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Ethereum co-founder sees role diminishing as blockchain becomes increasingly decentralized – TechCrunch

As the layer-1 blockchain Ethereum continues to focus on a road map toward greater decentralization, its co-founder, Vitalik Buterin, thinks that moment might come sooner than expected.

In the early days after Ethereum’s launch in 2015, Buterin said he was doing development and research, but now there are more than a dozen researchers and multiple development teams that have taken control of the project, giving him and others a chance to step back from a prominent role over the blockchain.

“I think even today, we’re at the point where the Ethereum project can function completely without me.” Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin

“The amount of stuff that I have to do just keeps on decreasing more and more every six months,” Buterin shared in a press meeting with TechCrunch during the Korea Blockchain Week 2022. “We’re definitely getting to a point where Ethereum is just far more decentralized now than it was three years ago, and I expect it to be far more decentralized three years from now than it is today.


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Bitcoin ‘Maximalist’ Saylor Makes Crypto His Only Job

Michael Saylor’s new job looks a lot like his old job: adding bitcoin to the balance sheet of his business-software company with religious fervor.

“I’m a bitcoin maximalist, I happen to believe that bitcoin is an instrument of economic empowerment, it’ll be beneficial to eight billion people,” Saylor told Forbes in an interview. “I also happen to believe that bitcoin is unique,” he continues, because of “the Immaculate Conception, decentralization, and its commodity status. All of these things make it the superior asset in the space.”

The Immaculate Conception he means is the founding of bitcoin, as explained in a 2008 white paper by one or more people using the name Satoshi Nakamoto. Saylor stated that bitcoin is the only crypto asset which is truly decentralized and without an issuer. He backs bitcoin as a corporate investment in part because he believes there is regulatory agreement among U.S. regulators that bitcoin is a commodity and falls under the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s jurisdiction. There is debate about whether various other cryptocurrencies are securities and thus fall under the Security and Exchange Commission’s purview, as that agency has stated.

“The vast majority of the other cryptos are unregistered securities,” Saylor said. “They have an issuer, they will pass the Howey Test and so if you’re going to invest in an equity type instrument, you’re really a venture capitalist. We’re not investing as venture capitalists, we don’t want to take that kind of risk. In addition to the technical risk, the competitive risk, you also have regulatory risk, the uncertainty of not knowing how they’ll be treated.”

Saylor has turned the analytics business he founded into a leveraged bet on bitcoin, with a stash worth about $1.9 billion and total debt of $2.7 billion. For Microstrategy’s first bitcoin purchase in 2020 the company used $250 million of its capital to buy the cryptocurrency. Then the company borrowed $2.4 billion and sold $1 billion of equity to fund its subsequent bitcoin investments.

The concept has been good to Microstrategy’s stock price, up 159% to $319 a share since bitcoin purchases began in 2020, though down 60% from the $816 peak it reached when the crypto was at its all-time-high on November 10. Yet the bitcoin strategy hasn’t done anything for the bottom line; the last net profit Microstrategy recorded was in Q3 2020.

Last week the company posted a $1.06 billion loss for Q2, mostly attributable to a $918 million loss on its crypto holdings. Still, unlike automaker Tesla
TSLA
, which winnowed its bitcoin hoard, Microstrategy revealed that it had added $10 million worth in the period. It also announced that Saylor would turn over CEO duties to CFO
CFO
Phuong Le, who will mind the software store. Saylor becomes executive chairman and is in charge of bitcoin strategy.

He must be okay with the switch. The company founder controls 68% of its voting power through his class B shares, though he has only 4% of the publicly traded class A, according to Microstrategy’s April proxy statement.

Before taking the crypto plunge, Microstrategy shares had produced average annual returns of about 13% since coming public in 1998, almost twice the gain of the Standard & Poor’s 500. The company’s software helps clients gather and manage data related to their businesses, but its annual revenue plateaued between $500-$600 million over the past decade. Additionally, Microstrategy struggled to grow in a market crowded with larger rivals like Microsoft
MSFT
and Oracle
ORCL
.

“In the 2017 timeframe, we decided that we were going to spend a lot more money to grow, and we channeled hundreds of millions of dollars into sales and marketing and growth initiatives,” Saylor says. “What we found is, it doesn’t matter how much money you spend, it doesn’t move the needle.”

In order to save his business, Saylor felt Microstrategy needed to take a risk. He chose to go for crypto gold.

