Weekly Crypto News Recap - Feb 3, 2023

February 3, 2023


Central Bank Recap: Crucial Takeaways from the Fed, BoE and ECB

DailyFX – Market News
It was a busy week for major Central Banks with interest rate policy decisions from the Fed, BoE, and ECB. Each country's respective monetary authority hiked inline with consensus expectations, 25 bps for the Fed, and 50 bps for the BoE and ECB. Markets responded positively to the hikes as Fed Chair Powell commented on easing inflation and used relatively more modest verbiage, guiding to a "couple" of more rate hikes ahead. The BoE followed the lead of the Bank of Canada in the week prior, signalling that it's likely to pause on future rate hikes. The ECB signalled that another 50 bp hike would come in March before it reevaluates the future path of its policy. All in all, the announcements led many to believe we are nearing the end of this hiking cycle. It remains to be seen how the Fed will respond to this morning's blowout jobs numbers that came in nearly 3x higher than expectations, pushing the unemployment rate to a 53-year low.

Fed policy to align bank oversight could limit crypto activities by state banks

The United States Federal Reserve Board announced on Jan. 27 that it was issuing a policy statement regarding limitations on banks. The policy seeks to create a level playing field and limit regulatory arbitrage for state banks with deposit insurance, state banks without deposit insurance, and national banks, which are overseen by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), by allowing them the same scope of permissible activities. The new policy will limit the activities of state banks by not allowing them to engage in activities not permitted by national banks unless state legislation allows it. The notice also said that state banks have proposed issuing “dollar tokens” — that is, stablecoins — and those banks now will be subject to OCC interpretive letters 1174 and 1179, as are national banks.
The statement was issued on the same day that the Fed rejected the application of Wyoming’s Custodia Bank for Federal Reserve System membership.

Bitcoin Community Erupts in Existential Debate Over NFT Project Ordinals

This month’s debut of the Ordinals protocol, which stores NFTs on the Bitcoin blockchain, is driving a wedge between Bitcoin purists who say the blockchain should be restricted to financial transactions, and those who see the network as large and versatile enough to host a range of use cases – even if that means meme-themed art. The protocol’s opponents argue that Ordinals will compete with traditional payment transactions by crowding blocks and driving up transaction fees. The Ordinals founder, Casey Rodarmor, disagrees. “To that I say, well, there's this fee market pricing mechanism that bitcoin has, that lets people pay the amount of fees according to how valuable doing the transaction is to them." Ordinals, in its current form, wouldn’t be possible without Bitcoin’s 2017 Segregated Witness (SegWit) upgrade and the more recent 2021 Taproot upgrade.

Ethereum Developers Launch "Zhejiang" – The New Testnet for ETH Withdrawals


Investment Manager Hamilton Lane Opens Tokenized Fund on Polygon Blockchain

Hamilton Lane (HLNE) – an investment-management firm with $824 billion in assets under management and supervision – has opened the first of three "tokenized" funds that it had said it would create in an effort to give more investors access to private markets. In a statement shared with CoinDesk, Hamilton Lane said that its flagship Equity Opportunities Fund V recently closed with $2.1 billion in investor commitments and that the firm is making a portion of that accessible to individual investors through a tokenized feeder fund on Securitize that’s backed by the Polygon blockchain. The fund offers “diversified exposure to unique and differentiated deals through an efficient fee structure." With the tokenized version of the feeder fund, the minimum investment amount drops to $20,000 from at least $5 million for the traditional version. Hamilton Lane plans to launch the previously announced two additional feeder funds, which offer exposure to private credit and secondary transactions, in the coming months.

