SEC Rejects Another Spot Bitcoin ETF, Binance Announces New System to Remove BNB from Circulation

Ahead of the winter season holidays, the crypto market is struggling to maintain its gains.

While many are expecting the liquidity thin weekend to send crypto prices higher into the year-end, for now, the market is stuck. Bitcoin has fallen back under $49k, and Ether is below $4k. BTC 4.43% Bitcoin / USD BTCUSD $ 50,784.54
$2,249.764.43%
Volume 28.22 b Change $2,249.76 Open $50,784.54 Circulating 18.91 m Market Cap 960.29 b
7 h SEC Rejects Another Spot Bitcoin ETF, Binance Announces New System to Remove BNB from Circulation 1 d Credit Unions Seeking Approval to Hold Crypto Directly to Compete with Banks 1 d Trump Warns of A Crypto Explosion Bigger Than Big Tech While Appreciating Former First Lady’s NFT Plans
ETH 3.16% Ethereum / USD ETHUSD $ 4,108.02
$129.813.16%
Volume 18.01 b Change $129.81 Open $4,108.02 Circulating 118.86 m Market Cap 488.29 b
6 h Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) Flips CryptoPunks Floor Price, But Only Briefly 7 h UNI and MATIC Pump after Uniswap V3 Deployed on the Ethereum Scaling Solution Polygon 7 h SEC Rejects Another Spot Bitcoin ETF, Binance Announces New System to Remove BNB from Circulation

“Everyone who wanted to de-risk for the holiday already has. China forced selling ends in 1 week. It’s Christmas. Holiday volumes are low, yet price creeps upwards as short-side OI pumps. When all the sellers have finished selling, which way does price go?” commented Charles Edwards of Capriole Investments.

This week, investment firm Kryptoin’s proposal for a spot Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) was rejected by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

In a letter on Wednesday, the SEC announced its rejection, eight months after the agency first began evaluating the application. Just last month, the SEC rejected VanEck’s application for a spot Bitcoin ETF. It postponed the decision on Bitwise’s physically-backed bitcoin ETF and Grayscale’s Bitcoin Trust’s (GBTC) conversion to ETF.

This, however, wasn’t unexpected, as SEC Chair Gary Gensler has said numerous times that he prefers Bitcoin futures ETF over one that holds Bitcoin directly.

The first bitcoin futures ETFs, the ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF (BITO), first began trading in October. After that, two more Valkyrie Bitcoin Strategy ETF (BTF) and VanEck Bitcoin Target ETF (XBTF) were launched.

“The Bitcoin Futures ETF that launched this year has been widely regarded as not very retail-friendly given the high costs involved of rolling over contracts which amounts to around 5-10%,” said Vijay Ayyar, vice president of crypto exchange Luno. “Increasing pressure/evidence… points to a Bitcoin Spot ETF being approved in 2022 mainly because the market is now large and mature enough to support one.”

Meanwhile, the total crypto market cap is still keeping above $2.4 trillion.

Amidst the ongoing lethargy, leading crypto exchange Binance’s native token BNB is trading around $530, down 22.6% from its ATH hit in May. This has been despite Binance completing its 17th burn of 1.335 million BNB. BNB 2.86% Binance Coin / USD BNBUSD $ 548.82
$15.702.86%
Volume 1.87 b Change $15.70 Open $548.82 Circulating 166.8 m Market Cap 91.54 b
7 h SEC Rejects Another Spot Bitcoin ETF, Binance Announces New System to Remove BNB from Circulation 2 d BitMEX Launches BMEX Token for Active Users, US Not Eligible for Airdrop 3 d Crypto Outliers: Terra (LUNA) Amasses $16.9 Bln & Surpass BSC, Avalanche (AVAX) Aims for 1 Million Daily Transactions

Binance also announced that from now on, it would use a new system to remove BNB from circulation to better reflect their usage in the Binance Smart Chain ecosystem (BSC). BSC, introduced in April 2020, currently has $16.7 bln in total value locked (TVL), down from $31.7 in May.

