hand “just in case.”

Steakhouse Financial said that in order to “preemptively secure more runway,” it may be required to exchange Ether for a stablecoin. This statement was made with reference to operational expenditures.

With the price of ETH fluctuating between $1,100 and $1,700 over the last few months, Steakhouse Financial observed that with LidoDAO’s current inflows at roughly 1000 stETH each month, the DAO is producing about $1.3 million to 1.5 million per month.

According to Steakhouse Financial, the numbers should be “sufficient to pay monthly operating expenditures” on their own.

However, they are currently considering whether or not it would be beneficial to convert their surplus of stETH into a stablecoin in order to better prepare themselves for any changes in market circumstances that may result in higher operational expenditures.


Tagged : / / / / / / / / / / /

BUSD, Paxos, and the Recent Scrutiny of Paxos

Financial services using cryptocurrencies The head of research at Matrixport is of the opinion that the current investigation of Paxos and its Binance USD (BUSD) token is not an assault on stablecoins in and of itself.

Matrixport’s Markus Thielen noted in a study that was published on February 14 that the BUSD issuer, Paxos Trust Company, may not have been as severe as it should have been with its control of the token.

In addition, he said that it “does not seem to be about stablecoins” as the root of the problem.

According to Thielen’s argument, “Paxos had failed its commitment to undertake targeted, periodic risk assessment and due diligence of Binance and Paxos-issued BUSD consumers.” Paxos is the company that issues the BUSD tokens.

“as a consequence of multiple outstanding problems connected to Paxos’ management of its connection with Binance,” the New York Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) ordered Paxos to cease the issuing of BUSD on February 13th.

Paxos has also just disclosed that the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) sent a Wells notice to the stablecoin issuer on February 3, for the alleged failure of the issuer to register the offering in accordance with federal securities laws.

According to Thielen, BUSD has issued $11 billion worth of tokens on Ethereum, but there is also $4.8 billion worth of Binance-Peg BUSD Tokens on the BNB Smart Chain. Binance offers a service for pegged tokens in which BUSD is locked on Ethereum and Binance-Peg BUSD is released on BNB Chain in addition to other blockchains such Avalanche and Polygon.

“It seems that NYDFS is now apprehensive that the $4.8 billion may not be fully supported or have had difficulty with being 1:1 backed,” he added. “This looks to be a concern on the part of NYDFS.”

Paxos, on the other hand, said as recently as February 13 that “BUSD tokens created by Paxos Trust have and always will be backed 1:1 by US dollar-denominated reserves, completely segregated and stored in separate distant accounts.” Paxos made this claim.

Thielen points out that the event on January 24 in which Binance mingled client money with collateral might have also been a catalyst for some of the regulatory steps that have been taken.

Some people are still under the impression that other stablecoins might be in danger as a result of the recent steps taken against BUSD.

Paxos has asserted as of late that “there are categorically no further complaints against Paxos,” in addition to the ongoing controversy surrounding BUSD.

“USDC is a regulated dollar digital currency that was issued as stored value in accordance with United States money transfer legislation,” claims Circle.

“Facts and circumstances in any type of regulatory action like this are all different, as are the structural and regulatory considerations with each of the cryptocurrencies that are in circulation around the world,” Disparte added. “Facts and circumstances in any type of regulatory action like this are all different.”

However, Thielen has emphasized to those in the sector that they need not be excessively anxious about what the future holds for BUSD.

“Binance has shot itself a little bit in the foot here, but they are working on it and it should be rectified. The question is, “Should we truly be worried?” Thielen stated.

“I don’t believe that’s the case. Is the peg going to break? NO. We are no longer in a bear market, which is characterized by investors being concerned about potential losses; while, in bull markets, investors are more focused on potential gains.


Tagged : / / / / / / / / /

South Korean Officials Confirm They Sent Team to Serbia to Find Do Kwon

Do Kwon, the controversial inventor of the now-defunct Terra ecosystem, is the subject of an escalated manhunt, with reports indicating that South Korean authorities have confirmed they have dispatched at least two personnel to Serbia in an effort to locate him.