Bitcoin Mining Network Hits New Record Hash Rate Above 300 EH/s



MicroStrategy Books Impairment Charge of $197.6M on Q4 Bitcoin Holdings
Bitcoin purists slam Luxor’s support of ‘magic internet jpegs’
Retail giant Pick n Pay to accept Bitcoin in 1,628 stores across South Africa
Lighting network provider Strike expands to Philippines
Bitcoin establishes highest monthly returns since October 2021
Bitcoin premium in Nigeria tops 164% amid demonetization


ZenGo proposes solution to tackle offline signature exploits with EIP-6384
ZK developer Nil Foundation says new technology makes it easier to build on Ethereum
Ether supply reaches all-time low after The Merge
Market Maker B2C2 Teams With Blockdaemon, Stakewise to Provide Ethereum Staking Liquidity
Matter Labs fixes security issues in zkSync Layer 2 after OpenZeppelin audits


Celsius publishes eligible users’ list for withdrawals
Rocket Pool Community Voting Whether to Self-Limit Its Growth
What Is Canto? The Token That Rallied 700% in a Month
Render token up 17% after DAO approves burn & mint mechanism
Optimism plans major network upgrade called Bedrock in March
Solana-Based DeFi Protocol Everlend Announces Shut Down
OlympusDAO Votes To Deposit $77M In MakerDAO
Stargate to Reissue STG Tokens Following Alameda Wallet Hack
Rally’s RLY token tanks 10% as sidechain shuts down – severing users’ from their NFTs
dYdX users traded $466 billion in crypto derivatives during 2022
Celsius Used New Customer Funds to Pay for Withdrawals: Independent Examiner
Celsius failed to report $800 million in losses as CFO flagged ‘possibly illegal’ behavior
Uniswap on BNB Chain: Wormhole wins bridge selection vote
LayerZero CEO denies accusations of critical trusted third-party vulnerabilities
Uniswap dev team wins web3 gaming Battle of Titans competition
Secret Labs and Secret Foundation battle it out openly


Terra USTC surges 66% following approval to re-peg to $1
Euro stablecoin launched in Finland, claims to be first approved in the EU
Tether denies it borrowed $2B from Celsius, as described in court report
UK-native stablecoin integrates into 18,000 ATMs nationwide
Cardano’s decentralized stablecoin Djed goes live on mainnet
Hong Kong will not tolerate algorithmic stablecoins in new regulation
Stablecoins Seem Unattractive as the Gap Between 3pool's APY and Treasury Yields Widens
Gemini’s stablecoin loses USD peg amid OKX delisting
Mastercard, Binance to launch their second prepaid crypto card in Latin America
Stablecoin withdrawals from exchanges reach $800M on Jan. 30
Fantom Blockchain to Release Version 2 of fUSD Stablecoin
Key takeaways from Circle’s $44.5B USDC reserve report


California DMV to Use Blockchain Technology for Record Keeping
Nomura’s Laser Digital readies institutional trading platform, eyes mainstream market making
Cross-chain margin platform Prime Protocol is launching on Arbitrum
Blockchain Analytics Firm Chainalysis to Cut Jobs in Reorganization
Structured Finance Platform Intain Opens Tokenized Marketplace for Asset-Backed Securities
Kin Foundation debuts Solana-based on-ramp tool for app developers
Off-chain data provider Pyth expands into the Ethereum ecosystem by launching on Arbitrum
FTX Sister Firm Alameda Hits Bankrupt Voyager Digital With $446M Lawsuit
Crypto wallets combat scammers with transaction previews and blocklists
Crypto Services Company Prime Trust Lays Off One-Third of Staff
Crypto Trading Firm Cumberland Can Trade Crypto With Canadian Dollars
Smart Stake Joins List of Secret Network Validators Shuttering Operations
Crypto tax unicorn CoinTracker cuts 20% of staff citing industry gloom, over-hiring
Crypto Custodian Prime Trust to Cease Operations in Texas at End of January


