Here's your Friday edition of Cryptonews Crunch, featuring the latest stories with NearPay announcing the launch of their new virtual crypto card & wallet, Binance signs a memorandum of understanding with the city of Busan (South Korea), and Alex Krüger warns the public about a potential "sell the news" event prior to the Ethereum Merge.
On Friday at 09:10 UTC, Ethereum (ETH) was down by 2.8% for the past 24 hours to a price of USD 1,661. The drop was sharper than for Bitcoin (BTC), and enough to make ETH today’s second-worst performer among the top 10 cryptoassets by market capitalization after Solana (SOL). The price drop followed reports from Thursday that Ethereum developers have identified bugs in the software ahead of the Merge. While developers discussed the technical risks heading into the Merge, traders were – as always – focused on price. Among them was the popular economist and crypto trader Alex Krüger, who warned of risks to market players as the Merge nears. He reminded his followers that BTC fell 20% two days before its last halving, and 10% just hours before the halving, calling it “a classic case of positioning driven ‘sell the news’.” Meanwhile, Binance announced on Thursday that it plans to support any tokens that may come as a result of hard forks during Ethereum’s switch to proof-of-stake.
In more news, Binance signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the City of Busan that would allow the latter to “receive technological and infrastructure support from Binance for the development of the city's blockchain ecosystem and promotion of the Busan Digital Asset Exchange.” The latter has been in the pipeline for some time, and city authorities envisage the creation of a kind of city-run stock market for certain types of cryptoassets, such as security tokens. This plan has remained very much on the drawing board for several years, with the government of President Moon Jae-in maintaining a hardline stance on all things crypto-related – particularly domestic token launches, which remain outlawed in all their forms.
Seeking to bring what the company describes as "the modern digital banking experience" to the cryptosphere, crypto finance protocol NearPay has launched virtual crypto cards and its wallet for iOS and Android. The service is currently available to residents of the European Economic Area (EEA), which comprises the European Union member states and Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway, as well as the UK. NearPay Wallet is now available on all platforms, including Web, iOS, and Android.
The Argentinian crypto firm Ripio has unveiled a Visa card in Brazil that lets its users pay in crypto. The card is a prepaid debit card that can be used with any merchant who accepts Visa payments, which will be compatible with all 28 of the tokens that Ripio lists on its crypto exchange platform. Customers can also choose to pay in fiat with the same card, and will receive 5% BTC cashbacks on all purchases.
Police in Seoul, South Korea, have arrested 178 people on suspicion of buying and selling drugs online using cryptoassets as a means of payment. According to JTBC, Seoul Metropolitan Police officers said they had arrested 12 suspected drug dealers and 166 of their alleged customers, stating that the individuals had all made use of darkweb portals and crypto payments. The officers also stated that they had seized tokens, some USD 8,500 worth of cash, 12kg of marijuana, and significant amounts of drugs such as synthetic cannabinoids, ketamine, and MDMA (ecstasy).
To celebrate the first Gamefiversary of GameFi (GAFI), GameFi brings the Catventure in the Multiverse. This very first event will bring you a captivating, thrilling, and diverse experience of multiple gameplays.
Campaign period: 13:00:00 on August 24, 2022 - 13:00:00 September 8, 2022 (UTC)
The Singapore-based crypto exchange Zipmex plans to meet with potential investors and Thailand’s financial regulator to discuss a recovery plan, per Bloomberg. The company has previously sought protection from creditors after it ran into a liquidity crunch following exposure to the troubled crypto lender Babel Finance. It also stated that representatives from KordaMentha Pte Ltd have been engaged as financial advisors and proposed scheme managers to assist Zipmex through the restructuring process.
Elrond (EGLD), currently the 46th most valuable cryptoasset by market capitalization, will become available to more than 20 million users via the popular online payment platform Revolut, Elrond announced on its blog on Friday.
Police in Afghanistan’s Herat province last week shut down 16 crypto exchanges and arrested employees at some of them, local Ariana News reported. “Da Afghanistan Bank (central bank) stated in a letter that digital currency trading has caused lots of problems and is scamming people, therefore they should be closed. We acted and arrested all the exchangers involved in the business and closed their shops,” Sayed Shah Sa’adat, head of the counter-crime unit of Herat police, was cited as saying.
CoinSwitch Kuber, a major Indian crypto exchange backed by venture capital giant Andreessen Horowitz, has been raided by anti-money laundering agents from India’s Enforcement Directorate, per Bloomberg. The exchange is reportedly suspected of violating foreign exchange laws in the country.
The US Securities and Exchange Commission(SEC) has delayed a decision on a spot bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) application from asset management firm VanEck. The date for when the SEC must either approve or disapprove the application has now been set to October 11.
FTX Ventures, the venture arm of major crypto exchange FTX, has denied a report from Bloomberg that it plans to merge with crypto trading firm Alameda Research’s venture business. “This seems like a big misrepresentation to me,” FTX CEO and Alameda founder Sam Bankman-Fried wrote on Twitter in response to the story.
Criminal defense attorneys in New York have warned that insider trading charges against a former employee at NFT marketplace OpenSea represent an attempt at expanding the reach of federal fraud laws, Law360 has reported.
Su Zhu, the co-founder of the insolvent crypto hedge fund Three Arrows Capital(3AC), has said Teneo, the crypto hedge fund's liquidator, made “inaccurate and misleading” representations to the High Court of Singapore, per Bloomberg.
Compound, a major DeFi protocol for borrowing and lending crypto, has launched a new “streamlined” version of the protocol, called Compound III. The launch follows a successful governance proposal, said the team.
Arcade and video game company Atari is launching a new NFT collaboration with artist Butcher Billy called 50 years of Atari. The collection will include 2,600 unique NFTs based on 15 original works by the artist, an announcement said.