The software business remains profitable, bringing in $22 million net cash from operations over the past six months. However, that figure is down from $76 million over the similar period in 2021. Expanding the software operation is now Le’s job.

Bitcoin’s
BTC
bad year put a dent in the Microstrategy balance sheet. After the dust from the crypto decline settled, liabilities outweigh assets in Q2 for the first time since 2003, resulting in $187.1 million of negative shareholder’s equity.

Little light was shed on finances during the company’s quarterly earnings call. For the question-and-answer session, Shirish Jajodia, Microstrategy’s director of investor relations, read out questions from unnamed analysts, an unusual format.

While the financial benefits may be dubious, the bitcoin bet has certainly launched Microstrategy – and Saylor – into the public eye. His bitcoin-focused Twitter account has amassed 2.6 million followers, and he regularly appears in the media to speak as an advocate for the original cryptocurrency.

“Nobody wants to talk about business intelligence. If I were to tweet nonstop about business intelligence, then that engagement would fall off dramatically, because the average person doesn’t buy enterprise business-intelligence software,” Saylor said. “The average person is concerned about macroeconomics, politics, digital assets, crypto freedom.”

In addition to growing his personal audience, Saylor stated that bitcoin drives public engagement with Microstrategy. The company’s trading volume is also heavily impacted by investor interest in bitcoin.

“The majority of the enterprise value of the company is now attributable to the bitcoin strategy,” Saylor says. “The bitcoin strategy doesn’t have a full-time employee. I represent bitcoin. It’s not a labor-intensive business or an activity-intensive business; it really is a capital-intensive business.”

Since Microstrategy’s first bitcoin purchase in 2020, the company has funneled revenue from its software business into purchases, according to Saylor. In March, Microstrategy also took a $205 million loan from crypto-focused Silvergate Bank to buy more bitcoin, using existing holdings as collateral. If bitcoin falls below $21,000 – it’s under $24,000 now – that could trigger a margin call, but Saylor has said the company’s loan is 10x
ZRX
overcollateralized and has plenty more on its balance sheet to cover if necessary. Revenue from the software business is also used to pay interest on the Silvergate loan.

Beyond the financial benefit of the strategy itself, the company’s status as a way to gain bitcoin exposure on a traditional financial market makes capital-raising easier, “I don’t have to beg people to invest in MicroStrategy
MSTR
stock,” Saylor said.


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This NFT-Linked Cryptocurrency Just Surged Into a Top-30 Spot

What happened

Today’s rally in crypto markets has taken many investors by surprise, given the “good news is bad news” reality we’re now seeing play out. Last week’s strong jobs numbers indicated to investors that the Federal Reserve could be less likely to take its foot off the gas pedal when it comes to rate hikes. Nonetheless, equity and crypto markets have surged higher, with the crypto sector up 3.8% in aggregate over the past 24 hours, as of 10:15 a.m. ET on Monday.

However, one cryptocurrency that has not-so-quietly moved into a top-30 spot in the crypto market cap rankings is Flow (FLOW). This crypto project linked to non-fungible tokens (NFTs) has surged 13.3% over the past 24 hours as of 10:15 a.m. ET this morning. Over the past week, this token’s performance is even more notable, with gains of approximately 50% over this time frame.

The key catalyst driving Flow higher is news that its blockchain technology and Dapper Wallet product will play an integral role in Meta’s move into the NFT space. Instagram’s photo-sharing application will now support posting of NFTs using the Flow blockchain, providing a big boost for this project that was designed from the start to revolutionize the NFT space.

So what

Flow’s blockchain technology appears to have caught the attention of Meta’s upper brass, with this purpose-built NFT platform getting the nod to be used in the company’s impressive NFT rollout. Reportedly, this international NFT expansion to more than 100 countries will enable users from around the world to post their non-fungible tokens minted on the Flow blockchain. 

Dapper Labs, the company behind the Flow blockchain, is well known for its portfolio of top NFT projects. Whether it’s CryptoKitties, NBA Top Shot, or UFC Strike, NFT investors have long sought out Flow’s collectibles, given this project’s first-mover status in many sports-related collectible NFTs. Instagram appears to be partnering with Flow given its position in what could be a massive market over the long term.

Now what

How successful Instagram’s foray into the world of NFTs will be is something that will be determined over time. But the vote of confidence that Flow investors received by this integration is noteworthy. From a technological standpoint, there’s a lot investors have to cheer about with this partnership.

