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Welcome back to another episode of “We Will Crypto,” the podcast that keeps you up to date with the latest happenings in the world of cryptocurrencies. I’m your host, and today we have an exciting lineup of news stories to discuss. We’ll be covering a range of topics, including the growing adoption of cryptocurrencies by major financial firms managing trillions of dollars in assets, the challenges and opportunities faced by banks in Hong Kong as they navigate the push for the region to become a global crypto hub, and the rise of cryptocurrency adoption in South and Southeast Asia. Additionally, we’ll delve into the recent developments in the European Union’s bank-capital legislation and its impact on crypto assets, as well as the market performance of Bitcoin and other top cryptocurrencies. So, sit back, relax, and let’s dive into the world of crypto. But before we get started, I want to encourage all our listeners to hit that subscribe button and leave a review if you enjoy our content. Your support means a lot to us. Now, let’s jump right in.
Our first story takes us to the realm of institutional adoption. It seems that cryptocurrencies are gaining traction among major financial institutions in the United States. CoinShares’ Chief Strategy Officer, Meltem Demirors, recently highlighted the actions of eight prominent financial institutions, collectively managing a staggering $27 trillion in assets. Institutions like BlackRock, Fidelity, JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, BNY Mellon, Invesco, and Bank of America are actively working to facilitate access to Bitcoin and other digital assets. While the adoption process is gradual, the construction of bridges between traditional finance and crypto is happening in real-time.
In other news, FileMarket is revolutionizing the NFT space with its accessible marketplace for minting and purchasing NFTs. This platform introduces Encrypted FileTokens (EFTs), allowing the sale of encrypted file access through NFT trading. By leveraging the Filecoin Virtual Machine (FVM) and their unified FileWallet, FileMarket aims to reshape the e-commerce sector. They are launching the FileBunnies project, the first-ever EFT collection, which will feature various rarities and provide exclusive access to valuable assets contributed by partner projects. With a visual no-code constructor for creating digital content stores, FileMarket makes it even easier for creators to launch their digital products.
Moving on, Binance Australia faced a setback when its payments partner cut off its access to the local banking system with less than a day’s notice. The suspension of Binance’s dollar services came after its payments provider, Zepto, received instructions from Cuscal, its partner banking and payments provider, to stop supporting Binance. The decision affected approximately 1 million Australian customers. While the reasons behind this move were not entirely clear, references were made to crypto-related scams and fraud. Binance Australia’s regional manager, Ben Rose, emphasized the importance of collaboration with regulators and the banking sector. He called for the implementation of sensible licensing to ensure the growth and opportunities of the industry in Australia.
Now, let’s turn our attention to the crypto market. Bitcoin has been experiencing a recent rally, reaching its highest level in over a year. Currently trading above $30,375, Bitcoin’s technical outlook appears positive. If it can clear the $32,000 level, we may see further gains above $35,000 and near $36,000. However, the release of the personal consumption expenditures index, a major macroeconomic catalyst, could impact Bitcoin and other risk-sensitive assets. Market participants will closely analyze the data for signs of inflation and potential implications for the Federal Reserve’s interest rate policies. As for altcoins, they have had a mixed performance, with some experiencing slight declines.
Our next story takes us to the European Union (EU), where a political deal has been reached on new bank-capital legislation that includes regulations for crypto assets. The aim is to establish prohibitive rules to prevent unbacked cryptocurrencies from entering the traditional financial system. While the specific details of the deal’s transitional prudential regime for crypto assets were not provided, the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision is currently working on a global crypto banking rulebook. This rulebook is expected to assign high-risk weights to cryptocurrencies. However, there’s a proposed compromise for regulated stablecoins to soften the strict stance on risk weights. This development showcases the EU’s efforts to strengthen and increase the resilience of banks operating within its jurisdiction.
In Ripple and Ethereum news, Ripple and blockchain software company Perrsyst have been collaborating on the development of an Ethereum-compatible sidechain for the XRP Ledger. The project has now entered its second phase, with the release of a new version of the devnet (v2). This version features a decentralized bridge design using the XLS-38d specification and supports transfers of XRP, IOU, and ERC-20 tokens between the XRP ledger and the EVM sidechain. The EVM sidechain utilizes a Proof of Authority (PoA) consensus mechanism and has made improvements in scalability, chain performance, and validator election mechanism. A security audit of the EVM sidechain will be conducted in July, and upon approval of the XLS-38d bridge change on the mainnet, the EVM sidechain is expected to go live. The integration of the EVM sidechain with the XRP Ledger opens up possibilities for XRP users to access decentralized applications (dapps) and for the Ethereum ecosystem to utilize XRP tokens in decentralized finance applications. The mainnet launch is approaching, and the third and final phase will involve implementing the EVM sidechain on the mainnet after the security audit.
Shifting over to Bitcoin Cash, a spin-off of Bitcoin, has seen a significant gain of 108% in the past week. Investors are hopeful that it will be classified as a commodity by U.S. regulators. However, a market expert cautions that this surge may not be sustained. While Bitcoin Cash and other Bitcoin forks have garnered attention, there haven’t been significant upgrades to support long-term growth. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has been actively regulating local crypto entities, considering many cryptocurrencies as securities. Bitcoin Cash, created in 2017 to enable faster and cheaper transactions, is available on the compliance-focused crypto exchange EDX Markets.
In Gaming News, Bling Financial offers iOS and Android mobile games that allow players to earn small amounts of Bitcoin or Ethereum while playing. By signing in with an account and earning Bling Points through gameplay and watching ads, players can convert those points into BTC or ETH and deposit them into a Coinbase or PayPal account. Currently, Bling offers nine games across iOS and Android, including titles like Bitcoin Blast, Ethereum Blast, and Sweet Bitcoin. To cash out the earned points, players can use the Bling Financial website, where they can choose between Bitcoin and Ethereum and transfer the earnings to their Coinbase or PayPal account. There is a waiting period of seven days before players can cash out again.
Now let’s turn our attention to Hong Kong, where the push to become a global crypto hub has put banks like HSBC and Standard Chartered in a challenging position. While Hong Kong’s regulators are urging banks to serve crypto exchanges as clients, the banks are concerned about the risks of money laundering and regulatory crackdowns. Authorities in Hong Kong are actively trying to attract crypto businesses, even those without licenses, but the banks fear legal consequences if they are found to be involved in illicit activities. This dilemma highlights the challenges faced by banks as they navigate the demands of regulators while maintaining their reputation in a rapidly evolving crypto landscape.
Finally, let’s explore the rise of cryptocurrency adoption in South and Southeast Asia. Despite regulatory restrictions, countries like India, Vietnam, the Philippines, Pakistan, and Thailand have experienced a surge in cryptocurrency usage. Factors such as the embrace of blockchain technology, a growing user base, investor interest, and the global nature of cryptocurrencies have contributed to this trend. This rise in adoption indicates a potential global shift towards decentralized financial systems and a more inclusive financial landscape. Additionally, blockchain technology holds immense potential for transforming supply chains in the region, enhancing transparency, traceability, and reducing fraud. However, challenges related to security, regulatory measures, and financial literacy need to be addressed to sustain this growth. South and Southeast Asia’s progress in cryptocurrency adoption positions the region as a leader in the crypto world.
And that concludes today’s episode of “We Will Crypto.” We hope you found these insights valuable. As always, remember to stay informed, stay curious, and stay crypto. Don’t forget to subscribe to our podcast and leave a review. Thanks for tuning in, and we’ll catch you in the next episode.