ICYMI, here are some of the key developments in the crypto and blockchain space over the past week that we think should be noticed. Let us know what you think about the compilation, subscribe and clap if you like. Happy reading!
FTX’s Top Users Were from Two Tiny Islands
Those hoping that the majority of troubled FTX exchange users would have come from a large economy could find this disappointing. Global customer distribution (WRS and Dotcom silos) as of the petition date shows that majority of the FTX exchange users were from the Cayman Islands (22%) and the Virgin Islands (11%). Other countries that make up a substantial number of users include China (8%), the United Kingdom (8%), and Singapore (6%). While the document does not indicate what percentage of Turkish users were on the exchange before its collapse, Turkey recently started investigating the former CEO of FTX, Sam Bankman-Fried, over fraud allegations with some of his assets seized.
MAS: Not Much a Regulator Could Do to Save Investors From FTX Collapse
The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) became one of the world’s financial regulators to come out to correct misconceptions about what a regulatory body could have done to avert the impact of the FTX collapse on investors.
It says that it was impossible to protect local users who dealt with FTX as the exchange is not licensed by MAS and operates offshore. On why FTX was not placed on the Investor Alert List (IAL) like Binance despite both not being licensed by MAS, it says Binance was involved in the unlicensed solicitation of customers. Binance was also offering listings in Singapore dollars which FTX didn’t.
Kenya Likely to be First African Country to Tax Crypto Users
Kenya says it will start to tax the country’s four million crypto owners following the planned introduction of the Capital Markets (Amendment) Bill 2022 which will see transactions on crypto exchanges and digital wallets taxed like excise duty charged on bank transactions. The Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) will proceed with the plan once MPs approve changes to the law. The Bill will require crypto owners in Kenya to provide the Capital Markets Authority (CMA) with specific information for tax purposes in a move that will see Kenya bring crypto mainstream and extend regulation for the first time.
What’s Your Pre- and Post-Bitcoin Halving Price Projection?
You can join the wagon. The Bitcoin halving-related projections for the price of the top cryptocurrency have started rolling in despite the event is still slated to happen in well over a year (April 2024). Billionaire venture capitalist, Tim Draper, predicts Bitcoin will reach $250,000 by June 2023. His rationale for the expected breakout next year is the halving, as well as Bitcoin’s remaining prominent untapped demographic, women, coming onboard. Draper’s prediction follows Pantera Capital’s which projects that, should history repeat itself as the market usually peaks on average 1.3 years before and another 1.3 years after the halving, Bitcoin would rise to $36,000 before the event and $149,000 afterward. The VC studied the change in the stock-to-flow ratio across each halving to arrive at its conclusion.
New York Set to Ban PoW Crypto Mining for Two Years
Meanwhile, New York governor Kathy Hochul signed the proof-of-work (PoW) mining moratorium into law to make the state the first in the US to ban PoW crypto mining activity for two years. It could be recalled that following the ban on crypto-related activities in China, particularly mining, several mining businesses have made their way to the US. The state’s argument that crypto mining energy consumption is exponentially beyond other industries had earlier been described as false by the Chamber of Digital Commerce, the world’s blockchain trade association.
NFT Sales Down At 2022 Lowest, Record Shows
NFT gaming platform Balthazar DAO noted in its latest NFT Marketplace Update that NFT sales were down by over US$100 million in November (or -20% compared to October). It says NFT sales across five top marketplaces — OpenSea, Magic Eden, X2Y2, LooksRare, and Solanart — combined were US$394.02 million in November, the lowest recorded in 2022. Only Magic Eden was the only marketplace of the five that saw an increase from US$58.66 million in October to US$94.40 million in November.
Meanwhile, OpenSea, the largest NFT marketplace in the world, has seen more trading volume this year to date compared to last year.
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