Key metrics investors should watch from here are NFT transaction volumes on Flow’s blockchain, as well as user growth and adoption over time. Right now, Flow is one token with some serious momentum. Accordingly, should this broad-based rally continue, this is one project with outsize potential, at least in the near term.

Randi Zuckerberg, a former director of market development and spokeswoman for Facebook and sister to Meta Platforms CEO Mark Zuckerberg, is a member of The Motley Fool’s board of directors. Chris MacDonald has positions in Meta Platforms, Inc. The Motley Fool has positions in and recommends Meta Platforms, Inc. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.




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Serenity Shield Launches First Cryptographic Sensitive Data …

 Serenity Shield , a decentralized application platform that offers an innovative, revolutionary approach to crypto inheritance and secure storage solutions for sensitive data, is launching the Minimum Viable Product (MVP) of its StrongBox®. The MVP is already available (email to register: ) and the final solution will be implemented further, offering full usage of the StrongBox®. This marks a significant step toward realizing its vision of“Security, Privacy and Digital Rights access for all”.

Employing privacy-by-design, Serenity Shield’s patent-pending StrongBox® DApp technology allows users to:

⦁ store, preserve, and restore their data in case of loss of access to their sensitive information. This can be anything from wallet access and digital assets to highly confidential information and other related documents;

⦁ transfer the ownership through secure inheritance of this information to specifically elected successors, such as heirs, in the case of an accident or death of the user.

The solution ensures that all user data is encrypted and protected thoroughly from unauthorized access. To achieve this, Serenity Shield has chosen Secret Network, a private smart contract blockchain system, to store confidential information, as it offers the security and privacy-by-design features required.

The Serenity Shield MVP is a cross-chain solution whose primary base is Solana. The user is guided on Serenity Shield to create his StrongBox® using Metamask, Phantom wallet or any other non-custodial wallet from popular chains. The UI has been carefully designed to offer a straightforward registration and set up path, from A to Z.

This multichain offering is designed to protect access to digital assets and sensitive digitized information across all wallets, blockchains, and centralized exchanges. Thanks to this disruptive technology development, Serenity Shield is positioned more broadly as a consolidator among all existing blockchain solutions.

Finally, with the StrongBox®, Serenity Shield offers a solution directly usable by end-users, but can also become a partner of choice for corporate and financial institutions. Serenity Shield is a bridge between the classical financial world and the crypto world based on blockchain for insurance companies or corporates willing to enter the digital space.

“The growth and worldwide adoption of digital assets and tokenization are imminent. We’re glad to be finally launching what we’ve worked so hard on. Our objective was simple: ensure all new and existing digital asset owners have access to an affordable, easy-to-use, and pioneering utility tool. Our architecture is unique and leverages the best tech out there today.” — Rodolphe Seynat, Co-Founder of Serenity Shield.

About Serenity Shield

 Serenity Shield was established in 2021 as a result of identifying a glaring and as yet unaddressed need in the global cryptocurrency market for secure access to and transfer of ownership of digital wallets. Harnessing advances in cryptography and the private storage of blockchain data, it has designed a secure, non-custodial method to store and retrieve any kind of sensitive data, as well as automating the transmission of them to pre-designated beneficiaries, should the owner become unavailable because of untimely death or other unforeseen circumstances.

 

 

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Bitcoin Retakes $24,000 on Stronger Risk Appetite Before Inflation Data

  • Bitcoin on Monday rose above $24,000 for the first time in August. 
  • Softening in US bond yields have boosted the cryptocurrency’s price. 
  • Bitcoin’s price has increased in August but is down 50% in 2022. 

Bitcoin advanced to $24,000 for the first time in August, a move taking place before financial markets assess a high-profile reading of US inflation this week. 

Bitcoin rose as much as 4% to $24,191.55, crossing that handle for the first time since July 31. The cryptocurrency has been struggling with a so-called crypto winter since November that’s left its price down by roughly 50% in 2022. 

The world’s most valuable cryptocurrency showed improvement Monday as US stocks moved higher before turning choppy, and as US Treasury yields pulled back. 

“Oil prices have weakened again, and this is providing drag on bond yields, which is supporting the likes of silver, bitcoin, Swiss franc and Japanese yen – currencies and commodities that carry very low or zero yield,” Fawad Razaqzada, market analyst at Forex.com, said in an early Monday note. 

US Treasury yields declined Monday after Friday’s  jump in the wake of the unexpectedly strong July payrolls report. The US economy added 528,000 jobs last month, highlighting potential inflation pressures at a time the Federal Reserve has been ramping up interest rates to cool consumer prices. 