The new system is dubbed Auto-Burn, and under this, BNB burn will be independent of revenues generated on the Binance CEX; rather, it will be automatically adjusted based on the price of BNB and the token’s supply and demand dynamics based on on-chain information. This new system, the exchange said, will provide greater transparency, autonomy, and predictability.

BNB Auto-Burn will be halted once the total circulation of BNB drops below 100 million. The circulating supply of BNB is currently 168 million.

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Author: AnTy

Bitcoin Network Can Start Recovering with Hash Rate Dumped 50%, Chinese Miners Already Migrated Overseas

Many small and medium-sized operations in China are also not affected. The upside further means the path to recovery is faster, and miner capitulation usually represents the best buy signals in Bitcoin history.

Bitcoin hash rate dropped to 91.2 Th/s over the weekend, a level last seen in early November, representing a decline of 47% from its all-time high of 171.4 Th/s on May 13. As of writing, the hash rate is back above 104 Th/s.

As a result, block time has reached above 14 minutes, the same as in mid-April. Difficulty meanwhile is at 19.93 trillion last seen in January, after the recent negative adjustment. Bitcoin mining profitability is still at 0.226 per day for 1 THash/s, at late January levels.

The latest drop came after Bitcoin mining farms in Sichuan were closed on Sunday. Central and provincial government-owned power companies were ordered to immediately stop electricity to crypto mining projects.

Sichuan is 90% renewables powered, and about a year and a half ago, it represented more than 50% of the Bitcoin network.

According to an estimate by the University of Cambridge, about 65% of the world’s Bitcoin mining took place in China as of April 2020.

According to a Communist Party-backed Global Times report, this closure of so many Bitcoin miners in the province has resulted in more than 90% of China’s Bitcoin mining capacity being shuttered.

Many small and medium-sized Bitcoin mining farms in China, however, haven’t been affected, and neither has Ethereum, Filecoin, and Chia mining.

Additionally, new pools such as Foundry USA launch now account for more than 7% of the global network and have entered the top 10 mining pools list.

China’s clampdown helped ViaBTC temporarily become the world’s largest bitcoin mining pool. Its founder Yang Haipo said for over two years, its mining pools and other businesses have begun to resolutely take the international route and de-sinicize.

“Institutional miners had already started migrating overseas from China as early as March,” said Sino Global capital. And expecting more bans came from the officials, “Chinese miners accelerated their process of migration to other countries.”

Kazakhstan AIFC officials are also looking for Chinese miners as they have power facilities with a capacity of 1,685 MW, which can help establish a managed mine within 3-4 weeks. Jonathan Cheesman, head of over-the-counter and institutional sales at crypto-derivatives exchange FTX said,

“Longer term most see hashrate moving out of China as positive but in the near term may have/has already resulted in inventory sales.”

China’ mining shutdown is leading to a real drop in hash rate and may cause a difficulty adjustment and perhaps even slightly slower blocks for a while, “but it’s not yet that big relative to the last 3 years (see below). And we’d prefer this to a firewall attack,” said Balaji Srinivasan, former Coinbase CTO, and General Partner at Andreessen Horowitz.

In a separate tweet, Srinivasan noted that Bitcoin mining is actually no longer in the exponential growth phase. He added,

“Hashrate isn’t increasing 100X in a year, hardware now lasts longer, opex/capex is more predictable, and tools for bounding risk now exist. So it’s easier to mine anywhere.”

Charles Edwards of Capriole Investments noted that we are now seeing the worst-case scenario for a China mining ban played out. “The brunt of the force of the China mining bans has been dealt. We are at a point where the network can now start to recover,” he wrote.

The upside here could mean the path to recovery is faster, given that mining is still largely profitable and that this capitulation wasn’t caused by genuine business collapse, said Edwards adding, Miner capitulation usually represents the best buy signals in Bitcoin history.

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Author: AnTy

Purpose Bitcoin ETF Adds 100 BTC, Cathie Wood’s Ark Fund Buys More GBTC and COIN Shares

The latest dip in prices saw many scooping off cheap coins while the crypto market remains in “extreme fear” and unresponsive to all the good news coming in.

The cryptocurrency market remains choppy, with prices continuing to show weakness while range trading.

