Trading Desk Market Update: 8/11

August 11, 2022

BTC is currently trading around $24,800 and ETH around $1,900.  Notable gainers in the last 24 hours are ETC, CEL, and LDO.  The global crypto market cap is $1.22T, up 3.0% over the last day.  DeFi Total Value Locked is ~$67b and BTC dominance is around 41%.

After yesterday’s lower-than-expected US inflation reading, cryptocurrencies, and ether in particular, are continuing to rally following Ethereum’s successful completion of its third and final testnet merge on Goerli, making the testnet a full proof-of-stake chain.  Ethereum developers had already completed two largely successful testnet merges on Ropsten and Sepolia, and the stage is now set for Ethereum’s mainnet to merge with the Beacon Chain likely next month and moving the network from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake.  

In regulatory news: a UN development body has recommended that developing countries ban banks from holding crypto, among other restrictions; The Philippines’ central bank plans to halt applications for new virtual asset firms for three years in order to conduct a reassessment based on market conditions; South Korea’s Financial Services Commission plans to expedite new crypto rules with parliamentarian debates on 13 bills; Uzbekistan blocked users from accessing Binance, FTX, and Huobi as authorities clamp down on crypto in the country; India’s Enforcement Directorate has now probed at least ten crypto exchanges on money laundering allegations; The US SEC and CFTC proposed amending Form PF, a private filing of AUM by large hedge funds, to include cryptocurrency exposure; The US SEC is investigating Coinbase’s listing process and staking, yield, and stablecoin products, per a Coinbase regulatory filing; The US FTC opened an investigation into crypto exchange BitMart over its hack back in December; The US IRS is seeking to examine customers of crypto prime dealer sFOX for failure to pay taxes; and, the US SEC sent a cease and desist letter to Bloom Protocol asking it to register its tokens as securities.

Other notable news includes: investment manager BlackRock launched a private trust offering US-based institutional clients exposure to spot bitcoin; asset manager T Rowe Price poached a new digital asset strategy head from hedge fund Dunamis; the US subsidiary of electronic trading platform developer Clear Markets received CFTC approval to offer physically-delivered OTC crypto derivatives; crypto trading firm Alameda Research has likely lost $70m in its support of embattled crypto platform Voyager Digital, per Sam Bankman-Fried; China-based crypto exchange Hotbit suspended withdrawals after its assets were frozen due to an ongoing investigation into a former employee; crypto exchange Bitfinex is reportedly facing a criminal investigation, per a Department of Justice Freedom of Information Act request; blockchain infrastructure provider Paxos was chosen to be Brazilian fintech app PicPay’s crypto partner in Brazil; NFT marketplace OpenSea announced a new stolen item policy to combat NFT theft; Vinteum, a bitcoin research and development nonprofit, launched in Brazil; Ripple is exploring a potential buyout of Celsius’ assets; Polkadot’s innovation hub Astar Network announced a partnership with DeFi network Acala to boost DeFi on Polkadot; decentralized institutional lending platform Maple unveiled a new $30m liquidity pool; blockchain analytics firm Elliptic introduced a new product to track crypto flows across all blockchains in a single screening; and, MailChimp suspended the accounts of several crypto newsletter publishers, including Messari and Edge.

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