Yields fall when prices rise. The 10-year Treasury yield on Monday fell 6 basis points to 2.77%, and the 2-year Treasury yield slipped 3 basis points to 3.12%. 

Bitcoin so far in August has picked up more than 3%, adding to July’s surge of 19%. The digital asset gained ground last week following news that Coinbase is teaming up with asset manager BlackRock to help some its clients gain greater exposure to cryptocurrencies, starting with bitcoin.

Investors in bitcoin and other markets are waiting for a fresh read on US consumer price inflation, due Wednesday from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The July report may show headline inflation cooling to 8.7%, according to an Econoday consensus estimate. The CPI rose to 9.1% in June, the fastest inflation rate since November 1981, paced by food and energy increases.


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Cryptocurrency: What is Crypto, Blockchain, Ethereum, Stablecoins and More

In the simplest terms, cryptocurrency is internet money and digital assets. Cryptocurrencies have made headlines for eye-popping valuations — and crashes. Bitcoin soared to all-time-highs of $69,000 last November, but has free-fallen to around $22,000. Long term crypto bulls, nicknamed maxi’s — short for maximalists — believe the technology will revolutionize how we bank and conduct business. But bears argue it’s a vehicle for illegal activity, susceptible to scams and detrimental to the environment.




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All cryptocurrencies are decentralized, intended to be free from government regulation and built on blockchain technology. They fall into two categories depending on their purpose. Coins, like Bitcoin, are currencies to replace fiat money. Tokens, like Ether, are programmable assets which exist strictly on the blockchain.


Want to know how to start investing in cryptocurrency? Checkout the Best Cryptocurrencies And Crypto Stocks To Buy And Watch page.


What Is The Blockchain Technology And How Does It Work?

The three main components of cryptocurrencies are the blockchain, the blockchain network, and the network cryptocurrency. The blockchain is the base technology for cryptocurrency networks. It’s a distributed ledger that records and maintains transactions using cryptography, which is the practice of encoding and decoding data.

The data is stored in groups called blocks. When a block reaches its maximum storage capacity it’s closed and linked to the previously filled block, forming a data chain.


View the latest Cryptocurrency Prices & Crypto News.


There are different types of blockchains. Public blockchains allow anyone to join and review and transfer data via a peer-to-peer network of computers and data centers across the globe. Private blockchains operate on closed databases and require an invitation to participate. Some companies, like Meta Platforms‘ (META) Facebook, launched their own blockchain divisions to keep up with the new tech competition, but their networks are typically private. Permissioned blockchains are a hybrid of public and private blockchains, where anyone can join the network as long as they meet certain criteria.

A blockchain network includes the blockchain ledger and everyone that contributes to the ledger. Most cryptocurrencies use public blockchains with decentralized networks. They’re not maintained at one location or issued by a central authority. Because of this, the method for updating the ledger depends on the blockchain’s consensus protocol.

What Is A Blockchain Protocol?

A blockchain’s consensus algorithm, also known as the blockchain protocol, is the method for validating data and updating the ledger. Overall, there are five types of consensus protocols. But the two most widely used are Proof of Work and Proof of Stake.

The Bitcoin network was the first successful cryptocurrency payment system built on the blockchain back in 2008. An anonymous person or group known as Satoshi Nakamoto created it. The goal of Bitcoin is to become an international currency. It has a finite supply of 21 million coins that are awarded by mining. Mining is the process of validating blocks and verifying transactions on the blockchain.

Bitcoin: Proof Of Work

Bitcoin uses a proof of work consensus algorithm, meaning only verified miners can update the ledger. Proof-of-work protocols award miners for processing and validating transactions, which is done by solving complex math problems that require a massive amount of computing power.

Computer nodes bundle and store transaction data in blocks. Each block is encrypted using a hashing function which assigns it a specific hash value. Miners compete to be the first to discover the correct hash value, thereby validating the block. Once the other nodes in the network confirm the solution, the block is added to the ledger. The winning miner receives fees for processing the transactions or bitcoin awards in the case of newly minted coins.

Transaction fees vary depending on network congestion, and bitcoin’s fees can be as low as a few U.S. cents. The block reward for newly minted coins is currently 6.25 BTC. That number is halved every four years to slow supply and help increase demand, in a process known as halving.

