Blockchain Biz
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Blockchain Biz

Daily Crypto News

  1. Troubled Hong Kong crypto exchange AAX unlikely to reopen, says former executive — Hong Kong-based crypto exchange AAX is likely to end operations and restructure, its former vice president for global marketing and communications, Ben Caselin, told CoinDesk TV on Wednesday in his first interview since he announced his resignation on Monday. The exchange deleted its social media accounts and froze services on Nov. 13 following what it called a malicious attack that left it unable to verify customer balances and allow withdrawals. AAX added that resuming withdrawals would put the exchange at risk of capital deficit. The company stated on Nov. 19 that it was speaking to investors and saw the chance of a return to normal operations, but Caselin said that was not his observation at the time of his departure.
  2. U.S. crypto exchange Kraken to lay off 30% of its workforce, cites ‘market conditions’ — U.S.-based crypto exchange Kraken will lay off 30% of its global workforce, or approximately 1,100 people, to “adapt to current market conditions,” according to a company blog post on Wednesday. “Since the start of this year, macroeconomic and geopolitical factors have weighed on financial markets. This resulted in significantly lower trading volumes and fewer client sign-ups,” the company said in the post. “Unfortunately, negative influences on the financial markets have continued and we have exhausted preferable options for bringing costs in line with demand.” The cuts bring the company’s total workforce to the same size it was 12 months ago, Kraken said in the statement.
  3. Bitcoin Rises Again on US Fed Chair’s Moderate Remarks — U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell wasn’t exactly dovish in a speech Wednesday, but his suggestion that the Fed could live with a more moderate interest rate hike at its mid-December meeting sent cryptocurrency prices, not to mention other assets, higher. Bitcoin was recently trading over $17,150, up 1.4% over the past 24 hours, and its third consecutive day of gains. The largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization had started surging on Monday amid investor hopefulness that Powell and other Fed officials have found reassurance in economic indicators showing inflation and the threat of a harsh recession waning. BTC sank below $15,500 two weeks ago as markets chewed on Genesis Global Capital’s decision to halt withdrawals, part of the fallout from crypto exchange giant FTX’s implosion.
  4. Telegram plans decentralized crypto exchange, wallets following FTX collapse — Social media site Telegram Messenger LLP plans to build non-custodial wallets and a decentralized exchange for cryptocurrencies following the collapse of the FTX platform, Telegram’s founder and Chief Executive Officer Pavel Durov said on Wednesday. The 38-year-old founder said his and other blockchain-based projects should return to their decentralized roots, allowing cryptocurrency users to make transactions from self-hosted wallets that don’t rely on any single third party. “We, developers, should steer the blockchain industry away from centralization by building fast and easy-to-use decentralized applications for the masses. Such projects are finally feasible today,” Durov said in his post. FTX’s bankruptcy shows that reliance on centralized entities leads to investors losing money at “the hands of a few who began to abuse their power,” said Durov.
  5. It’s time for more institutions to adopt blockchain and crypto: Opinion — As the digital asset space is transforming from a niche market into an alternative investment class with participation from a wide range of players, headline-grabbing failures such as FTX, Three Arrows Capital, Voyager Digital, and now BlockFi have negatively affected public perception of the industry, highlighting the need for safe and regulated solutions.
  6. Bitcoin, crypto, rise after Fed Chair Powell hints at easing rate hikes — Bitcoin and Ether rose in Thursday morning trading in Asia, with all non-stablecoin top 10 cryptocurrencies and traditional equity markets as U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said on Wednesday that the central bank may start easing interest rate hikes.
  7. Bitcoin jumps to a 2-week high of $17,000, but crypto experts say don’t cheer the rally as FTX contagion is far from contained — Bitcoin notched a two-week high of about $17,000 on Wednesday, but experts said the fallout from FTX’s crash has yet to fully play out. In the past week, bitcoin and ethereum are up a respective 2.76% and 8.90%, according to Messari, despite continuous bad news within the industry. FTX, the once-$32 billion digital asset empire started by Sam Bankman-Fried, swiftly collapsed earlier this month and is raising contagion fears. Crypto lender BlockFi filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Monday, revealing significant exposure to FTX. And industry giant Genesis is organizing restructuring lawyers to prevent the crypto brokerage from going bankrupt, Bloomberg reported Tuesday.
  8. Fed Likely to Raise Rates by 50 Basis Points in December; Bitcoin Jumps — In its eighth and final meeting of 2022, the Federal Reserve will likely raise interest rates by another 50 basis points, or 0.5 percentage point, Fed Chair Jerome Powell implied Wednesday. The previous four Fed rate hikes were for 75 basis points, or 0.75 percentage point. “It makes sense to moderate the pace of our rate increases as we approach the level of restraint that will be sufficient to bring inflation down,” Powell said at an event at the Brookings Institute in Washington, D.C. “Time for moderating the pace of rate increases may come as soon as the December meeting.” A 50-basis point hike would lift short-term rates to a target range to 4.25 to 4.50%. Bitcoin (BTC) jumped about 1% on the news to $16,982. Speculation over a smaller rate hike mounted in recent weeks after two consecutive lower-than-expected inflation reports by the U.S. Labor Department gave central bankers some relief that price pressure is starting to cool.
  9. Binance hires the accounting firm that disavowed Donald Trump’s financials to verify its crypto reserves — Binance is enlisting the services of accounting firm Mazars, which previously worked for former President Donald Trump, according to the Wall Street Journal. Mazars will verify Binance’s crypto reserves, the report said, as part of the exchange’s larger proof-of-reserves system to foster more transparency. Both Binance and Mazars did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment. Binance confirmed the news to Bloomberg, saying “it is working with Mazars to conduct a third party financial verification as part of the Proof of Reserves updates.” “Mazars is reviewing all information that we have shared publicly to date on Proof of Reserves (BTC) and will also be verifying future updates and tokens,” Binance told Bloomberg. “The first verification update for BTC will be completed this week.”
  10. The Ethereum Foundation Commences Shutdown of Ropsten Testnet — The Ethereum Foundation said in a Wednesday blog post that the blockchain’s Ropsten test network (testnet) has begun to wind down, with a full shutdown anticipated for sometime between Dec. 15–31. The news comes as developers have gradually stopped participating on the testnet over the past few months, and participation rates have declined. Ethereum runs testnets so that developers can run software before launching it on Ethereum’s main network (mainnet). Test networks essentially act as copies of the Ethereum mainnet, and they allow client teams, infrastructure providers and developers to test any changes to their applications before launching them in a more high-stakes environment. Ethereum will also shut down its Rinkeby testnet sometime in mid-2023, giving developers ample time to move over any applications they have running to the Goerli or Sepolia testnets.

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