NFT lending hits all-time high in loan volume, users, quantity
OpenSea Releases Suite of New Tools for Creator NFT Drops
Mastercard's NFT Lead Exits, Selling Resignation Letter as NFT
Axie Infinity users can now take loans against in-game assets
China’s Suzhou city sets goal to become metaverse hub by 2025
Coinbase NFT Pauses New Collection Drops, Denies Shuttering Marketplace
OpenSea's Polygon NFT Sales Top Ethereum for Second Straight Month
Cool Cats Are Going Multi-Chain—And Adding Customizable NFTs
NFT Sales Jump 38% in January as Bored Apes Drive Trading Surge
Meta gets court win in metaverse acquisition plans: Report
Doodles 2 NFT Mint Opens, Dooplicators Price Soars on OpenSea
Steve Aoki, Seth Green Will Let NFT Holders Shape Animated Short
Blur Reportedly Finds Loophole in OpenSea's Blocklist as Marketplace War Escalates
NFT Marketplace Sudoswap Airdrops Tokens to Liquidity Providers and 0xmon Holders
Solana Protocol Metaplex To Enable Royalty Enforcement
Fortnite player Mongraal claims top score on Bored Ape Yacht Club’s viral NFT game Dookey Dash
Dungeons & Dragons Reverses Course on NFT Ban Amid Backlash
Premier League Inks Deal With Digital Trading Card Platform Sorare
Yuga Labs co-founder to take leave of absence due to health reasons
Hackers breach Azuki’s Twitter account, stealing $758K in 30 minutes


Marathon’s first Bitcoin sale in 2 years not the result of distress
Bitcoin Miner TeraWulf Restructures Debt
Core Scientific cuts deal with lender NYDIG to extinguish $38.6 million in debt
Bitcoin mining infrastructure startup Giga Energy raising $10 million in Series A
CleanSpark doubles bitcoin production in January to 697
Crypto Miner Pow.re Raises $9.2M Series A at $150M Valuation
Cipher Mining doubles hash rate capacity in January
Luxor launches auction-style platform for mining machines
Bitcoin Miner Argo Blockchain's CFO Alex Appleton Quits
Crypto-friendly bank ends loans backed by crypto mining rigs
Bitcoin Miner Core Scientific to Borrow $70M From B. Riley
Bitcoin miner Greenidge lost $130M in 2022 Q4; restructures debt with NYDIG, B. Riley
Bitcoin miner Gryphon releases operational update ahead of going public
Bitcoin mining revenue jumps up 50% to $23M in one month
Core Scientific files motion to sell over $6M in Bitmain coupons
Bitcoin Miner Gryphon to Go Public Via All-Stock Merger With Cannabis Firm Akerna
Marathon forms Abu Dhabi bitcoin mining JV; initial project of 250MW


Binance-WazirX Dispute Rages as the Indian Crypto Exchange Is Told to Move Funds out of Binance
Binance Re-Enters South Korea by Buying Majority Stake in Crypto Exchange GOPAX
Coinbase stock up 21% following lawsuit dismissal
Kraken closes Abu Dhabi’s office, sacks 8 staff
Crypto Exchange Bittrex Laying Off More Than 80 People
Binance signs MoU to deliver cryptocurrency infrastructure in Georgia
Voyager creditor files Motion for Chapter 11 trustee
Alameda Research Wallet Receives $6M From Bitfinex Hot Wallet
Binance delves into decentralized Web3 storage with BNB Greenfield
CME’s crypto derivatives reach new highs as traders seek safe port in storm
Shuttered Crypto Exchange Bitzlato Says It Plans to Resume Operations: Report
Coinbase loses Bison Trail co-founders: Sources
UK Crypto Exchange Archax Launches FCA-Regulated Custody Service
Binance blocks some accounts amid Bitzlato case: ‘Funds are safe’
WazirX Says Binance Lied About Ownership as Dispute About India’s Largest Exchange Escalates


DeFi protocol Archimedes raises $4.9 million in seed funding
Blockchain Company SIimba Chain Received $30M Funding Increase From US Air Force
Cronos Labs to accept second cohort for $100M-backed Web3 accelerator program
Blockchain security firm Sec3 raises $10 million in seed funding
Viola Ventures and Fabric Ventures back Addressable’s $7.5 million raise
Web3 Security Firm Hypernative Secures $9M in Seed Funding
Blockchain Scaling Project Sovereign Labs Raises $7.4M in Seed Round
Pfizer Ventures backs decentralized science startup in $4.1 million round
Arbitrum-based DEX Vest comes out of stealth with seed round from Jane Street, others