The fierce competition for bitcoin mining spiked demand for computing components called graphics-processing units. That led to a global shortage in those units in 2021. Bitcoin mining operators like Marathon Digital Holdings (MARA) run their systems 24/7 which wears down GPUs. That was a major boon to components suppliers like Nvidia (NVDA) and Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), which saw their stock prices soar to all-time-highs last November.


Is AMD Stock A Buy Right Now?


Beyond Bitcoin: What Are Altcoins?

Altcoin is the umbrella term for any cryptocurrency other than bitcoin. There are 20,292 cryptos currently listed on CoinMarketCap, and Ethereum’s Ether is the largest altcoin. Altcoins can differ in their objective, whether it be providing utility, being a store of value or medium of exchange. Bridges connect different blockchains as a way to transfer coins between their native networks.

Tokens are often built on existing blockchains. Because they’re programmable, tokens can be utilized for decentralized finance (DeFi) and decentralized applications (dApps). They can also represent asset ownership, facilitate services and financial transactions or create products and digital art, known as NFTs.

What Is Ethereum?

Ethereum currently uses a proof-of-work protocol, but it’s merging to a proof-of-stake system this summer. Instead of mining, POS algorithms validate transactions via peer review. The idea is to be faster and more energy efficient.

POS mechanisms require validators to stake a certain number of tokens as collateral to earn rewards. The system randomly selects multiple validators to verify a block before it’s closed and the ledger is updated. In return for processing transactions and storing data, validators receive a percentage in return annually. If a bad actor tried to manipulate the ledger by falsifying data, the discrepancy would be caught by the others. The perpetrator would then lose their staked tokens and be banned from updating the ledger.

Unlike Bitcoin, Ethereum has an open-ended network. That allows third parties to program their own decentralized apps and projects. It uses smart contracts to automatically process conditional transactions between two parties. But the benefit of speed comes at the cost of what are called high gas fees — transaction processing fees that fluctuate based on demand.

Many token projects and altcoins grabbed attention for posting incredible returns with affordable price points. But massive hacks, rug-pulls and phishing scams have made many investors skeptical.

Pay-to-earn video game maker Axie Infinity had $615 million stolen from its Ronin Network on March 23. Hackers gained access by an exploit in the Ronin Bridge, which allowed users to transfer their tokens between the Ronin Network and Ethereum. Bored Ape Yacht Club, which creates the famous monkey NFTs, has had more than $13 million of digital assets stolen through phishing scams after its Discord and Instagram accounts were hacked.

What Are Stablecoins?

You can’t judge cryptocurrency fundamentals in the same way you do stocks. Instead, their fundamental metrics are the numbers of wallets, transactions and users, which can cause huge, unpredictable price swings.


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Stablecoins are altcoins whose value is pegged to some other asset as a means of combating crypto volatility. Stablecoins are typically pegged to the U.S. dollar. And they maintain their pegs in different ways. The two largest, Tether (USDT) and USD Coin (USDC), both keep a reserve of U.S. dollars to back their value and are overcollateralized. Others, like Maker’s DAI, use ETH-based assets as collateral and smart contracts to maintain the peg.

Algorithmic stablecoins rely on smart contracts to hold their prices. They don’t hold reserves and are uncollateralized. Instead, they rely on the relationship between two tokens, the stablecoin and another altcoin, to maintain value.

Smart contracts regulate the relationship between the two depending on supply and demand to keep the stablecoin’s price target in check. Algorithmic stablecoins are incredibly risky, as demonstrated by the implosion of LUNA and terraUSD.

LUNA Crash Explained

Terra’s stablecoin, terraUSD (UST), stabilized its price according to its sister token, terra (LUNA). However, if UST fell below its peg, investor panic would cause LUNA to fall as well. This led to a death spiral. In February, the Luna Foundation Guard, launched by Terra CEO Do Kwon, raised $1 billion for reserves through LUNA sales, led by Three Arrows Capital. In mid-April, UST became the third-largest stablecoin and LUNA hit $90. But it didn’t last long.

The stablecoin fell to 98.5 cents on May 8 after an $85 million UST swap for USDC. By May 12, LUNA was less than 10 cents. And the Terra blockchain was halted multiple times. The crash wiped out more than $40 billion in value and started a snowball of liquidations and bankruptcies for crypto brokers and lenders, including major player Celsius. Many investors, such as Three Arrows Capital and Voyager Digital, are still feeling the effects from Terra’s crash.

How To Invest In Cryptocurrency




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Cryptocurrency can be purchased on cryptocurrency exchanges, like Coinbase (COIN) or BlockFi, and stored in digital wallets. Exchanges are platforms and apps where you can buy, sell and trade cryptocurrency. Similar to Robinhood, users can link their bank accounts to their profile transfer deposit and transfer funds between the exchange and their bank account.