According to a story that was published on the 7th of February by Bloomberg, the prosecutor’s office in Seoul said that the rumors “aren’t fake” about members of its team venturing out to the Balkan state in order to locate Kwon.

It would seem that at least two state officials traveled, one from the office of the prosecutor, and the other from the Ministry of Justice in South Korea.

Chosun Media, a magazine located in South Korea, said on December 11 that they had been notified by a state intelligence officer that Kwon had established a base of operations in Serbia.

There is no extradition treaty in place between South Korea and Serbia at the present time.

According to a recent opinion post written by Minso Kim for the Chosun Media outlet in South Korea, Kwon most likely found Serbia to be an excellent place to hide out as a result of the factors described above.

Kwon, however, has had his passport revoked by South Korea, which may make it more difficult for him to travel in the future.

Since South Korean prosecutors filed an arrest order against Kwon on September 14, he has been suspected of evading capture ever since. Kwon has rejected the allegations made against him throughout the month of October.

The failed entrepreneur, who is now 31 years old, has also been charged of violating regulations governing capital markets.

It is well knowledge that Kwon is a frequent tweeter; yet, he spent over two months without tweeting or retweeting a single message, which has led some people to wonder what the controversial figure has been up to in that time.

However, Kwon recently gave a response to an accusatory tweet that was directed at him, in which he said that he has never taken anybody else’s money and has never participated in any “hidden cashouts.”

Kwon has, up to this point, denied any misconduct.

The de-peg of the algorithmic stablecoin known as TerraClassicUSD (USTC), which caused the collapse of the Terra ecosystem, was one of the contributing factors. Terra Classic (LUNC) was intimately connected to the stablecoin, with the latter also approaching 100% of its value.

There was an estimated loss of value of sixty billion dollars brought on by the environment.


Tagged : / / / / / /

The UK is a step closer to launching a central bank digital currency

After the publication of a consultation document that explains the planned digital pound, which the general public has dubbed “Britcoin,” the United Kingdom is one step closer to creating a central bank digital currency (CBDC).

The Bank of England (BoE) and the United Kingdom Treasury both contributed to the publication of the 116-page consultation document on February 7th. In addition to that, a technology working paper that delves into the technical as well as economic design issues was published.

CBDCs such as the digital pound may co-exist in what the authors of the article believe to be a “mixed payments economy,” despite the increase of privately-issued stablecoins over the last few years, according to the findings of the paper.

“The digital pound does not need to be the predominate form of money in order to accomplish its public policy aims in the same way that cash coexists alongside private money. It is possible that the digital pound will coexist with other types of currency, such as stablecoins.

Although the Bank of England (BoE) and the Treasury Department (Treasury) have expressed optimism that a digital version of the pound would be introduced by 2025 “at the earliest,” they are not yet one hundred percent positive that this will really occur.

According to the report, “The Bank and HM Treasury assess it is likely to be necessary in the UK to have a digital pound,” however there is currently no decision that can be made to adopt such a currency.

According to the paper, the primary objective behind the launch of the digital pound is to “promote innovation, choice, and efficiency in domestic payments” and to ensure that the money issued by the central bank of the United Kingdom continues to serve as “an anchor for confidence and safety” in the monetary system of the country.

“For the digital pound to play the role that cash plays in anchoring the monetary system, it needs to be usable and sufficient adopted by households and businesses,” this quote from the Financial Times reads. “For the digital pound to play the role that cash plays in anchoring the monetary system, it needs to be usable and sufficient adopted by households and businesses.”

Users will have access to e-GBP after they have established a connection to an API that is managed by the private sector and that, in turn, links to the core ledger.

Additional programmability capabilities, including as smart contracts and atomic swaps, which make it possible for assets to be moved across networks, will be made available.


Tagged : / / / / / / / / / / /
Bitcoin (BTC) $ 28,299.58 3.92%
Ethereum (ETH) $ 1,712.32 1.24%
Litecoin (LTC) $ 67.36 0.08%
Bitcoin Cash (BCH) $ 247.13 4.15%