Interestingly, amidst the ongoing sentiment of “extreme fear” in the market, the third-largest Bitcoin outflow of 2021 from centralized exchanges was recorded this week.

“A total of 39,040 BTC were withdrawn, the majority coming from Kraken (29,700 BTC),” noted IntoTheBlock.

However, it could be just in-house shuffling as Kraken had made some internal transfers over the weekend as well.

Scooping off cheap coins, however, is still happening as the market remains weak. Purpose Bitcoin ETF, the first one of North America, increased its holdings by 100 BTC, with its total holdings now standing at 19,508 BTC. Up until mid-May, the ETF’s holdings increased significantly but have since slowed down their pace.

As for its Ether ETF, it increased its holdings by a total of 574 ETH, with a total holding of 54,520 ETH. ETH -2.99% Ethereum / USD ETHUSD $ 2,519.04
-$75.32-2.99%
Volume 41.91 b Change -$75.32 Open $2,519.04 Circulating 116.21 m Market Cap 292.74 b
6 h NHL Team, San Jose Sharks, to Accept BTC, ETH, DOGE, And Alts Next Season 7 h Polkadot Ecosystem Hits a Milestone as Kusama’s First Functional Parachain Goes Live 8 h Layer-2 Scaling Solution Polygon Records Continued Growth, But May Not Bring Fees Down on Ethereum

BTC Price vs Number of Bitcoin

Source: Bybt.com

Cathie Wood’s APK Ark Fund also purchased 18,746 shares of Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) and 13,718 shares of Coinbase (COIN) this week.

ARKW now holds 7,441,692 shares of GBTC and 799,779 shares of Coinbase, accounting for 4.01% and 3.37%, respectively. APKK meanwhile holds 3,134,630 shares of Coinbase, accounting for 3.44%.

Bitcoin price, however, still went down to about $32,275 despite all the buying and good news the market is seeing.

This week, former US President Donald Trump came out and called bitcoin a competitor of USD, and MicroStrategy shared its plans to buy another $400 million worth of BTC.

Over the weekend, the El Salvador president announced that the country would declare Bitcoin a legal tender. Following this, Paraguayan Congressman Carlitos Rejala added laser-eyes to his Twitter profile. Rejala said,

“As I was saying a long time ago, our country needs to advance hand in hand with the next generation. The moment has come, our moment. This week, we will start an important project to innovate Paraguay in front of the world!”

Fabio Ostermann, leader of the New Party, a libertarian party in Brazil, also joined in along with Francisco Sánchez, a member of the Chamber of Deputies of Argentina, and Gabriel Silva, a Congressman in The National Assembly of Panama. Silva wrote,

“This is important. And Panama cannot be left behind. If we want to be a true technology and entrepreneurship hub, we have to support cryptocurrencies. We will be preparing a proposal to present at the Assembly.”

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Author: AnTy

DeFi Protocol Balancer Rolls Out $2M (or 1000 ETH) Bug Bounty Program Ahead of V2 Launch

Following a tumultuous year for decentralized finance (DeFi) projects, many liquidity providers and automated market makers (AMMs) are looking for solutions to address the growing menace of cyberattacks.

Generalized AMM protocol Balancer Labs, which previously lost $500,000 worth of tokens through a security breach, has opened the floor for ethical hackers to test its newly released V2 single-vault security protocol.

$2 Million For The Best Hacker

Balance Labs is looking to secure its network from malicious attacks with what it has termed the “biggest bug bounty” in DeFi’s history.

According to the non-custodial portfolio manager, it will be giving away 1,000 ETH or $2 million to any white-hat hacker that discovers vulnerabilities within its V2 smart contracts vault.

The DeFi protocol said that this prize is meant to reward ethical hackers who can discover backdoors through which malicious actors may infiltrate its newly launched V2 smart contracts architecture.

This open-source platform is scheduled to be available on the testnet starting on Tuesday.

According to the bug bounty website, these vulnerabilities are classified into critical, high, medium, and low, with critical vulnerabilities receiving the top prize of 1,000 ETH. Solutions for low-level defects will only attract 5 ETH or $10,000.

It also went further to state that critical vulnerabilities lead to the draining of investor funds from the vault or permanent locking of these funds in the vault.