Cryptocurrency Exchanges

The main purpose of wallets is storage and security. A wallet can be a software program or physical device like a USB drive. There’s two main types, hot and cold. Hot wallets link to the internet. Cold wallets are not. Personal wallets can connect to many exchanges, similar to bank accounts. While many exchanges offer their own wallet services for investors. Other platforms, like OpenSea, specifically store, trade and sell NFTs and other digital assets.


Is Coinbase Stock A Buy Right Now As Bitcoin And Ethereum Surge?


Cryptocurrency Stocks and Bitcoin ETFs

Many companies are investing in bitcoin, DeFi or blockchain technology, including Walmart, Amazon and MicroStrategy. Publicly traded exchanges like Coinbase which had to cut its staff by 18% at the end of June, provide cryptocurrency investment options without needing to buy individual tokens. As well as publicly traded mining companies including HUT8 (HUT), Riot Blockchain (RIOT) and Marathon Digital are also options for cryptocurrency investment vehicles.


Want to know how to start investing in cryptocurrency? Checkout the The Best Bitcoin Stocks And Crypto Plays To Watch page.


Major Companies Investing In Cryptocurrency

In addition to individual coins and tokens, Bitcoin and crypto-focused investments have numerous actively-managed ETFs and multi-asset funds. ProShares, Grayscale and VanEck all offer publicly traded Bitcoin strategy ETFs. ProShares is even trying to play both ways, having launched its Short Bitcoin Strategy ETF in June.


Bitcoin ETFs: Learn more on Bitcoin ETFs and cryptocurrency ETF investment strategies.


How To Sell Cryptocurrency

Bitcoin ATMs or online through brokerages and exchanges all provide access to cryptocurrencies, after which users can transfer the funds to a traditional bank account. And some wallet services also have sell functions that convert to U.S. dollars. Instead of cashing out of cryptocurrencies completely, investors can also trade different tokens on exchanges.


These Blockchain Technology Stocks May Surprise You


What Can You Buy With Bitcoin?

There still aren’t many places that accept bitcoin or cryptocurrencies for payment in the United States, but adoption has grown to reach nearly every industry. Some major retailers and service providers like Walmart, Shopify and AT&T have started accepting bitcoin for online purchases. The most common way to buy things with bitcoin is to use it to purchase a gift cards for everyday transactions. Some credit card companies like Visa (V) provide crypto services. Exchanges like Crypto.com offer cards that function similarly to debit cards. And a recent Deloitte survey indicated that 75% of merchants plan to accept cryptocurrencies or stablecoins within the next two years.


View the Cryptocurrency Prices & Crypto News page to keep up with daily crypto news and the crazy swings of digital assets.


How To Track Cryptocurrency Prices

Another critical difference between gauging cryptocurrencies and stocks is that cryptocurrencies don’t have earnings. As mentioned previously, their metrics include the numbers of wallets, transactions and users. Experts say the fundamentals for cryptocurrencies in general are trending in the right direction, even in the midst of the current cryptocurrency downturn.

Institutional support is growing as well. Currently, more than one-third of all traditional hedge funds are investing in some sort of digital asset, according to this year’s Global Crypto Hedge Fund Report from PricewaterhouseCoopers.

However, despite their original intent, cryptocurrencies have not acted as hedges against inflation. Instead, they’ve trended with the broader stock market indexes.


Read The Big Picture and Market Pulse to track daily market trends.


What Are The Risks Of Cryptocurrency?




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The massive volatility and history of failed cryptocurrency projects make it clear there’s plenty of risk in the space. Projects built on bad blockchain technology, or which offer unsustainable returns as part of their operating plans (known as tokenomics), have caused major losses for many investors. Crypto’s interconnected ecosystem means major problems can compound, as seen with the LUNA wipeout.

And it can be hard to find reliable, up-to-date data on current prices, transaction volume, utility, etc. The current lack of regulation means cryptocurrency investors are vulnerable to bad actors that have been making headlines by wrecking havoc on the industry. And as with all sorts of investing, trading on emotion is also a risk. Many retail cryptocurrency traders have mistimed advances out of FOMO — fear of missing out — and poor risk assessment.