First Exchange-Traded NFT Fund Shuts Down
Osprey Funds Accuses Grayscale of ‘Unfair’ Practices in Lawsuit
DekaBank Selects Swiss Crypto Specialist Metaco to Steer Digital Asset Offering
Pantera returns to altcoins after seeking haven in bitcoin, ether
Crypto-Focused VC Firm Pantera’s Liquid Token Fund Lost 80% in 2022
Crypto investment products see weekly inflows of $117M, highest since July 2022
BH Digital didn’t just get Dragonfly’s head of liquid strategies, it got the whole team
Tekin Salimi on Managing $125M Through A DAO


Russia's Sberbank Will Introduce DeFi Platform by May: Report
UK Bank Nationwide Has Restricted Card Payments to Binance
BNY Mellon Names Caroline Butler CEO of Digital Assets
EBay Hiring Multiple Web3 Roles Following NFT Marketplace Acquisition
HSBC seeking new product director to steer tokenization efforts
Twitter moving ahead with payment processing service; crypto integration may come later
Virtu continues to see crypto as a ‘long-term growth opportunity’
Silvergate slides pre-market after suspending preferred dividend


UK Seeks CBDC Expertise for ‘Digital Pound’
Chinese Communist Party officials issue KPIs for e-CNY transactions in Suzhou
Banks in Russia to Lose $700 Million a Year Due to Digital Ruble, Experts Say
India's Reliance Retail, Other Merchants Now Accepting Digital Rupee
Montenegro’s central bank teams up with Ripple on digital currency pilot project


Australia Releases Token Mapping Consultation Paper, Plans to Reveal Crypto Rule Framework in 2023
Indonesia targets launch of its national crypto exchange by June
Crypto-related enforcement actions by US states rose sharply in 2022: Report
Japanese prime minister says DAOs and NFTs help support government’s ‘Cool Japan’ strategy
Bitzlato CEO arrested by Spanish police: Report
Senate Banking Committee’s priorities for new Congress include crypto: Report
UK Crypto Industry Celebrates Government’s Planned Exemptions for Crypto Ad Approvals
EU eases regulatory burden for crypto smart contracts in draft legislation
US Treasury lists BTC, ETH addresses tied to Russian sanctions evasion group
MakerDAO launches $5M legal defense fund
US Senators Demand Answers from Silvergate Capital Corp Over FTX's Misuse of Customer Funds
LBRY Credits’ Win Against SEC Ignites Hope for the XRP Community
UK Treasury outlines plans for regulating crypto exchanges and lenders
Mango Markets Exploiter Thought a DAO Protected Him. Then US Courts Showed Up
Kazakhstan Looks to Tighten Rules for Crypto Exchanges After FTX Collapse
White House Releases Roadmap on Biden Administration’s Plans To Tackle Crypto Risks
Crypto Exchange Gemini Emphasized FDIC Insurance in Communications With Earn Customers: Report
Hermès v MetaBirkin: NFT trademark stoush heads to trial in Manhattan
Philippines securities regulator seeks more authority to police the crypto industry
Panama’s Supreme Court to rule on cryptocurrency legislation
New York State Takes a Step Toward Cryptocurrency Adoption with New Bill
South Korea to deploy cryptocurrency tracking system in 2023
Federal Reserve denies membership to crypto adjacent bank Custodia
White House report says it would a ‘grave mistake’ to deepen ties between crypto, broader financial system


Russian citizens sending ‘significant amounts’ via crypto to help Ukrainians
How Bitcoin mining saved Africa's oldest national park from bankruptcy


Logan Paul faces class-action lawsuit over failed CryptoZoo NFT project
Bankman-Fried Family Subpoenas Opposed by US Government in FTX Filing
Sam Bankman-Fried Negotiating Bail Conditions: Court Filing
Lack of liquidity mitigated damages to BonqDAO exploit: Report
Couch From Famous Doge Meme to Be Auctioned by PleasrDAO
Bithumb’s Ex-Chairman Kang Jong-Hyun Arrested: Report
Federal judge bars SBF from contacting FTX and Alameda employees via Signal
Monkey Drainer-linked scammers possibly exposed after an on-chain quarrel
DOJ Seeks To Cut Off Sam Bankman-Fried’s Communication With Key People Involved in Fraud Trial
BlockFi permitted to pay $10M in staff bonuses in spite of bankruptcy
North Korean Hackers ‘Trying to Bait Crypto Users With Bogus Job Offers’


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