High exposures would prompt severe rounding errors where a bad actor can steal funds over any gas costs or swap fees, while medium defects would be minor rounding errors that allow an attacker to gradually doctor balances to their advantage.

Low-level vulnerabilities are those that are mainly information and code quality-based disclosures. The liquidity provider also stated that vulnerabilities previously discovered during formal audits would not be eligible for the rewards.

Speaking on the latest development, company CEO Fernando Martinelli noted that the bug bounty program is meant to build a developer community that will help to create a better Balancer platform for all investors.

DeFi Security Breaches Growing Unchecked

In a report published by blockchain analytics firm CipherTrace in November 2020, in the first half of 2020, DeFi projects were major targets of criminals with a 45% success rate.

This saw over $51.5 million lost to cyber criminals during the period. In the closing months of 2020, DeFi hacks rose to 50%, with the affected crypto projects losing over $47.7 million in the process.

It also said that DeFi hacks made up 21% of all crypto-related crimes. This, according to the document, is because cryptocurrencies have continued to boom as more investors are coming into the crypto space.

And this has not ceased even with the growing prosecution of crypto criminals. In a statement posted last month, decentralized exchange platform DODO DEX said that it lost $3.8 million to a cyberattack. Even though the company has said it expects $1.88 million to be recovered, crypto thefts have continued to boom unhindered.

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Author: Jimmy Aki

Buy Bitcoin Ads Pop Up in the UK, Australia, and Other Parts of the World

“… it’s time to buy Bitcoin,” is what one of the many adverts posted in different cities of different countries says.

As Bitcoin rallies strongly towards the end of 2020, up 78% in Q4 and 166% YTD, and everyone from retail, institutional investors, high net worth individuals, insurance companies, and family offices take a liking to the largest cryptocurrency, exchanges are also taking advantage of this to attract even more attention.

Cryptocurrency exchange Luno has been pushing Bitcoin advertisement to different parts of the globe.

From street signs and buses in Australia, underground billboards in the UK to newspapers, online ads in Malaysia, bus shelters, lamp posts in Nigeria, and malls and premier league matches in Zimbabwe, buy Bitcoin posters are being put up to attract the masses.

Nasper Lt.-backed crypto exchange, Luno, was acquired by New York-based digital investment firm Digital Currency Group, the company behind Genesis, Grayscale, Foundry, and Coindesk, this year.

Grayscale actually ran the famous campaign #DropGold last year focused on Bitcoin, which aimed to make the investors understand the limits of using gold as a hedge while bringing awareness to digital gold, the store of value.

In August this year, it launched another national advertising campaign where it told investors to move to Bitcoin and Ether via its products by showing how it has evolved all these years in the 30-second commercial that aired on CNBC, MSNBC, and FOX.

Another exchange, London-based Coinfloor, had its “first outdoor advertising campaign on the London Underground.”

“Bitcoin is DEAD… Easy with Coinfloor,” reads the posters plastered across central London.

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Author: AnTy

Chinese Police Won’t Return the $4.2B Seized PlusToken Funds; ‘Forfeit to the National Treasury’

PlusToken is back to worry the market. However, it is worth noting that many of the funds scammed by this Ponzi scheme have been getting sold over the years.

It has been more than 100 days, over three months, since these funds have been moved.

“This is bullish either way,” commented Su Zhu, the CEO of Three Arrows Capital.

Today, the reports came that as per the new court ruling, crypto assets worth over $4.2 billion have been seized by the Chinese police in a PlusToken Ponzi scam crackdown. The ruling came amidst the latest reports of China cracking down on online criminal activities.

The crypto assets involved in this scam were 194,775 BTC, 833,083 ETH, 487 million XRP, 1.4 million LTC, 27.6 million EOS, 74,167 DASH, 6 billion DOGE, 79,581 BCH, and 213,724 USDT that are seized by the law enforcement from seven convicts, according to the judgment made public on Thursday.

Unfortunately, these assets won’t be returned to the victims.

“The seized digital currencies will be processed pursuant to laws, and the proceeds and gains will be forfeited to the national treasury,” said the court, but nothing is mentioned about the when, what, and how of it.