Before buying into any specific cryptocurrency, investors should read that currency’s white paper and really learn the tokenomics and tech behind a project before deciding to buy in. It’s best to use established exchanges for trading and keep all wallet logins and passwords secured. Be wary of startups, scams and potential pump-and-dump schemes, especially in the current crypto market. Institutional backing can also indicate legitimacy. Experts recommend allocating 1% to 5% of portfolios to Bitcoin or cryptocurrencies, depending on personal financial situations and risk tolerance.


Read more on navigating crypto bear markets


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Bitcoin, Binance Coin, ApeCoin, and Decentraland Daily Price Analyses – 8 August Morning Price Prediction

The global crypto market continued with its gains as it progressed. The recent 24 hours proved lucky for Bitcoin, Binance Coin, and others as they were able to continue bullish. The recent wave of bullishness has proved good for the market as it has broken across the previous barriers. The mentioned change has been a new phenomenon over the last few months. The recent wave of bearishness had affected Bitcoin adversely as it lost a considerable amount.

The US Treasury has sanctioned cryptocurrency mixer Tornado Cash. The mentioned service allows the users to obscure the details of the transactions. The company and its 44 wallets have been designated Specially Designated Nationals List. The announcement came from the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Asset Control on 8 August.

The wallets, as mentioned earlier, run the smart contract used by Tornado Cash. As it has been put on the SDN list, it bars the company from operating in the US and forbids US citizens to engage in transactions with such entities. It has attracted the treasury’s ire because of its dubitable transactions. One of these includes working in collaboration with North Korea’s Lazarus Group. It is alleged to be laundering more than $455 million for Lazarus.

Here is a brief overview of the current market situation, analyzing the performance of Bitcoin, Binance Coin, and others.

BTC crosses $24K

Celsius has expressed its intentions to sell its mined Bitcoin. Texas regulators don’t trust this decision because it faces allegations of misconduct. It has referred to the problematic asset deployment decisions for its current turbulent period.

BTCUSD 2022 08 08 20 28 07
Source: TradingView

The latest data for Bitcoin shows that it has taken a speedy influx of capital. The 24-hour data shows the addition of 4.42% to Bitcoin. The seven-day data shows a gain of 3.32% as the inflow remains strong.

The price value for Bitcoin is in the $24,125.23 range. If we compare the market cap value for Bitcoin, it is estimated to be $461,177,434,824. The 24-hour trading volume of this coin is about $25,470,323,179.

BNB scaling new heights

Binance and WazirX came in direct conflict due to recent statements from the leaders of both companies. According to the latest updates, Binance has terminated fund transfers between WazirX and Binance. Its representative had recently said in a statement that it would cease these transactions soon.

BNBUSDT 2022 08 08 20 28 32
Source: TradingView

Binance Coin has also seen a speedy inflow of capital. The recent data shows a gain of 0.94% for this coin. In comparison, the weekly data shows a gain of 13.83%.

The price value for BNB is in the $326.58 range. If we compare the market cap value for this coin, it is estimated to be $52,689,096,519. The 24-hour trading volume for the same coin is about $1,286,631,480.

APE continues to grow

ApeCoin has also grown considerably due to the bullish market. The 24-hour data for this coin shows that it has added 1.14%. The increase has also pushed the weekly performance as it has added 4.79%. The enhancement hiked its price value to the $7.35 range.

APEUSDT 2022 08 08 20 29 01
Source: TradingView

The market cap value for ApeCoin is estimated to be $2,264,527,625. The 24-hour trading volume for the same coin is about $276,487,621. The same amount in its native currency is about 37,467,920 APE.

MANA growing speedy

Decentraland has also seen an enhancement in value due to a bullish market. The increase has helped it add 3.55% over the last 24 hours. The weekly data shows an addition of 5.72%. The hike has taken its price value to the $1.09 range.

MANAUSDT 2022 08 08 20 30 50
Source: TradingView

If we compare the market cap value for MANA, it is estimated to be $2,030,559,595. The 24-hour trading volume for the same coin is about $267,540,156. The circulating supply of this coin is about 1,852,428,597 MANA.

Final Thoughts

The global crypto market has seen a considerable enhancement in its value. The increase has helped it rise from the bearish change to a relatively consolidated position. The increase for Bitcoin and others has proved good as Bitcoin has crossed its recent resistance level. The global market cap value is also on the rise. It is currently estimated to be $1.14 trillion. 

Disclaimer. The information provided is not trading advice. Cryptopolitan.com holds no liability for any investments made based on the information provided on this page. We strongly recommend independent research and/or consultation with a qualified professional before making any investment decisions.


