Block by Block Weekly Newsletter #30

Get the newsletter in your inbox each week — click here to subscribe!

News of the Week

🤔 Coinbase Revamps Listing Process

Coinbase has revamped its policy for listing new cryptocurrencies, replacing an ad-hoc process with one Coinbase hopes will rapidly expand the range of assets traded on its exchange.

The new system allows almost anyone to submit a cryptocurrency through an online form for evaluation under the company’s digital asset framework.

Listings will be added on a jurisdiction-by-jurisdiction basis, rather than supporting all assets globally as Coinbase has done up until now. As a result, some coins won’t be available for Coinbase customers to trade in places where local regulations either expressly forbid them or are unclear about their legality.

🔍 Crypto Exchanges Under Regulatory Scrutiny

The New York Attorney General (NY AG) has referred three cryptocurrency exchanges, including Binance and Kraken, to the New York Department of Financial Services, over the possibility that they have committed digital-currency regulatory violations. The referral is the result of a comprehensive investigation started by NY AG Barbara Underwood’s predecessor, Eric Schneiderman in April, spanning two AGs and carrying significant weight and thoroughness

The NYAG’s inquiry was launched in April, seeking voluntary participation from 13 of the world’s most notable trading sites, including Coinbase, Kraken, Bitfinex, Bittrex, and Binance, among others.

💸 Mt Gox Trustee Has Sold $230 Million in Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash Since March

The trustee for the now-defunct cryptocurrency exchange Mt. Gox has revealed new details about the pace of cryptocurrency sales as part of the firm’s bankruptcy and rehabilitation process.

Attorney Nobuaki Kobayashi explained in a September 25 notice on the Mt. Gox website that over $230 million dollar’s worth of bitcoin (BTC) and bitcoin cash (BCH) had been exchanged for fiat currency between March 18 and the start of civil rehabilitation on June 22.

According to the notice, the trustee sold 24,658.00762 BTC and 25,331.00761 BCH — quantities that brought in 25,975,702,352 Japanese yen, or $230,269,821.82.

Following the sale, the balance in the trustee account was “approximately JPY 70,059 million,” or around $621 million, Kobayashi added.

🇸🇬 Binance to Launch Fiat Exchange in Singapore

Binance, the most-used cryptocurrency exchange in the world, is testing a fiat currency exchange in Singapore, according to CEO Zhao Changpeng.

Specifically, the exchange will open in beta — meaning invite-only users within a closed testing environment — on September 18.

No further details have yet been released, but it is fair to assume that the Singapore dollar will be available.

💰 Crypto Exchange Zaif Hacked In $60 Million Bitcoin Theft

Another Japan-based cryptocurrency exchange has been hacked, losing a 6.7 billion yen (about $60 million worth of cryptocurrency), including 5,966 bitcoins.

The exchange first noticed an unusual outflow of funds on the platform around 17:00 Japan time on September 14, after which the company suspended asset deposit and withdrawal services.

Zaif explained that after further investigation, it discovered that hackers with unauthorized access to the exchange’s hot wallets had stolen roughly $60 million in bitcoin, bitcoin cash, and MonaCoin.

⚖️ Pro-Cryptocurrency Bills are Being Introduced in Congress

This week, U.S Rep. Emmer announced that he would introduce two bills and a resolution to help rationalize the regulatory environment for cryptocurrencies. The resolution supports a light-touch approach to regulation, and the two bills create safe harbors, one for non-custodial use of cryptocurrencies and the other for taxpayers who report income from hard forks.

The Blockchain Regulatory Certainty Act would create a safe harbor from state licensing requirements for non-custodial entities in the cryptocurrency space.

The Safe Harbor for Taxpayers with Forked Assets Act would create a safe harbor from penalties for taxpayers who benefit from a cryptocurrency hard fork and make any good faith effort to comply with the presently uncertain tax policy surrounding these events.

👍 Crypto Ad Ban Lifted at Google

Google is reversing part of its sweeping ban on cryptocurrency-related advertising and plans to allow regulated crypto exchanges to buy ads in the United States and Japan.

Google’s updated policy applies to advertisers all over the world, though the ads can only run in the U.S. and Japan, and interested parties will need to apply for certification to serve ads in each country individually. Google’s move follows Facebook, which started allowing preapproved cryptocurrency advertisers in June.

The new policy is set to start in October.

Project Updates

MetaMask adds Ledger Hardware Wallet Support

You can now connect your ledger hardware wallet directly to MetaMask! This allows any dapp that works with MetaMask to be used safely and securely with a hardware wallet.

0x Development Update #11

0x v2 is now live on the mainnet! Read the full announcement post here.

Aion Token Bridge and Swap Now Live

This bridge will enable AION ERC-20 Tokens holders to seamlessly and atomically transfer their AION ERC-20 Tokens on Ethereum to AION Coins on the Aion Blockchain.

a16z crypto purchases 6% of MKR

Investment fund a16z crypto has purchased 6% of the total MKR token supply for $15 million USD.

Opera Launches Crypto Wallet

Opera launched a “Labs” special edition of its desktop web browser with built-in crypto wallet functionality.

Scaling Ethereum to ~500tx/sec On-chain

Vitalik Buterin thinks that Ethereum can scale asset transfer transactions by a huge amount, without using layer 2’s that introduce liveness assumptions (eg. channels, plasma), by using ZK-SNARKs to mass-validate transactions.

OnChainFx Gets New Features

OnChainFx now tracks fundamental events on their crypto charts (such as forks, airdrops etc).

Rocket Pool Beta v1 Recap

Rocket Pool Beta has finally come to a close, after running at capacity for almost its entire lifespan. Jake from the team provides a recap of everything that happened.

Loom Announces Validator Requirements for PlasmaChains

Requirements include having a minimum 1,250,000 tokens, getting a sign off from the Loom Network on hardware specs and configs and completing KYC/AML proceuders.

Prysmatic Labs Ethereum 2.0 Update #13

New research and development updates from Prysmatic Labs.

LearnChannels was launched this week to help educate people about state channels.

State of the Polkadot Ecosystem

T-12 months until the launch of Polkadot. What’s the state of the ecosystem?

Project Spotlight

expo — A Simple Way to Margin Trade Cryptocurrency

Expo is built on the dYdX Protocol, and will be the easiest way to buy and sell dYdX Margin Tokens. Expo will initially support Short Ethereum ‘sETH’, an ERC-20 token pegged to a short ETH position, and will add support for additional short and leveraged assets in the future.

Expo will be live on mainnet on October 2, 2018.

Website Updates

New resources added to the site


Thanks for reading. I’d love to get your feedback so please send an email to and I’ll be sure to get back to you! :)

Disclaimer: None of the information outlined in this piece should be taken as investment advice. Please click here for more information.