The market expects these crypto assets to be released in the market in a “gradual manner.”

The PlusToken Ponzi scheme started its operations in May 2018; it duped more than 2.6 million members.

15 people have been convicted in the case so far who are in jail for two to 11 years with fines between $100k to $1 million. One convict also successfully laundered 145 million yuan worth of crypto into the Chinese Yuan.

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Author: AnTy

ETH Gas Prices Explode Higher After Ethereum Dumps to $480

Everything is going as expected and as seen by the crypto market so many times.

The market has been given a Thanksgiving sale as the price of Bitcoin fell hard, to about $6,300 level.

This obviously led to an even bigger sell-off in the price of the altcoins.

After the rally seen by the cryptos in the past few weeks, a correction was expected, and retail flows into the sector further meant “it’s time to be cautious.”

ETH Got Cheap Again

The second-largest cryptocurrency market cap went down to as low as $480.

Just the day before yesterday, ETH went as high as $620, a level that was last seen in May 2018, thanks to the confirmation of the ETH 2.0 launch on December 1st.

“While Bitcoin has understandably dominated market attention over the past number of weeks, Ether has been quietly building steam in its shadow,” said Konstantin Richter, founder of Blockdaemon. As ETH 2.0 comes closer, “market confidence is peaking,” he said.

After reaching the $600 mark, Etherem faced strong selling pressure. As per the IOMAP indicator of IntoTheBlock, “the strongest level of support for ETH is located between $531 and $547, where 499k addresses previously bought 6.43m ETH.”

As a result, on several of the top centralized exchanges, the funding rate for Ethereum got positive, meaning long traders started paying the shorters to keep the price of perpetual futures contracts near the index price.

Then last night, the price of ETH dropped more than 20% to $480, seen last Friday only.

At the time of writing, ETH/USD has been trading around $500 with $3.4 billion in ‘real’ trading volume.

And Network Becomes Too Costly

Not just ETH but DeFi tokens much like most of the cryptocurrency market are in losses; these cryptos are actually down 15% to 30%.

CREAM, up 14%, is among a handful of tokens that are in the green at the moment.

As a result of these losses, people are changing their positions, and a lot of activity on the Ethereum network is leading to a surge in gas prices.

“Gas has exploded higher since the flush. DeFi traders are active rebalancing positions,” noted trader and economist Alex Kruger.

Ethereum gas fees have surged to 180 Gwei, up 200% from yesterday’s 60.7 Gwei, as per Blockchair.

Earlier this week, the gas fees went down to 29 Gwei, declining from the Sept. 17 high of 539 Gwei when DeFi was topping out.

As such, average Ethereum fees went up to $7.48, an increase of 236% from yesterday’s $2.28. The all-time high in average fees was achieved on Sept. 2nd at $15.2.

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Author: AnTy

Tezos ‘Delphi’ Upgrade Makes it More Attractive For Defi Projects; Reducing Gas Price By 75%

Tezos has completed the Delphi upgrade, which many believe would make the blockchain a hub for defi projects. As per the official announcement, the Delphi upgrade has brought down the gas fees significantly, allowing users and developers to deploy more complex smart contracts on the platform.

The Delphi upgrade is believed to bring down the gas fee by a whopping 75% along with a four-times lower storage cost.

Tezos network makes use of gas just like Ethereum, but with a different implementation. While the Ethereum blockchain uses gas as a transaction fee, the Tezos network uses it as a limit setter for the consumption of computing power for a transaction. However, the transaction cost is determined by the amount of gas used for that transaction.

Gabriel Alfour, the lead developer at Marigold—and one of the core development teams that worked on Delphi, explained the importance of the lower gas fees and how it can propel the Tezos network to be a leading blockchain when it comes to the deployment of complex smart contracts. He said,

The motivation for such an interim proposal is straightforward. The size and complexity of smart contracts is limited by gas constraints, and so people attempting to build contracts with rich functionality have needed improvements to those constraints for some time.

Thus, such improvements are crucial to enable novel applications on Tezos that target areas like DeFi (“Decentralized Finance”), collectibles, and gaming.

Luckily, in August, we finalized some long-standing work on improving the performance of the Michelson type checker and interpreter, and on refining the cost model, thus mitigating the gas problem.