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US sanctions cryptocurrency service allegedly used by North Korea for money laundering

By Jennifer Hansler and Brian Fung, CNN

The US Treasury on Monday sanctioned Tornado Cash, a virtual currency mixer, for its use by cybercriminals, including those under US sanctions.

According to a senior Treasury official, Tornado Cash has reportedly laundered more than $7 billion in virtual currency since its launch in 2019, including $455 million from the Lazarus Group, a North Korean state-sponsored hacking group. It was also used as recently as last week to launder money from a “heist” of Nomad, a US cryptocurrency firm, the official said.

Monday’s sanctions will prohibit US persons, and those subject to US jurisdiction, from using the virtual currency mixer.

A virtual currency mixer receives a number of transactions and mixes them together before sending them to their ultimate destination to make it harder to trace where the money came from or where it’s going.

Tornado Cash did make some efforts to comply with its regulatory obligations, including by adding a screening tool to prevent money from going to previously sanctioned cryptocurrency wallets, the senior Treasury official said. But despite that, law enforcement analysis of public cryptocurrency transactions showed hackers such as the Lazarus Group were still able to send money to Tornado Cash for laundering, the official said.

As part of Monday’s action, 44 cryptocurrency wallets linked to Tornado Cash were sanctioned by the US government. The Treasury official said Tornado Cash had been previously identified as an entity of concern, but declined to say for how long and where the organization may be based or what individuals may be operating it.

“Despite public assurances otherwise, Tornado Cash has repeatedly failed to impose effective controls designed to stop it from laundering funds for malicious cyber actors on a regular basis and without basic measures to address its risks,” Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian Nelson said in a statement. “Treasury will continue to aggressively pursue actions against mixers that launder virtual currency for criminals and those who assist them.”

According to the Treasury official, Tornado Cash is one of the largest virtual currency mixers that has been identified by the US government. It is only the second time the Department has sanctioned such an entity.

In May, the Treasury Department sanctioned another virtual currency mixer, Blender.io, which it said was used by North Korea “to support its malicious cyber activities and money laundering of stolen virtual currency.”

The official said they hoped Monday’s sanctions would send a message to the private sector and partner nations to encourage them to develop regulations when it comes to virtual currency.

The-CNN-Wire
™ & © 2022 Cable News Network, Inc., a WarnerMedia Company. All rights reserved.


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E-Commerce Platform become first blockchain hardware to be approved for tier 4 at BitPay. – World News Report

123Miners - BitPay

123Miners – BitPay

123Miners improves its payment service to its customers.

LELYSTAD, FLEVOLAND, THE NETHERLANDS, August 8, 2022 /EINPresswire.com/ — FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

E-Commerce Platform first blockchain hardware to be approved for tier 4 at BitPay. 123Miners improves its payment service to its customers.

Bitpay is the market leader in blockchain payment technology. They provide its merchants and their end-user with secure, user-friendly, AML and KYC compliant payment solutions.

“We are proud to accomplish tier 4 in our partnership with BitPay. Currently we are the only blockchain hardware company with this status. Both from a compliance and user friendly perspective we are very thankful for Bitpay tier 4 acceptance as well as their merchant collaboration” said the Founder of 123Miners, Harvey Blom

Our aim is to continue to serve the industry the best way possible with a strong focus on value creation and waste reduction. And we will be launching new insurance and finance solutions.

About BitPay

BitPay was founded in 2011, while Bitcoin was still in its infancy. We saw the potential for bitcoin to revolutionize the financial industry, making payments faster, more secure, and less expensive on a global scale.

BitPay is a pioneer building blockchain payment technology to transform how businesses and people send, receive, and store money around the world.

About 123Miners

123Miners is the first E-commerce company that focuses on refurbishing Bitcoin and other crypto miners, combating E-waste and unutilised digital capital. Due to the crypto mining ban currently being enforced in China, Kazakhstan and now Russia, many “old” crypto miners are not being utilized. In addition to E-waste, miners shutting down production have halted the creation of new digital capital.

Refurbished Bitcoin miners can be obtained at a lower cost. Bitcoin mining is now incredibly competitive, no longer being mined on single laptops. It would be extremely hard to earn Bitcoin by solo mining with just one miner. That is why people commonly join cloud mining pools, sharing multiple machines, to turn Bitcoin mining into a collective process.

Learn more about 123Miners at https://123miners.com.

Harvey Blom
CryptlyMedia
+31 6 34226466
email us here
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