Growing gas fees due to the network congestion has been a substantial problem for Ethereums mainnet since defi gained traction, and its volume increased significantly. While the launch of ETH 2.0 is believed to solve many of the scaling problems for Ethereum, in the meantime, other blockchains such as Tezos can attract higher numbers of customers to its platform.

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Author: Hank Klinger

Anchorage & Tokensoft Collab to Bring Wrapped Coins to Ethereum; Zcash (ZEC) Is Up First

The growing popularity of decentralized finance (DeFi) has attracted many other digital assets to Ethereum, including Bitcoin, in a wrapped layer one solution. The latest to join the league is the privacy-centric coin Zcash (ZEC). The Wrapped Zcash is brought into the Decentralized ecosystem by Anchorage in association with Tokensoft.

Wrapped ZCash (wZEC) is the first asset launched by the “wrapped” project in association with Ethereum tokenizers Tokensoft and the qualified custodian Anchorage. The liquidity for the wrapped project would be offered by over-the-counter (OTC) liquidity provided by CMS Holdings.

However, Wrapped Zcash is not the first wrapped digital asset on Ethereum. Wrapped Bitcoin has been quite popular as the DeFi market continues to explode. A wrapped digital asset transfers the value of that particular digital asset onto the Ethereum blockchain by creating an ERC-20 token with a 1:1 value representation against the asset. Thus one Wrapped bitcoin would be equivalent in value to that of 1 bitcoin.

This allows for other digital asset holders to access the DeFi space and collateralize that asset instead of buying Ether and then collateralizing it. This also helps in increasing the liquidity of the DEX ecosystem.

Zooko Wilcox-O’Hearn, Zcash founder and Electric Coin Company CEO, commented on their recent association with Anchorage and Tokensoft and said,

“I’m thrilled that there is such interest, and that people can, and do, innovate and deploy extensions on top of Zcash without the Electric Coin Company’s knowledge or approval.”

“I also agree that it’s great for people to have more alternatives to centralized exchanges (CEXs), and the way that CEX’s have to comply with arbitrary demands from their banks.”

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Author: James W

Netherlands Central Bank (DNB) Approves First Crypto Exchange Under New AMLD5 Regulations

The AMLD5 regulations approved by the EU are considered to be quite strict, which cast many doubts over the future of digital asset firms operating in the region. However, Nederlandsche Bank NV (DNB), the Netherlands’ central bank, has approved AMDAX BV as the first digital asset firm to operate under its jurisdiction.

The authorities’ approval is a first of its kind since the latest AMLD5 regulations came into force. Many existing crypto firms had to either close their operations or move their business outside of the Netherlands. Deribit, a popular derivative exchange, was among those who had to shut down its operations because of the newly enforced laws.

As per an official briefing dated October 7, AMDAX BV, an Amsterdam-based crypto service provider, would now offer its services to the Dutch residents. The company in its official statement said,

“AMDAX B.V. has been registered by De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB) as the first provider of crypto services in the Netherlands. This enables AMDAX to process crypto transactions and store cryptocurrencies.”

Ever since the enforcement of newly updated anti-money laundering rules called 5th Anti-Money Laundering Directive, or AMLD5, companies must register with the regulatory body. Only after their approval, they can offer their services to the customers. The registration for support started in January 2020, and AMDAX B.V has become the first firm to get the regulatory nod.

AMDAX B.V to Cater to the Needs of Retail and Institutional Investors

AMDAX B.V would be catering to the needs of both retail and institutional investors. The digital asset firm started working towards AMLD5 compliance back in May. Valentino Cremona, AMDAX BV co-founder, commented on their regulatory approval and said,

“The market needs clear legal frameworks, such as the set of requirements of DNB. This registration shows investors that crypto is a mature asset class, not for criminals, but smart investors.”

“All crypto companies need to get this registration. Without it, they cannot operate in the Netherlands. The other Dutch crypto companies have up to November 21st to receive registration.”

The approval of DNB for AMDAX BV shows that digital asset firms can still get the regulatory nod despite the stricter regulations.

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Author: Hank Klinger